Avlon: Market Research Proposal

Background

Avlon is a leading cosmetic manufacturer of international repute located in US. It recently acquired a Singaporean cosmetic manufacturer that had in the recent ties developed an anti-ageing cream containing bovine products. This product works in the same way as Botox. The company intends to market in Singapore as Bolox and has already developed the design of the package. On acquisition of the company, Avlon decided to venture into the international market with Bolox. The company intends to make a debut of the product first in the US and UK market and later to launch it into the emerging markets of India and China in the next two years.

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Objectives

The major objective of this research proposal is to evaluate the potential market size for bolox in the UK market and the perception of customers towards the new product. This will be a very useful tool of planning the Avlon’s entry into the market even as it eyes the vast market of the emerging economies especially India and China. This broad objective will be broken down into four sub objectives which will include among others to examine the potential market size and the target segment of the product. The study intends to investigate the size of the potential market for product in order to determine the feasibility of the venture and marketing and selling approaches to be developed for the product in order to achieve the intended objectives. On the same line, the study will unveil useful insight on the target segment for the product. This will enable Avlon to develop the most efficient and effective way of segmenting the market so as to come up with a more focused and directed approach of marketing and selling to the segment. It will also aid in developing the appropriate product designs that appeal to the segments.

The second objective will among many other tasks seek to investigate how the customer in the US and UK market perceive the brand name and the design of the product. This will help the company to make changes where necessary to adapt the product to the market through appropriate branding and packaging. It will also give Avlon an important insight on how to localize the brand while maintaining the brand identity and the company’s best practices. The research report will thereafter seek to propose effective ways of leveraging the product branding and packaging in order to penetrate into the market. The move will also aid in designing the appropriate marketing and packaging strategies for the market segment.

The third sub objective of the study will be to identify the perception of the consumer towards bolox. This will help the company to know whether it is achieving its market diversification strategy and whether the current marketing, selling, and production strategies are achieving the intended objectives. The ultimate aim will be to aid the company in developing the most effective strategies of endearing the product to the market.

The fourth sub objective will be to examine ways of simulating consumers to give an alternative potential brand name. This will ensure that the company’s brand name is more appealing to the consumers and achieves the targeted objectives within the minimum period at the least cost. In addition, the study will help reduce the cost of branding and advertising since marketing approaches to be used will be more accurate and directed. Another benefit of this objective is that the consumers will easily embrace a brand name that is locally developed since it carries with it the cultural attributes of the local population hence easy ownership of the brand.

Approach and methodology

Ultimate Research Inc intends to employ both qualitative and quantitative research in the study. Qualitative research for instance will aid in the measurement of unquantifiable aspects of the data such as the perception of the consumers towards bolox and also to evaluate the perception of the consumers towards the bolox brand and the design of the product package. To collect qualitative data, personal interviews will be conducted using questionnaires. Similarly, quantitative research will be administered to capture quantifiable aspects of the study such as the measuring of the market size and the target segment of the product in the UK and the American market. It will also be employed to evaluate productivity and efficiency of the current production technology.

Reference material will also be sourced from books and websites. This will be executed by analyzing peer reviewed articles and journals from various websites and also reviewing the company’s websites. Key relevant points will be captured from the sources then thereafter collected, systematically analyzed, and summarized. Later they will be compiled alongside those collected from other sources in readiness for presentation to the Avlon’s board of directors. To conduct the sample survey, a representative sample will be generated from a list of existing and potential consumers from where personal interviews will be administered. The results of the book and website reviews in addition to results from interviews captured in a structured questionnaire will be forwarded in to the research staff for analysis.

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Focus group

The research study will be targeted on users and nonusers between the ages of 35 years and above. The research staff will generate a sample of 1400 households from the larger population in which the questionnaires will be administered. Only those households with persons over 35 years of age will be selected for interviews. The potential user will consist of those persons intending to use the product in the next 12months. The sample survey will be conducted among potential and current users in 5 UK counties namely; Cheshire, Devon, Kent, Surrey, and Yorkshire. This sample will be divided into four groups:

Group Age Sample Size
A 35-45 500
B 45-55 400
C 55-65 300
D 65+ 200

Reporting and presentation procedures

On completion of the major phases of the study, an interim report will be presented to the management team of Avlon on 5th of May followed by a full presentation on 7th May. A mini report will also be issued on 26th of April to brief the management team on the progress of the study. This will be communicated through a special meeting. Ultimate Research will use emails and telephone calls to make clarifications and consultations on various issues. Upon completion of the study a formal power point presentation of the report will be given during a meeting of the management team scheduled for 7th of May. This will be professionally done to ensure it captures the attention of the audience while delivering the key points precisely. A bound copy of the report accompanied by a soft copy will be sent to the Michael Schulz three days prior to the formal presentation.

Timing

The research proposal will be presented on 16th of March for approval. If approved, a go ahead is expected to be issued on 9th of April after which the agency intends to commence the study on 10th of April. This research project is projected to take a period of about a month commencing 10th of April 2010 and ending on 7th of June 2010. This is in compliance with set timeframe in the brief. Ultimate Research will issue weekly progress reports on every Friday of the week at 3.00pm. The timing is designed to give the staff adequate room for compiling reports of the work progress. Any discrepancies in your timings will be deliberated and considered appropriately so that all the necessary adjustments are put in place on time. This will be in line with ensuring that your deadlines are met. The projected time table for the research project will be as follows:

Time table for the research project

Presentation of the proposal 16/03/2010
Authorization of the research study 09//04/2010
Start up date 10/04/2010
Presentation of mini report 26/04/2010
Projected time of completion 06/05/2010
Set up and initiation of the project 4 days
Data collection 12 days
Data analysis 6 days
Compilation of results 3 days
Presentation of the interim report 05/05/2010
Presentation of the full report 07/05/2010
Re-launch of bolox 01/08/2010

Questionnaire design

The questionnaire is designed to take about 30 minutes. The content will be as follows:

  1. Age
  2. Sex: Male/female
  3. Area of residence: Cheshire/ Devon/ Kent/ Surrey/ Yorkshire/ none of these
  4. Present occupation
  5. Have you used bolox in the last 12 months? No/ Yes
  6. Do you intend to use bolox in the next 12 months? (If NO skip to terminate the interview and add in the questionnaire)
  7. Do you enjoy using bolox? No/ Yes
  8. Would you recommend bolox to a friend? No/ Yes
  9. Do you like the name bolox? No/ Yes
  10. How would you rate the design of the product? Very attractive/ attractive/ fair/ not attractive
  11. Suggest another name for the product
  12. How was your experience in using bolox? Bad/ fair/ good/ excellent
  13. How would you rate the cost of bolox? Very affordable/Fair/expensive/ too expensive
  14. How often do you use bolox? Daily/ occasionally/once/
  15. Have you experienced any problem during use? Yes/No (If No skip to skip to question 17)
  16. What problem was experienced?
  17. What would you like to be added on the bolox cosmetic?
  18. Do you know any other botox product? No/ Yes
  19. Have you used any of the botox products? No/ Yes

Budget

Listed below are the projected costs of research study. The estimates are exclusive of VAT and are subject to the assumptions made in the research proposal. The fees outlined in the budget are only projections and the agency reserves the right to make adjustments as the management deems fit.

Activity Description Fees
Qualitative research 50 hrs of Senior research executives
100 hrs of junior research executives
Purchase of research material ($2,500)
$20,000
Quantitative research 100 hrs of Senior research executives
200 hrs of junior research executives
Purchase of research material ($5,000)
$30,000
Consultancy Services 20 hrs at $200 per hr $4,000
Transport cost $ 2,000
Stationery and other items $ 1,000
Food and accommodation expense $ 15,000
Equipment and research material $25,000
Other expenses $3,000

Personal CVs and related experiences

This research project will be conducted by Ultimate Research Inc. under the leadership of Brian Bailey who has 8 years of solid work experience in market research. He has a wealth of experience especially in the cosmetic industry having served as the head of market research and development in Super Beauty cosmetics, a leading cosmetic manufacturer in New Port. He later worked with internationally renowned research firms before founding his own firm Ultimate Research Inc. This firm has recently been involved in a number of high profile market research projects for leading cosmetic manufacturing firms. David Ratliff will be the lead researcher for the research project. He joined the agency in 2004 having previously worked with high profile companies in top management. He also doubles as an associate researcher at The London School of economics.

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