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The Concept of Product Development Qualitative Research Essay


Literature Review

Literature review will be conducted for the purposes of providing theoretical knowledge and general insight on the research problem. The general overview from the literature review will help in defining the concept of product development.

Additionally, existing arguments on the topic from different authors within existing literature will be considered for the purposes of forming theoretical framework necessary for addressing the identified research problem (Pride and Ferrell, 2003).

The foundation of the study will be formed based on new product development processes and related requirements. Interrelationship between the product and other organizational functions together with anticipated shortcomings also form the foundation of the study.

According to Jassawala and Sachittal (2000), development of new product follows a systematic process capable of creating and producing highest possible satisfactory results within the targeted market. The whole processes involve lowest possible risks and highest possible benefits to organization (Rainey, 2005).

However, most crucial elements within the process include the participants. New product development processes are never the same since some companies do not follow the deliberate step-by-step approach (Lee et al., 2000).

The process on product development and implementation follows five successive stages; idea generation, feasibility, definition and design, development and testing then Market entry and review stages (Martins et al., 1996).

New ideas are usually obtained from the market field through customers, employees and information from other competitors within the market using same line of technology (Martins et al., 1996).

Research and development team together with other departments involved enter into detailed coordination for the purposes of expanding the idea. This is followed by drafting of concept paper by the manager. The paper highlights product description, benefits and target consumers within the market (Rainey, 2005; Swink, 2000).

Desk Research

The research will utilize secondary sources for the purposes of obtaining relevant up-to-date information. The desk research will be used to obtain required information on other related product trends within the market. Such statistics will provide useful information based on the real market situation.

The research proposal will incorporate various stages including scrutinizing of the available sources for the purposes of obtaining required information (Kumar et al., 2002).

Problem Statement

There has been growing trend on the use soft drinks as means of boosting energy in process performing hard tasks. However, reliable sources have indicated possible dangers surrounding frequency of use of such drinks.

This is attributed to health related issues and therefore calling for the need to introduce into the market healthy natural energy drink free from sugary content (Fisher,1997).

Research question

What is the overall effect of development process of “Natural” energy drink to the organization’s performance?

Objectives

The main objective will be examination of the effect of new product development processes to the Organization’s performance and general attitude towards the use of ‘Natures’ energy drink within the market environment.

  1. To examine possibility of using ‘Natures’ within domestic settings
  2. To find out overall consumer attitude towards “Natures’ energy drink and other related brands
  3. To identify possible promotional platforms which can be utilized during launching period

Methodology

Qualitative Research

The stated objectives will be analyzed in depth through use of detailed qualitative information. This research will ultimately focus on the process of identifying possible consumer reactions towards the new product.

Within the same process quantitative research will be applied for the purposes of establishing the nature of impact consumer reaction and attitude has on the new brand (Wegner, 2000).

Qualitative research will seek to answer questions focusing on conditions under which the product is used and places where the product is might be used. Qualitative research will be used for the purposes of providing detailed description of the product in question (Strauss and Corbin, 1990).

Rationale for using in-depth interviews

In this research in-depth interviews will be used as a means of gaining consumer perspective from the dimensions of interaction within the market. Generally, an open-ended in-depth interview provides the required flexibility based on the respondent’s neutrality and sensitivity.

The structure encourages open conversations enabling collection of primary data based on detailed information from interviewees.

In-depth interviews will be utilized for the purposes of allowing deep understanding of the phenomenon based on physical and social settings within the target market (Griffin, 1997). Additionally, the method will allow understanding of norms, effects and values attached on the line of product from participant’s point of view.

In-depth interviews will be conducted the first two weeks of June, during which code names will be used to avoid the possibilities of victimizing respondents based on information given. (Strauss and Corbin, 1990). Interviews will be conducted after signing of the consent form by the willing respondents.

Population

The population in this study will be used to refer to the aggregate of all elements within the area of study. Within this study, the population will comprise of all stakeholders related to the new product and found within marketing and product development function.

This will also include some of the important departments within the business organization involved in the manufacture of the product.

Population Sampling

The method of random will be extensively utilized in this research. This is since this method grants equal opportunity for participation and covers significant area of targeted population. Everybody within the market environment will be granted equal opportunity to fully participate within the study (Malhotra, 1996).

Coding will be used for the purposes of ensuring relevance and validating the kind of data collected.

Approximately two hundred and fifty interviews will be conducted within selected consumer segments for the purposes of establishing differences for entire responses. Sample size will be determined through proportional sampling technique (Trott, 2008).

Table 1: The sample quotas will be set as follows

Population size within each segment Male Female Total sample
1 30 30 50
2 30 30 50
3 30 30 50
4 30 30 50
<5 30 30 50
Total 150 150 250

Questionnaire design

Design of appropriate questionnaire will ensure that correct research questions are applied as well as collection of relevant primary data applicable for statistical analysis.

Five-point Likert scale will be used for rating purposes since it provides respondents with options to indicate their level of agreement or disagreement against statements provided. Each statement will be assigned a numerical score ranging 1-5 of which the score will ultimately be summated.

Likert 5-point scale will comprise of scale from “strongly disagree” to “strongly agree”, “very low influence” to “very high influence”.

Procedure

All questionnaires will be approved by the manufacturing company. The questionnaire will include relevant questions touching all sections within the market and the organization at large. Pre-testing of initial questionnaire will be done using a group of ten respondents obtained from the same sample population.

This will be done for the purposes of making important adjustments to the designed questionnaire (Wilson, 2006).

Examples of questions that will be used; what is the anticipated rate of consumption of energy drinks within the market? Do consumers complain concerning current brands? In what areas are they specifically concerned?

Detailed information will be obtained based on open-ended interview process where questions will also be pre-coded.

At the same time code frames will be utilized within the range of first ten percent, this will be based on nature of responses (Malhotra and Birks, 2003).

The kind of implementation process adopted by the management will incorporate all the processes involved in the allocation of resources. Such ideas will be adopted for sole purpose of attracting consumers and at the same time provide for their desires.

In the process of such intense planning, solid strategies will be incorporated for the purposes of identifying consumer needs. Implementation of New Product Development Process involves processes of convincing the market based on research objectives.

All marketing strategies will be tested before being incorporated within the full process. This will ensures establishment of quality implementation process hence profitable outcome within the target market (Kotler, 1997).

Description on Company’s products reveals the necessity of paying attention to the value customers attach to products based on pricing technique used. The article is true in portraying the fact that management team always pay much attention on the manner in which the company utilizes resources.

Timeline for the Research proposal

Months May June July August September
Wks1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4
Activities
Literature Review +
Desk Research + + + + +
Qualitative fieldwork + +
Availing qualitative and desk research findings +
Development of questionnaire +
Pilot +
Pilot debriefing +
Coding and preparation of data + + +
Analysis + +
Compiling report + +
Presentation of final report + +

References

Fisher, M. L. 1997, ‘What is the right supply chain for your product?’ Harvard Business Review, vol 75, no. 2, pp.105–116.

Griffin, A. 1997, ‘Modelling and measuring product development cycle times across industries, Journal of engineering and technology management, Vol. 1, No.14, pp.1-24.

Jassawala, R. & Sachittal, C 2000, ‘Cross functional dynamics in new product development,’ Research Technology Management, Vol.10, No. 43.

Kotler, P. 1997, “Marketing Management – Analysis, Planning, Implementation and Control,” 9th edition, Prentice Hall, USA.

Kumar, V., Aaker, D. & Day, G. 2002, “Essentials of Marketing Research,” 2nd edition, Wiley c2002, New York.

Lee, J., Lee, J. & Sonder, W. 2000, ‘Differences of organizational characteristics in new product development: Cross cultural comparison of Korea and the US,’ Technovation, Vol.9, No. 20, p. 497.

Malhotra, K. & Birks, D. 2003, Marketing Research: An applied approach, 2nd European edition.

Malhotra, N. 1996, “Marketing Research: An applied orientation,” 2nd edition, Prentice Hall International, New Jersey.

Martins, J., Loubser, M. & Van Wyk, H. 1996, Marketing Research: A South African approach, Unisa Press, Pretoria.

Pride, W. & Ferrell, O. 2003, Marketing Concepts and Strategies,12th edition, Houghton Mifflin Company.

Rainey, D. 2005, Product Innovation. Leading change through integrated product development, Cambridge University Press.

Strauss, A. & Corbin, J. 1990, Basics of qualitative research: Grounded theory procedures and techniques, London.

Swink, M. 2000, ‘Technological innovativeness as a moderator of new product design integration and top management support’, Journal of Product Innovation Management, Vol. 3, No.17, p 208.

Trott, P. 2008, Innovation management and new product development, 4th edition, Prentice Hall.

Wegner, T. 2000, Quantitative methods for marketing decisions, Juta, Cape Town.

Wilson, A. 2006, Marketing research, an integrated approach, 2nd edition, Prentice Hall.

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