2.06 Understand data-collection methods to evaluate their appropriateness for the research problem/issue Primary Data: Data obtained for the first time and used specifically for the particular problem or issue under study Secondary Data: Data that has already been collected for some purpose other than the current study Secondary data is less expensive to collect than primary data It is most effective for companies to decide what secondary data it will use before collecting primary data. Methods of collecting primary data 1. Survey method – a research technique in which information is gathered from people through the use of surveys or questionnaires. Surveyors usually use a sample of the entire target population to get results Personal interview – involves questioning people face-to-face. Often conducted in central locations. Advantage: People are likely to respond. Disadvantage: Costly Focus group interview- involves eight to twelve people who are brought together to evaluate a product, design, or strategy under the direction of a skilled moderator Telephone interview – quick, efficient, and relatively inexpensive. Disadvantage: some people are unwilling to participate Mail survey – relatively inexpensive way to reach a large audience. Respondents are generally honest and find this type of survey less intrusive. Disadvantage: return rate for mail surveys is only 10%. Internet survey – includes wide-open polls, anybody-can-answer polls, invitation-only surveys, password protected research sites, and Internet – based panels. Methods of collecting primary data 2. Observation method – a research technique in which the actions of people are watched and recorded either by cameras or observers. Mystery shopper – a researcher who poses as a customer Point-of-sale research – a research technique that combines natural observation with personal interviews to get people to explain buying behavior 3. Experimental method – a research technique in which a researcher observes the results of changing one or more marketing variables while keeping certain other variables constant under controlled conditions. Often used to test new package designs, media usage, and new promotions. The Marketing Survey Businesses need valid and reliable data to make good decisions. Marketing researchers need to know how to construct survey instruments that provide the necessary information to assist in the decision-making process. Reliability – exists when a research technique produces nearly identical results in repeated trials. Validity- exists when the questions asked measure what was intended to be measured Questions can be either Open-ended or Forced-choice Open-ended questions ask respondents to construct their own response to a question. Example: “How can we serve you better?” Forced-choice questions ask respondents to choose answers from possibilities given. These are the simplest questions to write and the easiest to tabulate. Can be multiple-choice questions, rating or ranking scales, and level of agreement scales. The Marketing Survey Yes/No Questions: Only gives two options, should only be used when asking for a response on one issue. Multiple-choice Questions: Gives the respondent several choices, important that the options are made comprehensive enough to include every possible response. Usually includes an “other” option. Rating Scale Questions: Variety of questions used such as very satisfied to very dissatisfied, or excellent to poor. Level of Agreement Questions: Used to assess attitudes or opinions. Commonly used options: strongly agree (SA), agree (A), neutral (N), disagree (D), and strongly disagree (SD). Basic Guidelines for Writing Questions Should be written clearly Should be as brief as possible Do not ask leading questions which suggest a correct answer Avoid bias Avoid questions that might cause a respondent to guess at the meaning of your question. Pretest – allows for correction of any misleading questions, directions, or problems Formatting Surveys Need excellent visual appearance and design to appeal to respondents. Use dark ink on light paper (Contrast) Use type that is easy to read Shade sections for contrast Use arrows to lead the reader Use section headers or numbers on individual survey sections Number the questions Directions for completion must be clear Use a variety of question types (All answers should not be yes) Group demographic questions about gender, age, ethnic background, and education, etc. at the end of the questionnaire.