Exploratory Research Techniques

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Exploratory research
• Exploratory research is most commonly unstructured, “informal” research that is undertaken to gain background information about the general nature of the research problem. • Exploratory research is usually conducted when the researcher does not know much about the problem and needs additional information or desires new or more recent information.

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When to use Exploratory Research
Exploratory research is used  To gain background information  To define terms and variables  To clarify problems  To establish research priorities  To understand strategic options

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Techniques for Exploration
Focus Groups Secondary Data Analysis Experience Surveys Projective Techniques Word association
Sentence Completion Storytelling…etc.

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Techniques for Exploration
Focus Group
A group of 6-10 people who discuss a subject under the direction of a moderator. Focus group interviews are not a question-and-answer session, rather the group members discuss a topic in some detail in an open and detailed way. 4

Techniques for Exploration
Use of Focus Group
• • • • A good source of marketing problem exploration Spark new product ideas Identify new themes A good technique to conduct SWOT

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Techniques for Exploration
Advantages of Focus Group
- Flexible,
- Brief - Easy to execute

- Quickly analyzed
- Inexpensive - useful insights can be gained which normally wouldn’t come out in a survey 6

Techniques for Exploration
Disadvantages of Focus Group
- Small discussion group is not “representative” - One or a few individuals may dominate the

discussion
- Confusion & unwanted argument may arise

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Techniques for Exploration
Secondary Data Analysis –
Conceptual literature Trade literature Published statistics

Example: Analysis of case Benchmarking

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Techniques for Exploration
Experience Surveys –
Conversation or interviews with knowledgeable persons and experts, inside or outside the organization,...
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