Marketing research is a prerequisite of successful decision making.
o A set of techniques and principles for systematically collecting,
recording, analyzing, and interpreting data that can aid decision makers
involved in marketing goods, services, or ideas.
The Marketing Research Process
1. Will the research be useful; will it provide insights beyond what the
managers already know and reduce uncertainty associated with the project?
2. Second, is top management committed to the project and willing to
abide by the results of the research?
3. Third, should the marketing research project be small or large? Marketing Research Process Step 1: Defining the Objectives and Research
o Marketers must clearly define the objectives of their marketing
o Researchers assess the value of a project through a careful comparison
of the benefits of answering some of their questions and the costs
associated with conducting the research
Marketing Research Process Step 2: Designing the Research
o Researchers identify the type of data needed and determine the
research necessary to collect them.
Marketing Research Process Step 3: Collecting the Data
o Secondary data: Pieces of information that have already been
collected from other sources and usually are readily available.
o Primary data: Data collected to address specific research needs.
o Researchers must choose a group of customers who represent the
customers of interest, or a sample, and then generalize their opinions to
describe all customers with the same characteristics.
Sample: A group of customers who represent the customers of
interest in a research study.
Marketing Research Process Step 4: Analyzing the data and developing
o Analyzing and interpreting the data should be both thorough and
Data: raw numbers or facts
Information: Organized, analyzed, interpreted data that offer
value to marketers.
Marketing Research Process Step 5: Developing and Implementing an
o The analyst prepares the results and presents them to the appropriate
decision makers, who undertake appropriate marketing strategies.
A typical marketing research presentation includes an executive
summary, the body of the report (which discusses the research
objectives, methodology used, and detailed findings), the
conclusions, the limitations, and appropriate supplemental tables,
figures, and appendixes.
Secondary data might come from free or very inexpensive external sources
such as census data, information from trade associations, and reports
published in magazines. o Although readily accessible, these inexpensive sources may not be
specific or timely enough to solve the marketer’s research needs and
o Firms also can purchase more specific or applicable secondary data
from specialized research firms.
o Finally, secondary sources can be accessed through internal sources,
including the company’s sales invoices, customer lists, and other reports
generated by the company itself.
Inexpensive External Secondary Data
o Often, however, inexpensive data sources are not adequate to meet
researchers’ needs. Because the data initially were acquired for some
purpose other than the research question at hand
Syndicated External Secondary Data
o Syndicated data: Data available for a fee from commercial research
firms such as Information Resources Inc. (IRI), National Purchase Diary
Panel, and Nielsen.
o Scanner data: A type of syndicated external secondary data used in
quantitative research that is obtained from scanner readings of UPC
codes at check-out counters.
o Panel data: Information collected from a group of consumers.
o both panel and scanner data, as well as their more advanced iterations
gathered through social media and online usage patterns, provide firms
with a comprehensive picture of what consumers are buying or not
buying. The key difference between scanner research and panel research
is how the data are aggregated.
Internal Secondary Data
o Customer information & purchase history
o Data warehouses: Large computer files that store millions and even
billions of pieces of individual data.
o Data mining uses a variety of statistical analysis tools to uncover
previously unknown patterns in the data or relationships among variables.
Data mining: The use of a variety of statistical analysis tools to
uncover previously unknown patterns in the data stored in databases
or relationships among variables.
By mining customer data and information, the company also
reduces its churn levels.
Churn: The number of consumers who stop using a
product or service, divided by the average number of
consumers of that product or service. The company can focus on what it does best. Overall,