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International Journal of Market Research

The essential aid for users and providers of research.

What might they reveal and what do they reveal?

An IJMR Lecture on indirect measures of attitudes in market research

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Capturing consumption emotions in service encounters: Why immediacy matters when studying service-related emotions [PDF]
Louise Maguire pp. 1–26
This paper examines the methodological arguments for using 'SMS diaries' to capture the emotions experienced by consumers of services at the very moment they are being felt. The objective of the methodology was to capture the emotions that patrons experienced in real time, in a manner that gives them the freedom to express these feelings in their own words, without having to adhere to a predefined list of emotions, which could potentially be considered restrictive. The importance of capturing emotions as they are being experienced cannot be overstated, as previous studies (and indeed the one outlined here) have evidenced that consumers can forget the emotions they have experienced when asked to recall them in retrospect. Using mobile phones to capture consumption experiences has found some take-up in consumer research, but not in the context of the emotional 'journeys' that customers experience in service situations. These emotional episodes are important to understand as they can influence customer satisfaction levels and the overall evaluative judgements of service providers. The SMS diaries used here proved to be an effective and compelling way of learning about the consumption emotions that patrons experienced while using a variety of services.
[Digital First] Published 1 July 2015

Why Chinese elites buy what they buy: The signalling value of conspicuous consumption in China [PDF]
Xiaotong Jin, Hefeng Wang, Tianxin Wang, Yang Li and Shengliang Deng pp. 1–32
In 1899, Thorstein Veblen introduced socially contingent consumption into the economic literature. However, it was not until recent years that empirical studies of his theory begin to appear in mainstream economic literature with diversified conclusions. This article complements the scarce empirical literature by testing his conjecture on consumers in China's transitional economic context. Three sets of hypotheses were tested with a sample of 1,021 Chinese consumers. The findings of the study support Veblen's contention, especially the argument advanced by Leibenstein (1950) that the primary motivation for conspicuous consumption rests on social status seeking and position enhancement. With a rising per capita income in China and the birth of an elite social class, conspicuous consumption has to some extent replaced the traditional Chinese values of modesty and frugality in search of social recognition and self-realisation.
[Digital First] Published 1 June 2015

Book review: Humanizing Big Data: Marketing at the Meeting of Social Science and Consumer Insight, by Colin Strong [PDF]
Justin Gutmann Vol. 57 No. 3, 2015 pp. 503–505
This book review examines 'Humanizing Big Data: Marketing at the Meeting of Social Science and Consumer Insight' which takes stock, critiques, warns against and welcomes Big Data and the new and rapidly maturing set of techniques that will not go away.
Published 26 May 2015

Making conjoint behavioural [PDF]
Leigh Caldwell Vol. 57 No. 3, 2015 pp. 495–501
Traditional choice-based conjoint methods are based on an unrealistically rational model of consumer decision-making. These methods work accurately only if we assume that consumers can process all the information given to them, weigh it up and make a calculated, accurate decision. Modern discoveries in behavioural economics make it clear that these assumptions are incorrect. To accurately understand consumers’ decisions and preferences, conjoint methods must be updated to include behavioural understanding. This paper presents five ways in which this can be done: rank-finding conjoint, goal-attribute conjoint, intangible-attribute conjoint, algorithmic conjoint and contextual conjoint. Each of these extensions to the standard conjoint method can explore a specific aspect of the decision-maker’s psychology, and together they result in a much deeper and more accurate reading of consumer behaviour and desires.
Published 26 May 2015

Impact 2015 (MRS annual conference), Grange Tower Bridge Hotel, London, 17-18 March 2015 [PDF]
Adam Phillips, Reg Baker, Douglas Rivers and Corrine Moy Vol. 57 No. 3, 2015 pp. 483–494
With online now the first or second most important mode of research by value in the top ten research markets, IJMR sought to inject a dose of science and some practical advice into the debate about the quality of online research at a session at Impact 2015, held in London in March. This article presents the findings from the debate, focusing on non-probability sampling, the margin of error controversy and fit-for-purpose sampling in the internet age.
Published 26 May 2015

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The IJMR is published for MRS by Warc, the global provider of ideas and evidence for marketing people.