By James M. Livingstone (auth.)
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Additional resources for A Management Guide to Market Research
Let us assume that it has been decided to carry out a survey of drivers' use of a certain type of medium-sized private car sold throughout Western Europe. A pilot survey of 25 car users has yielded, among other items, information on the distance travelled in the past year by each car and also the type of petrol normally used. Since it is intended to make comparisons in different European countries, distances have been noted in kilometres rather than miles and petrol in octane values rather than the 'star' system used in some countries.
BIASED SAMPLING Finally, and in complete contradiction of all the laws of statistical sampling, there is the case for biased sampling. A situation has already been discussed where there is virtue in biased selection within a sample - that is, going for the person who matters in the decision-making process, particularly in industrial buying. But there is, in more general terms, a case for using a biased sample, even in some types of consumer market research. The reader is probably familiar with the concept of the product life cycle; namely that if a product has a distinguishable and relatively short period of acceptability - for example, a few months or a few years - the type of market and quantities demanded will vary.
The issue will be developed later on, but may be summed up in the point that statistical results cannot be better than the information on which they are based, and that elegant statistical treatment does not necessarily make up for inadequate or ambiguous market research information. AN INTRODUCTION TO QUANTITATIVE METHODS 45 Finally, to sum up the intentions of this section of the book, this chapter will discuss methods whereby a group of results can be briefly but accurately described; the next chapter will introduce the basic concepts of sampling theory, on which much of market research practice is based.
A Management Guide to Market Research by James M. Livingstone (auth.)