By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm:
In a recent piece in Forbes online, Roger Dooley tells his own story of a spectacular market research failure. His company was involved in metal sales and competed in a market with an overall price similarity. Thinking that their product had some quality advantages over the competition, the company wanted to charge a higher price. The market research they did showed that price came in dead last as a concern, with likely customers focused on quality, delivery speed, and customer service instead.
Roger Dooley’s audience for this piece is market researchers, but the critique and the caution applies just as well to those who conduct litigation focus group and mock trial projects. There are definite similarities between the legal pretrial research and the market research fields, since we often use the same recruiters, the same facilities, and have similar goals in testing the public’s reaction to new information.
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