All about Business and management

September 25, 2007

Marketing research

Filed under: Marketing management — Jagdish Hiray @ 7:08 pm

            The dynamic nature of marketing activities requires manufactures and retailers to make continuous decision on variety of problems and opportunities. Large amount of investment depend on correct decisions being made by marketing managers who must be able to make intelligent appraisals of alternatives and the consequences of their actions. The decision-making relies on the use of information about environment, customers, competitors, and the activities of organization. The role of market research is to obtain and analyze this information and aid-marketing managers to form intelligent appraisals. Marketing research is systematic gathering, recording, and analyzing of data about problems relayed to the marketing of goods and services.

             A company can conduct its own marketing research or hire third party firm. Large companies can have their own marketing research departments where as others have option to buy data from third party firm or engage outside vendor exclusively for its operation. There are mainly three types of marketing research firms: syndicated service research firms, custom marketing research firms and specialty-line marking research firms. Syndicate service firm collects information designed to fit the needs of many users. For example, F.W Dodge makes syndicated monthly reports to the building trades, collecting information form about 165,000 architects, engineers, contractors, public officials, and others associated with the building trades. These syndicated reports are available for a fee and generally covers an industry sector. Many manufactures of food and drug products subscribe to one or more syndicated services on continuing basis. Several companies appoint third party firm to conduct marketing research for their products and services. These firms work with companies to design and devolve marking research plans exclusive for their products. Data collected in this case remains confidential to firm and exclusively supplied to the company. Some firms provide specialized marketing research services such as panel interviews, field survey, store/warehouse audits and independent-sample survey. For example, Starch magazine advertisement readership selects a new sample each time and through interviews elicits answers to a set of questions. Market Research Corporation of America is specialized in gathering information through its established panels of individuals. Some specialized firms provide help in technical areas ranging from design of samples to computer programming and data processing.

             Market research can be conducted by several different ways; can be less expensive and more creative. Some companies have tie up with universities and colleges for project work and work with professors and students to conduct market research. Hiring summer trainees from management institutes to conduct study is very common among companies. This approach offers innovative and low cost solution to companies. Another handy approach is to research published information available on Internet, in newspapers, industry reports. Many websites offers various survey reports at nominal charges. Some companies sell household and business directories prepared by various types of surveys. Another cost effective approach is to study business behavior of competitors by visiting their facilities, studying theirs products, getting information from people who do business with competitors.  

             Starting with less expensive market research approach will give owner an overall idea about craft market. It will also help owner to decide whether it is worth investing in custom market research or conduct any specialize market research.  



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