As John Gottman found out, it is possible to learn more about what people think by observing their actions than by listening to what they say. This means that people do not necessarily mean what they say. Therefore, it’s hard for marketers to base their research results on mere words from the public.
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This can be manifested by the analysis of the Coca-Cola Company and its competitor Pepsi. The Coca-Cola Company had been dominating the soft drinks market from the early 1980s, but they realized that their competitor Pepsi Company begun rising steadily eating away the market share. This was shown by a research carried out in 1972 and another one in 1980s. The latter showed a huge improvement for Pepsi against Coca-Cola. After running a taste tests between the two brands, both companies found out that Pepsi had a better taste than Coke. Coca Cola continued dominating the market even though the taste tests favored Pepsi. The conclusion is that though people loved the taste of Pepsi, they loved to drink Coke.
Packaging also determines the preference of customers as Louis Cheskin found out. He carried out a research seeking to increase sales for margarine and when he changed the packaging, color and brand name, the results were impressively different from earlier ones. The same results were realized when two brands of inexpensive brandy were analyzed. The brands were E & J and Christian Brothers. Christian Brothers after dominating the market for many years, was losing to E & J. After running several research programs, Cheskin realized that the packaging was the issue with Christian brothers. Thus branding and packing are crucial for an item to make it in the market.