This guide was prepared for Dr. Durvasula's course on marketing research methods. The guide provides sources for secondary research only.
Although the detailed instructions page refers you to Information Technology Services for help, at the Raynor Information Desk we can also help with some parts of the process. Give us a call at (414) 288-7556.
The databases below offer industry profiles that are regularly updated, some quarterly, some annually, etc. There are more industry profiles in two of our article databases, ABI-Inform Trade & Industry and Business Source Premier.
Investext is another good source for industry information, but it is more difficult to use. I've put Investext into its own box below, with more instructions for getting to the industry-wide reports. Please be aware that while you can often find really useful reports in Investext, it can take some time to find them.
Below are links to industry reports from individual publishers, and to databases that contain industry reports. Many of these reports are available in general business databases: where possible, the links go directly to that content, not to a general search screen. But where such direct linking is not possible, the links go to the main database search screen (e.g. Passport).
These reports are pulled from large aggregator databases (ABI-Inform Trade & Industry, Business Source Premier, and Business Insights Essentials). The interfaces of these large databases allow me to create these individual links, which is not possible in other interfaces.
Below are two online books which will provide overviews of the customers for various products.
For more detailed information, especially at the brand-level, you would need to use a consumer survey dataset. These have a steeper learning curve, so be prepared to ask for help and spend some time on them. Here are links to more information:
Investext was once a separate database all on its own, but it was bought up by Thomson Reuters some years ago. At Marquette, it is available through the ThomsonOne.com interface, where it is unhelpfully called 'Research'! Below are instructions on how to get to the advanced search screen where you can specify industry reports.
First, what is Investext? It's a collection of research reports written by investment analysts from many different research companies. Some of the 'big names' are: Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan, William Blair, AE Edwards, CitiBank, Credit Suisse, and many more. Here are a couple of things to know about the content:
Getting to it (see screen-shot above; please note that sometimes the menu displayed in the screen-shot above can be on the left-margin instead -- this is a function of which version of Internet Explorer you have):
Things to do / check (see screen-shot below):
- Use the drop-down menu to search in the report's table of contents, or in the full-text (instead of searching only in the report title); or ...
- Use NAICS or SIC codes to specify your industry (not always necessary; I often find that a combination of keyword and industry code searching works best -- it just depends on the industry!)
- Specify a geographic focus for the reports: for some industries, this is especially helpful. I recommend using the look-up feature, as the country/region names are sometimes not what you might expect
- Specify that you only want reports longer than x number of pages -- a very useful feature for avoiding the quarterly financial blurb reports which tend to be the shorter ones, 5-6 pages in length.