Exploratory research tries to understand a subject of study in a preliminary way. Research designs for exploratory work usually depend on direct observation of a small selection of what is to be studied, for example, drinking behavior.
Focus groups that bring together a small group of subjects to participate in a guided dialogue with regards to a limited issue, are a good example of exploratory research design.
Examples of Exploratory Research Design
Although exploratory studies aren’t meant to offer exact estimates of the prevalence of a problem or to test specific theories, they can be very helpful in mapping domains of study. Some exploratory research examples are listed below:
1. The favorite crime investigation TV programs (e.g., Crime Patrol, Arjun, Savdhaan India, etc) give a pretty good example of the research design. These shows typically start with a crime that needs to be investigated. The initial step is to look for hints which can help establish what has happened (exploratory). The clues found in the exploratory phase of the research usually point in the direction of a specific hypothesis or explanation of the events which happened, and investigators start focusing their efforts in this direction, performing interviews with witnesses and suspects (descriptive).
2. An advertising company got an account for a new coffee containing chicory, the company started the investigation process with exploratory research in order to identify the situation. The researchers found that virtually no one had heard about chicory. It wasn’t being used, and no-one seemed to know how to put it to use. This resulted in the hypothesis that the advertising could depict the chicory ingredient in whatever way the customer desired.
3. At Chrysler, exploratory study assisted in reducing a number of the risks of introducing a new, unconventional vehicle in the ever-changing automobile business.
Miller Business Systems, Inc., made use of published industry sources to build up profiles of their competing firms, which they kept in its database. The business on a regular basis examined the database to keep track of competitive actions. One day, they observed that a competitor had employed 9 furniture salesmen in a 10-day period, tipping them off that the rival was ready to make a push in the office-furniture market. They swiftly planned extra sales calls and were able to hold on to their accounts.
Examples of Focus Group
1. Aeropostale turned out to be one of the most popular performing clothing chains for teens in part by performing focus groups with high school students.
2. At Yoplait, yogurt moved from cups to tubes with the launch of Go-gurt. In a follow-up move, the organization created carbonated yogurt so that they can make yogurt more tasty. Based on focus group results, the children gave the impression that they loved it. In fact, the focus group outcome was so powerful that Yoplait’s president overlooked further marketing research for Fizzix and went instantly to a countrywide roll out for the product. Not surprisingly, Fizzix fizzled on the market and the product is no more offered.
Case Analyses Example
In 1979, Xerox researched Japanese competitors to understand how they could sell mid-size copy machines for less than what it cost Xerox to make them. Today, a lot of companies frequently use benchmarking as a standard research tool.
Exploratory research works as a source for generating ideas which are then put through further research investigation. I have provided some examples of exploratory research design above so that you can understand what it is and how its works. If you like the article or have any query then post in the comments section.