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The Market Research Toolbox


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Table of Contents

Preface Plan of the Book Who Should Read This Book? A Note on Pedagogy Acknowledgments PART I: Introduction 1. Nature and Characteristics of Market Research How Many Kinds of Market Research? Research Techniques Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 2. Planning for Market Research From Decision Problem to Information Gap Types of Decision Problems: The Decision Cycle Matching Tools to Decisions Effective Application of Research Tools Summary Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings Appendix 2A: Financial Planning for Market Research PART II: Archival Research 3. Secondary Research Procedure Examples Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings Appendix 3A: Search Techniques for Gathering Market Information Summary: Search Strategy for Secondary Research 4. Big Data Before Big Data Procedure Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings PART III: Qualitative Research 5. Customer Visits Programmatic Customer Visits for Market Research Examples of Visit Programs Hybrid and Ad Hoc Examples Cost Strengths and Weaknesses Future Directions Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 6. The Focus Group Applications Comparison to Customer Visits Procedure Cost Factors Examples Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 7. Interview Design Style of Questioning Procedure for Question Selection Some Good (and Bad) Questions Good (and Bad) Interviewer Behaviors Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 8. Qualitative Sampling and Data Analysis Why Sampling? Projection from N = 1 Projections From Qualitative Samples of N is less than or equal to 32 Binomial Inferences Multinomial Inferences Measures of Association Summary: Rules of Thumb Implementing Qualitative Samples Qualitative vs. Quantitative Sampling-An Integration Qualitative Data Analysis Discussion Questions Suggested Readings PART IV: Quantitative Research 9. Survey Research Procedure Conducting the Survey Yourself Cost Factors Applications Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 10. Questionnaire Design Procedure Generating Content for Questionnaires Best Practices and Rules to Observe Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings Chapter 11: Experimentation Example 1: Crafting Direct Marketing Appeals Commentary on Direct Marketing Example Example 2: Selecting the Optimal Price Commentary on Pricing Example Example 3: Concept Testing-Selecting a Product Design Commentary on Product Design Example Example 4: A-B Tests for Website Design Commentary on the A-B Test Example General Discussion Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 12. Conjoint Analysis Designing a Conjoint Analysis Study Future Directions Strengths and Weaknesses Choosing Among Options for Experimentation Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 13. Sampling for Quantitative Research Types of Samples The Terrible Beauty of Probability Samples How to Draw a Probability Sample Estimating the Required Sample Size Formula for Computing Sample Size Estimating the Variance for a Proportion Estimating the Variance for a Mean Value Sampling Reminders and Caveats Discussion Questions Suggested Readings 14. Quantitative Data Analysis Procedure Types of Data Analysis in Market Research Managerial Perspective on Data Analysis Dos and Don'ts Discussion Questions Suggested Readings PART V: The Big Picture 15. Combining Research Techniques Into Research Strategies Developing New Products Redesigning a Website Assessing Customer Satisfaction Segmenting a Market Expanding Into New Markets Repositioning a Brand Developing an Advertising Campaign Commentary Discussion Questions 16. The Limits of Market Research Identifying Boundary Conditions Formulating Boundary Conditions When Quantitative Market Research Can't Be Done What Qualitative Research Can Do Summary and Conclusion Discussion Questions Suggested Readings Index About the Author

About the Author

Edward F. McQuarrie is a professor in the Department of Marketing, Leavey School of Business, Santa Clara University, in California's Silicon Valley. He received his Ph.D. in Social Psychology from the University of Cincinnati in 1985 and a B.A. in Psychology and Literature from The Evergreen State College in 1976. His research interests include market research appropriate to technology products, on the one hand, and advertising strategies that call on rhetoric, narrative, and semiotic resources on the other. He has also written the book Customer Visits: Building a Better Market Focus, co-edited the volume Go Figure! New Directions in Advertising Rhetoric, and published articles in the Journal of Consumer Research, Journal of Advertising, Marketing Theory, Journal of Consumer Psychology, Journal of the Market Research Society, Journal of Advertising Research, and the Journal of Product Innovation Management, among others. For a current list of publications, you can access his profile on or He was Associate Dean for Assessment at the Leavey School of Business, 2001-2010, responsible for the assessment of learning outcomes and the evaluation of teaching. He was Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, 1996-2000, responsible for the MBA and Executive MBA programs. Professor McQuarrie began moderating focus groups in 1980 for Burke Marketing Research. He has consulted for a variety of technology firms and has taught seminars on effective customer visits, managing focus group research, marketing research methods, and similar topics for the Management Roundtable, Hewlett-Packard, Sun Microsystems, Microsoft, Apple Computer, Tektronix, Varian Associates, Cadence Design, and other clients, in England, Germany, and New Zealand as well as the United States.


"Reading this book is like having a conversation with an experienced, knowledgeable practitioner of marketing and marketing research. The conversational style makes the book easy to read and conveys the information in a friendly, but important way."

-- Ronald Goldsmith

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