Boston is being threatened by the increasing use of drug. The number of arrests related to drugs is continuously on the rise. It also implies a huge inestimable underground ‘black market’ of drugs running through the city. Boston’s Mayor Raymond Flynn is looking to take the drug problem head-on. He enforced various ‘anti-drug’ and ‘drug-education’ programmes but quick and substantial profits were increasing drug-trafficking and attracting illegal drug dealers. This time Mayors policy advisor Neil Sullivan and Marc Zegan initiated a research program to create a plan to ‘de-market’ the drug in Boston. Harvard Business School’s four member field study group came up with a research design and analysis.
The mayor wants to determine what message the city should send to its young people and how it should be packaged and through what delivery channels it should be communication.
Objectives of Market Research
The basic objective of the market research is to obtain guidelines on designing an effective communication message. This would be through following sub-objectives: 1) Understanding their motivation for drug use 2) who influences their behaviour 3) which advertisement influences them. Let us now evaluate their approach and findings.
Research Design: The research design they used was exploratory qualitative design. It was a good method considering it needed insight and understanding into behaviour of drug users. Quantitative method would have taken more time and would have required rigorously designed questionnaire. One-on-one interview was considered too slow and too subjective for a proper evaluation. Focus group which they went for was appropriate for the context. Focus group was one design which has various merits such as synergy, snowballing, stimulation of ideas and flexibility and speed in the process. Sampling: They considered clustered sampling from “community schools” of 4 neighbourhoods which were...