Marketing intelligence is process of analyzing and gathering information relevant to organization for the purpose of making accurate decisions so that strategy can be determined in relation to market opportunity, penetration and development plans. It is collection of information from the external environment of business (Maenpaa, 2012). Such data is gathered by organization when it plans to enter in new market. The firm collects the information so as to investigate the opportunities existing in the current market. The present study includes analysis of purchase decision making process and the factors that affect buyer behavior. Along with this the study entails to identify market research techniques and marketing research plan. The report investigates techniques that can be used to assess responses of customers. Lastly assessment of market trend size and SWOT analysis of specified product and service is carried in the study.
The following stages are involved in purchase decision making process:
Need awareness: This is the first stage in the process of buying whereby the individual analyze their need. If customers do not know what is their requirement then they will not make any purchase (Reighley, 2014). It is essential that individuals identify their need so that they can satisfy them. Waitrose can develop product and services in accordance with the needs of target audience so that they are attracted towards the product.
Information search: In this stage the customer finds solution in order to satisfy their problem. Customer know what they need thus in order to fulfill their requirement they search for specific features in brand as well as product (Liu and et. al., 2013). Under this individual can make use of internal and external information to gain facts about relative products. Internal is that under which the customers make use of their own memory for the purpose of generating information. This may be done by gaining knowledge through the past experience explored by them (Iacobucci and Churchill, 2009). Under external the customer searches for information by gathering data from their relatives, friends or through advertisements. The company like Sainsbury can adopt promotional strategy which is the most suitable for customers and provides them relevant information as per their requirements.
Evaluating alternatives: When all the information is gathered, customer evaluates them regarding product on the basis of cost and risk. Moreover the buyer investigates level of benefit associated with product (Zou and Fu, 2011). The criteria for assessment in relation to Waitrose’s product are set by individual themselves.
Purchase decision: After the evaluation of alternatives, customers make decision regarding selection of product and payment option available at particular store (Van Doren and Johns, 2010). Moreover the individual makes decision on whether or not to make repeat purchase of Waitrose’s products.
Purchase: Within this stage, actual need for which the product is purchased is resolved. The transaction is said to be accomplished at this step. The customer under this makes selection of the best from all the available ones which he feels is the appropriate one for the purpose of fulfilling his needs and wants.
Post-Purchase evaluation: This is the last stage under which customer investigates whether his needs are satisfied or not (Verhoef and Rust, 2005). The outcomes of purchasing are investigated. This is done so that customer can make post purchase decision.
The theories of buyer behavior in terms of market and individuals are as follows:
Environmental theory of buying behavior: According to this theory decision to purchase depends upon the environmental conditions. For instance, one may compare the prices of water and juice when that is not his need (Penn, 2014). But after a long journey an individual may not compare the prices rather he will grab the bottle to satisfy his requirement.
Internal theory of buying behavior: The purchase decision is affected by life style. Internal theory states that some individual judge product as per the prices while other may examine the benefits of associated with it (Paswan and et. al., 2011). Waitrose needs to determine the needs of both these types of individuals while developing product.
Generic theory of buying behavior: When an individual make decision to purchase, they follow generic model in making decisions. This model states that buyer is required to analyze the need followed by searching for products by comparing prices of different brands (Padilla and Richards, 2009).
Cultural theory: Under this theory the behavior of individuals is influenced by the culture from where they belong. The decision regarding buying is influenced by factors such as social class, occupation, income, values and beliefs (Reighley, 2014). The company like Sainsbury needs to design products and services in accordance with the requirement of people belonging to varied cultural background.
The factors affecting buyer behavior are as such:
Cultural factors: The factors such as customers’ culture, social class and subculture affect the buying behavior of an individual (Shah, 2014). Marketers of Waitrose need to determine the cultural shift in order to spot the specific needs and wants of customers. The needs of individual may vary from location to location.
Social factors: The buying behavior of buyer is affected by social factors such as family roles, status, aspirational and reference groups. The differences that lie among the social class result in creation of customer groups. These groups affect the buyer behavior while making decision to purchase.
Personal factors: This includes factors such as age, gender, education, income level, life style and personality (Oudan, 2007). They lay impact on the buying behavior of individual to a greater extent. For instance, if income of consumer is high then he may purchase expensive products.
Psychological factors: The factors such as motivation, perception, learning, belief and attitudes affects the purchasing decision of buyers. For example: every individual have different needs that may be physiological or biological. Thus such needs motivate customers to make purchase so that their needs can be satisfied (Kotler, Shalowitz and Stevens, 2011). Waitrose needs to keep in view the needs of customers while designing the product.
Brand loyalty is the foremost and ultimate goal of organization. The preference of customers to purchase specific sort of product is brand loyalty. There is strong relationship between brand loyalty, repeat purchasing and corporate image. When an individual buys products of Waitrose repeatedly then this will make them loyal towards the brand. True brand loyalty is reflected when an individual show high relative attitude by making repeat purchases (Brand Loyalty vs. Repeated Purchases, 2007). Thus this will enhance the image of brand in market place. It acts as an asset to Waitrose as the loyal customers are willing to buy product at higher prices. Moreover they can bring new customers for corporation.
The different types of market research techniques are as follows:
Surveys: Business analyst can make use of questionnaire under this method in order to analyze the response of target customers. If larger sample is selected then outcomes can be more reliable (Iacobucci and Churchill, 2009). Other than face to face survey business analyst can conduct telephone, mail or online surveys which are comparatively less expensive methods.
Focus groups: Under this technique discussion is organized between the people who belong to different locations. A moderator is appointed who records the responses of customers (Michman, 2006).Thus with this method business analyst will gain attention to what are needs of different customers.
Observation: Within this technique perception of individuals are recorded by observation. Business analyst can observe the customers while they are making actual purchase (Ghosh, Shrivastava and Sahney, 2013). Thus this will give an appropriate picture regarding habits as well as shopping patterns of customers.
Personal interview: This includes unstructured as well as open ended questions. Subjective information can be gathered through this. Under this the personal interview of the existing customers can be taken so as to gain better insight to their responses (Suki, 2013). The result obtained do not represent large segment of population. This can be the best way through which the valuable insight to the customer’s attitude can be known.
Qualitative techniques: For the purpose of gathering qualitative information business analyst can make use of primary research (Pepels, 2007). The techniques such as focus group can be used for this purpose. Open ended survey can be used in order to gain knowledge regarding the responses of customers as it restrains biasness.
Quantitative research method: This technique can be used for the purpose measuring data. Reliable information can be gathered with the assistance of this method which can be used by Sainsbury in order to make future decisions for company (Fearne and Cacciolatti, 2013). However such technique does not takes into consideration human behavior which is critical factor for the retailer like Sainsbury.
Marketing research plan for Sainsbury is as such:
Background: Sainsbury has grown to become one of UK’s largest retailers. The company was founded in 1869. It carries its business in over 1000 stores including 400 convenience stores. The firm emphasize on building sound relationships with customers by providing superior quality products. Moreover it aims at offering excellent services within reasonable prices.
Rationale: The areas where the business lacks can be identified by this research (Indounas and Avlonitis, 2006).
Research objective: To gain insight to level of satisfaction possessed by customers of Sainsbury.
Methodology: The research is done by incorporating methods such as observation, survey and focus group which will help in determining the responses of customers.
Analysis of Data: Thematic analysis for qualitative data can be used for the purpose of interpretation of collected data (Pepels, 2007).
The techniques that can be used to assess customer response are evaluated in the following manner:
Home customer survey: Business analyst can make use of survey method in assessing the experiences of customers towards Sainsbury’s product. Through mail or phone survey, responses of individuals can be gathered (Scholes, Whittington and Johnson, 2008). The information in relation to interaction of customers with company’s staff and their opinion on product can be gathered using this method.
Customer service questionnaire: Under this technique, customers are asked on problems they are facing in association with product. The shopping experience of customers and their complaints are also surveyed under this (Layton, 2011). This provides a clear picture on customer responses towards company’s product and services.
Customer suggestions: The customers provide feedback to company so that they can bring improvement in the service. Analyst can design suggestion form so that business can listen to feedbacks of customers (Verhoef and Rust, 2005). Through these suggestions business can determine the needs of buyers and they can make improvement in their products as per the requirement of individuals.
Customer expectation: The expectation of customers can be used to analyze their responses. Sainsbury can make use of customer expectations while designing product but unnecessary demands needs to be avoided (Kenning, 2008). The expectations of an angry customer may destruct the operations of company thus it has to be neglected.
Customer complaints: In this method the feedback gained from the customers are examined so that their responses towards the company’s product and services can be analyzed.
The sources of secondary data are the ones that can be used by business analyst to achieve the objective of market research. In order to know the level of customer satisfaction, Sainsbury can make use of internal as well as external sources.
Sales data: Such information can be used by organization in determining the trend of sales for future. Moreover with the analysis of sales data, Sainsbury can evaluate the past records. This will enablethem to identify the areas where improvements can be brought to increase the satisfaction level among customers (Ghosh, Shrivastava and Sahney, 2013).
Government data: Business can collect data from government in order to determine the target market and their buying patterns. The use of this data assists company to gain insight to laws and regulation which are to be followed by them (Baisya, Sharma and Priya, 2010). Further this will result in achievement of research objective.
Internet: This source assists Sainsbury in knowing competitors information. Extracting useful information through internet allows business to make accurate decisions while planning its operations.
Success of the survey that is conducted to gain an insight to satisfaction level of customers can be reviewed as such. The questionnaire was used to record responses of customers (Suki, 2013). It was comprised of both open ended and close ended questions so that outcomes of research can be accurate. The questionnaire provided was complete in every aspect. The open ended questions helped business in gaining in depth opinions of customers in relation to products. The survey resulted in success to a greater extent as it was easy to analyze the close ended and multiple choice questions. The customer satisfaction survey proved to be efficient in knowing the satisfaction level of Sainsbury customers. The data gathered by business analyst through internal sources were valid and reliable. This is because the researcher can have an easy access to such information.
Validity means the extent to which the techniques used from survey can generate accurate results. The methods used to determine satisfaction level of customers are valid in analyzing the objective research. Reliability is level to which the measures yield similar kind of results when experimentation is conducted repeatedly. The finding of the research may not be accurate and valid (Pepels, 2007). Sainsbury may not fully rely to responses gathered through survey. This is because the natural setting may change the responses of individuals thus they cannot be reliable. The outcome from the survey in the present report can be considered as valid and reliable because the respondents were provided environment in which they were free to interact with the researcher. Moreover in such natural setting respondents can put their views in an effective and appropriate manner (Indounas and Avlonitis, 2006). The researcher has made use of techniques such as innovation and observation in determining satisfaction level of customers. Sainsbury to some extent can rely on outcomes developed through research conducted by business analyst.
The aviation industry in UK contributes to major national income in country. The companies operating under this sector are easy Jet, British airways, Flybe, Virgin Atlantic, Monarch, Jet2.com (Jenster, Hayes and Smith, 2005). The data produced by UK Civil Authority states easy Jet airline industry dominates the UK airline industry. The market share of this company in UK is about 43%. British airways are the second largest company in aviation industry in UK which has market share of 30%. The shares of other companies are in following ranges.
The Size of each company is demonstrated through graphical representation:
The aviation industry in UK has suffered setback because of the increase in fuel costs. The European Airline industry has third position in the global rankings. Aviation industry acts as a major motivator that inspires both employment as well as gross domestic product in UK.
The analysis of firm’s performance with respect to its competitors is referred to as competitor’s analysis. It is comprised of competitor’s objectives, strategy, resources and capabilities. Under this analysis, company tries to identify the potential strength and weakness of its competitors and then tries to utilize this information in developing its business activities (Zou and Fu, 2011). The major competitors of Nokia are Samsung and Apple. Other competitors are HTC and Sony. Samsung is one of the top market leader in mobile phone market. The company in order to create awareness of brand has invested money in branding and marketing. The company aim is to fulfill the requirements of its customers. The business has developed strategies keeping in mind attributes of product, customer’s benefit and brand personality (Fearne and Cacciolatti, 2013). The company is able to locate itself in the market by making high-tech products within reasonable price. Nokia has suffered from huge losses as it has made delay in developing products as per the needs of market. The other competitors of company such as Samsung and Apple have taken appropriate position in mobile phone market by developing smart phones. Nokia failed to incorporate Android in its products which resulted in decline of its position.
The following are the opportunities and threats of Nokia:
Opportunities: Company has the opportunity expand its product features and differentiate its prices that can suit the people in market. Developing countries have high demand for cheap products. Youth need stylish and fashionable handsets thus Nokia can take advantage of this to gain edge over competitors. The company has opportunity to launch smart phones in low to high segment market (Ras and Küsel, 2010). Decrease in telecommunication charges provides chance to Nokia in developing new products that possess potential to attract customers. The organization can enhance the quality of its camera so that sales can be enhanced.
Threats: The Company may have threat from its competitors such as Samsung, Sony, and Apple etc. Moreover cheap phones and delay in making high tech products can be biggest threat to business.
The customer’s choice is becoming more complicated as China mobiles are gaining attention of people. Huge price pressure is faced by Nokia from China and other producers of mobile (Layton, 2011). The company is losing its position in global market because of the emergence of various Chinese producers in market. Nokia is facing biggest threat in maintaining its position as new Apple i-phone and Goggle’s Android operating system are emerging in market. Samsung is the biggest threat to Nokia as it is coming with various ranges of products and better services. The economic recession can be a risk to business. This may not affect the sales of Nokia’s product.
It can be concluded from the study that factors such as social, cultural and personal affect the buyer behavior. In order to assess the responses of customer’s techniques such as observation, survey, focus group and interview has been used by business analyst. In order to carry out research in an appropriate manner, plan is prepared by researcher. It has been analyzed that the findings of research are valid and reliable. This is because the business analyst has conducted survey of customers in appropriate natural settings. Sainsbury can make use of such data in analyzing the responses of customers towards its products. The aviation market in UK has been investigated. Moreover the opportunities and threats of Nokia have been analyzed so that company can build its strong position in market. The competitive analysis of Nokia is carried out in the present report so that business can know the strengths, strategy and objectives of its competitors. Thus it can plan its strategies accordingly.
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