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Chapter 1
Friday, October 20
Defining the Problem and
Determining Research
Differences Between Managers and
• Marketing managers and researchers see the
world differently because they have different jobs
to perform and their backgrounds are very
Differences Between Managers and
Discussion and Definition of the Problem
Discussions often take place between managers
and researchers to determine the problem.
Researchers should ask questions relating to:
Define the Marketing Manager’s
Problem…Questions cont.
Online Research and Problem Definition
• Managers sometimes must act fast, Online
research could help
• Positive Outcome: Online systems aid in the
process because information systems speed
information delivery
• Negative Outcomes: 1. Information
Overload or 2. Online environment also
means that competitors and customers have
better information
Define the Marketing Management Problem
and Research Objectives
• Marketing Management Problem:
• Symptoms of failure to achieve an objective
are present. What should be done?
Difference between these two actions
• Symptoms of the likelihood of achieving an
objective are present (opportunity
identification). What should be done?
• Marketing Research Objectives:
• Providing relevant, accurate, and unbiased
information that managers can use to solve
their marketing management problems
Defining the Marketing Management Problem
• Understanding of the Manager’s Situation
Background of the product/service; company
history, overall mission, marketing plans,
managers objectives and her/his resources, etc.
• Clarify Symptoms
Symptoms are changes or _________. Examples
include changes in sales volume, market share,
profits, or dealer orders, also complaints and/or
competitor actions could be indicators
Define the Marketing Manager’s
• Pinpoint suspected causes of the problem.
• Eliminating a symptom does not solve the
• For every problem, an underlying cause can be
• A probable cause differs from a possible
cause. Important to list all possibilities first.
• Specify actions that may alleviate the problem.
• Solutions include any marketing action that
may resolve the problem.
Define the Marketing Manager’s
• Assess the adequacy of information on hand to
specify research objectives.
• Information State: quantity and quality of
evidence a manager possesses
• Information Gaps: discrepancies between the
current information level and the desired level
of information at which a manager feels
comfortable resolving the problem at hand
• Manager and researcher come to agree on
research objectives based on the information
The Invitation to Bid and the Marketing
Research Proposal
• A marketing research proposal flows from an
“invitation to bid” (ITB) or “request for proposal”
( RFP)
• Both define the marketing management
• Both specify the research objectives
• The bid details the research method proposed
by the researcher to accomplish the research
The Invitation to Bid and the Marketing Research
• The problem statement for both identifies:
• the company, division, or principals involved
• the symptoms
• the possible causes of the symptoms
• the anticipated uses of the research
• The research proposal ensures that the
researcher and the manager see the problem in
the same way.
The Invitation to Bid and the Marketing
Research Proposal:
• The proposal itemizes the information objectives
agreed to by the manager and researcher.
• Constructs and operational definitions are
• A construct is a marketing term or concept
that is involved in the marketing management
problem (e.g. brand awareness, product
knowledge, attitude, loyalty, satisfaction).
• An operational definition describes how the
researcher will measure a construct.
Formulate the Marketing Research Proposal:
Translate the Research Objectives to Be
• Relationships are identified.
• A relationship is a meaningful link believed to
exist between two constructs (lower price is
related to greater sales, higher exposure is
related to greater awareness, etc.).
• A model is decided.
• A model connects constructs with
understandable logic
The Invitation to Bid and the Marketing
Research Proposal:
• The proposed research method identifies data
collection mode, questionnaire design, sample
plan, and other aspects of the anticipated
marketing research.