Marketing Chapter 3 Similarly Company That Successfully Deals With Problem Before Its Competitors Has Created

Document Type
Homework Help
Book Title
Basic Marketing Research 9th Edition
Gilbert A. Churchill, Tom J. Brown, Tracy A. Suter
Chapter 3 Problem Formulation
I. Learning Objectives:
Upon completing this chapter, the student should be able to:
1. Specify the key steps in problem formulation.
1. Meet with the Client
3. State the Manager’s Decision Problem
5. Select Research Problem(s) to be Addressed
2. Discuss two goals of the initial meeting with the research client.
2. Obtain as much information as possible about the problem/opportunity
1. Unanticipated or unplanned change (reactive research)
4. Explain why the researcher must be actively involved in problem formulation.
5. Distinguish between two types of decision problems.
Discovery-oriented decision problem seeks answers to “what” or “why”
6. Distinguish between a decision problem and a research problem.
7. Describe the research request agreement.
8. Outline the various elements of the research proposal.
A. Tentative project title
B. Statement of the marketing problem
D. Outline
E. Data sources and methodology
F. Estimate of time and personnel requirements
G. Cost estimates
9. Describe the purpose of a request-for-proposal (RFP).
Originating from the research-seeking company, it is a means to (1) state the
II. Chapter Outline:
A. Problems versus Opportunities
B. The Problem Formulation Process
Exhibit 3.1: Key Steps in Problem Formulation
1. Step One: Meet with Client
a. Planned Change versus Unplanned Change
3. Step Three: State the Manager’s Decision Problem
4. Step Four: Develop Possible Research Problems
6. Step Six: Prepare Research Request Agreement
Research window 3.1: Research Request Agreement Presented to
C. The Research Proposal
1. Problem Definition and Background
3. Sampling Plan
5. Analysis
7. Personnel Requirements and Cost Estimate
8. Appendices
Chapter 3 Problem Formulation
D. Choosing a Research Supplier
Manager’s Focus
III. Answers to Review Questions:
1. This saying means that both situations require good information about the
marketing environment before managers can make important decisions. Today’s
2. The sources of marketing problems/opportunities are unplanned changes in the
marketing environment and planned changes in the marketing environment.
3. “Normal thinking” is when a problem/opportunity is looked at in a routine way. It
4. The basic nature of a decision problem is to be able to state the problem facing
the decision maker for which the research is intended to provide answers.
5. The fundamental characteristics of the two types of decision problems are as
6. A research problem is a restatement of the decision problem in research terms,
7. A research request agreement summarizes the problem formulation process in
written form and is submitted to managers for approval. It includes the following
8. A research proposal is a written statement that describes the marketing
problem, the purpose of the study, and a detailed outline of the research
9. When choosing a research supplier, one should consider the degree of objectivity
IV. Instruction Suggestions:
1. Begin with a discussion of the task of problem formulation. Note to students,
perhaps using the shift to digital music facilitated by iPods and similar portable
2. Students will enjoy a discussion of the problems with “normal thinking,” especially
if the instructor can work into the class discussion some of the many creative
3. Students often seem to struggle with the ambiguity involved in problem
formulation. The development of a step-by-step process for defining the problem is
helpful, but there are still many subjective aspects of problem definition. Most
students will benefit from a discussion of the different goals for discovery- versus
the earliest stages of most problems/opportunities there is critical need for
discovery-oriented research.
4. The relationship between decision problems and research problems can be
5. The role to be played by marketing research in decision problems can be indicated
by discussing how research can help:
(a) in gaining insight into the decision-making environment
6. Class action can then be directed at the use of a formal research request
agreement, a research proposal, and/or a request-for-proposal to ensure that the
7. Some instructors may find it useful to discuss the research proposal at this point,
while others will want to postpone such a discussion until later on in the course
8. Discussion can next be guided towards the choice of using a marketing research
supplier. The use of outside suppliers by most companies is normal business
practice. However, in order to prosper from the choice three questions need to be
asked: 1) Is the research really necessary?; 2) What are the most critical areas of
uncertainty and the issues that would benefit the most from research?; and 3) Do
the capabilities of the research supplier meet the needs of the company? A formal

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