Mkt 3413 Problem Definition
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Problem Definition & Qualitative Research
-11 steps in marketing research process
When do we know we have a marketing problem?
• Failure to meet objectives or be where we should or want to be
o Market share
o Some other indicator
▪ *typical indicators (measures of success or failure)
• Sales volume: total units or dollar value of units sold in a given time
• Market share: percentage of total industry
• Complaint competitors
▪ **Knowing you have a problem is NOT knowing you have a problem**
• Iceberg sighted- seeing the ice on the top of the water, but not knowing
how big it is underneath
• Make up of a marketing research problem
o Researcher must be a detective
o The Dialog
▪ MR(marketing researcher): What’s going on?
▪ MM(marketing manager): We had a drop in our sales last quarter and again in
▪ MR: Any ideas as to why?
▪ MM: Our competitor dropped prices last quarter, so maybe our customers are
▪ MR: What can you do about it?
▪ MM: I can cut my prices by 5 percent, but I am not sure this will solve the
▪ MR: So, what do you need?
▪ MM: I need to know if my lost customers will come back if I drop my price by
o The marketing researcher does not make decisions. They dig into issues/problems told
to them by the marketing manager. Marketing managers make decisions.
▪ The marketing researcher gets information to help marketing managers make
the best decision out of their suggested solutions.
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