- Salespeople conduct needs analyses to learn more about the specific pain points of prospective clients.
- Product development managers research customer needs and desires, competitive products, target markets, pricing sensitivity, and channels of distribution.
- Product managers rely on research to gain insights into how one or more elements of the marketing mix can be tweaked to better serve customers and create customer evangelists.
- Marketing managers leverage traditional research and digital analytics to build brands that better serve customers.
Secondary ResearchWe often take secondary research for granted. In our personal lives we routinely investigate options for lunch, vacation, even medical care. When we explore alternatives for necessary decisions we often conduct secondary research. Secondary research uncovers data that was previously collected, analyzed, and organized for use in making decisions. When you go to your favorite Internet browser and enter a search request, you are conducting secondary research as you explore available data on the subject. Of course, you could conduct primary research to analyze options for lunch, vacation, or medical care options. This might entail you going around the office and asking for suggestions. Canvassing your colleagues would most likely take a bit more time than letting Google do the work. The following table summarizes differences between primary and secondary research.
Differences – Primary and Secondary Research
|Primary Research||Secondary Research|
|Original data collected||By you or a company you hire||By someone else|
|Examples||Surveys, focus groups, interviews, observation, experiments||Searching public data sets, industry data, literature reviews|
|Qualitative or Quantitative?||Can be either||Can be either|
|Key Benefits||Specific to your needs; you control design, sample, quality||May be cheaper and quicker; not always|
|Key Disadvantages||Usually costs more and takes longer||Data may be old, not specific, not reliable (must analyze methodology, sample source and size, relevance to your objective)|
Secondary Research for Mobile Banking Product
|Research Objective:||What is known about the market for small business mobile banking in Southeast U.S.?|
|Limitations:||May need to extrapolate from existing data sets of consumer or business mobile banking; age of data sets, bias in information|
|Research Scope:||Identify 10 or more sources, summarize, and recommend further action.|