Cambridge AS A Level Business Studies/ ZIMSEC Advanced Level Business Studies/ Business Enterprise Skills Notes: Introduction To Marketing And Market Research

  • Marketing has been defined as the process of identifying and anticipating consumer needs and wants so they can be satisfied at a profit
  • Market research is concerned with identifying and anticipating these needs as the word research suggests
  • Market research is often confused with marketing research and with good reason however the two are not one and the same thing
  • Market research involves the systematic and objective collection, analysis, evaluation and presentation of information relating to markets and marketing which helps management in making informed decisions
  • In short market research is when the business in question research its market and try to identify the characteristics of this market
  • This will include for example trying to ascertain things like:
    • The size of the market
    • The attributes of the target market
    • Competitors/Players in that particular market
    • Trends withing that market etc
  • Marketing research meanwhile refers to the systematic gathering, recording, and analysis of qualitative and quantitative data about issues relating to marketing products and services
  • Marketing research goes beyond market research and includes the following aspects:
    • Market research-includes researching on things like market size, geography, customer traits/behaviour, coming up with sensible ways to segment the market etc
    • Promotion research-where the effectiveness and efficiency of the current and past promotional activities is evaluated and future strategies formulated
    • Product research-where the strengths/weaknesses of the business’s current product line up are weighed. New products can be developed based on other data, product variations in terms of the branding, packaging etc implemented. New uses for current products researched.
    • Sales research-a thorough look at the selling activities of the organisation including an evaluation of selling methods e.g. is the business selling online, should it consider selling online etcExport market research-where potential export markets and what is required to sell in these are considered
    • Competitor research-an evaluation of the marketing efforts and effectiveness thereof of the business’s rivals
    • Macro-economic and microeconomic research-a look at the business’s economic environment and how it impacts on the business’s marketing efforts. For example, during a depression, people are less likely to spend freely and will consider cost to be an important factor
  • Marketing research is also divided into:
    • Secondary ResearchPrimary Research
  • In addition to this marketing research can also be classified according to the data it yields that is:
  • Qualitative data and
  • Quantitative data

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