Process of Marketing Research
Marketing research is the process of collecting and analyzing data to explore more about the current trends in the market. Marketing research includes specific inquiries into specific marketing problems.
Good marketing research can offer companies good information about the target market, competitors’ positions, and probable opportunities and threats enabling companies to be more proactively perform in the market.
The marketing research process begins with the identification of the problem or opportunity, followed by defining the objective of the research, making a plan, collecting the data, analyzing it, presenting the findings, and making decisions. Let’s understand each of these steps in detail.
Define The Problem
The first step in marketing research is defining the problem your marketing firm is facing. It is said that once you have clearly defined the problem your business is facing, half of the problem of the research is solved.
Your business may be facing a lot of problems at the same time, so for the research purpose, a problem should be selected which represents the overall problem of the business.
In addition to identifying the problem for research purposes, an opportunity can also be determined for the research. While defining the problem or opportunity make sure to discuss it with other members who may further help to pinpoint the most critical problem the company is going through.
At the end of this first step of marketing research, you should be able to define the problem or opportunity and the reasons why you are conducting the research.
Establish Research Objective
The research objective is what you want to achieve at the end of your marketing research. The objective should define why the research is necessary and if it is conducted how it is helping the company.
The research problem and the research objective should be interconnected and interrelated. Since the overall research is based on the objective it becomes a base for evaluating the results.
In addition, your research objective should be reachable within the resources your company has. It should be appealing to all company members and not rely on heavy assumptions only. Should consider the factual data and information.
Develop A Research Plan
Once the research problem and objective are defined, the next step is to develop a marketing research plan. While making an effective research plan researchers must do a lot of jobs.
The research plan should outline the ways to answer the questions i.e. problems it wishes to solve. It should outline the steps of how the defined problem will be solved and the objectives will be achieved.
The marketing research plan should mention how the information will be gathered, who will be responsible parties for it, and what kinds of methods, and techniques will be used.
You can create the research design once you have determined the type of information you require, as well as the project’s timeline and budget. This describes how you intend to gather and evaluate the relevant data.
Collect the Data
After the successful design of the research plan, the next step in the marketing research process is to collect the relevant data. For the collection of it, you can go through both the primary and secondary sources.
There are different methods using which you can collect your data such as interviews, phone calls, emails, journals, papers, from focus groups, questionnaires, etc.
While collecting the data, some respondents will not feel comfortable answering your questions. Thus, it is your responsibility to make them feel comfortable with you and your questions. The data should be collected with their will not by force.
Once the data is collected, make sure it is adequate and relevant, and if all are set step for the analysis.
Analyze the Data
The data which you have collected are in raw form, it should be analyzed to make it usable. The analysis of data includes the transferring of raw data into useful information. For analysis, you can go through a number of analysis methods mentioned below:
- Descriptive Analysis – Descriptive analysis is a sort of data analysis that aids in accurately describing, displaying, or summarizing data points so that patterns may appear that satisfy all of the data’s requirements.
- Diagnostic Analysis – This analysis will help you to find out the cause-and-effect relationships.
- Predictive Analysis – As the name suggests, predictive, this analysis will help you to forecast future outcomes more accurately through available data.
- Prescriptive Analysis – This analytics tool combines descriptive, diagnostic, and predictive analytics methods to help companies optimize their best course of action.
Present The Findings
After the analysis of the data, it is time to present your findings. You can present the findings in the written format, in a slideshow, or through a video.
Presenting the findings in different ways will let readers choose their choice of reading materials. However, make sure that the finding you preset should be easily accessible and comprehensible to everyone.
Top managers have the right to evaluate the findings you have presented and they will decide whether or not your research finding is suitable take action.
Once the research findings are presented and recommendations are made by the top management about the research finding as suitable, let’s say. The last step in the marketing research process is to take action on the research findings. It is time to develop plans to solve the problem or make plans and strategies to exploit the opportunity identified in step 1.
Once the research has been successful it will be helpful for others to solve similar nature problems as well as get insights on how to do good marketing research.