1. Skip questions are used in questionnaires seeking responses from respondents who have distinct characteristics. For example, questions skipped by females may be referring to those issues that affect or are relevant to males only.
2. Stratified random sampling method would be most appropriate method. The population is very distinct and it can be grouped into homogenous subgroups. The population can be grouped into respondents with income below $50,000, and those with income above $50000. The researcher can then use different sampling fractions to sample the distinction within the strata of population with income above $50000.This will ensure variability within the group is lower than variability for the total population. In that way, stratified random sampling method helps ensure all the population is represented in the selected sample.
3. Snowball sampling would be the most appropriate method. The researcher cannot be aware of all the snow skiers in south Florida. He will need to identify a specific group that he is well aware of who will recommend to him other snow skiers whom he can approach and conduct a survey.
4. Experimenting: It is done to experiment the response of the market to planned marketing methods that marketing firms plans to introduce in the market. An example is where the firm places small samples of its products in shelves of supermarkets and some questionnaires to get the feedback of respondents about the product
5. Cost. Before any test marketing is done, the marking department should consider its cost implications to the firm and the customers
Effectiveness. The effectiveness of test market is predetermined to determine whether it will have a positive impact in the market once the product is introduced.
How long will the test take place? This is important as it helps to determine the amount of time it will take before actual sales are realized.
Market size. If the market size is small, market testing becomes unnecessary as it could effectively be reached out as the product is being introduced.
The most compelling factor is the costs that will be incurred in market testing. If high costs are incurred, manufacturers have to pass them to the consumers through high prices which may drive customers away and the whole process become ineffective.
6. Properly selected email questionnaire survey reaches a good number of people at their convenient places. The target market mainly consists of literate people who are able to access the internet and their emails. Email questionnaires often give an immediate feedback that is not based on any bias since it is voluntarily. Given the time and money constraints, email questionnaire will be the most appropriate method
7. Online focus group is associated with many advantages that cannot be achieved using the traditional research methods. Online focus saves a lot of time since there is no travelling involved. Once the participant group is identified, the consultant is able to post his questions every time he wants to conduct a research on a particular site where respondents log in and answer them appropriately. It saves resources. The costs of transport and preparing research questionnaires is greatly reduced.Consoltant is also able to organize online interviews with the correspondent through videoconferencing and audio conferencing.
8. Executive summary is the most important part of a research report. It summarizes the main contents of the research report. It is the part that catches the attention of the readers of the report and ignites their interests in the report and its findings. The executive summary part provides a brief summary introduction of why the research was carried out, the research methods used, the research team, and the effectiveness of the research methods, findings and conclusion of a report. In essence, executive summary points out and states the reasons why the report should adopted and implemented giving clear procedures and methods which could be adopted to ensure the recommendations are implemented. It also defines the procedures that are going to be followed to ensure subsequent evaluation and effectiveness of the implementations. Thus a good report has to have a well formulated executive summary to ensure it catches the attention of its users. It is also supposed to cater their ability to understand.
Ways of attracting more business majors to my school.
This is the first step that I would undertake. I would seek to know how business major classes started, what were the overall objectives and visions of those who started it. I would seek to know the current population trends and develop research problems from that point.
In my marketing research to attract more students, I would first seek to answer the following questions what is the current enrolment of business major students? What is their mode of study: Are they full time students or part time students? How has the enrolment trends been changing over the past 10 years? Why has there been a decline in enrolment such that we are seeking to attract more numbers instead of expanding facilities to accommodate high number of students who should be enrolled?
After defining my problems which have given me clear background information, I would outline the following as my research objectives:
- Understand the demand of business program among undergraduate students who would wish to major in business
- Understand why undergraduate students chose to major in other fields other than business
- Highlight the number of competing institutions who are offering the same program and the reasons why they are attracting high number of enrolment.
- Understand the current syllabus, its objectives and the mode of study
- Understand the amount of fees being charged for the program and if it is competitive.
- Investigate the current trends in the job market seeking to absorb business major graduates
- Statement of the problem
- Why has there been a decline in the number of students enrolling for in the program to major in business?
The next step is to understand the decision making environment in the business school. I would seek to know how decisions are being made in the business school, what authorities and structures are followed and if there are any bureaucracy issues. This will help in determining the reasons why the school is not attracting more students in business majors. Most probably may be because of poor decisions that are made such as imposing high fees on the program, poor marketing and advertising or offering low quality programs where there is no continues research, development and extension
After this I would embark on sampling of the population to gather more information. My population would be current students in the program, former students, lectures, support staff, parents, students from other colleges taking the same program and the administrative officials. I would use probability sampling method since my population is distinct and large. I would group it into seven distinct groups and then use stratified sampling method to sample few individuals who will provide data. After that design a questionnaire and distribute it to all the groups with questions which were defined in the statement of problems. I would also seek to know how they feel about the program, seek their views on the fees charged, and seek to know their prospects of employment.
After that I would analyze my data and determine the main problems why the enrolment has been declining, their remedies and new methods of getting more students transfer into the program. I would recommend the following as the mostly likely ways to attract more students into the program:
- Do an extensive marketing through advertising in the local and international media for more students.
- Revise the fees program to ensure it is more competitive and pocket friendly while maintaining margins. This will include a research to determine the fees programs being charged in other schools offering the same program and then using the best school as a benchmark.
- Review the current program to ensure it is in line with the market trends and also ensure the industry recognizes graduates of business major in my school are the best trained
- Offer incentives to new students such as fees discount for the first 500 students or offer accommodation at a minimal rent
- Employ more and highly qualified lecturers who are student friendly for the program
- Create awareness of the existence and importance of business in life among prospective students and existing students who may wish to major in business.
- Roll out an innovative program to ensure the current students who have not majored enroll to major in business program. This will include offering attractive incentives such as free educational tours in our business program and award of masters and PhD scholarships to students who perform best.
- Partner with stakeholders in the corporate world to offer internships and employment vacancies
- Introduce exchange programs with leading institutions with schools offering business as a major to learn more about their programs and their way of operation
- Make sure our school’s operations are in line with the market trends
With all the above recommendations being implemented, more students would flock in the school and this will see escalation of the numbers and improved reputation of my business school.