This paper does not intend to provide a comprehensive discussion of the many different forms, methods and techniques of marketing research, but rather to introduce a few basic methods of collecting primary information in international for companies. Each of the methods may be used for a variety of general purposes (Schawk J.L., 2002).
Management international marketing research
A marketing research management involves a system that consists of people, procedures and methods to get information, analyze the information, evaluate and distribute this information to marketers to make good decisions out of it. It is the proper use of marketing research. It is vital because it assists a company to know what it needs I terms of information and how it will use the information to come up with a good decision in the shortest time possible.
It is done by the marketing research team of the company. A market information system includes the sales information systems. These are reports that are made from the up to date sales of a company from the customer and sales representatives. It also includes the marketing intelligence system which is the procedures and sources that are used in the company to obtain information about marketing progress in the environment where they operate ( Bernstein, Scheff Joanne and Kotler, Philip, 2006).
The marketing intelligence system also includes the marketing research process which is the designing, analyzing and collection and reporting of data findings to be sued in the company for marketing. Information about marketing intelligence system can be collected from various sources around the company. Some companies have data in the marketing research departments and others have to go to the field to look for information. We have two sources of information and these are
- Internal sources
- External sources (Chisnall, P. 2001).
Internal sources for Marketing Information System are most places where the company can get information from within i.e. from the books of accounts, various records kept in the company and former research that was done. Those are the information from records previously kept by the company. External sources include those sources that are from outside the company like publications, books, periodicals, encyclopedia and also commercial data that can be obtained by companies by payment of a fee to research companies. Company can also get information from the internet (Kumar, V., Aaker, D.A. and Day, G.S. 2002).
It is very important for a company to have good Marketing Information System because it helps the company to get more useful information quickly, for expansion, it will assist them to predict how buyers will respond to changes in features of products, environment, styles, etc. they also assist the company on competition and information about competitors price, branding. It also assists the company to develop relevant advertising and good sales promotion and they also get good information about marketing tools through Marketing Information System (Manila Bulletin, 2006).
Methods of research utilized
The basic objective of test marketing is to test the effectiveness of a proposed change in a marketing policy and strategy s as to decrease or eliminate the risk attached to such a step. The test method involves an experimental marketing process on a small scale for example the same product may be tested practically in the market in different packaging. A control market is distinguished in which all factors are kept constant in which one factor that is the packaging changes. All other factors are figures’ so it is argues it probably the result of the difference in packaging (Schaik J.L., 2002);.
Various problems emerge such as: which determine the choice of a test market; the comparativeness of the test and control markets; the danger of the carry-over of advertising messages from the test and control markets; the test of the control markets competitors who may attempt to ruin the experiment; retailers who may act differently under test circumstances than under normal business circumstances (Schaik J.L., (2002);.
The field of application is broad and can include: the determination of the potential of new market offering; the determination of the optimum price of a product; and the determination of the most effectiveness advertising message and distribution channel (Schaik J.L., 2002).
The method is concerned with the question of why for example a specific consumption pattern is followed or why consumers act the way the do. The unwillingness or inability of most consumers to explain their behavior gave rise to motivation research. An investigation is thus undertaken of motivations of which the consumer has no conscious knowledge. What persuades consumers to buy a specific product is often not the physical product itself but a total need satisfying market offering and the consumers own conception of ti – they often buy images of thought and not realities. With motivation research the marketing researcher attempts to bring the consumer personality into relation with the personality of the total market offering. The techniques include among others projection techniques such as role play and cloud pictures (Schaik J.L., 2002).
The consumer panel
This method is used to record the spending behavior of the same group of consumers continually over time. The objective of the consumer panel is more specifically: to record the consumer purchases of various products on generic or brand level on a continuing basis; to collect continuous and repeating information from the same households in order to record tendencies in consumer habits and actual expenditure over time and to records tendencies in consumer expectations, attitudes and plans over time. With the aid of the above information a reasonably complete picture can be built up the total market demand and its composition as well as the product is brought when it is bought, the price paid for it who buys it whether it is new or second hand and whether it is an additional or replacement response Schaik J.L., 2002).
The retail audit
It is thus theoretically possible to determine consumption quantitatively by measuring it at some or other strategic point along the distribution channel. A retail audit is the method which measures the flow at the end point that is the point where the products flow the channel to the consumer. It may be done on a hoc basis, which is generally known as trade research or the measurement of retail sales can take place periodically at the same sample of retail stores (Winer, R.S. ,2007).
The application possibilities of the results are numerous. The most customary one are: the determination of the competitive position of the product. The determination of the general competitive position of the and kind of retailers; the determination of the effectiveness of advertising campaigns specifically and marketing communication programmes in general; the informal can be as a basis for marker forecasting and the method the information can be used as a basis for market forecasting and the method presents an excellent picture of the geographical shift of the market demand for a particular product (Vandermerwe, Sandra 1997).
A survey of consumer intentions is usually limited to durable consumer products and for a specific time period. The potential consumers are asked what kind of product and what quantity at specific prices they plan to purchase over a given future period. The intention to buy is of course not always an indication of actual future purchases as purchases are dependent on the availability of the necessary purchasing power and other environmental variables which might affect the consumers’ intention drastically. The information can be made more reliable by taking into account the actual sales over time and the estimated increase in consumer income over time Schaik J.L., 2002).
Conclusion and recommendation
International market research will enable a company have good marketing strategies that will enable them compete favorably within their industry. To serve the international market, different marketing strategies are successfully applied and it is made possible by market research (Keillor, David Bruce , 2007).
Marketing research enables the company to decide what marketing strategies like plotting an invasion sequence, using celebrities in advertisement, lowering prices and specializing in some services will be applied in addressing the market needs. Similarly perfect market strategies will be applied to address the market needs like use of media to advertise, by discovering new market segments, being customer oriented and by outsourcing abroad. These are admirable marketing strategies that have applied in international market by multinational and they should by apply globally to promote the sales (Winer, R.S., 2007).
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