Marketing research is the process of gathering, analyzing and interpreting information about a market, about a product or service to be offered for sale in that market, and about the past, present and potential customers for the product or service. It can be research into the characteristics, spending habits, location and needs of your business's target market, the industry as a whole, and the particular competitors you face. Marketing has a number of methods which are, Qualitative research, Quantitative research, Primary research, Secondary research, Internal secondary research and External secondary research.
Qualitative research provides data on why people buy, what motivates them to buy, or their impression of products, services or advertisements. It can be used to investigate customer attitudes towards an organisation, determine customer reactions to changes in price and learn information about customer preferences lifestyle and aspirations.
The use of samplingtechniques (such as consumersurveys) whose findings may be expressed numerically, and are amenable to mathematical manipulation enabling the researcher to estimate future events or quantities. It can be used to measure product sales week by week, track prices across a variety of retailer and brands, estimate market shares of competing brands and estimating market and its segments.
This research is carried out to find new information required for a marketing research project, which has never previously been collected. There can be internal or external research. Primary research is usually carried out to answer questions that are beyond secondary research. A few examples of primary research are, observation, surveys and experiments.
This research makes use of work that has already been collected by someone else for some other marketing project or purpose. This can also be internal or external. However with secondary research there are limitations. This type of research is widely used and extremely cheaper than carrying out primary research. But some of the problems with this is that the information may not be detailed enough to help the organisation make decisions about their own operations. Also with secondary research the markets may change fast and the information may go out of date quickly. Examples of these are news reports and government statistics
Internal secondary research
This is also secondary information held inside an organisation such as sales records and customer complaint reports. Internal secondary data is produced by an organisation during its day-to-day activities for example, loyalty scheme records, sales by sales person and region and even country.
External secondary research
This information comes from a wide variety of sources outside the organisation. This is also secondary information that is available outside an organisation such as government statistics; this would be one of the most useful sources of external secondary research.
Marketing Research Method
2 examples of marketing research used by SERC
Qualitative or Quantitative Research
Reason for using this method
SERC use surveys as a method of primary research. SERC would use a number of surveys for example a questionnaire. SERC would send a questionnaire most likely by email to be filled out by students so they can find out how they are doing as an organisation and what they could do better.
Also SERC could use observation as a primary method of research. This would be used if a topic needs to be explored, for example how people are getting on in a new class that SERC have recently brought into the college. In observation the researcher will not interact with the people being observed. This type of observation would not be structured nothing will be structured.
Questionnaires provide a quantitative method of data gathering