Visits to customers by a cross-functional team of marketers and engineers play an important role in new product development, entry into new markets, and in exploring customer satisfaction and dissatisfaction. The new edition of this widely used professional resource provides step-by-step instructions for making effective use of this market research technique.Using a wealth of specific examples, Edward F. McQuarrie explains how to set feasible objectives and how to select the right number of the right kind of customers to visit. One of the leading experts in the field, McQuarrie demonstrates how to construct a discussion guide and how to devise good questions, and offers practical advice on how to conduct face-to-face interviews.Extensively updated throughout, this third edition includes three new chapters as well as expanded coverage of the analysis of visit data. It also discusses which industries and product categories are most (and least) suitable to the customer visit technique. The author also covers how the customer visit technique compares to other market research techniques such as focus groups.
Introduction; Part 1. Rationale; 1. Why Visit Customers?; 2. Customer Visits as a Distinctive Approach to Market Research; 3. Limits, Boundary Cases, and the Sweet Spot for Customer Visits; Part 2. Procedures; 4. Programmatic, Ad Hoc, and Hybrid Approaches to Visiting Customers; 5. Planning a Program of Visits; 6. Budgets, Recruitment, Coordination, Team Preparation, and Time Line; 7. Selecting Customers to Visit; 8. Preparing a Discussion Guide; 9. Constructing Good Questions; 10. Conducting the Visits; 11. Completing the Visit Program; Part 3. Analysis; 12. Generalizability of Visit Data; 13. Procedures for the Analysis of Visit Data; 14. The Place of Customer Visits within the Market Research Toolbox; Appendix: Checklist for Conducting a Program of Customer Visits; Bibliography; About the Author; Index.