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marketing observation research

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Observation Research:
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is the systematic process of recording the behavioral patterns of people, objects, and occurrences without questioning or communicating with them.
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Examples of Observation Research: People watching people
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Observing shoppers in a supermarket
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Examples of Observation Research: People watching phenomena
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Observing traffic in a shopping mall
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Examples of Observation Research: Machines watching people
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Video cameras filming shoppers in a supermarket
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Examples of Observation Research: Machines watching phenomena
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Traffic counting machines monitor mall shoppers
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Conditions for Observation Research: Observation research should only be used if
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-information must be inferable from observation -Behavior of interest must be frequent, repetitive, or predicatable -Behavior of interest must be of relatively short duration
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Observation Research Approaches: Natural Observation
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done in completely natural circumstances. Typically, the consumer has no idea he/she is being observed
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Observation Research Approaches: Contrived Observation
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Contrived observation studies recruit subjects who know they are being watched, but are asked to behave naturally
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Observation Research Approaches: Structured observation
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The observer fills out a questionaire-like form on each observed person or counts the number of times an activity occurs Pros: in a structured you already know what you are after
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Observation Research Approaches: Unstructured
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the observer makes notes on the behavior being observed Pros: unstructured is more exploratory
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Observation Research Approaches: Human vs Machine Observer
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In some situations, a machine may do the job less expensively, more accurately, and less obtrusively
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Observation Research Approaches: Direct vs. Indirect
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Indirect observation can be achieved by checking to see how much of a product has been used or somehow checking on past behavior
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Advantage of Observation: Validity
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measuring what we set out to measure •if behavior or events are clearly defined, then we have valid observation •no problem with respondents’ misunderstanding or misreporting
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Advantages of Observation: Reliability
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consistency in measurement •no interviewer bias •Measuring observable, repeatable behaviors or events
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Disadvantages of Observation
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Can only observe physical actions, physical characteristics, etc. -Cannot observe attitudes, intentions, motivation -CANNOT draw any conclusions about anything other than the physical actions or events Not all actions can be observed
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Disadvantages of Observation
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-Can only observe actions of fairly short duration -Cannot report some things with accuracy (age or socioeconomic status) -Some observations bias the actions (direct observation) -Time-consuming
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Human Observation Techniques: Mystery Shoppers
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-Pose as consumers -Check out the competition -Or assess quality of employers’ own stores
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Human Observation Techniques: One-way Mirror Observations
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-Allows researchers to observe clients as they use or react to products
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Human Observation techniques: Shopper Patterns
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-Drawings that record the footsteps of a shopper throughout a store -Aids retailer in planning store layout
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Human Observation Techniques: Ethnographic Research (Humanistic Inquiry)
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-Anthropological method -Non-empirical (qualitative) -Researcher immerses him/herself in the system under study
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Machine Observation Techniques: Traffic Counters
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-Machines used to measure vehicular flow over a particular stretch of roadway
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Machine Observation Techniques: Physiological Measurement
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-Skin response •Changes in electric resistance of the skin •Also, machines measure sweat responses -Voice pitch analysis •Changes in relative vibration frequency of the voice -Facial Action Coding Service •Face reading for emotional reactions -Neuromarketing
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Machine Observation Techniques: Scanner-Based Research
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-Laser Scanners read UPC codes on products and produce instantaneous information on sales -Hopefully provide accurate, objective picture of the casual relationship between marketing mix variables and sales
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Machine Observation Techniques: The Single-Source Model
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-Panels of respondents are selected to shop with ID cards -These people have their purchases scanned at drug, food, and retail outlets -Marketing variables are manipulated to influence purchase behavior -Television meters and/or cable measure the impact of marketing
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Machine Observation Techniques: Symphony IRI group
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Founder of scanner-based research -BehaviorScan •These people have their purchases scanned at drug, food, and retail outlets •DVRs -Specialized software
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Machine Observation Techniques: Future of Scanners
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-Scanners will be able to communicate with personal computers in homes •Offer Menu and product use suggestions •Interface with internet home shopping programs