Marketing research aims to provide accurate information that reflects a true state of affairs, and thus should be conducted impartially. While research is always influenced by the researcher’s research philosophy, it should be free from the personal or political biases of the researcher or the management. (50)
Marketing decisions should be research-based. Decisions based on high-quality information should produce better outcomes. One reason small businesses fail is because owners do not consistently make fact-based decisions.
For this assignment, you will establish the foundation for a market research project. It will be helpful to review Section 10.2 Steps in the Marketing Research Process (Links to an external site. https://open.lib.umn.edu/principlesmarketing/chapter/10-2-steps-in-the-marketing-research-process/) as you complete this assignment. Chapter 10 included recommendations for an entrepreneur in a situation similar to the scenario you are asked to address.
Suppose you own a small residential cleaning service. Your business provides interior and exterior cleaning services for residential homes. The business operates with you and two part-time employees. Your company has been open for approximately two years and has been successful! Local homeowners have realized that your business provides high-quality service. Suddenly though, your profits decline. The loss of profits is troubling. Is the loss of profits the problem, or is the loss of profits the symptom of something bigger? For example, perhaps the firm’s service quality has declined and caused customers to hire competing firms. Alternatively, maybe the local unemployment rate has increased, and more consumers are cleaning their own homes since their budgets have gotten tighter. As a business owner, you need to look at symptoms, drill down to the potential causes, and ultimately implement solutions.
For this assignment, use the 7-step marketing research process to describe how you will address the firm’s declining profit margins. You will only complete Steps 1 and 2 of the 7-Step Marketing Research Process.
7-Step Marketing Research Process
Step 1: Define the Problem
Step 2: Design the Research
Step 3: Design the Data Collection Forms
Step 4: Specify the Sample
Step 5: Collect the Data
Step 6: Analyze the Data
Step 7: Write the Research Report and Present Its Findings
The body of your APA-formatted report must be at least 500 words. An abstract is not required. Your report must include the following sections: (1) Use the specific headings provided in the order given.
Introduction (Do not use the heading Introduction in your paper. The beginning is assumed to be the introduction. The title of your paper should be the first heading used.) Please explain what the 7-Step Marketing Research Process is and why it is beneficial in one to two paragraphs. Include why the 7-Step Marketing Research Process is more effective than unstructured Internet searches for information.
Define the Problem (use this heading)
Describe the scenario by restating the above prompt. Do not change the fundamental scenario, but you can create a name for your business and location. State what you think the problem is and why you think that way. Include a reference to support your conclusion. For example: After you describe the scenario, your problem statement may be similar to: The problem is that Happy Cleaning Service has seen a sharp decline in profits because the local unemployment rate has increased. “Within the most recent six months, the unemployment rate in Florida has increased from 3% to 9%” (Smith, 2021, p. 121). End this section with a marketing research objective. Example: The marketing research objective for Happy Cleaning Service is to survey previous clients who terminated their cleaning service within the last six months to determine why they ended their cleaning service.
The problem statement and marketing research objective should be clearly identifiable as they are in the above examples.
Design the Research (use this heading)
State whether you will collect primary data or secondary data, or both. Please include your rationale. Identify two specific data sources that you will use. Make sure the two specific data sources you will use are consistent with your selection of primary data or secondary data. Please label your data sources as primary data or secondary data if you will collect both primary and secondary data. (Hint: Module 4, Learning Unit 4, Pages 11-13 provides a list of data sources. Remember the differences between primary data and secondary data.) Important: Make sure the data sources you list can help you accomplish your marketing research objective. For example, the above marketing research objective stated an objective was to collect surveys. Therefore, surveys would need to be listed as a type of data source.
Conclusion (use this heading)
Define the Problem and Design the Research are the first two steps in the 7-Step Marketing Research Process. In the Conclusion, in one paragraph, generalize your next step in the 7-Step Marketing Process. Briefly discuss what you will focus on after you have completed the Design the Research step.
Use the specific headings provided and use them in the exact order as presented. Grading will largely be based on the quality of your work and the appropriateness of your approach.
University of Minnesota. (2010). Principles of marketing. Retrieved from https://open.lib.umn.edu/principlesmarketing/front-matter/publisher-information/