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Fundamentals of Market Research Qualitative

Welcome to this course?s first module, ?Fundamentals of Market Research and Qualitative Research?! this article is all about utilising market research to generate the relevant findings that will help your product or service, to make strategic decisions to develop your product or create an effective communication plan, to boost your sales etc. It is needed to keep your organisation up to date with the latest market trends and gain an edge over your competitors in the market.


  1. Fundamentals of Market Research
    1. Importance of market research and market research life cycle
    2. Market research problem and hypothesis formulation
    3. Preparation of a market research brief
  2. Research Design and Data Collection
    1. Research Design
    2. Data Collection Using Secondary Research
  3. Data Collection using Primary Research (Qualitative
    1. Primary Research
    2. Qualitative Research
    3. Sampling for Qualitative Data Collection
    4. Data Collection Using Qualitative Research Methods
  4. Analysis and Reporting (Qualitative)
    1. Data Analysis
    2. Content analysis
    3. Word cloud analysis
    4. Narrative analysis
  5. Report and Presentation

The previous course covered Marketing, Sales and Consumers? buying behaviour. We followed the story of Pooja, Sanjeev and Kartik ? all of them distinct consumer profiles for which you need to create a strong positioning and a tailor-made sales pitch, using the AIDA concept. But how do you get to know your consumers in the depth that you need? How do you actually generate findings, and how do you gather information to make conclusions? This is what this course is all about ? gathering and analysing data; in academic terms, we call it ?Market Research?.

As a manager, you need to be aware of the potential of market research and execute the process on behalf of your organisation. The research will be conducted by an external market research agency in most cases or an internal team (if the organisation decides so). To commission, execute and evaluate the research, you must be thorough with concepts such as market problem, research brief, research design, qualitative research, quantitative research, sampling, data collection, data analysis and reporting, etc. This is what you will be learning in this module.

In the next module, you will learn about quantitative market research and the various processes surrounding it in detail. Furthermore, there will be a case study that will demonstrate all the key concepts in this course.

In this introductory session, you will mainly learn three things:

  1. Importance of market research and market research life cycle
  2. Market research problem and hypothesis formulation
  3. Preparation of a market research brief

Market research would give your business or organisation the advantage of making informed decisions by providing insights into various aspects of your product or service.  In this video, you will learn what market research is and why it?s important in detail.

Market research is a tool used by brands to gain insights into some crucial attributes of their markets, such as market segments, consumer attitude, competitors? behaviours, strategies to acquire potential consumers, the changing needs of the market, evaluation of the best pricing, communication and promotional strategies, etc. It helps identify opportunities and problems and in addressing and resolving them by implementing marketing techniques. This continuous effort by an organisation to understand the entire ecosystem of a market, comprising consumers, competitors, advanced technologies, government policies, and changing behaviours of social, cultural, and economic aspects, is carried out using market research.  

the kind of insights that market research can provide and how these insights can positively impact the decisions made by an organisation. Both the organisations ? LG and Maggi ? used the insights from market research to ?

  • Devise new market strategies
  • Foster innovation for their products/services
  • Develop communication strategies
  • Identify selling points for their products/services
  • Create  consumer strategies
  • Support their management teams? decision-making

You were also introduced to the market research life cycle. It consists of four steps:

  • Hypothesis formulation and research brief
  • Research design
  • Data collection
  • Analysis and presentation

You will learn about each of these steps in detail in the upcoming segments and sessions.

What are the other findings that LG and Maggi generated through market research?

Research Problem and Hypothesis Formulation

The first stage of a market research life cycle is hypothesis formulation and research brief. In this segment, you will learn how to arrive at a hypothesis.

To derive a hypothesis, you need a market research problem or objective. To arrive at a market research problem or objective, you need a market or business problem. In this video, you will learn how to formulate a hypothesis.

A market or business problem is any problem that is related to the market, product, or service offered by your organisation. It may include a dip in sales, bad user feedback from consumers, or similar problems.

A market research problem refers to the topic that has been selected to be studied based on the market problem.

To solve a market research problem, a researcher constructs a hypothesis. A hypothesis is a prediction that you create before conducting marketing research.

A hypothesis should contain the following elements:

You learnt how OnePlus formulated its hypothesis using the research problem.  Let?s revisit the table you saw in the video:

Market ProblemMarket Research Problem
Now that we have identified a problem in the market, do we introduce OnePlus phones?To determine smartphone consumers? preferences and acceptance of OnePlus
Should OnePlus change the target market it identified?To determine the business potential in the identified target market
Should OnePlus decrease the price of its product in India?To determine the impact of sales and profit of OnePlus in India at various price points
Should OnePlus target only online sales?To determine the potential of the e-commerce segment for OnePlus and the cost per acquisition through online and offline sales

Let?s take another research problem and convert it into a hypothesis ?

To determine smartphone consumers? preferences and acceptance of OnePlus.

Using these three elements necessary for hypothesis formulation, you can derive the following hypothesis:

Consumers will prefer smartphones with advanced photography options like that of DSLR cameras since there are no affordable phones in the market with those features.

In the next segment, you will learn about the remaining part of the first stage of the research life cycle, i.e. preparing the research brief.

Research Brief

When your organisation wants to conduct a research, they would either appoint an internal team or outsource it to a market research agency. There is a high probability of your organisation choosing the latter since market research agencies possess the required expertise to conduct a successful market research. As a manager, it is your responsibility to provide a well-prepared research brief to your market research agency. This is an important stage of the market research process and is one of the activities that will require your active involvement. You may not conduct the entire research yourself as your role will entail you to overlook the process and evaluate it. For the successful completion of your market research, the agency must be provided with a research brief. In this section, you will learn why it is important and how to prepare it.

A market research brief is a document that is sent to a market research agency/researcher by the organisation that wants to conduct the research. This document highlights the objectives of the research, the background information regarding the market problem, the target audience, and the impact of the findings on the organisation, proposed timings, and the findings from previous similar studies conducted by the organisation. This document helps the researcher to understand the overall objective of the research and prepare a research design that produces relevant results.

Now that you know the importance of market research, let?s learn how to prepare one

the kind of information that needs to be included in this document. Remember that the research brief should not exceed more than two pages.  In this next video, we will take you through a sample research brief by Cinthol, which focuses on their ?Alive is Awesome? campaign.

Industry experts recommend you to keep in mind a few things while conceptualising and writing a research brief:

  1. In case you are aiming at a target audience that has a varied range of customers, evaluate if your research agency will be able to cover all of it within the prescribed budget
  2. Don?t assume that the research agency will know about your previous researches or some important market knowledge that is crucial to your research. It might be obvious to you but not to them. Hence, it?s best to list them down for their consideration.
  3. Yes, market research will give you ideas for new possibilities, but it doesn?t mean that you conduct one without a clear purpose in mind. You need a set of well-defined market research objectives and an ultimate goal before investing your resources in a full-fledged market research.

Additional Reading

  1. Why Kellogg?s used market research 
  2. Market research for start-ups  

Research Design and Data Collection

Welcome to the session on ?Research Design and Data Collection?. In the previous session, you learnt how to prepare a market research brief. But what are the processes that they will follow, after you send it? They will get back to you with a research design, methods of data collection, sampling and other details. You need to know what these processes are in order to evaluate anything they send to you.

In this session, we will move on to the second stage of the research life cycle, i.e. research design. Here, you will learnt the two types of research design: exploratory and conclusive.

The session will also introduce you to the third stage i.e. data collection

Research Design

After you give the research brief to the agency, they will get back to you with a research proposal and suggest a research design for your market research. Research designing is the second stage of the market research life cycle. You need to learn the types of research designs to evaluate this proposal and give the go-ahead for the research. In this video, you will learn about the two types of research designs ? exploratory and conclusive.

Exploratory researches are done when complete information isn?t available to the researchers. In this situation, the researcher needs to examine all the possible dimensions and concepts that interact with the problem. Expert interviews, literature reviews, and qualitative research are some of the components of exploratory research. The intent behind using exploratory research is essential to EXPLORE a problem or identify the nature of a problem. It is not used to derive a solution to a problem. However, it provides the background information that is required to conduct a conclusive research.

You also learnt how Intex used exploratory research to find out the reasons why its brand wasn?t faring well. However, using exploratory research, Intex wasn?t able to derive insights that will help it tackle this situation.

In the next section, you will learn about the conclusive research design. You will also dive deep into two different types of conclusive research designs, i.e. descriptive and causal research.

Conclusive researches are more formal than exploratory research. This research design will allow the researcher to verify and quantify the findings derived from the exploratory research. It will further help an organisation to arrive at actionable solutions to tackle a particular problem, unlike exploratory research. There are two kinds of conclusive researches ? descriptive and causal researches.

Descriptive research is used to describe a situation in greater detail. It helps in describing the characteristics and behaviours of its sample population. You can use descriptive market research to find the users of your product/service, their buying patterns, the anticipated demand for your product/service, etc. However, descriptive research, unlike exploratory research, cannot be used to find out the reason behind the user?s behaviours.

Causal research is used in a business environment to find out the cause and effect relationship between two things. This research is used to test if a certain change in an existing situation will yield a different result.

You?ve learnt about these concepts through the examples of Intex, Fabindia, and Sony PlayStation, the game development company. Remember what you learnt about the three types of research designs through the following example of Delhi Daredevils.

 Exploratory ResearchDescriptive ResearchCausal Research
Research Objective  To find out the reasons behind the declining popularity of Delhi Daredevils, the IPL teamTo find out the ?level? or ?degree? of dissatisfaction among the supporters of Delhi DaredevilsTo find out if a change in the team anthem will increase the support for Delhi Daredevils

After finalising the research design, the research team will start the data collection process. In the next segment, you will learn about the data collection method using secondary research.

Data Collection Using Secondary Research

After the research design is finalised, the next step is to start the data collection process. Before you start collecting data directly from users, it is important to conduct research and find out the already existing information with regard to your research. This will save you the cost and avoid duplication. This process of gathering already available data is called secondary research. Let?s hear from our experts about secondary research in detail.

econdary research is a kind of research using which a researcher can collect existing or published data. This research process is usually a prerequisite to primary research as you can obtain all the existing data and identify the knowledge gaps, which will help you conduct primary research. You will not be able to find any original data using secondary research because the information you receive is based on data that is already available. Some of the major sources using which you can collect secondary data include ?

  • Websites (of competitors, research agencies, government institutions, etc.)
  • Annual reports
  • Sales reports
  • Government documents
  • Industry data channels
  • Media
  • Internet
  • Previous researches
  • Books and journals

In the next section, you will introduced to data collection using primary research.

a product could use secondary research through the example of Center fresh, the chewing gum. From the same example, you also learnt that all the data could not be procured through secondary research. An organisation needs to conduct primary research to fill the gaps in data.

The major differences between primary and secondary data collection methods. They are ?

Secondary ResearchPrimary Research
In secondary research, you need to use the existing data or information to derive solutions.In primary research, you need to collect fresh data from your target audience directly
The sources for your data are books, annual reports, the internet, sales reports, competitor data, government sites, news, and other such sources.In primary research, you collect your data using questionnaires, interviews, focus group discussions, etc., whereyou directly interact with the people providing the data
The researcher needs to validate the authenticity of the collected data, which involves checking whether it is from a reputed sourceThe researcher needs to validate whether the person/group from which the data is collected is reliable or not
The researcher should verify the context of the data since it might have been collected for a different purposeThe researcher should verify the validity of the data to make sure it?s not outdated
Secondary research mostly helps in understanding a problem in depthPrimary research is mostly helpful for solving problems faced by  organisations
This form of research consumes less time as the data is already availableThis form of research takes more time as the data needs to be collected afresh
From a budget point of view, this will be less expensive because you don?t need to allocate budget for data collection and the collected data will usually be from free sourcesThis form of research can be more expensive as it involves incurring costs for collecting data

To conduct secondary research and how it is different from primary research. As a matter of fact, secondary research is important to gain momentum in your primary research. Based on your secondary research, you can define your research objectives more clearly and plan your research design to start primary data collection. You will learn more about this in the next session.

Additional Reading

  1. External Secondary Research Advantages 
  2. Exploratory Data Analysis and its Importance to Your Business

Data Collection Using Primary Research (Qualitative)

Welcome to the session on ?Data Collection using Primary Research (Qualitative)?. In the previous session, you learnt about the different kinds of research designs and when to use them. You also learnt how to conduct secondary research and how it is different from primary research, is important to proceed further in your research. Based on your secondary research, you can define your research objectives more clearly and plan your research design to start primary data collection.

In this session

You will deep dive into data collection using primary research. Furthermore, you will be taught what qualitative and quantitative market research are and the key differences between the two. Going ahead, you will learn how to select the ideal sample for your qualitative research and the various methods of data collection used in this process.

Primary Research

In the last segment, you learnt how to gather the existing data and use it to strengthen your market research. In the next video, you will learn why it is important to collect data yourself and how it adds value to your research. Let?s learn about primary research from our experts

The advantages of using primary research include ?

  • It provides specific answers to an organisation?s exact research objective.
  • It gives researchers better control of the process of information collection
  • It helps them allocate funds efficiently.
  • The information collected using primary research is the organisation?s property.

In the next part, you will learn that data collection using primary research methods is of two types ? qualitative and quantitative.

Qualitative market research looks into the opinions, attitudes, feelings, behaviours, and thoughts of a consumer and tries to understand the reasons for these.  In simple terms, it is used to understand what people think and why.

Quantitative market research focuses on facts, data, and statistical values. The purpose of this research is to translate consumer behaviour and attitudes into numerical values such that the interpretation can be compared with other datasets.

The table below lists the differences between these two types of primary data collection:

Qualitative ResearchQuantitative Research
This form of research deals with qualitative data, i.e. it is used to measure the consumer?s reactions, responses, attitudes, or feelings towards a product/service.This form of research deals with quantitative data, i.e. data in the form of numbers and statistics, which will be used to derive conclusive findings about a product/service.
Qualitative research deals with more conceptual problems and aims to derive a detailed and complete description of the problem. Often, this form of research is used to understand the research problem in detail in order to find solutions to the market problem.Quantitative research deals with more empirical problems and aims to generate numerical data, using statistical, logical, and mathematicaltechniques.
The researcher may not have a detailed understanding of the problem while conducting this form of research. It is highly possible that the responses through the research can guide and even change the direction of your research.When quantitative research is commissioned, there is a clear definition of the problem and the researcher is looking for open-ended responses to test whether a hypothesis is correct or wrong. The chances of your research being guided to another direction is negligible as the researcher has clarity on the kind of responses that are expected.
A moderator is compulsory for this kind of research. Be it interviews or group discussions or observation methods, it is the moderator who acts as the data-gathering instrument.The methods used in quantitative research are surveys, questionnaires, etc., which do not need a moderator?s perception skills to record or interpret.

You have understood the importance of primary research and have learnt how it is crucial in holding an edge over your competitors. You also learnt about the two broad data collection methods in primary research ? qualitative and quantitative research. But what exactly does qualitative research help you understand about consumers? A lot of leading brands have used qualitative research methods to launch certain products that took the market by a storm. In the next segment, you will learn how two brands (one Indian and one International) used qualitative research methods to understand what the consumer wanted and delivered a product based on the market expectations and became best sellers.

Qualitative Research

Using market research, you can gain an understanding of how to help your product/service achieve your targeted results. There are two kinds of data collection methods that fall under primary research ? one that helps you find if consumers? are buying your product and the other helps you find out what was in the mind of a consumer when he bought your company?s product. In this segment, you will be learning about the second method. This method helps find out the experiences of consumers and reveals their underlying behaviours, perceptions, emotions, thoughts, opinions, etc. that led them to the decision of buying that product. This can be achieved through qualitative market research. Let?s learn from our experts in detail about this.

you will learn about the other findings that Gillette and Saregama generated using qualitative research. Let?s learn about this from our digicanny expert

the examples of Gillette and Saregama, you learnt about the importance of qualitative research and the kind of insights it gives. You also saw how these brands used the insights to make relevant management decisions to develop their respective products.

Some of the major reasons why brands use qualitative research methods are as follows:

  • To test a new idea/product/service
  • To capture reactions of consumers towards a particular product
  • To observe the body language, change in voice, behavioural changes while viewing an advertisement
  • To find out if a consumer can associate a jingle/packaging/taste to the accurate product
  • To understand the entire decision-making process of a consumer when confronted with multiple brands of the same product

Often, researchers use qualitative research as a prerequisite for quantitative research methods. However, qualitative research can be used before and after quantitative research.

  • At the beginning of product development, qualitative market research can be used to generate ideas , evaluate potential product concepts, test marketing communication materials, etc.
  • On completion of quantitative research, which deals largely with numbers,  you can use qualitative research to explain why these numbers are the way they are.

How to build your brand using qualitative market research?

You are not the only one in the market. Consumers are spoilt for choice, and it is your responsibility to ensure they come to your for their needs. You need to know your consumer in and out,understand the deep emotional connect he/she has for you, and use the insights to develop more relationships with more consumers. Some insights from qualitative market research to strengthen your brand include:

  • Unique branding position: There are plenty of brands in the market. You need to stand out from the rest to excel. Find out what people identify as the most valuable proposition of your brand, using qualitative market research, and check how strong that makes you, as compared to your competitors.
  • Fostering happiness: If a consumer expresses discontent, then dig deeper to find out what caused it. It could be anything, from bad customer service to high prices. Asking the ?why? will help you chalk your strategy accordingly to solve the crisis.
  • Address weaknesses: Much like the user experience mentioned above, it is important that the product itself is of superior quality. If you are into the food industry, conduct a taste exercise and ask why the respondent liked/disliked it. If yours is a mobile phone, do a product testing and find out why the consumer prefers a competitor. Use the insight to develop your product and strengthen the brand.
  • Transition from ?good? to ?excellent?: You might have consumers who have no complaints about your product. It doesn?t mean that you should ignore them and focus only on the unhappy ones. Observe and decide what could give them extra satisfaction while using your product/service. If implemented well, these people become living-walking-talking promoters of your brand.

So far, you have learnt why qualitative research is done and how it helps a product or service. In the next segment, you will learn how to select the right audience to conduct qualitative market research.

Sampling for Qualitative Data Collection

Let?s assume that you want to study consumer satisfaction levels of guests who have stayed in Treebo hotels across the country. Reaching out to each and every guest who used Treebo properties is a tedious process and will turn out to be extremely expensive. In this case, the researchers should select a ?set of people? from the large consumer base of Treebo and collect data from them to gather insights into consumer satisfaction levels. The findings are used to further improve the guest experience of every Treebo user in the future. This selection of a ?representative section? of the entire target audience in order to conduct the research and extrapolate the findings back to the target audience is called sampling.

In the following section, you will learn about three major sampling methods used in qualitative research.

You gained an understanding of the three major sampling methods used in qualitative research. They are ?

  1. Purposive sampling
  2. Quota sampling
  3. Snowball sampling

If Treebo Hotels wants to find the reasons why guests liked or disliked their experience, they can use qualitative research to find the answers. How will they select the ideal sample for the research?

  1. Purposive sampling: When the researcher has a perspective about the kind of target audience the findings of the research will be focused on, they select a sample that fulfils these perspectives. In the case of Treebo Hotels, they need to ensure the sample comprises only people who have used Treebo services before and in different cities; this will give the company a more refined insight into the perceptions of their consumers across the country. This ensures a great balance in terms of the diversity of the participants and is close to what the general target audience could look like.
  2. Quota sampling: In quota sampling, researchers identify sub-groups within the purposive sample  to include all possible characteristics in the data, such as age, marital status, socio-economic class, etc. These sub-groups are identified with the assumption that there can be differences in the behaviour of people based on their unique characteristics. In the case of Treebo Hotels, the purposive sample includes their customers who used their properties in different cities. Using quota sampling, Treebo Hotels created further sub-groups such as ?  
    (i) Business travellers
    (ii) Unmarried couples           
    (iii) People who spent ?4000 and below          
    (iv) People who spent ?4000 and below
  3. Snowball sampling: It is a common practice to ask for references of respondents from the current respondent, who may know about similar persons in their network. Thus, instead of a random sample, it looks like a chain or snowball, connecting to the respondents. This is the most useful method when it is difficult to find an adequate number of respondents for certain sensitive topics. In the case of Treebo Hotels, the researchers can asked the unmarried couples they interviewed for references of friends or acquaintances who have used the service.

Once the sample is selected, you need to go to these people and collect the data from them. What are some of the commonly used methods to collect data using qualitative research. You will learn about this in detail in the next segment. 

Data Collection Using Qualitative Research Methods

Qualitative research is exploratory in nature since it aims to gather insights by understanding the underlying motivations and perceptions of the consumer. This forces the researcher to probe further than just understand what the problem is. This leads to large chunks of descriptive data that cannot be quantified and measured easily. Since the information that the researcher is looking for is very subjective, data collection in qualitative research is a long and expensive process. Usually, this also forces the researcher to decrease the sample size to effectively utilise the available time and resources. In the following videos, you will gain an understanding of the major data collection methods using qualitative research.

The three method of data collection for qualitative market research. You will also learn about a few contemporary techniques used in data collection for qualitative market research. T

  1. Focus group discussions
  2. In-depth interviews
  3. Observation techniques
  1. Focus group discussions (FGD): In this method, the researcher organises a group of sample respondents. The respondents is guided by a moderator who introduces the topic of discussion. The moderator makes of note of the points that are raised. With the help of FGDs, the researcher gets a diverse set of opinions from a varied set of people opening avenues for new ideas. There is an active discussion among people wherein they listen to other people?s viewpoints to reach an agreement or disagreement, helping the researcher observe the consumer behaviour.
  2. In-depth interviews: In this method, the respondent has the complete attention of the interviewer, and the topic is discussed at great length. You can expect more detailed answers from these interviews as compared to your FGD?s. Since this is a one-on-one discussion, the respondent is more comfortable answering the questions with more detail and honesty. It is a more flexible approach as you can connect with the respondent over the phone or video calls if the geography  of the participant is a problem
  3. Observation techniques: In this method of data collection, the researcher is an observant who puts herself in a setting with her sample group. Instead of interacting directly with her sample group, the researcher observes the setting and makes notes of the relevant aspects. This method is useful for the reason that the subjects or the sample audience are the most natural when they are not aware that they are being monitored or questioned.

In this video, you learnt about some contemporary techniques that are used by market researchers. These are called projective techniques.

  1. Word association
    In this method, the respondents will be asked to answer with the first word that comes to their mind when they are told certain words. This helps the researcher understand the respondent?s underlying perception towards a product or service.
  2. Sentence completion
    Like word association, sentence completion also relies on the respondent?s ability to complete a sentence using the first word that comes to their mind. This, again, is a true representation of what a user perceives your brand to be.
  3. Role plays: Here, the respondents are given a certain role to play within the context of the organization commissioning the research. There is no script provided to these users, and this is an impromptu setting where the users will act out the situation based on their experiences.

Once the data is collected, it is important to analyse it to derive relevant findings that will help you better your product or service. In the next session, you will learn in detail about data analysis and reporting.

Additional Reading

  1. Projective techniques for brand image research  
  2. Market Research for Brand Positioning

Analysis and Reporting (Qualitative)

Welcome to the session on ?Analysis and Reporting (Qualitative Research)?. In the previous session, you learnt about data collection using primary research and the two types of researches under this: qualitative and quantitative. Furthermore, you were taught in detail about qualitative market research, the methods to collect the right sample and the traditional and contemporary data collection methods under qualitative market research research

In this session you will three major methods used for Qualitative Research Analysis:

  1. Content analysis
  2. Word cloud analysis
  3. Narrative analysis

Furthermore, you will deep dive into the process of preparing a research report and delivering a presentation to your top management

Data Analysis

The data collected for qualitative research is largely textual in nature. The analysis of such data involves the identification and interpretation of patterns and recurring themes. Using this, the researcher generates findings that can be applied to the making of a product or service

the following data analysis methods for qualitative research:

Content Analysis

Content Analysis is a method of studying recorded human interactions, such as data acquired through books, videos, interviews, discussions, observation methods, etc., to answer your research question. Let?s understand this process using an example.

The steps involved in this process are ?

  • Data Transformation
    This is the process of preparing or transforming large amounts of data in other forms to a textual form.
  • Data Coding
    During this phase, the researcher categorises the largely textual data into themes in the form of a word, sentence, or phrase. These words, sentences, or phrases should represent a theme or idea that is a larger umbrella under which you can add more subsets.
  • Data Analysis
    During this phase, the researcher draws inferences based on the codes and categories you generated. In this process, you need to look for the relationship between your broad theme and subsets and create new findings.

In the next part, you will learn the other two methods of data analysis used in qualitative research 

the other two methods of data analysis used in qualitative market research:-

2) Word Cloud Analysis
This is an organized display of words in the form of a collage, usually with different colours.  It highlights the key themes or keywords that your respondents used when asked about the various aspects of your brand. This will help you get a picture of the general perception that people have towards a certain question. The keywords highlight how ingrained certain thoughts are in the minds of people when it comes to the various aspects of your brand.

3) Narrative Analysis
This uses descriptive data to create a story, using which you can narrate to someone why and how something happened. Using these narratives, one can identify certain behavioural patterns and emotions with regard to a product or service.  This form of analysis has a huge part of it covered during the data collection method, where the researcher with an outline of the story probes the interviewee to delve into further details. The analysis should capture the key themes that recur in the story and correlate them with other methods of analysis.

After the data is analysed, it is important to present it in a format that is easily comprehensible for the people using it. In the next segment, you will learn about preparing a market research report and get tips for an effective presentation.

Report and Presentation

Once the entire research process is completed, the research agency presents the findings of the research along with their recommendations, the methodology followed, etc., in the form of a report. As a manager, it is your responsibility to evaluate the findings and communicate the insights to your top management. This will act as a catalyst for marketing actions, tied to the purpose of this research.

In this part, you will learn about the importance of a market research report and the ways it is prepared.

Reporting and presentation are important for the following reasons:

  1. Your report is an actionable item developed after your market research, as it contains the entire research process and findings.
  2. It acts as a documentary evidence of the research and is added to your library, to act as secondary research material for your upcoming ones.
  3. Your management will make decisions based on this report. That is the reason you conducted the research in the first place, and this is the end product that the management expects.
  4. As a manager, this is your responsibility. You may have an internal research team or hire an agency to conduct market research. However, it is you who communicate the end results to the management, and the effective medium is a well-prepared report.
  5. The findings of this research and their impact will have a bearing on the management?s decision to conduct further researches. Hence, it is important that the report effectively communicates every step of the process and produces relevant findings that will benefit the organisation.

A good market research research should contain the following:

  1. Cover Page
  2. Table of Contents
  3. Executive Summary
  4. Research Design:
    a. Background and purpose
    b. Research objectives/questions
    c. Target audience and sampling
    d. Methodology
    e. Explanation of analysis
  5. Results & Findings
  6. Recommendations
  7. Other Miscellaneous information that should be added to the report:
    a. Limitations and challenges
    b. Data collection guides
    c. Data sets
    d. Relevant contacts of stakeholders

Some of the points to keep in mind while presenting the findings to your top management are ?

  1. Do not present the entire report. Summarise and present a concise version with the key takeaways.
  2. Use visuals instead of text-only presentations to maintain the interest levels of the audience.
  3. Add audios and videos depicting real people as this will give the management a glimpse of real people and real emotions.
  4. The tone of the presentation shouldn?t be one that comes across as a showdown of weaknesses and blatant criticism.
  5. Be prepared for questions. In case the audience has a lot of them, use this opportunity and recommend them to read the entire report.
  6. You must present actionable recommendations including short-term and long-term goals.
  7. Avoid research jargon and keep the language simple.

Additional Reading

  1. Analysis and Interpretation of Qualitative Data in Consumer Research
  2. Market Research for Digital Marketing Companies
  3. Benefits of market research reports  
  4. Market research to increase brand resonance and awareness

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