What Is Marketing Research? Why Is It Needed by Companies?
THE UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST INDIES Undergraduate Coursework Accountability Statement (To be completed by student) ACADEMIC YEAR: 2009/2010 SEMESTER: SUMMER COURSE CODE: MKTG3000_3 TITLE: Marketing Management NAME: Troy Lamontagne ID: 03620362 ASSIGNMENT: Graded Mini Essay What is marketing research? Why is it needed by companies? 1. I hereby certify that I am the author of the attached item of coursework and that all materials from reference sources have been properly acknowledged. . I understand what plagiarism is and what penalties may be imposed on students found guilty of plagiarism. 3. I certify that this paper contains no plagiarised material. 4. I certify that this is my own work and that I did not receive any unfair assistance from others (including unauthorized collaboration) in its preparation. 5. I certify that this paper has not previously been submitted either in its entirety or in part within the UWI system or to any other educational institution. 6.
In the case of group work: a.
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I certify that the individual work of each member of the group has been clearly indicated; b. that where no such indication has been given, I take the responsibility for the work as if it were the section of the paper for which I am solely responsible; and c. that I have not collaborated with any members of the group to breach the University’s regulations. Signature: Troy Lamontagne Date: Saturday 3rd July 2010 WHAT IS MARKETING RESEARCH? WHY IS IT NEEDED BY COMPANIES? a.
Definitions and Objectives: Green and Tull have defined marketing research as “… the systematic and objective search for, and analysis of, information relevant to the identification and solution of any problem in the field of marketing. ” It seeks to understand the best ways to connect a consumer and a product, with the hope that the consumer will buy. This involves assessing the marketing strategy in use for that product or product line, and finding out whether they are working. This also involves studying the marketing techniques of other companies.
Marketers begin research with a problem or a question. They want to know why a particular market is doing well or not doing well and what can be done to change that. They may also want to know why consumers are not buying some products, but purchasing similar products. Research is then done to answer the question, and that answer can be turned into a marketing technique that may get better results. There are two types of marketing research. The first is consumer market research. The goal is to study the purchasing habits of consumers.
This can be done by tallying up how much of a product is sold, through surveys or via other means. The information gathered from consumers can be used to analyze current marketing campaigns and to create new ones. The second type of marketing research is business to business research, which studies how businesses sell products and services to other businesses. For example, Company A sells computer equipment to companies B and C. Someone may be interested in seeing how companies B and C found out about the equipment, how company A marketed its product and how good the market for that product is.
Some of the important business decisions that a market research helps and aids is product line, choice of a good location, sales projections, pricing strategy, where to advertise, offering credit, how much capital might be required, how much floor space might be required, how much inventory might be ordered, how much equipment and supplies would be required or how many employees should be hired. Explanation and Process: As an aspect of marketing activities, marketing research can be broken down into primary and secondary research.
Primary research, involves the compilation of research for the purpose it was intended. Secondary research, is initially conducted for one purpose, but often used to support another purpose. By these definitions, an example of primary research would be market research conducted into health foods, which is used solely to ascertain the needs/wants of the target market for health foods. Secondary research, according to the above definition, would be research pertaining to health foods, but used by a firm wishing to develop an unrelated product. There also exist other modes of marketing research:
Exploratory research has the goal of formulating problems more precisely, clarifying concepts, gathering explanations, gaining insight, and forming hypotheses. It can be performed using a literature search, surveying certain people about their experience, focus groups and case studies. Descriptive research seeks to describe users of a product, determine the proportion of the population that uses the product or predict future demand for a product. Causal research seeks to find cause and effect relationships between variables. It accomplishes this goal through laboratory and field experiments.
Conclusion: Marketing Research is valuable for generating new concepts, getting feedback on proposed advertising or gaining insight into attitudes and opinions about a new product. The distinction between marketing within a firm’s home country and marketing within external markets is disappearing. Cognizant of this, firms need to reorient their marketing strategies to meet the challenges of the global marketplace, in addition to sustaining their competitiveness within home markets. Social norms affect business practices, since they are a factor in the demand for a product.
In the tobacco industry, for example, adolescents in developing countries are often the focus for the marketing and advertisement campaigns due to their vulnerability. Tobacco companies will often use symbols and fabrications in western society associated with smoking as a means of attracting these prospective consumers. A company marketing pork would experience less sales in an Islamic country, than it would in China, which is the world’s largest consumer of pork. Marketing research does not make decisions and it does not guarantee success. Marketing managers may seek advice from marketing research specialists.
It is important that research reports specify alternative courses of action and the probability of success, of these alternatives. However, it is marketing managers who make the final marketing decision and not the researcher. The second observation, that marketing research does not guarantee success, is simply recognition of the environment within which marketing takes place. Consider the marketing problem of determining how much to spend on a promotion in order to achieve a given market share. The link between promotional expenditure and sales is not so direct.
There are many more intervening variables, including: the medium used to advertise, the effectiveness of the promotional message, the length and frequency of the campaign, not to mention the many dimensions of the product, price and distribution. References Green, P. E. , Tull, D. S. and Albaum, G (1993), Research For Marketing Decisions, 5th edition, Prentice-Hall Kerlinger, FN. (1994) Foundations of Behavioural Research, 1st edition, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, p. 174. QuickMBA. Marketing. Retrieved July 3, 2010, from http://www. quickmba. com/marketing/research/