Environmental Context ot the Problem Marketing Research Help

To understand the background of a marketing research problem, the researcher must understand the client’s firm and industry. In particular, the researcher should analyze the factors that have an impact on the definition of the marketing research problem. These factors, encompassing the environmental context of the problem, include past information and forecasts pertaining to the industry and the firm, resources and constraints of the firm, objectives of the decision maker, buyer behavior, legal environment, economic environment, and marketing and technological skills of the firm, as shown in Figure 2.2. Each of these factors is discussed briefly

Past Information and Forecasts

Past information and forecasts of trends with respect to sales, market share, profitability, technology, population, demographics, an” lifestyle can help the researcher understand the underlying marketing research problem. Where appropriate, this kind of analysis should be carried out at the industry and firm levels. For example, if a firm’s sales have decreased but industry sales have increased, the problems will be very different than if the industry sales have also decreased. In the former case, the problems are likely to be specific to the firm

Past information and forecasts can be valuable in uncovering potential opportunities and problems. The following example shows how marketers can exploit potential opportunities by correctly assessing, potential demand

Factors to Be Considered in the Environmental

Factors to Be Considered in the Environmental

Smarte Carte Becomes Smart with Marketing Research

Smarte Carte. Inc. with its headquarters in St. Paul, Minnesota. is the leader in baggage cart, locker, and stroller services at more than I ,000 airports. train stations, bus terminals, shopping centers. and entertainment facilities around the world. The company recently developed a new locker using “smart” technology. They wanted to know which would be the ideal markets for this new product and sought the help of Emerge Marketing Expanding into new markets requires knowledge of each market’s size and growth potential, barriers to entry. and competitors. Using qualitative research (like focus groups and depth interviews) and secondary research methods (like Census Bureau information and Nielsen ratings), Emerge Marketing developed baseline information for a number of possible market segments. Based on the key requirements identified for each market, it was found that the new locker technology would be a good fit for amusement parks. ski areas, and water parks. The study had revealed that the features offered by the new product suited the needs of these markets segments the best. Moreover, the competitive picture was most favorable in these segments. Thus. the problem definition was narrowed to determining the demand potential for the new technology in these three segments (amusement parks, ski areas, and water parks).


The Lunch on the Go Crowd

The Lunch on the Go Crowd

This example illustrates the usefulness of past information and forecasts, which can be especially valuable if resources are limited and there are other constraints on the organization

Resources and Constraints

To formulate a marketing research problem of appropriate scope, it is necessary to take into account both the resources available, such as money and research skills, and the constraints on the organization, such as cost and time. Proposing a large-scale project that would cost $100,000 when only $40,000 has been budgeted obviously will not meet management approval, In many instances, the scope of the marketing research problem may have to be reduced to accommodate budget constraints. This might be done, as in the department store project, by confining the investigation to major geographical markets rather than conducting the project on a national basis. Other constraints, such as those imposed by the client’ firm’s personnel, organizational structure and culture, or decision-making styles, should be identified to determine the scope of the research project. However, constraints should not be allowed to diminish the value of the research to the decision maker or compromise the integrity of the research process. If a research project is worth doing, it is worth doing well. In instances where the resources are too limited to allow a high-quality project, the firm should be advised not to undertake formal marketing research. For this reason, it becomes necessary to identify resources and constraints, a task that can be better understood when examined in the light of the objectives of the drganlzation and the decision maker


Decisions are made to accomplish objectives. The formulation of the management decision problem must be based on a clear understanding of two types of objectives: (1) the organizational objectives (the goals of the organization), and (2) the personal objectives of the decision maker (OM). For the project to be successful, it must serve the objectives of the organization and of the OM. This, however, is not an easy task

Buyer Behavior

Buyer behavior is a central component of the environmental context. In most marketing decisions, the problem can ultimately be traced to predicting the response of buyers to specific actions by the marketer. An understanding of the underlying buyer behavior can provide valuable insights into the problem. The buyer behavior factors that should be considered include:

1. The number and geographical location of the buyers and non buyers
2. Demographic and psychological characteristics
3. Product consumption habits and the consumption of related product categories
4. Media consunfption behavior and response to promotions
5. Price sensitivity
6. Retail outlets patronized
7. Buyer preferences

The following example shows how an understanding of the relevant buyer behavior helps in identifying the causes underlying a problem

Posted on November 28, 2015 in Defining the Marketing Research Problem ond Developing on Approoch

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