When running your own business, it’s absolutely necessary that you understand the market. And this is where conducting a marketing research comes in handy. What many people don’t know is that marketing research can be broken down into two methods; quantitative and qualitative marketing research. And the difference between the two is somewhat simple – quantitative research will provide you with statistics while qualitative helps you define which information is worth quantifying. Both methods have their roles and to know when to use which of the two, it’s necessary that you understand them more clearly. So, if you’ve been thinking about conducting a marketing research, make sure you read on.

Marketing research

In order to understand both methods, you first need to learn a bit more about marketing research in general. The whole point of conducting a marketing research is to gain knowledge which will allow you to improve your strategies for getting your business out there. This is done through various tests which include messaging research, ad testing, concept testing and brand name testing. Each of these tests is supposed to help you optimize your presentation and bring your business closer to consumers. You will also get valuable insights on how to align your business with current market conditions.

Qualitative marketing research

The most important thing about qualitative marketing research is the type of questions asked in this method. Instead of sticking to numbers, this method is used to asked open-ended questions. There are plenty of ways questions like this can be asked. For example, you can hold face-to-face interviews with consumers, talk to them over the phone or send them an email. No matter how you decide to reach out to consumers, the goals here are supposed to be the same. You can turn to this method when exploring a new market, generating screen ideas or trying to understand customer perception. Ideally, you’ll take a few different types of approach such as traditional, observational and projective, in order to get effective results.

Quantitative marketing research

Unlike qualitative marketing research, quantitative marketing research relies on data. This data is reported through statistics gathered in the research. This method also involves different kinds of formats such as face-to-face, over the web and via phone. For example, some websites include pop-ups that are supposed to ask you whether you’ve found what you were looking for when accessing their website. Things like this help companies determine whether their websites need improving. Therefore, as participants are asked to answer with a yes or no question or to rate something on a scale from 1 to 10, it only involves dealing with numbers instead of words. However, the problem with this method is that is mostly used for pre-coded and closed-ended questions. In other words, online questionnaires can only provide with data programming allows it to gather.

Which method should you go for?

As we’ve already said, both methods can play a significant role in your marketing research. So ideally, your marketing research should consist of both qualitative and quantitative marketing research. However, the problem arises when choosing which one to do first. Usually, qualitative research needs to be done first if the concept you’re dealing with hasn’t been researched before. This will provide you with consumers’ initial reaction needed in order to decide whether to do a quantitative marketing research. Still, quantitative marketing research needs to be done first when you’ve already researched the concept before, since it allows you to understand the current feasibility of it.

If you’re running your own business, knowing the difference between these two methods is extremely important. Moreover, you’ll need to understand which one you should do and how it’s supposed to be done in order to get effective results.

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lauren wiseman

Posted by lauren wiseman