WHY MARKET RESEARCH?
Business success is built-up from identifying and serving the needs of customers efficiently. When businesses were small and their customers were few, specialized functions (such as Marketing, Finance, Production, Personnel etc.) were largely unnecessary. But, the businesses grew bigger and markets expanded geographically, a distinct function is called Marketing has evolved as a specialized function of management, which now has a key role in building profitable business.
When the companies grew large marketing became more sophisticated and specially trained management in this field became most relevant. As the business grew, the distance between the managers and the customers increased enormously. This was due to the complicated system of branch offices, wholesalers, retailers etc. Yet, managers must know who their customers are, what their needs, are their competitors are, if they want to take a sound decision. Often managers rely on their sales representative and dealers for the required market information. At times, they may not get a consistent information. Thus, to avoid the uncertainty, marketing research is being used extensively.
Types of Research
Research can be of two types:
1. Basic Research
It is intended to expand the body of knowledge in a field or discipline to provide knowledge for the use of others. For example : A study conducted by professors in universities for the purposes of obtaining knowledge in the field of Biological Sciences.
2. Applied Research
It is carried on for solving a particular problem or for guiding a specific decision. For example: A study conducted for the purposes of estimating the market demand for a particular product.
We confine our studies to applied research only as marketing research falls under this category. The essential purpose of marketing research is to provide information which will facilitate the identification of an opportunity or problem situation and to assist managers in arriving at the best possible decisions when such situations are encountered.