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Current Issue

Vol. 59 No. 3, 2017

Editorial
Peter Mouncey pp. 269–278 [Download PDF]
In this editorial, Peter Mouncey previews the articles in volume 59(3) of IJMR, covering topics including evaluating aspects of data quality in a retail establishment survey, the impact of word of mouth on intention to purchase, new product concept testing with item response theory and a review of the literature on marketing models. Peter also writes about the forum section on the BPC/MRS enquiry into the 2015 election polling, the viewpoint section on what is next for qualitative research and the letter and its response referring to a paper in 58(5) by Yallop and Mowatt. He discusses Impact 2017, the annual MRS conference, and the four sessions at it hosted by IJMR as well as the Archive of Market and Social Research. He ends with a mention of the two conference notes in the issue from the MRS ‘Methodology in Context’ one-day conference held in London in November 2016.
Published 31 May 2017

Letters regarding 'Investigating market research ethics: an empirical study of codes of ethics in practice and their effect on ethical behaviour', Anca C. Yallop and Simon Mowatt
Karin Curran, Kay Bramley, Winifred Henderson and Anca C. Yallop and Simon Mowatt pp. 279–282 [Download PDF]
In these letters, Karin Curran, Kay Bramley and Winifred Henderson from the Research Association of New Zealand (RANZ) respond to the IJMR paper 'Investigating market research ethics: an empirical study of codes of ethics in practice and their effect on ethical behaviour'. The RANZ representatives contend that the research, which they saw as critical of codes of ethics in New Zealand, is based on outdated data and should not be applied to the present state of ethics in the country. The paper’s authors, Anca Yallop and Simon Mowatt respond that, while they apologise for omitting the data collection and analysis timeframes, the research is not outdated, that the research still makes a valuable contribution to the debate and that the paper was not intended to portray the current state of the New Zealand market research industry.
Published 31 May 2017

Viewpoint: What next for qualitative research?
Kirsty Fuller pp. 283–284 [Download PDF]
In this viewpoint, the author looks at the current state of qualitative research and looks to the future of the practice for market researchers. There are flaws with approaches to both qualitative and quantitative data. Qualitative researchers often avoid numbers and focus too much on what can be learned about people on an individual level rather than the shared social and cultural experience. Quantitative researchers can look at qualitative data as adding texture and nuance instead of substance. Commoditisation, digitisation and cost efficiency agendas have challenged agencies of both types but this provides opportunity for qualitative data. It can be integrated with big data to add human and cultural understanding and bridge the gap with quantitative data.
Published 31 May 2017

BPC/MRS enquiry into election: Ipsos MORI response and perspective
Roger Mortimore, Paul Baines, Robert Worcester and Mark Gill pp. 285–300 [Download PDF]
This Forum article considers the unsatisfactory results of pre-election opinion polling in the 2015 British general election and the BPC/MRS enquiry report into polling by Sturgis et al., providing a response from Ipsos MORI and associated researchers at King’s College London and Cranfield Universities. Whilst Sturgis et al. (2016) consider how to perfect opinion poll forecasting, why the 2015 prediction was inaccurate when the same methodology returned satisfactory results in 2005 and 2010 at Ipsos MORI is considered here instead. We agree with Sturgis et al. that the inaccurate results were not due to late swing or the ‘shy Tory’ problem and with Taylor (2016) that the underlying problem is a response rate bias. However, Sturgis et al. critique pollsters in their report for systematically under-representing Conservative voters but the Ipsos MORI final poll had too many Conservatives, too many Labour voters and not enough non-voters. The Sturgis et al. conclusion is convincing that the politically disengaged were under-represented due to quotas and weighting mechanisms designed to correct for response bias. Nevertheless, for Ipsos MORI, this explanation does not account for why the polling methodology was inaccurate in 2015 when it had performed accurately in 2005 and 2010. For Ipsos MORI, a more likely explanation is that Labour voters in 2015 became more prone to exaggerate their voting likelihood. We offer various postulations on why this might have been so, concluding that to account for the inaccuracy requires a two-fold response, to improve: (i) sample representativeness and (ii) the projection of voting behaviour from the data. Unfortunately, the BPC/MRS report offers no blueprint for how to solve the problem of sampling the politically disengaged. Whilst Ipsos MORI have redesigned their quotas to take account of education levels, to represent those better with no formal educational qualifications and reduce overrepresentation of graduates, polling in the referendum on EU membership suggests that the problem of drawing a representative sample has been solved but difficulties in how best to allow for turnout persist.
Published 3 February 2017

Evaluating data quality in reports of sales in a retail establishment survey
Kristen Olson, Xiaoyu Lin and Timothy Banks pp. 301–320 [Download PDF]
This paper examines failure to use records in sales reporting across about 12,000 store owners participating in a retail measurement panel in a Southeast Asian country. Reported sales based on the storekeeper’s memory (oral reports) were lower than those from records, as expected. More surprisingly, oral reports acted as a supplement to record-based reports at the same store, such that stores that had oral reports had higher total sales than those with invoices. Although stores were expected to either have or not have a reliable record system, many stores used both. Findings varied over individual categories of products. Little research has examined the quality of reports of retail (consumer) sales from store owners in non-western countries. The paper suggests that improving data collection tools, rather than a single statistical adjustment approach, may be a more fruitful avenue for reducing measurement error in sales reports.
Published 31 May 2017

The impact of word of mouth on intention to purchase currently used and other brands
Robert East, Jenni Romaniuk, Rahul Chawdhary and Mark Uncles pp. 321–334 [Download PDF]
This paper measures how the impact of positive and negative word of mouth (PWOM, NWOM) is related to the receiver’s intention to purchase brands, using shift in the intention to purchase as the measure of impact. It distinguishes between currently used and other brands, and finds that PWOM has more impact, and NWOM less, when these forms of advice are on the current brand. The PWOM effect persists among those who are disinclined to rebuy their current brand, so it is not based on preference. Similarly, the NWOM effect is not enhanced when respondents are disinclined to repurchase their current brand. To explain this phenomenon, we suggest that the current brand is better understood, making it easier for customers to accept PWOM and reject NWOM on it, irrespective of preference. This work, by showing that the response to WOM is relatively independent of preference, also indicates that bias based on preference may be a limited hazard in survey responses about WOM. When account is taken of the relative frequency of WOM on current and other brands, PWOM has twice as much effect on customer acquisition as customer retention, while NWOM has more than four times as much effect in deterring the acquisition of new buyers as it has on deterring customer retention. This evidence contributes to our understanding of how WOM acts to both retain and acquire customers.
Published 31 May 2017

Picking winners: new product concept testing with item response theory
Chunyu Li, Ling Peng and Geng Cui pp. 335–354 [Download PDF]
This paper describes how, based upon item response theory (IRT) and its differential item functioning (DIF), two studies were designed to address two important issues – adopting effective items or inviting proper respondents – involved in the identification of successful new concepts, to test new concepts with different levels of newness. Study One shows that some items in a multi-item scale better discriminate among concepts with low or high viability, and that tailored selections of items are necessary when testing major innovation or minor improvement concepts. Study Two pinpoints that choosing an effective source of respondents is important to identify popular movies. Although evaluations from ordinary moviegoers are generally more discriminating among movies with different popularity, those from professional critics are more effective for movies of unfamiliar genres. The implementation of IRT and DIF in both studies demonstrates an effective two-step benchmarking procedure for picking up winners for different new concepts.
Published 31 May 2017

Marketing models: a review of the literature
Canan Eryigit pp. 355–382 [Download PDF]
This paper reports the results of a systematic review of recent literature on the use of mathematical models in the marketing field to identify the main aims of model adoption in various functional areas of marketing. As study material, we have chosen 143 articles that used marketing models and were published in the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, Journal of Marketing, Journal of Marketing Research, International Journal of Research in Marketing, Quantitative Marketing and Economics and Quality and Quantity, from 2010–2014. Based on content analysis, these articles were assigned to consumer behaviour, product management, pricing management, distribution management, promotion management and marketing dynamics research themes in accordance with their research objectives. Some of these clusters were determined based on previous studies, while others emerged from our review. It is found that the highest (lowest) proportion of articles reviewed in this study involve research that uses marketing models in the marketing dynamics (distribution management) research theme. The next most common research theme was consumer behaviour. Articles utilising marketing models in product, pricing and promotion management themes were moderately common. We also summarise specific purposes for the use of marketing models in each research theme.
Published 31 May 2017

Conference Notes: 'Methodology in Context', 24 November 2016, London
Rachel Lawes and Neha Viswanathan pp. 383–390 [Download PDF]
This was a one-day Market Research Society conference with ten presentations covering a very wide perspective on methodological developments. There are two Conference Notes from that event. In the first, Rachel Lawes argues the case for applying semiotics as a core methodology in qualitative research; in the second, Neha Viswanathan discusses the methodological challenges when researching millennials in an emerging market. The notes for Lawes concludes that the challenges for adopting such a methodology are more organisational bu researchers will benefit by expanding their ability to do the qualitative equivalent of inferential statistics. Viswanathan argues that brands need to acknowledge and understand that there is a world beyond millennials and London, and that they need intimacy with a wider demographic if they want to be relevant to more of the market.
Published 31 May 2017

98% Pure Potato, by Tracey Follows and John Griffiths
Merry Baskin pp. 391–392 [Download PDF]
This book review looks at ‘98% pure potato’, by Tracey Follows and John Griffiths. The self-published work is an intriguing and insightful look into the origins of advertising account planning through interviews of the pioneering planners and researchers themselves. It has broader appeal beyond planning and should be picked up by marketers and researchers as well. The authors opine that account planning started in the UK rather than the US due to innovations in qualitative research. Early account planners loved data and used quantitative research to build the quality of the IPA Effectiveness Awards. The book makes a powerful case that research is a creative tool that has helped produce some of the greatest advertising in the world.
Published 31 May 2017

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Reminder to members – MRS Code of Conduct assurances

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