A workshop on Marketing Research was held at IIM Indore by Utasaha—The Annual Rural Marketing Fest, on October 15, 2016. The workshop witnessed eminent experts from various fields who interacted and advised students on various marketing ideas.
Mr. Saroj Mohanta, Ex-Partner, MART-A and a freelancer for Business Model Innovation in Rural Markets talked on ‘Understanding Human Behavior in the Rural Market’. He highlighted the importance of understanding the nuances of rural India, like its governance structure, culture and infrastructural realities. He pointed out that a company would be successful only if it provided a solution relevant to the rural ecosystem, and not one that satisfied only the company’s bottom-line and an individual consumer’s need.
Mr. Mohan Krishnan, Director, Peninsula Centre for Knowledge & Insights and consultant with IMRB, discussed about data analysis, report writing and the insights one can draw from a well-designed questionnaire. He mentioned that one of the major mistakes of a young researcher is poor clarity of question. ‘If one does not form a good question, forming a relevant hypothesis is impossible. After that, one should not stick to a confirmatory hypothesis, but explore and eliminate many possible explanations’, he said. With a good hypothesis in place, one simply lists down relevant information, forms a good questionnaire, and if required, converts it into a game, he concluded.
Dr. Sharad Sarin, Professor, Marketing & Strategic Management Area, XLRI Jamshedpur, is credited with introducing gamification of research to India. Mr. Sarin attempted to invigorate students with enthusiasm for rural market research by sharing his story, and difficulties faced in conducting a marketing fair.
The event was a run-up to Utasaha, a rural marketing event held in the village of Janpaw Kutti, on the occasion of Karthik Purnima.