Madetomeasure field research

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This requires an executive within the organization with responsibility for defining the need for research and briefing and commissioning a research agency to conduct it. Money is needed to pay for the technical expertise of a research agency.

Some research can be carried out by executives within a user organization. Exploratory interviews in industrial or trade research and postal surveys are the most commonly used do-it-yourself research methods because they are possible and practical. However, the fact that they are apparently easy to do means that, as in do-it-yourself in many other areas, a great deal of bad workmanship can result! If an organization does plan to do its own marketing research then the executives concerned will need to know rather more about it than could possibly be covered in a short introductory book such as this. Suggestions for improving personal research expertise are offered in Chapter 17.

Research techniques almost always commissioned from research agencies are those involving large-scale interviewing or telephone research surveys, because these require more routine time and staff than most organizations are likely to wish to handle, or are able to do, cost effectively. Group discussions and consumer depth interviews are normally also commissioned from research agencies since they require specialist expertise for successful application and interpretation.

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2.5 Summary

Any organization is likely to have a need to use marketing research in making resource allocation decisions. The first step is to define precisely why the research is needed, and some examples and suggestions about research applications are given. The next step is to realize what types of research data are available, and six types of research are introduced: continuous research, ad hoc research, internal and external desk research, off-the-peg and made-to-measure field research. Finally, the organization needs a method for getting started and appropriate resources for the acquisition of research data, and these are discussed.

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