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Market Research

by Rahul

Entrepreneurial Marketing 445

Guest Speaker:
Kaiping Zhang
Business Librarian
Secondary Market Research Resources
Why Market Research?

 Continually recognize emerging opportunities

 Effectively capitalize on the most promising
 Decisions about product features, target
audiences, prices, communication methods,
distribution approaches and much more…
Market Research

 Any reliable information that improves

marketing decisions
 Trade offs (how much information is
collected, from which sources, collected in
what manner, at what cost, and completed by
what date)
Market Research as a Logical Process

Recognize and define managerial problem

The set up Set Research Objectives

Establish simple hypotheses

Identify information needed

Market Research as a Logical Process

Perform secondary data search


Obtain primary data

Develop research design
The Determine sampling strategy
Design questionnaire or measure instrument

Collect data

Analyze data
Market Research as a Logical Process

 Secondary data: information that has been

previously collected, such as government
reports, trade association studies, past
marketing research studies or internal
company data files.
 Primary data: new information generated by
the by the researcher to address a particular
Market Research as a Logical Process

The Write report

Select the most appropriate
decision decision alternative
Backward Approach
Determine the key management
decisions to be made

Specify information inputs that would

The set up lead to one decision alternative versus
other decision alternatives

Prepare sample tables or short report

containing the kinds of information
that would best help make
the managerial decision

Determine the analysis that will be

necessary to fill in the tables or report

Determine what questions must be

asked to provide the data required
by the analysis

Ascertain whether needed questions

have been answered already
Backward Approach

Design sample

Implement research design

Analyze data
Traditional vs. Entrepreneurial
 Surveys  Richer insights
 Large sample  Lower cost
 Professional firm  Less complexity
 Customers rational  Customers emotional
 Start with product:  Tap unconscious mind
attributes, features, of buyers
benefits  Start with consumer
 Analytical and
Principles to Guide the
Entrepreneurial Research Process
 Think Like a Guerrilla: unconventional tactics and
unorthodox practices
 Make Use of Your Surroundings
 Find Insights in the Ordinary
 Explore the Unconscious
 Build Research into Daily Operations
 Use Technology Creatively
 Create and Mine Databases
Low Cost Effective Research

 Qualitative
 Observe Customers in Action
 Garbology
 In-depth Interviews
 Individual (Lead User Research)
 Focus Groups
 Projective Techniques
Snowball Sampling

 Identify one or more contacts inside the

buying organization. The initial contact is
telephoned and asked to identify four people
inside the organization who would be
meaningfully involved in a buying decision.
Tally the two or three names that are
mentioned the most times. Create a qualified
sample from the ground up.
Other inexpensive methods

 Garbology: Study of a market by examining

what it discards.
 Monitor weblogs: A blog is a website that
includes user-generated content, typically on
some focused topic.
Low Cost Quantitative Research

 Survey Research
 Web based
 Consumer panels
 Experimentation
 Archival Studies (secondary data)
 Internal archives (company records)
 External archives
Lead User

 An Individual who has needs for which no

solution exists and who often has ideas for
effective products that have not yet been

 Use of field work to capture behavior and

human reactions in the natural setting as they
Environmental Scanning
Characteristics of
Changing External Environments
• Environmental Change

• Environmental Complexity

• Resource Scarcity

• Uncertainty
The Role of the Macroenvironment
HBR Scanning the Periphery
 Mattel Barbie vs. Bratz
 Avoid being blindsided
 See changes sooner and capitalize on them
 “What don’t we know that might matter?”
 Improving Peripheral Vision
HBR Scanning the Periphery
 Define Scope
 Match capability with need
 Companies in complex, rapidly changing
environments require well-develop peripheral
 Companies in relatively simple, stable
environments have less of a need.
HBR Scanning the Periphery
 Learning from the past
 “What have been our past blind spots? What is
happening in these areas now?”
 Is there an instructive analogy from another
industry? (Nanotech and GMO)
 Who in your industry is skilled at picking up on
weak signals and acting on them ahead of
everyone else?
HBR Scanning the Periphery
 Examining the Present
 What important signals are you rationalizing away?
(cheaper products?)
 What are your mavericks and outliers trying to tell you?
(Organon drug company, secretary and cheerful allergy
 What are peripheral customers and competitors really
thinking? (Complainers and defectors)
HBR Scanning the Periphery
 Envisioning New Futures
 What future surprises could hurt (or help) us?
 What emerging technologies could change the
game? (focus on customer conditions: over
served, underserved and unable)
 Is there an unthinkable scenario?
Key Ideas

 Entrepreneurial marketer has two

overarching responsibilities:
 Continually recognize emerging opportunities
 Effectively capitalize on the most promising
Key Ideas

 Firms must be proactive in gathering and

interpreting inputs from the external environment
 Ongoing intelligence on customers, markets,
distributors and competitors.
 Changes about product features, target audiences,
prices, communication methods, distribution
approaches and much more…
Key Ideas

 Market research reduces uncertainty

surrounding managerial decisions.
 Best to use a logical process.
 Entrepreneurial: lower cost and greater
 Calculated part of calculated risk-taking