As well as identifying the most preferred methods for collecting and analyzing information about the state of tastes and preferences of buyers.
As well as identifying the most preferred methods for collecting and analyzing information about the state of tastes and preferences of buyers.
Recently, due to the greatly intensified competition in the field of food sales, it is very important to have accurate and reliable information about the state of the market in question. And also clearly represent the needs of consumers, in order to maximize their satisfaction.
In this paper, the methods of research and analysis that currently exist are considered, appropriate conclusions are drawn and recommendations are given on this issue.
This work can be used as a theoretical and practical material in enterprises working in the field of nutrition.
Ensuring "transparency" of the market, ie. obtaining complete and reliable information about its state and development is one of the main goals of marketing, supplemented by the requirement to ensure the predictability of its further development, otherwise scientifically based prediction, forecast. It is impossible to carry out marketing management activities without knowing the current market situation; without identifying trends and patterns in the functioning of the market mechanism, it is unthinkable to regulate market processes or adapt to its action.
Let's recall the methodology of developing a new product, what an important role is played in it by research operations, demand forecasting. Planned activity, the formation of a strategy for the company's behavior in the market is entirely based on the assessment and analysis of the market situation, the characteristics of the company's own capabilities, its competitiveness, etc. Marketing controlling includes elements of marketing research, monitors market parameters and evaluates the level of implementation of the marketing plan and budget, determining its effectiveness. These examples can be continued, but the conclusion is already clear that marketing activities to bring goods from the sphere of production to the sphere of consumption need information and analytical support. Marketing research, which is designed to solve these problems, an integral part of marketing, it is carried out in the interests of marketing and by its order. Marketing research is carried out either by the marketing service itself or, at its request, on a commercial basis by a specialized marketing (consulting) firm, scientific / educational institution, government organization, etc.
Marketing research - any research activity aimed at meeting the needs of marketing.
Each firm acting on the market as a seller or buyer must have at least the following information:
a) the market capacity and the share occupied by the firm itself, the position and capabilities of the competitor;
b) the situation on the market;
c) own market potential and competitiveness;
d) the reaction of the market to certain marketing actions of the company.
It has already been noted that the company operates in the surrounding marketing environment, it is useful for the company to know the forms and strength of the influence of the micro- and macro-environment on its activities and its results in order to optimally adapt to these influences. Therefore, studying the forces and environmental factors of marketing is an important research task.
There are five stages in marketing research:
Choosing a goal (marketing order), putting forward hypotheses, setting goals;
Development of a methodology for a specific study (formation of a statistical bank, i.e. a set of observation and analysis methods);
Collection, processing and storage of information (formation of an information bank);
Analysis, modeling and forecasting of data (formation of a bank of models), drawing up conclusions and recommendations;
Evaluation of the effectiveness of marketing research.
The following typology of marketing research is known: exploratory research preceding the development of the main research program, they are undertaken to collect preliminary information that allows one to put forward hypotheses and select the appropriate analysis technique; descriptive (descriptive) research aimed at stating real facts, events, indicators obtained as a result of collecting information; a casual study conducted to test the hypotheses of marketing links with environmental factors.
Marketing research is a separate scientific direction that has developed at the junction of a number of sciences. Marketing research has a rather complex methodology, which is a combination of statistical1, econometric2, sociometric3, qualimetric4, behavioral5 and marketing methods proper. The collection of information is entirely subject to the rules of statistical observation, statistical methods are used in assessing the dynamics, variations, structure of market phenomena, identifying trends and patterns; econometric techniques are used in modeling, simulating and forecasting market processes, risk assessment; without knowledge of sociometry it is difficult to study the behavior of consumers, to conduct their survey; the need for a comprehensive assessment of quality and competitiveness forces the use of qualimetry methods. Behaviorism helps to understand the processes of formation and change in consumer attitudes towards a product, in the reactions of demand to the properties of a product, to the processes of its aging and renewal.
1 Statistics is a science that studies mass phenomena and processes that can be quantitatively measured.
2 Econometrics - the use of economic and mathematical methods of analysis, the measurement of the parameters of mathematical expressions that characterize a certain socio-economic concept.
3 Sociometry - characterization of the structure and functioning of certain human groups with the help of quantitative assessments.
4 Qualimetry - a methodology for quantitative assessments of the quality of goods. 5 Behaviorism is the science of people's tastes and preferences.
The following requirements are imposed on marketing research: explanation and prediction of the studied phenomena and processes on the basis of scientific principles and objectively obtained data, identification of patterns of development; complexity, i.e. study of phenomena and processes in their interconnection and development, analysis of the structure, identification of the hierarchy and subordination of elements; reliability, i.e. ensuring the scientific principles of data collection and processing, the exclusion of bias in estimates, careful control, the use of computers; efficiency, i.e. achievement of the set goals, commensuration of results with costs.
In the theory of marketing research, there are two schools (two directions): supporters of the formalization of research, i.e. the use of quantitative estimates, the use of statistical and econometric models, etc., and supporters of informal analysis, qualitative assessments. Each of these areas has its own advantages and disadvantages. Thus, formalization gives accurate estimates, takes into account many factors, makes it possible to predict future development, etc., but it is quite laborious, requires special knowledge, the use of a PC, and requires the collection of statistical information. The informal approach is prompt, often gives quite reliable estimates, does not require the use of mathematical tools, but does not have a high degree of accuracy, is not always objective, and requires extensive experience and highly qualified employees.
The tasks of marketing research are:
Collection, processing, summary and storage of information;
Assessment and analysis of market conditions, calculation of market capacity, characterization and forecasting of demand, analysis of its elasticity;
Assessment of the company's own capabilities, its potential and competitiveness;
Evaluation of the competitor's capabilities;
Analysis of the division of the sales market, assessment of its share captured by the company, territorial analysis of the sales market;
Certification and testing of the quality of the product and its competitiveness, studying the reaction of consumers to a new or modified product;
Studying the commodity nomenclature and assortment, shifts in their structure;
Information and analytical substantiation of market segmentation (grouping of consumers);
Information and analytical support for product development and regulation of its life cycle;
Information and analytical support for the development of a marketing strategy and marketing planning;
Information and analytical support of controlling;
Information and analytical support for pricing and price regulation;
Accounting and analysis of turnover, inventory, distribution costs and profits in general and by stages of the life cycle;
Characteristics of the effectiveness of marketing and marketing research.
PREMIUM CHAPTERS ▼
The collection, processing and summary of information is an integral part of the overall information and analytical marketing process. Obtaining information is subject to management tasks and aims to provide an assessment and analysis of market processes in order to make the right marketing decisions.
Marketing information is figures, facts, information and other data necessary for the analysis and forecasting of marketing activities. __________________
Information is collected among its carriers, i.e. legal entities and individuals who have some information and are engaged in certain market activities (both active and passive). Who in the consumer market acts as a carrier, owner of information? First, individual consumers (population) , from whom information is collected that characterizes their demand, behavior in the market, belonging to social and demographic groups and other information necessary for marketing; secondly, manufacturers who have information about the qualitative and quantitative characteristics of the product, the potential for production and the possibilities of scientific and technical progress, the prospects for upgrading the product and creating qualitatively new products, the cost of goods, etc.; thirdly, distributors (resellers) who have information about consumer demand, consumer market conditions, trade competitors, advertising effectiveness, etc. As a rule, participants in a distribution channel, especially a conventional one, or a vertical marketing system willingly exchange information of mutual interest. Often they conduct joint marketing research. The information system of marketing research is complex and diverse. The collection, processing and analysis of information require special qualifications and a high information culture from employees of marketing services.
Information culture is the knowledge, ability and skills of effective use of marketing information in the context of computerization.
In the wholesale market, industrial and other mass consumers act as information carriers.
There are different types of marketing information. First of all, it is divided into internal and external. Any information collected by the firm itself or by its order refers to internal; to external - information collected outside the company, but used by the company for marketing purposes. It includes: information collected and developed by the State Statistics Committee of the Russian Federation and its local bodies, as well as other state and public organizations, including official publications: information collected and developed by scientific institutions and educational institutions: information published in the media: information from advertising and commercial nature of other firms, including bulletins, registers, directories, etc.
In turn, internal information is divided into primary and secondary. Secondary information is collected by the company not for marketing purposes, but for other purposes (for example, accounting, operational information, mandatory reporting for government statistics, tax authorities, etc.). However, this data can be used by the marketing service for its own purposes. Primary information is collected specifically for specific marketing needs (surveys, surveys, etc.). Sometimes information in marketing is divided into desk research , i.e. work with materials already collected by someone, and for field research (field research), i.e. primary collection of material for a specific marketing research.
A special place in marketing research is occupied by marketing intelligence - the collection of current information about the marketing microenvironment (customers, resellers and competitors). There are two directions here: the first is the use of information that these forces of the marketing environment provide themselves (the exchange of information between the participants in the distribution channel and information about themselves of an advertising nature for shareholders, potential investors or customers, etc.); the second is obtaining confidential or semi-confidential information, sometimes using methods of economic espionage, collecting rumors, tracking publications.
Evaluation of market phenomena and processes is given using marketing indicators, i.e. indicators characterizing the main parameters of the market, their state and changes, such as sales, prices, assortment, inventory, demand, supply, orders, the number and composition of participants in the market process, costs, profits and profitability.
Sources of marketing information include:
- publications (digital, factual, theoretical) in the media, in official reference publications, in scientific or journalistic literature (in some countries there are special clipping bureaus that collect dossiers on the issue of interest to the company by order of the marketing service on a commercial basis);
- INFORMATION acquired by the company on a commercial basis from the State Statistics Committee of the Russian Federation or alternative statistical services (demographic data, data on prices, incomes and expenditures of the population, other socio-economic indicators);
- intra-company accounting and reporting, including accounting (data on the production and sale of goods, the range of supply and shipment, on wholesale and retail trade, cost and price , investments, costs and profits, material and technical base, etc.) ;
- exchange of information between the participants of the distribution channel:
- data from special surveys, in particular measurements of market parameters in reference points. ongoing monitoring according to a pre-designed program);
- information of trade correspondents - trade workers (usually sellers) who regularly report on their observations of demand and trade conditions for a special fee, as well as information collected by traveling salesmen and sales agents:
- various kinds of expert assessments and forecasts (Delphi method, brainstorming method and others);
- direct observation (for example, recording the time spent on the purchase, etc.);
- surveys of consumers (including interviews and questionnaires);
- panels of consumers - one-time or permanent sample surveys of consumer families who, for a special fee, keep track of their income and expenses, register their purchases, and also answer questions of interest to the company (in particular, about their opinions and preferences, behavior in the market, etc.). etc.); usually the panel is formed by a large specialized marketing or consulting firm; State statistics of family budgets has its own large panel (more than 60 thousand families) of consumers:
- experiment (price marketing): field - evaluation and modeling of the results of the sale of small lots of goods, studying the reaction of consumers to changing factors (conditions of sale); laboratory - building, according to field observations, a simulation model of the type:
where E is the result of the operation of the system, in which xi( - controlled parameters (successively changed by the researcher), y, - uncontrolled parameters.
The essence of the Delphi method of peer review is an anonymous survey of a group of highly qualified experts according to a pre-prepared program. The results are ranked, a distribution curve is constructed, its parameters are calculated: the median expresses the group opinion of experts, the interquartile distance - field consistent'” and responses (the closer the responses are to each other, the more accurate the assessment). Responses remaining outside the 1st and 2nd quartiles are discarded. In the second stage, each expert is introduced to the answers of other experts and allowed to change their mind. The previous procedure for processing responses is repeated. Usually, the interquartile distance narrows in this case, therefore, the degree of reliability of the estimate increases. If necessary, the process is repeated several more times. The closer the variance of estimates is to zero, the more accurate the estimate.
A simplified version of an expert assessment is a business meeting. The executives of the company, as well as leading experts, gather for a meeting and alternately express their own assessments of the situation. During the discussion, the scenes converge and a common point of view is developed.
In foreign practice, the method of logical-semantic modeling of problems is widespread. At the meeting, marketing executives and leading specialists are invited to put forward and evaluate the main problems (both stimulating and inhibiting firms' marketing), a catalog of problems is compiled, from which a rating of problems is derived. Problems are ranked, their priority and importance are revealed.
Brainstorming is considered to be a productive method of expert assessments. A team of qualified specialists is being formed. which are divided into two groups. Group A generates or concentrates ideas or assessments, group B analyzes and criticizes them. There is a free exchange of opinions. The process is coordinated and directed by the chairman. The estimate that receives the most support is considered reliable.
Sample surveys are the most common form of obtaining information about the opinions, needs, and behavior of consumers. There are individual interviews - surveys according to a pre-prepared program (their version is telephone interviews) and group interviews - a free conversation in a relaxed atmosphere. directed by the interviewer, suggesting topics for discussion. The psychology of consumers, the motivation of their needs, etc. are revealed. A special type of survey includes tests conducted according to a scientifically developed program. The success of a survey depends on the design of the program and the qualifications of the interviewer, and surveys are often conducted during trade shows or combined with trial marketing. An independent and most common form of survey is a questionnaire.
Questionnaire - a table with a list of questions that the respondent must answer. Questioning - a survey using a questionnaire.
The questionnaire is a questionnaire that is answered by the interviewed person (respondent). Compiling a questionnaire is a complex research work, including setting goals, putting forward hypotheses, formulating questions, developing a sample, determining the method of questioning, etc. The questionnaire survey can be carried out orally, when the registrar himself fills out the form according to the respondent (forwarding method). Another form - written (self-registration method), when the respondent fills out the questionnaire with his own hand, and the questionnaire is sent by mail (correspondent method). The disadvantage of this (cheaper) method is a certain percentage of incorrectly completed questionnaires. In addition, some of the questionnaires are not returned at all. Sometimes even selective control rounds of the respondents are carried out. The questionnaire method is also used when organizing panels, working with trade correspondents. Questionnaires are filled out by experts, specialists, etc. Typically, the questionnaire has the form of a table with printed questions and free space for an answer (the questionnaire can be multipage). The traditional scheme includes:
- introduction (the purpose of the survey, information about the interviewers: name, description, address), guarantee of anonymity of the survey and confidence in the answers;
- a list of questions characterizing the subject of the survey;
- information about the respondents.
The number of questions should be optimal, i.e. providing completeness of information, but not excessive, which increases the cost of the survey (a reasonable compromise is necessary). Questions should be drafted in a tactful manner so as not to offend or alarm the respondents and not cause a negative reaction from them.
The questions of the questionnaire are classified according to the degree of freedom, the nature of the answers and the form of the questions. They are divided into open, when the answer is given in free form, without restrictions, and closed, when a list of answer options is offered, from which one or more is selected (answer fan). Alternative questions are often given, which are answered with: yes, no, don't know. An important role in the survey is played by questions about intentions and opinions, in the answers to them a greater degree of freedom is allowed than in questions about facts and actions. Sometimes filtering questions are asked that aim to cut off some of the respondents, for example, if the respondent answers “no” to the question “Do you have any product”, then questions about evaluating its properties are unnecessary. And finally, any questionnaire contains control questions, used to assess the reliability of responses. Formulation of requests - labor- intensive research work that requires high qualification and erudition, knowledge of the basics of sociometry. This is a creative activity that does not allow mechanical copying. The questionnaire should be linked to the questionnaire development plan, table layouts, model options. In the development of questionnaires, statistical methods are used (grouping, correlation and regression analysis, etc.).
Marketing analysis is the process of drawing conclusions from collected and appropriately grouped information. The analysis has two stages:
ascertaining assessments of the state and development of the market and
explanation of the current situation, identification and modeling of cause-and-effect relationships, scientific forecasting of further development. Marketing analysis serves the purposes of developing a marketing strategy, making specific marketing decisions and ensuring the effectiveness of the company's marketing activities.
Marketing analysis - assessment, explanation and forecast of the market situation, the process of product distribution and the company's own potential using statistical, econometric and other research methods.
The marketing analysis methodology includes: statistical methods - absolute, average, relative values, groupings. indices, analysis of variations, correlation-regression and multivariate analysis, graphical method, trend models: econometric modeling - linear and dynamic programming. models based on queuing theory (queue theory) and decision theory (risk theory), logistic models; qualimetric methods; use of strategic matrices (grids), etc. Marketing analysis should be systemic, i.e., cover the entire market and market processes in their structural hierarchy, in dynamic development and in interconnection. It includes:
- situational (conjuncture) analysis;
- analysis of the potential of your own company;
- competitor analysis.
Any marketing event (decision to release a new product, conclusion of a sales contract, withdrawal from the market, price change, etc.) is carried out taking into account the market situation. Therefore, market analysis is a necessary component of marketing research.
Conjuncture (from lat. conjungo - I connect, connect) of the market - a specific situation that has developed on the market at the moment or for a limited period of time, as well as a set of conditions that determines this situation.
What is meant by a market situation, or a state of the market?
The degree of market balance (supply and demand ratio).
Market type (competitive, monopolistic, etc.).
Market development trends (changes, their vectors, speed and intensity).
The scale and degree of business activity (fullness of the company's economic portfolio, the number and size of orders, the volume of transactions, etc.).
Stability/fluctuation of the main parameters of the market.
Market trends are determined on the basis of an analysis of changes in the main market parameters (sales, prices, inventory). Dynamic series of growth rates or their graphic representations (diagrams) are visually considered. A more reliable conclusion is based on trend models (statistical alignment), which not only determine the vector and rate of development, but also its nature: acceleration (power and exponential curve, parabola), growth with deceleration (semi-logarithmic curve), decline with deceleration (hyperbola) , uniform development (straight line), etc.
Product quality analysis
An important point in assessing the company's own capabilities is self-certification: a characteristic of the quality level and competitiveness of the product. More often than others, qualimetric scoring of individual product properties is used. Technical (rigid) parameters are measured and compared with standards or corresponding parameters of a competitor product. Aesthetic (soft) parameters are evaluated by experts. According to the data obtained, the so-called partial and summary parametric indices are calculated. Summary indicators are calculated as arithmetic averages of the points set for the parameters. As weights, the significance ranks of each parameter, derived by expert means, are used. The integrated quality indicator is determined by the following formula:
where B is an integrated indicator of product quality;
Bi - quality level of a separate i-th parameter (parametric index);
Fi is the weight (rank) of the significance of the i-ãî parameter (its role in consumption).
A variant of the considered model is the assessment of the product by consumers, which are considered as indicators of consumer preferences, as well as a characteristic of the importance of individual properties of the product, from the point of view of consumers. They are derived from the results of a survey (questionnaire) of consumers.
Analysis of the behavior of competitors in the market
Analysis of competition and competitors is one of the most difficult problems in marketing research. The main difficulties, as already mentioned, are associated with the collection of reliable and complete information about competitors. The main obstacle on this path is the trade secret and the unpredictability of the competitor's behavior. However, indirect information, expert assessments and logically based hypotheses provide some insight into competitors' strategies. A competitor may keep his intentions secret, but it is difficult for him to hide his actions.
The first task of marketing analysis is to determine the range and composition of competitors. Registers and direct observation data are suitable for this purpose. Then the following scheme of characteristics of competitors is used:
The size of competing firms (the size of enterprises in terms of area used, the number of employees, sales volume, financial and credit potential, etc.), the range of their turnover, their market share, the contingent of customers;
Trends in sales/sales of goods, changes in market share, i.e. the nature of the development of competitors (growth, stability, decline);
Competitor prices (for a comparable range of goods): their level in relation to the average market prices and prices for your company's goods, the dynamics of prices for competitors' goods in relation to market prices and your company's prices, an expert forecast of the competitor's behavior;
Innovation policy of competitors (according to their statements, indirect information, trial marketing, etc.): availability of a new product, its properties and competitiveness, probable price, time to market;
Commercial policy of competitors: methods of marketing / selling goods, forms and quality of customer service;
Strategy of competitive actions: a) tough competition - soft competition; b) price - non-price; c) offensive, defensive, retreat;
Segmentation and diversification policy of competitors: what segments and markets are competitors (it turns out what threat they pose to the interests of your company);
Competitor's response to real or disguised marketing activities of the firm (response elasticity as the percentage of changes in the firm taking the action to changes in the responding firm): close to 0 - no response; within 0.2-0.8 - partial adaptation; within 0, 8 - 1 preparation for a rebuff; over 1 - escalation of competitors' actions;
An expert assessment of the strengths and weaknesses of a competitor, a psychological portrait of a manager of a competing enterprise.
The totality of these assessments will serve as the basis for the development of your company's strategy. It is permissible to determine a quantitative integral assessment based on expert scores for each competitive position. On this basis, competitive advantage is determined.
As mentioned above, by research methods we mean the methods of collecting information. One of the effective methods of research on consumer preferences can be considered:
information from trade correspondents - trade workers (usually sellers) who, for a special fee, regularly report on their observations of demand and trade conditions;
Let's consider a specific example.
The company has received information from sellers that the demand for this product has greatly increased. Therefore, the company needs to raise prices to generate additional profits. Or buyers spoke very badly about his products. So the manufacturer should improve the quality of the product.
- surveys of consumers (including interviews and questionnaires);
For example, a company wants to know what customers think about its product. To do this, conduct surveys and interviews of the population. Consequently, the company learns about the tastes of consumers, and what does not suit them in its product. Thus, the enterprise receives information for further analysis. Information is different depending on which segment of the population is being interviewed. The middle class, for example, will criticize the products because of their high price. The upper class criticizes because of an insignificant quality. Then this information is analyzed. Suppose that after a survey of consumers, we received such information that 100 people were interviewed, 30 of them want to reduce the price, and 70 want to improve the quality, so the company decides to improve the quality of manufactured products.
The next acceptable method of research is the organization of an exhibition by an enterprise that wants to know the opinion of consumers about its product. At the exhibition, the company shows its product from all sides. Suppose an enterprise produces dairy products, then at the exhibition each of the visitors can try this milk for free and express their opinion about this milk (fatty, not very tasty, many additives, it is not convenient to store it, etc.). Provide new products and learn opinion about her. Also, the exhibition can be held for advertising purposes.
An enterprise can use any of these methods, depending on what it needs and what funds it will allocate for these studies. These methods are the most effective to use for catering businesses. The same consumer survey method can be used when opening a cafe, grocery store or restaurant. Wherever it is located, what assortment should be, at what price and work schedule.