Develop a research design- CASE 12­3: Compact Lemon

Develop a research design including:
1. The type of survey to be employed
2. A questionnaire
CASE 12­3: Compact Lemon
Ben Johnson, a marketing research staff member, has been asked to provide a quantitative estimate of the demand
for a new product concept, tentatively called Compact Lemon. The concept involves a powerful spray cleaner
with a lemon scent to be used to clean trash compactors. The product will involve a heavy­duty cleaner that will
clean more easily than current competitors, which are not in a spray form, and that will provide the added benefit
of a deodorizer.
Johnson has a research proposal for a telephone survey—a national random sample of 600 homeowners screened
to be owners of compactors would be phoned via a WATS line. Johnson wonders (1) whether the proposed
questionnaire will deliver the necessary information and (2) what improvements could be made.
Proposed Questionnaire for Telephone Survey
1. Do you own a compactor?
2. How often do you use your compactor?
3. Is it satisfactory?
4. Any problems?
5. Have you noticed any odor problems? (Skip if covered in question 4.)
Our client is considering a new product. The concept involves a powerful lemon­scented cleaner in a convenient
spray container to be used to clean trash compactors. This heavy­duty cleaner will clean more easily because it is
in spray form, and it will provide the added benefit of a deodorizer.
6. Which of the following would describe your likelihood to buy the product? Would buy it Would very
likely buy it Would not very likely buy it Would not buy it
7. What is your reaction to this idea? (Probe—any other reactions?)
8. How often do you use deodorizers in the home?
9. How many people are living in your home?
10. What is your age?
11. Do you have children under eight years old?
12. Which are you?
a. Home owner?
b. Home renter?
c. Apartment renter?
CASE 12­4: Project DATA: An Urban Transportation Study
The Downtown Agency for Transportation Action project (Project DATA) was a collaborative approach to the
problem of improving the high­density movement of people and goods within downtown Cleveland.1
 In August
1996, the survey researcher employed by Project DATA was wondering how to collect downtown origin and
7/30/2016 Marketing Research, 11th Edition
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1996, the survey researcher employed by Project DATA was wondering how to collect downtown origin and
destination (DOD) data for input to a comprehensive model of traveler behavior in downtown Cleveland.
Problems had been compounded by a poor response rate to a recent test of the preferred method of data collection,
a mail­back questionnaire distributed to rapid­transit users, bus patrons, and automobile travelers. Consequently,
the researcher had to decide in a short time whether to stay with the mail­back questionnaire method or try some
other, more costly, procedure. Not to change would involve persuading the other members of the research team
that the problems encountered in the pretest could be overcome and that the mail­back method would yield
sufficiently accurate results.
Background
Downtown Cleveland represented one of the most important concentrations of people in the Midwest. It generally
was defined as an area encircled by the Cuyahoga River Valley, the Innerbelt Freeway, and Lake Erie. For the
purposes of Project DATA, this definition was modified slightly to include the downtown­oriented activity centers
adjacent to the southeast corner of the area outside the Innerbelt Freeway. These centers include the future
location of Cuyahoga Community College and the St. Vincent Hospital and its parking area.
There had been considerable progress in making downtown Cleveland more accessible through rail rapid transit
and freeways; however, facilities to expedite the movement of people and goods within the downtown area were
being installed at a much slower rate. Transportation planners had tended to treat downtown Cleveland as a
terminus point for regional line­haul transportation, yet the downtown covered a broad land area with several
separate activity centers and a solid network of business, commercial, and entertainment facilities. Except for a
downtown loop bus system, there was little transportation among these centers.
The lack of transportation was regarded as a contributing factor in the deterioration of downtown Cleveland and
many other urban areas. After the Hough riots, Cleveland was chosen by the U.S. Department of Transportation as
the site of the first large­scale effort to design a comprehensive central urban transportation network. A number of
systems were under consideration, including: (1) train­type systems, (2) small automatic taxis, and (3) continuous
systems. Each was to be evaluated by a model that would simulate the decision processes of different user
segments. The model would consider where and how users move from one place to another for various trip
purposes within the downtown area. The DOD data being collected by Project DATA were to be the base for the
calibration of the simulation model. In addition, the data would be used in the development of interim projects to
improve the existing downtown transportation system. Thus, there was considerable urgency behind the request
for the data.
Designing the DOD Study
The first step was to establish the purpose of the study. After extensive discussions, it was agreed that the
following types of information were needed:
1. The numbers and socioeconomic characteristics of people who move to, from, and within downtown
Cleveland
2. The locations of the activity centers within downtown Cleveland to which these people are moving
3. The methods of travel used to move these people to, from, and within downtown
4. The trip purposes of the people movements
5. The time distribution of the people­movement patterns throughout a 24­hour period
A number of alternative methods for collecting the DOD information were considered. These included mail­back
questionnaires distributed to people at key locations within the downtown area, personal interviews conducted at
these same key locations, telephone surveys, trip diaries distributed to people to complete over extended periods
of time, mail­back questionnaires sent to houses, personal home interviews, newspaper coupons to be completed
and returned by mail, and a system of distributing and collecting precoded computer cards to reflect origins and
destinations of trips within the downtown area.
An evaluation of the various survey designs was made by the Project DATA staff. It decided that a mail­back
7/30/2016 Marketing Research, 11th Edition
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An evaluation of the various survey designs was made by the Project DATA staff. It decided that a mail­back
questionnaire distributed at key locations within the downtown area was the most realistic approach to collecting
the needed information, taking into account the time and financial constraints of the project. To test this decision,
a pilot survey was conducted. The objectives were:
1. To evaluate the ability of the survey forms and questions to obtain the required data
2. To determine the approximate survey response rates that could be expected from the various categories of
people so that a proper data sampling frame could be formulated
3. To ascertain where in the downtown area the survey questionnaires should be distributed
4. To determine the best procedures for distributing the questionnaires to the users of various modes of
transportation
The pilot survey utilized the questionnaire shown in Figure 12­3. Four hundred were distributed to rapid­transit
users as they went through the turnstiles in Terminal Tower. Another 600 were given to bus riders as they passed
an imaginary downtown cordon line. Those questionnaires were distributed only during the a.m. and p.m. peak
traffic periods. A final 400 questionnaires were distributed within two major parking lots by placing them under
windshield wipers after the automobiles had been parked. The results of the pilot survey are summarized in
Figures 12­4, 12­5, and 12­6.
Questions for Discussion
1.
Critique the questionnaire. Does it provide the required data?
2.
Evaluate the overall research design with respect to possible sources of bias in the results and the reasons for the
poor response rate.
3.
Specify how you would improve this mail­back survey.
4.
Suggest an alternative design and cite its advantages and shortcomings

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