MKT611 Marketing Research Assignment 1 Solution Spring 2013

The Case :
Market research involves identifying customers’ needs and wants for developing new products. With the help of this process the firms develop products that meet the consumers’ needs. Market research, therefore, serves to create a link between consumers and marketers to solve their problems.

ABC Inc. conducted market research to identify consumers’ needs for a shampoo. The market research team generated ideas on how to address the identified needs. On the basis of these ideas, the marketing team realized multiple product concepts to express unique product attributes.
After developing a product conforming to the consumers’ needs which they were expected to buy, the next stage was to test whether it would be accepted by the potential customers.
For this purpose, the test marketing was done whereby free samples of the product were distributed among a group of the target market. Eventually, the marketing team realized that the product could not gain as much acceptability by the target market as was expected. The market research team then engaged in finding the reasons behind the product failure at this stage.
1. Suggest an appropriate problem statement for the case under study. (6 marks)
2. Which of the research designs can be employed by the research team to  investigate the problem? Justify your answer with reasons. (3+4 marks)

There are many ways to classify research designs, but sometimes the distinction is artificial and other times different designs are combined. Nonetheless, the list below offers a number of useful distinctions between possible research designs.

  • Descriptive (e.g., case-study, naturalistic observation, survey)
  • Correlational (e.g., case-control study, observational study)
  • Semi-experimental (e.g., field experiment, quasi-experiment)
  • Experimental (Experiment with random assignment)
  • Review (Literature review, Systematic review)
  • Meta-analytic (Meta-analysis)

3. Suggest a suitable method for data collection to solve the problem under consideration. Justify the suggestion with valid arguments. (3+4 marks)

Data Collection is an important aspect of any type of research study. Inaccurate data collection can impact the results of a study and ultimately lead to invalid results.

Data collection methods for impact evaluation vary along a continuum. At the one end of this continuum are quantatative methods and at the other end of the continuum are Qualitative methods for data collection .

Quantitative and Qualitative Data collection methods

The Quantitative data collection methods, rely on random sampling and structured data collection instruments that fit diverse experiences into predetermined response categories. They produce results that are easy to summarize, compare, and generalize.

Quantitative research is concerned with testing hypotheses derived from theory and/or being able to estimate the size of a phenomenon of interest. Depending on the research question, participants may be randomly assigned to different treatments.  If this is not feasible, the researcher may collect data on participant and situational characteristics in order to statistically control for their influence on the dependent, or outcome, variable. If the intent is to generalize from the research participants to a larger population, the researcher will employ probability sampling to select participants. 

Typical quantitative data gathering strategies include:

  • Experiments/clinical trials.
  • Observing and recording well-defined events (e.g., counting the number of patients waiting in emergency at specified times of the day).
  • Obtaining relevant data from management information systems.
  • Administering surveys with closed-ended questions (e.g., face-to face and telephone interviews, questionnaires etc)