THE IMPACT OF MARKETING RESEARCH ON DECISION MAKING
1.1 OVERVIEW OF STUDY
Every marketing manager as a task of managing all marketing activities in his organization by taking important decision that can ensure successful marketing of the product or service. He requires timely, adequate, reliable and precise information to make his marketing – oriented decisions. That part of his professional field responsible for providing information about what is going on; weakness and strength of his marketing effort, what he has to do to exploit marketing effort, what he has to do to exploit marketing opportunities and avoid threats.
Research can be defined as the manipulation of ideas, concepts, variables, situations, symbols, empirical evidence and other phenomena in order to arrive at a generalizable conclusion that might constitute theory in future. (Bummer and Bella 2009).
Furthermore, research was defined by Emory (2010) as an organized enquiry dsigned and carried out to provide information for solving a problem.
Alternatively, it can be defined as a means of making enquiry for the purpose of finding out what the real situation is before designing a project offering to meet customer’s refinement or the need of people. (Oladapo, Ekakite, Akpo, Robber and Omoyele 2004).
In Nigeria today, many social and business problem and puzzles exist thereby raising a lot of unexplainable and unanswered questions. Most of the answer of these questions perhaps lies in the ability of the educated Nigerian to recognize the management research. This form of research is most correctively done through the applying of scientific methodology. Although since people first inhabited the earth, there have been information system today tend to lay more emphasis on a computer based information system that on is almost certain of computers.
In fact, evidence of the critical role of marketing research has been stated in the research work with respect to some organizations in the advanced world. One of the most significant roles of marketing research is that it aids appropriate executive in making sound and effective decisions.
The information provided by a well articulated and designed research is though to be that which is relevant, accurate and timely. Thus, the researcher ought to collect information internally from the company, from outsiders and through desk research in order to present factual and objective report to the management. The information gotten from the research has the potential to improve the capacity of business organization to survive in the new competitive and changing environment. Its adoption is observed to be very low in Nigeria within the organization, in that much has not been envisage or known with regard to the impact or benefit those marketing research officers within the Nigerian context.
Therefore, most organizations would want to venture into what appears to be risky and uncertain. Thus, there is need to research into practical situation to find out what impact marketing research has on managerial decision making in order to provide a base necessary for consideration for the adaption or avoidance of marketing research.
But to what extent has Nigerian organization recognized the impact of marketing research?
Quite number texts have indicated the benefits that can be derived with respect to decision making by the design, installation and operation of the marketing research.
But in summary, it is still argued that coping with or avoiding such problem and achieving significant benefit is possible from a well designed marketing research process and strategy. Yet if the assumption that an effective marketing research system has a lot to offer for effective decision making by the manager of existing organization and such manifestation can only be linked to business in the developed world.
Perhaps te reason for thus may be attributed to the fact that research emanated from or belong to a group of marketers in the developed countries, or that application and adaptation of marketing research system to aid decision making also started with businesses in these developed countries. And the reason possibly could be that lessons about lessons about success and profitability, failures and losses in implementing a marketing research system were first learnt, reaped or paid for by business in the advanced world. It is not worth, however, that subsequent development of a successful marketing research were carried out of the experience of the businesses.
1.2 STATEMENT OF PROBLEM
In todays high competitive, dynamic and challenging marketing environment, the level cum quality of information gathered through marketing research are very critical to the growth and survival of the organization. Also, the unpredictable and transient nature of consumers which studies have shown is more complex, because customer’s needs and buying motives are often anything but obvious. Consumers themselves cannot tell you exactly what they need and why they buy. To gain good customer’s insight, marketers must effectively amangem marketing information from a wide range of sources.
A rapid turnover is a mean to an end, but not an end itself, only an effective marketing research can achieve this, but the question is, if marketing managers are quite aware that an effective marketing research system can help to facilitate this?
Furthermore, it is important to state that marketing research is a potential tool for effective decision making. Marketing managers are therefore perturbed on how to get it right in the face of changes in the ever evolving marketing environment, consumer thirst, demand for product and services, competitors’ product and service. Is marketing research capable of providing better or best solution?
Thus, a company’s marketing research and information system must do more than simply generate lots of information. The real value of marketing research and marketing lies on how it is used in the customers and competitors insight that it provides.
Therefore, this study seeks to assess the impact of marketing research on decision making at the Nigerian Bottling Company Onitsha.
1.3 OBJECTIVE OF STUDY
The purpose or aim of this research study is to bring to the awareness of the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) management on the impact of marketing research on decision making.
Marketing Research (MR) provide us with the required information to guide the management to be able to take effective decisions. The following aspect of marketing research which is explained below must be considered;
Product Research: This involves the researcher in seeking for knowledge about the level of success achieved by product attributes; size, colour, design, shape, weight, labeling, brand name, packaging, guaranty, warranty and other auxiliary services. Comprehensive test are carried out on other product concepts and attributes to know how the market accept them. In addition, competitive products are examined for their weakness and strength. These findings assist the researcher in recommending areas in which his client can improve and enjoy competitive advantage.
Pricing Research: In this aspect, the researcher is interested in identifying the right price that the product should carry. He compares existing price with existing demand level and what should be the optimum price that can increase the demand. The product-price relationship and product-quality relationship are examined to recommend the price level that client must place on the existing product.
Marketing communication research: This aims at measuring the effectiveness of all promotional programmes used by the firm. It also helps in identifying their adequacies and competence so that the firm can carry out reform in all its marketing communication efforts. The researcher focuses his search light on promotional elements like advertising, sales promotion, personal selling, public relations and publicity.
Distribution Research: in this study, there is conducted, a thorough investigation of activities of distributors used by the firm. The behavior of the wholesales, retailer and other middlemen is examined to know their relative performance in the product marketing. In addition, there is need to consider the extent of marketing motivation that physical distribution systems (Transportation, warehousing and customer service efforts) contribute to the achievement of marketing objectives.
Marketing and Sales Research: Study on the marketing requires the researcher to investigate and know the number of consumers through forecast, marketing share of the firm relative to the industry, specific pattern of consumption (buying behavior) in terms of social trends size, income, occupation, age and marketing trends. The analyst collects information about existing and potential consumers, how activities of the competitors affect the consumers and sales trends of the products.
Nevertheless, most managers are not aware of the usefulness of marketing research and as such this research project work is to enlighten the management on the impact of effective marketing research, so that they will not experience any constraints in the making of decisions.
Marketing research therefore, has to do with the systematic design, collection, analysis and reporting of data and findings relevant to a specific marketing situation facing the company.
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
In order to achieve the purported objectives of the study, as well as obtaining a vivid understanding of the study problems; the following questions will be relevant:
- Ø Does the Nigerian Bottling Company make effective decision by employing marketing research?
- Ø Does marketing research help the Nigerian Bottling Company in serving the customers better?
- Ø Does the adoption of marketing research promote competitive advantage for Nigeria Bottling Company?
1.5 SCOPE OF STUDY
The research will be based on the impact of marketing research on decision making and thus is based on the effective process of decision making by management which tend to improve productivity and increase sales margin in Nigerian Bottling Company, Onitsha.
This research is to determine how effective marketing research will assist marketing manager in decision making.
1.6 LIMITATION OF STUDY
In the course of carrying out this project work, the research encountered a lot of problems. Such problems that was encountered includes lack of adequate materials, financial constraint, logistic problem, time limit for the completion of work was not enough to encourage a good research project.
1.7 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
There are two (2) methods used in data collection. The two methods are used for easy gathering of the information (data) and also for easy analysis. The two methods that were said are as follows: primary source, secondary source.
The Primary Source: Personal interview was conducted with the marketing manager and some other functional manager of the Nigerian Bottling Company (NBC) Onitsha.
The Secondary Source: The secondary formed the major theoretical part that was derived through critical review of library and also other related literature (material written by others researchers).
1.8 SIGNIFICANT OF STUDY
The essence of this research topic is to analyze and bring to the awareness of the awareness of the organization and also to make organization whether complex in nature or not to really know the usefulness of marketing research on decision making in order to ensure that the marketing objectives are attained. And also to enlighten the management and to appraise the role of the marketing manager in the organization.
1.9 HYPOTHESIS FORMATION
In the course of this research work, the researcher demand it necessary to formulate hypothesis that would enable her to analyze the data or information collected from respondent. In line with this, the researcher tends to formulate the hypothesis to verify whether a hypothesis is true or false.
Ho: Null Hypothesis
Ho: There is no significant relationship between marketing research and decision making.
Ho: An effective marketing research does not enhance better customer’s service.
Ho: Marketing research does not affect the capacity of business organization to survive.