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8.6.2 Determine the Data Sources and Types of Data Required
8.6.1 Step 1 Identify the Managerial Problem and Establish Research Objectives


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References

  1. ^ finding sources of information sufficient to satisfy the research objectives and ensuring that the sources are credible.
  2. ^ primary qualitative research, such as focus groups or interviews, detailed guides are prepared for conducting the research to specify what questions are to be asked.
  3. ^ key decisions to be made:
    data collection method
    research instruments
    how to contact the participants
    design the sampling plan
  4. ^ Observation
  5. ^ Surveys
  6. ^ 3. Experiments
  7. ^ Common choices include face-to-face (perhaps in a shopping mall or a public place), mail, telephone, fax, email, and the Internet.
  8. ^ Who is the population (or universe) from which the sample of respondents will be drawn?

  9. ^ Who is the population (or universe) from which the sample of respondents will be drawn?

  10. ^ Who is the population (or universe) from which the sample of respondents will be drawn?

  11. ^ target market, defined in demographic or behavioural terms
  12. ^ the sample must be large enough to provide confidence that statistical data, such as mean responses to survey questions, are truly within some narrow-enough range, sometimes called the margin of error.





Designing secondary research is a simple matter of finding sources of information sufficient to satisfy the research objectives and ensuring that the sources are credible. [1]

[2] For primary qualitative research, such as focus groups or interviews, detailed guides are prepared for conducting the research to specify what questions are to be asked.


For primary quantitative research, research design is the most technical and most difficult step in conducting the research.


[3] The key decisions to be made in primary research design are to determine the data collection method and prepare the research instrument, determine how to contact the participants in the research, and design the sampling plan.




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8.6.3.1 Determine the Data Collection Method and Prepare the Research Instrument
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The most common methods of collecting primary data are:

  • observation,
  • survey, and
  • experiment.

[4] 1. Observation is just that: observing subjects using pay phones in Tanzania, in Maddy and Laguë’s case.
Typically, a form is prepared on which the observer records what is being observed, perhaps minutes of use and gender of the user, among other things.

Many Japanese companies favour the use of observation to better understand not only consumers, but also salespeople and distribution channel members.
[27]


[5] 2. Surveys involve writing a questionnaire, which will include questions and either

  • scaled answers (such as those shown inExhibit 8.9) or
  • spaces for open-ended answers.


Demographic information about the respondent is also usually requested to aid in market segmentation and market targeting decisions, which we address in Module 9.

Constructing survey questions and formats for the answers is more difficult than one might expect and is beyond the scope of this book, but several sources cited in this module, as well as Exhibit 8.9, can help bring the reader up to speed on these tasks.[28]

[6] 3. Experiments are studies in which the researcher manipulates one or more variables, such as price or product features, either within the context of a survey or in a laboratory or field setting, in order to measure the effect of the manipulated variable on the consumer’s response.

One common use of experiments is to examine the consumer’s likelihood to buy a new product at different price points.

Different respondents are given different prices for the product, and the researcher tests differences in consumers’ likelihood to buy as the price changes.

This procedure entails less bias than asking consumers what they would be willing to pay for a product, the typical answer to which is ‘as little as possible!’





8.6.3.2 Determine the Contact Method

Once a data collection method is chosen, the researcher must decide how to contact those who will participate in the research.

[7] Common choices include face-to-face (perhaps in a shopping mall or a public place), mail, telephone, fax, email, and the Internet. Exhibit 8.10 shows some of the trade-offs among these methods.

A significant problem with survey research is that those who choose not to participate when asked (‘We’re eating dinner now, and please don’t call back!’ ) may differ from those who do participate.

This nonresponse bias may distort the results of the research. Response rate can also be a problem, since many who are asked to participate will not do so.

Response rates for mail surveys generally run about 15 to 20 per cent. The other types are better or worse, as shown in Exhibit 8.10. Thus, for a mail survey, five to six times the number of surveys the researcher hopes to receive must be mailed.




8.6.3.3 Design the Sampling Plan

Selecting a sample of participants for observational, survey, or experimental research requires that three questions be answered:
  • Who is the population (or universe) from which the sample of respondents will be drawn? [8]
  • What sample size is required to provide an acceptable level of confidence? [9]
  • By what method, probability sampling (also called random sampling) or nonprobability sampling (such as convenience sampling), will the sample be selected? [10]

We’ll discuss each of these issues briefly.[29] First, the population from which the sample is to be drawn must be clearly specified. Typically, it consists of the [11] target market, defined in demographic or behavioural terms (e.g., users of pay telephones in Tanzania), although excluding current nonusers might not be a good idea for Maddy and Laguë if they hope to expand the market.
Second, [12] the sample must be large enough to provide confidence that statistical data, such as mean responses to survey questions, are truly within some narrow-enough range, sometimes called the margin of error.

In general, the larger the sample size, the smaller the margin of error.

If Maddy and Laguë observed only three pay phones in their research, they could not be very confident that the average daily minutes of use at those phones was representative of use for the hundreds of pay phones in Tanzania. A larger sample would give them more confidence. Exhibit 8.11 provides rough approximations of the margin of sampling error associated with different sample sizes.


Tags
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  2. collector bias
  3. competitive advantage
  4. competitive intelligence
  5. computerised reorder system
  6. consumer behaviour
  7. data sources
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  9. experienced user
  10. internal records
  11. just in time
  12. logistical alliance
  13. market potential
  14. market segmentation
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  18. mass market
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  20. michelin; us west;
  21. micro segmentation
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  35. observation;direct observation' tanzania mobile;
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  37. opportunity; research
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  53. pre-delivery inspection
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  60. qualitative data
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  62. quality assurance
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  64. quantitative data
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  66. research objectives
  67. retention programme
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  83. tanzania mobile
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  99. visceral thing that cannot be trained
  100. wild guess