Marketing and Social Research Practice – Business Essay
Introduction – Effective communication between the supliers and the consumers of goods and services of all kinds is vital to any modern society. Growing international links make this even more essential. For
a suplier to provide in the most efficient way that
consumers require he must understand their differing needs; how best to meet these needs; and how he can most effectively communicate the nature of the goods or services he is offering.
This is the objective of marketing research. It applies in both private and public sectors of the economy. Similar approaches are also used in other fields of study: for example in measuring the public’s behaviour and attitudes with respect to social, political and other issues by Goverment and public bodies, the media, academic institutions, etc. Marketing and social research have many interests, methods and problems in common although the subjects of study tend to be different.
Such researc depends upon public confidence: confidence that is carried out honestly, objectively, without unwelcome intrusion or disadvantage to respondents, and that it is based upon their willing cooperation. This confidence must be supported by any appropriate proffessional Code of Practice which governs the waxy in which marketing research projects are conducted.
The first such Code was published by the European Society gor Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR) in 1948. this was followed by a number of Codes prepared by national marketing research societies and by other bodies such as the International Chamber od Commerce (ICC = trgovinska zbornica), which represents the international marketing community. In 1976 ESOMAR and the ICC decided that it would be preferable to have a single International Code instead of two differing ones, and a joint ICC/ESOMAR Code was therefor published in the following year (with revisions in 1986).
Subsequent hanges in the marketing and social environment, new developments in marketing research methods and a great increase in international activities of all kinds including legislation, led ESOMAR to prepare a new version of the International Code in 1994. this new version sets out as concisely as possible the basic ethical and business principles which govern the practice of marketing and social research. It specifies the rules which are to be followed in dealing with the general public and with the business community, including clients and other members of the profession.
ESOMAR will be glad to give advice on the implementation of this Code; and also offers an arbitration and expert assessment service to help resolve technical and other disputes relating to marketing research projects.
Other aspects of marketing – in particular Direct Marketing and Advertising – are covered by separate International Codes of Practice published by the ICC. Copies of these may be obtained from the ICC Secretariat in Paris.