According to American Marketing Association, â€œMarketing Research is the function that links the consumer, customer and public to the marketer through information-information used to identify and define marketing opportunities and problems, generate, refine and evaluate marketing actions; monitor marketing performance; and improve understanding of marketing as a process.â€
Marketing Research is systematic problem analysis, model building and fact finding for the purpose of important decision making and control in the marketing of goods and services.
Marketing Research is a well-planned, systematic process which implies that it needs planning at all the stages. It uses scientific method. It is an objective process as it attempts to provide accurate authentic information. Marketing Research is sometimes defined as the application of scientific method in the solution of marketing problems.
Marketing Research plays a very significant role in identifying the needs of customers and meeting them in best possible way. The main task of Marketing Research is systematic gathering and analysis of information.
Before we proceed further, it is essential to clarify the relationship and difference between Marketing Research and Marketing Information System (MIS). Whatever information are generated by Marketing Research from internal sources, external sources, marketing intelligence agencies-consist the part of MIS.
MIS is a set of formalized procedures for generating, analyzing, storing and distributing information to marketing decision makers on an ongoing basis.
While Marketing Research is done with a specific purpose in mind with information being generated when it is conducted, MIS information is generated continuously.
MIS is continuous entity while Marketing Research is a ad-hoc system.
While in Marketing Research information is for specific purpose, so it is not rigid; in MIS information is more rigid and structured.
Marketing Research is essential for strategic market planning and decision making. It helps a firm in identifying what are the market opportunities and constraints, in developing and implementing market strategies, and in evaluating the effectiveness of marketing plans.
Marketing Research is a growing and widely used business activity as the sellers need to know more about their final consumers but are generally widely separated from those consumers. Marketing Research is a necessary link between marketing decision makers and the markets in which they operate.
Marketing Research includes various important principles for generating information which is useful to managers. These principles relate to the timeliness and importance of data, the significance of defining objectives cautiously and clearly, and the need to avoid conducting research to support decisions already made.
Marketing Research is of use to the following:-
To know about his product potential in the market vis-Ã -vis the total product;
Market Structures and selection of product strategy, etc.
Business and Government
Marketing Research helps businesses and government in focusing attention on the complex nature of problems faced by them. For example:
Determination of Gross National Product; Price indices, and per capita income;
Expenditure levels and budgeting;
The economic policies of Government; and
Operational and planning problems of business and industry.
Market Research Agencies
Marketing Research is being used extensively by professionals to help conducting various studies in Marketing Research. Most prominent agencies being:-
Linta India Ltd;
British Market Research Bureau (BMRB);
Hindustan Thompson Associate Ltd;