Qualitative and Quantitative Research Methods

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This Essay will compare and contrast two different research methods that are qualitative and quantitative methods endeavouring to highlight differences and similarities between them, and providing example how they are applied through airline industry. According to Kotler et al.( 2010 p. 124-125) “ Marketing research is a process that identifies and defines marketing opportunities and problems, monitors and evaluates marketing actions and performance, and communicates the findings and implications to managements.” This basically means that, a marketing research is a process of collecting, recording and evaluating the information related to customers’ needs and wants and products that are design to supply demand. This need for market research is derived from the concept that, only by creating profitable relationships with customers through understanding and creating value and effectively meeting customers wants and needs shall lead to organisational success (Kotler, 2008). However, creating relationships with customers through marketing concept takes works, for example the company need to search for consumers and to identify their needs, design excellent market offerings while setting competitive prices to promote and deliver them (Kotler, 2008). This particular purpose in marketing is achieved through conducting marketing research process such as Quantitative and Qualitative research methods to seek understanding of customer’s motivations and opinions also their needs and wants (Kotler, 2010).

Quantitative research, survey method is defined as techniques that uses a wide range of quantify data in terms of value and usually includes some form of data analysis, for example quantitative research provides valuable figures based on a large number of population that can be incredibly useful and reliable because statistic and numeric data give certain validity to the research (Burton, 2007/2010).

According to Trochim and Donnelly (2006) any information and collection of data that is not numerical is considered to be qualitative research method. Qualitative research focus group methods however, are based on a small sample group and are exploratory in nature also unstructured and usually involved depth interviews. Qualitative research methods are complicated and significantly and experimentally examined by process (Lincoln, 2003; Sarantakos 2005). Kotler (2010) believes, this method is useful and helps to gain an insight into definitions and concepts that is critical to design a survey. Thus it offers first-hand knowledge and customer’s own opinion for the products and services and it also useful to gain an insight of a survey conducted through quantitative research. For example survey at airport check-in desk may asks passengers, the importance of a speedy service at check-in but through qualitative research, one can define in which terms customers define speed of service (Kotler 2010).

Similarities and difference between qualitative and quantitative research methods are abundant. Both quantitative and qualitative research methods are able to find experimental details on the product and service (McDaniel and Gates, 2006). Quantitative research involved data and qualitative research is based on words, therefore it could be argued that, measurements are used in both methods in some degree, for instance qualitative data could be given quantitatively. (Alan Bryman, et. al, 2003). However differences are greater in terms of how the researches are conducted. Qualitative research is conducted through face to face interviews based on one to one level and is done mostly on focus group of 6-8 respondents. This is done to explore and provides depth interviews to find out the answer for the customers’ needs and wants (Donald R. Cooper, et.al 2008). This method is ideal provided that, it does not contain fixed questions. But during the interview the individual discussion is more effective to explore issues needed to do research by...
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