Market Research

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Market Research




     Market Research


     Corporate HR Group - July 1999

     For use within Unilever only

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    This addendum is intended to supplement the information in the Professional Skills Dictionary and the Marketing Skills Appendix

    The Market Research Skill Areas should be read and used in conjunction with the Marketing Skill Areas. The two sets of Skill Areas are shown together (pages 2 and 3) with definitions for each Skill Area and a bullet point list of the Skill Sub Areas.

    Subsequent pages of this addendum provide more detail on each of the Market Research Skill Areas. Each page is headed with the Skill Area and its definition. The Skill Sub Areas are then listed along with examples.

     These examples are illustrative; they do not cover all skills and are not meant to be limiting.

    PAGE ;1 1


    1 CONSUMER UNDERSTANDING The development of a compelling vision of consumers?existing and future needs. The acquisition and development of a deep understanding of consumers, their behaviour and attitudes towards the brand, the category and the wider world. The achievement of a high level of competence in the interpretation and deployment of market research.

     ? Developing an Intimate Knowledge of Consumers' Attitudes and ? Initiating and Exploiting Fundamental Research Behaviours on the Category ? Assessing and Interpreting Market Research ? Developing a Vision of the Future ? Being a Champion for the Consumer in the Business 2

    MARKET CATEGORY STRATEGY DEVELOPMENT The use of consumer understanding, the competitive dynamics and boundaries of the market, and Unilever's strengths and weaknesses to derive a clear strategy for the category that delivers profitable growth.

     ? Defining and Understanding the Market Category and Segments ? Creating Long Term Strategies for each Market Category ? Analysing Competitor Intelligence ? Constructing the Brand Strategy ? Formulating the Pricing Strategy 3 BRAND EQUITY MANAGEMENT The championship of a brand. The identification and definition of the purpose and personality of a brand that the consumer finds both distinctive and appealing. The development of new ideas that add value for the consumer together with the rigorous maintenance of the brand identity in all brand activities, to ensure the long term profitability of the Brand.

     ? Developing Brand Positioning Statement (BPS) ? Defending and Developing Brand Identity and Positioning ? Championing the Brand ? Monitoring and Managing the Performance of the Brand

    LEADERSHIP OF BRAND INNOVATION The identification of gaps in consumer needs, translating into brand ideas and through Innovation Process Management (IPM) bringing them to fruition, jointly with other functional specialists.

    ? Finding and Anticipating the Consumer Need Gap ? Generating and Evaluating Ideas (formulations and packaging) ? Launch Planning and Implementation ? Appreciating Technological Possibilities ? Aggregate Project Planning

    BRAND COMMUNICATION The communication of the brand, its unique values and benefits to the consumer and the guardianship of the brand identity and brand values, applying the principles of UPGA and 'Good Advertising Practice' (GAP).

     ? Developing a Communication Plan ? Working with the Agency ? Searching for Innovative Brand Communication ? Developing and Judging the Communication ? Briefing the Agency ? Testing the Communication

    MEDIA MANAGEMENT The presentation of the brand communication in the most relevant and cost effective way.

     ? Understanding how Consumers Assimilate Media ? Encouraging Innovative Media Activities ? Controlling the Media Plan ? Managing the Public Image of the Brand ? Evaluating and Optimising Media Spend

    MARKETING OPERATIONS The execution, with precision and speed, of all aspects of the marketing plan.

     ? Generating a Brand Activity Plan ? Maintaining, Implementing and Developing Marketing Support ? Developing Consumer Focused Promotions ? Systems ? Tactical Consumer Pricing and Marketing Activities ? Providing Consumer Advice and Support 8 CUSTOMER MANAGEMENT INTERACTION In conjunction with Customer Development to integrate trade and consumer needs in order to define and support brand sales strategies and build the customer value of the brands.

     ? Assessing Consequences of Retailing Developments on Marketing ? Contributing to Category Management ? Providing Input to the Trade Proposition ? Participating in the Development of Customer or Channel Specific Marketing Strategies 9 LEVERAGING BEST MARKETING PRACTICE The benchmarking of global developments within relevant categories with an open mind. Encouraging adoption and ensuring rapid implementation of best practice.

     ? Identifying and Analysing Best Practice ? Supporting Implementation ? Documenting and Communicating Best Practice ? Creating Networks and Learning Market Research Skills ?July 1999 2


    1 STRATEGIC LEVERAGE OF MARKET RESEARCH The design and development of programmes of continuous and ad-hoc market research to deliver the consumer and market understanding and insights needed to achieve profitable market growth and realise the objectives and strategies of the business.

     ? Determining Consumer and Market Understanding Needs ? Managing Internal and External Resources (Agencies) ? Assessing Trends and Developments Consumer and Market ? Integrating Consumer and Market Understanding Research ? Evaluating Market Research Performance ? Defining Programme Objectives and Research Mix 2 AD-HOC MARKET RESEARCH The selection and application of ad hoc market research techniques to ensure all elements of the marketing mix are optimised to meet consumer needs.

     ? Translating Consumer Understanding Needs ? Analysing the Research ? Assessment and Selection of Techniques ? Communicating and Using the Results ? Applying the Techniques

    3 CONTINUOUS MARKET RESEARCH The purchase, provision and interpretation of continuous research data to support and inform Marketing and Customer Management decisions and activities, based on comprehensive assessment of the sources of the data, the research techniques and analytical methods.

     ? Obtaining Optimum Data Mix ? Building Data Structures ? Ensuring Data Accuracy ? Analysing Continuous Research Data ? Managing Agencies ? Interpreting and Advising

    CONSUMER AND MARKET MODELLING AND FORECASTING The development and maintenance of models of the total market, brands and individual elements of the marketing mix that inform decision-making and enable forecasting to meet consumer needs and business growth.

     ? Determining the Modeling Requirements and Limitations ? Facilitating Trade and Category Management ? Assessing and Selecting Modeling Techniques ? Supporting Decision Making and Developments ? Managing the Modeling Process

    MANAGEMENT OF MARKET RESEARCH PROJECTS The efficient management of the technical, financial and human resources to meet the agreed marketing and business needs on time and within budget.

     ? Developing the Project Brief ? Analysing and Interpreting Data ? Agreeing the Research Design ? Implementing Findings ? Managing Project Execution

Market Research Skills ?July 1999 3



    The design and development of programmes of continuous and ad-hoc market research to deliver

    the consumer and market understanding and insights needed to achieve profitable market growth

    and realise the objectives and strategies of the business.

     Determining Consumer and Market Understanding Needs

     Analysing market category strategies and brand plans to determine the consumer understanding needs of the

    target groupings; translating needs into market and consumer information requirements; recognising cross

    category needs; briefing suppliers/ agencies on business needs and information requirements;

     Assessing Trends and Developments Consumer and Market Research

     Reviewing methods and measures used for effectiveness and potential abuses; investigating the nature and

    use of potential future data sources and measures and methods; identifying gaps in existing information;

    commissioning / developing methods to fill identified gaps; ensuring that action is taken based on trends that

    have been identified;

     Defining Programme Objectives and Research Mix

     Translating consumer and market information needs into objectives for continuous or ad hoc research

    programmes; balancing the use of external market research and direct consumer contact with other relevant

    techniques; determining the mix of sources and levels of data to meet programme objectives; working with

    Unilever expert groups and key suppliers to provide suitable solutions; developing a programme of research

    for the year in terms of planned marketing activity and identified gaps in consumer understanding;

     Managing Internal and External Resources (Agencies)

     Assessing capabilities (structure, people, skills and competencies) against consumer understanding needs of

    the business; analysing gaps; taking corrective action; determining the type of agency relationship for each

    type of programme (single source vs. multiple, tactical or strategic, etc.); developing strategic partnerships

    with key agencies ; identifying ways in which current and potential data can be exploited to gain competitive

    advantage; recommending appropriate budgets;

     Integrating Consumer and Marketing Understanding

     Creating processes and procedures to integrate market and consumer research findings; ensuring consistent

    understanding is developed in all categories; creating supporting systems for expert analysis and non-expert

    access to consumer and market data; stimulating communication of consumer and market information

    throughout the business, including findings and insights from individual projects; building database of

    consumer and market understanding and insights; ensuring agencies build learning across projects;

     Evaluating Market Research Performance

     Obtaining understanding and agreement on measures for consumer and market understanding; tracking

    performance against measure within and across categories; evaluating agencies and key suppliers on service

    costs and expertise; reviewing project performance and value added to the business;

Market Research Skills ?July 1999 4



    The selection and application of ad hoc market research techniques to ensure all elements of the

    marketing mix are optimised to meet consumer needs.

     Translating Consumer Understanding Needs

     Identifying gaps in understanding of the main determinants of consumer behaviour; assessing where qualitative

    research can be used to create understanding of why the consumers behave the way they do; translating brand

    objectives into specific targets on attitudes, awareness and attributes; exploring secondary data and using

    market analyses to identify broad trends and future developments; developing test and evaluation schedules for

    each element of the mix for each stage in the Innovation Process;

? ? Assessment and Selection of Techniques

     Supplementing regular U and A studies with advanced techniques; identifying and defining market and

    consumer indicators of underlying brand performance and health (e.g. image ratings); establishing pre-tests of

    mix elements; selecting research techniques suited to mix element; assessing the use of competitive

    benchmarking, sensory analysis and preference mapping for products; identifying and assessing uses and

    abuses of qualitative research in the development and evaluation of all elements of the marketing mix; applying

    Unilever MR Guidelines to all activities in the assessment and selection of techniques;

     Applying the Techniques

     Commissioning/ conducting wide range of quantitative research to identify key demand drivers; implementing a

    portfolio of brand performance measures covering purchasing, brand image and operational performance;

    constructing stimulus material that elicits consumer participation and constructive input; applying the most

    appropriate technique to increase precision in the assessment of each element of the mix;

     Analysing the Research

     Investigating links and trade-offs across adjacent product categories and/or countries; analysing brand health;

    investigating and synthesising existing consumer and market data to identify opportunities; investigating and

    analysing competitor innovations; using animatic research to select /approve advertising ideas; comparing test

    results with established best practice from other markets; constructing and using simulated test markets;

    interpreting and integrating the outputs from a range of qualitative techniques from simple groups to complex

    creativity sessions;

     Communicating and Using the Results

     Exposing early trends and communicating their implications for the category; communicating the results from

    brand health checks with recommendations on corrective actions; assessing and communicating results from

    packaging in-use tests; communicating insights into consumer motivation available from the use of qualitative

    techniques and their limitations;

    Market Research Skills ?July 1999 5



    The purchase, provision and interpretation of continuous research data to support and inform

    Marketing and Customer Management decisions and activities, based on comprehensive

    assessment of the sources of the data, the research techniques and analytical methods.

     Obtaining Optimum Data Mix

     Ensuring the right mix of data sources are bought at competitive prices; recognising uses and limitations of

    data collection methods and measures available from retail audit data and retail scanning (coverage, pick-up

    and trendability); assessing data from consumer panels (purchase and consumption); investigating and

    piloting alternative and supplemental data sources and research methods (external data access, published

    data, ad brand tracking, etc.); building understanding of market structure and dynamics;

     Ensuring Data Accuracy

     Determining the accuracy required for the data application; performing detailed data reconciliations; rigorously

    assessing pick-up and coverage; validating data and ensuring data is correct; communicating any major

    limitations of the data to users; answering queries on the data accuracy;

     Managing Agencies

     Managing our continuous suppliers; specifying and communicating requirements with agencies and other

    suppliers; establishing and maintaining partnership agreements with key suppliers; drafting and agreeing

    contracts; ensuring that suppliers provide accurate and timely data; conducting periodic review of supplier and

    agency performance; obtaining cost effective and timely responses to changes in data needs;

     Building Data Structures

     Drafting data hierarchy specifications; conducting discussions with key stakeholders (Marketing, Customer

    Management, Ad Hoc Research, etc.) on Company data hierarchy; maintaining data in the correct hierarchies;

    mapping new products to data sectors; developing multiple hierarchies to reflect trade, consumer and company

    views of the market;

     Analysing Continuous Research Data

     Applying aggregate analyses (price relativity, price relativity vs. brand share, sales per point of distribution,

    etc.); identifying and communicating factors that lie behind the analyses; identifying threats and opportunities;

    monitoring performance (brand, category, etc.) over time; appraising and using supporting software packages;

     performing dissaggregated analyses (demographics; penetration; weight of purchase; loyalty; duplication and

    switching ; loyalty/propensity; trial/repeat (Parfitt Collins) etc.); responding to requests for specific topic


     Interpreting and Advising

     Assessing levels of knowledge of different user groups; identifying gaps and instituting corrective actions

    (training, coaching, use of software, etc.) encouraging users to challenge the data; ensuring that longer term /

    strategic use of the data is not compromised by short term tactical issues; facilitating access to the data,

    including direct user access; developing systems and processes to share uses of the data across the business;

Market Research Skills ?July 1999 6



    The development and maintenance of models of the total market, brands and individual elements

    of the marketing mix that inform decision-making and enable forecasting to meet consumer needs

    and business growth.

     ? Determining the Modelling Requirements and Limitations

     Interpreting/identifying how modelling can support category development, brand planning and innovation;

    investigating market and value drivers (price elasticities, demand coefficients, discounted brand shares, profit

    curves); assessing value of modelling for brand communication development and media planning (weight,

    scheduling); translating business, category and customer management strategies into modelling requirements;

    investigating quantification of key elements (e.g. weather) for brand performance and sales forecasting;

    determining data and resource requirements; agreeing objectives for the model;


     Assessing and Selecting Modelling Techniques

     Appraising capabilities and characteristics of the major statistical modelling techniques (baselining, regression,

    Box Jenkins, Baysian, Neural Nets etc.); investigating applicability of application specific models - e.g.

    advertising response modelling (eg: AGB Ad Assessor, Millward Brown Force Modelling, Caratrack etc);

    identifying appropriate complexity of model required; detailing assumptions, constraints and qualifications on

    the techniques and data (e.g. Nielsen Scanpro, AGB Brand Monitor); obtaining informal feedback - Unilever

    and other experiences; assessing performance against internal and external benchmark data;

     Managing the Modelling Process

     Evaluating capabilities and suitability of Unilever/third party best practice modelling expertise; generating

    requirements brief (eg timing, expected outputs, type of problem); monitoring progress; establishing interim

    deliverables; applying ystems thinking?to modelling problems (eg causal loop analysis); utilising simple

    modelling tools; pursuing creative definition/development/application of models; incorporating appropriate cost

    data within modelling process (activ瑣癩ity based costing); communicating with/motivating and managing

    modelling experts; evaluating quality of output; determining when to conclude model development.

     Facilitating Trade and Category Management

     Determining the information needs for Trade Marketing; analysing category developments and requirements;

    developing trade and/or category scenarios; quantifying trade and channel developments; modelling channel

    and category flows; approving volume estimates in trade and category plans and proposals; establishing trade

    and category data structures; providing regular reviews of progress and operations.

     Supporting Decision Making and Developments

     Relating the model output to market realities; recognising key benefits and major trade-offs; identifying sources

    of competitive advantage, current areas of weakness or market opportunities; establishing/interpreting financial

    consequences of model solutions; assessing if solution can be implemented and `marketing' the solution;

    examining and communicating implications for category strategies and/or marketing and sales operations;

    incorporating modelling into marketing activities, e.g. individual promotions and brand plans; disseminating

    models across categories, markets and businesses;

Market Research Skills ?July 1999 7



    The efficient management of the technical, financial and human resources to meet the agreed

    marketing and business needs on time and within budget.

     Developing the Project Brief

     Agreeing the key business/marketing issues to be addressed by the project, the project deliverables and

    success criteria; challenging the need for the project in terms of existing consumer knowledge; defining the

    scale and scope of the project, including project risk; preparing a written brief covering the objectives, outline

    research technique, sample size and definition, sampling method, action standards etc.; selecting the

    appropriate research agency based on expertise, availability, partnership agreements, costs etc.; evaluating

    alternative proposals submitted by selected agencies; face to face briefing of the selected agency;

     Agreeing the Research Design

     Refining and agreeing the research design and sample with the research agency; developing the questionnaire

    / discussion guide; obtaining co-ownership of the research design; being responsive to alternative ways of

    meeting the brief; ensuring that the data collected will meet the needs of the brief and be both credible and

    actionable; agreeing the stimulus material;

     Managing Project Execution

     Managing the relationship with the Agency (eg creating a common language and shared philosophy with the

    Agency); providing input to and motivating and managing agency team; maintaining control of each stage of

    the project; controlling the quality of fieldwork by attendance where appropriate; managing the process of

    fieldwork attendance by other members of the business for purposes of developing consumer understanding.

     Analysing and Interpreting Data

     Reviewing samples of the raw data with the research agency; examining the agency’s analysis of the data;

    discussing and clarifying findings with the agency; seeking validation of the findings and their interpretation;

    developing clear, concise and actionable communication of the research findings; quality controlling the

    production and archiving of agency reports including relevant stimulus material.

Market Research Skills ?July 1999 8

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