Research Tips for MBA 640 Project 2

For this project, you are being asked to create a brand analysis report/brand audit.

The tips below give suggestions for finding useful information for some of the components of project 2.


Branding

To find documents that discuss the eight branding elements mentioned in your class, you can use databases such as ABI/INFORM Complete and Business Source Complete.

You can use one search box in the database to enter the name of one of the companies that you're researching and then use the drop-down box next to the search box to change the field selection option. In ABI/INFORM Complete, use the field selection menu to select Company/organization - ORG, and in Business Source Complete, use the field selection menu to select CO Company Entity.

Leave the Boolean operator AND selected between search boxes and use the next search box in the database to search for:

brand* AND (personalit* OR image* OR identit* OR differentiat* OR position* OR communicat* OR loyal* OR equity) AND keyboard*

In ABI/INFORM Complete, use the field selection menu next to that search box to select Anywhere, and in Business Source Complete, use the field selection menu to select TX All Text.

Click on the plus sign (+) next to a database name below to see a screen shot that shows what a search for documents about Roland's branding for its keyboards should look like in that database.

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Competitor Research

The instructions for Project 2 note that you should take a look at the websites of the two companies that you were asked to evaluate. The Project 2 instructions also list several recommended marketing-related websites that you can review for relevant material for your assignment.

For additional company information, including the company's major products/services, annual revenue, competitors, etc., the following UMGC Library databases will be useful:

Click on the plus sign (+) next to each database's name above for tips on finding company information in that database.

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Additional Resources

For information that will be helpful for answering other questions that you've been asked to answer for Project 2, see:

So, for example, to find information about how a particular product is faring, you could run searches in OneSearch and ABI/INFORM Complete for:

[company name] AND [product name] AND "market share"

So, for example, to find documents that discuss how Casio's keyboards are doing, you could search for:

casio AND keyboard* AND "market share"

You can also use Business Insights: Essentials to find market share information by clicking on the Industries link and then on the Market Share Reports link and then entering the name of the product that you're interested in finding information for. For example, to find information about the top companies with regard to keyboard sales, you could search for digital keyboard* and/or for electronic keyboard*.

To find documents that discuss companies' strengths and weaknesses, click on the links for Business Insights: Essentials, Business Source Complete, Hoovers, and Nexis Uni in the "Competitor Research" section on this page, as you'll find information there about how to find SWOT analyses in each of those four databases.

To find documents that discuss how customers perceive a particular product made by a particular company, you can run searches in OneSearch and ABI/INFORM Complete for:

[company name] AND [product name] AND (customer* OR consumer* OR purchaser* OR buyer* OR shopper*) AND (attitude* OR perception* OR belief* OR opinion* OR prefer*)

So, for example, to find documents that discuss how Casio's keyboards are doing, you could search for:

casio AND keyboard* AND (customer* OR consumer* OR purchaser* OR buyer* OR shopper*) AND (attitude* OR perception* OR belief* OR opinion* OR prefer*)

Note that it might also help to search for documents that discuss things that a particular company's doing for its customers. To find such documents, simply leave out the portion of the search statement having to do with attitudes; search for:

[company name] AND [product name] AND (customer* OR consumer* OR purchaser* OR buyer* OR shopper*)

You might also want to take a look at reviews/ratings of a particular product made by a particular company. To find these, you can search for:

[company name] AND [product name] AND (review* OR rating*)

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Additional Recommended UMGC Library Resources

There are also a handful of publications that are available through the UMGC Library that may be useful for this assignment and that have been recommended by MBA faculty, namely:

Click on the links above in order to run searches for documents in each of the publications listed.

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Recommended Non-UMGC Library Resources

The following non-UMGC Library resources have also been recommended by MBA faculty:

Note that portions of some of the resources listed above may be restricted to subscribers. Because UMGC does not have a subscription to these resources, students will only be able to access the material on these sites that's freely available.

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A General Note

Whether you're searching in UMGC Library databases or on the free Web, your search results may sometimes include mentions of market reports or data compilations from market research firms such as Forrester Research, Frost & Sullivan, the Gartner Group, etc. Such reports are generally quite expensive; many cost anywhere from hundreds of dollars to tens of thousands of dollars.

That being the case, the full text of such reports are not generally available in any library research database, and the UMGC Library may not be able to obtain the full-text reports for you via our DocumentExpress interlibrary loan service.

But press releases and other documents that discuss these reports -- documents that are often available from UMGC Library databases and/or posted on the free Web -- may be useful for your research since such documents often summarize key findings from the reports.

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Questions?

If you need further assistance with finding information for project 2, please Ask a Librarian.

If you have questions about the requirements for project 2, please contact your instructor.

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Created July 9, 2019; updated July 15, 2019