Marketing Reasearch Process:
1. specifying research objectives: In this step of the research process researchers must first obtain answer to the question," what is the purpose of this study"? And what are the objectives of the research?" if these questions are not properly answered at the outset the study is likely to be misdirected and to pursue vague or obscure goals. The probable result will be that the collected data will not be as valid and reliable as desired.
2. preparing a list of the needed information: after a satisfactory statement of the study's purpose and objectives has been established it is necessary to prepare a list of the information needed to attain the objectives. The contents of such a list will be determined by the objectives of the research and the situation leading to the research request.
3. Designing the data collection project: after the research objectives have been specified (step 1) and the list of needed information has been prepared (step 2) the researcher should determine whether such information is already available either in company records or in outside sources. Certainly the researcher should not collect data from the field until the appropriate secondary source of information has been reviewed. If the needed information is not available from secondary sources the researcher will have to collect data in the field and so it will be necessary to design a data collection project.
4. Selecting a sample type: almost all marketing research projects are interested in information about a large population such as all families with children at home or all retail grocery stores. As it is impractical to collect data from all members of such large populations a sample is selected. Various types of samples are possible but they can be classified into two general categories non probability and probability.
5. Determining sample size: the researcher must also decide how large a sample to select. Marketing researcher samples vary from fewer than 10 to several thousand. The researcher must consider the problem at hand the budget and the accuracy needed in the data before the question of sample size can be answered.
6. Organizing and carrying out the field work: field work includes selecting, training, controlling and evaluating the members of the field force. The methods used in the field are very important for they usually involve substantial part of the research budget and are a potential source of error through lack of both validity and reliability. Field work methods are dictated largely by the method of collecting data the sampling reqirements and the kinds of information that must be obtained.
7. Analyzing the collected data and reporting the findings: After all interviews and or observations have been made the completed data collection forms must be processed in a way that will yield the information the project was designed to obtain. First the forms need to be edited to ensure that instructions were followed that all questions were asked or observations made and that the resulting data are consistent and logical. Next the data must be prepared for tabulation. This means that the data must be assigned to categories and then coded so that the responses can be put into the computer. The responses are usually tabulated and analyzed on a computer. The reporting of research findings represents the end product of the research process. The type of report will vary greatly depending on the nature of the project and the audience for which it is prepared. Some reports should include considerable descriptive material covering the details of the research methodology used to obtain the data. Other reports are concerned primarily with a presentation of the conclusions reached.