Using market research to improve consumer focus
An England & Wales Cricket Board case study

Page 1: Introduction

Not so long ago, many organisations were quite prepared to take production decisions without any proper analysis of their market. Sometimes decision-makers hit on good ideas, or acted on a hunch that was fundamentally sound. The chances of success, however, were always likely to be reduced simply because they were making decisions without having first gathered, collated and analysed appropriate...
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Page 2: The England & Wales Cricket Board

Since its formation in 1998, the England and Wales Cricket Board has looked to create a framework in which cricket can succeed at all levels. This has involved establishing a clear vision of the direction in which the game should move. All levels of cricket were considered, from the grass roots in playgrounds and parks to the international Test arena. The ECB's vision for cricket is:"to ensure...
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Page 3: Market research

The ECB wanted to use market research to develop precise strategies that would help the future of cricket and make it more consumer focused. This research would enable the ECB to plan ahead with some certainty rather than rely on unsubstantiated guesswork and hunches. According to the American Marketing Association: "Market research is the systematic gathering, recording and analysing of data...
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Page 4: Market research methods

The starting point for the market research involved developing appropriate market research methods. The first step was to gather secondary information. Secondary information is often called 'desk research' and is frequently the starting point for any research. This has already been collected by someone else, often for another purpose. It often represents therefore, one of the cheapest and...
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Page 5: Meeting consumer needs

Findings from both the quantitative and qualitative research clearly highlighted some of the major barriers that discouraged people from attending cricket matches. For example, many people:didn't know about events and were unsure how to find itwere concerned about the value of the entertainment in relation to other activitieswondered about how inviting the cricket grounds were. The research showed...
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Page 6: The 20-over game

The final phase of the research showed that a cricket match that lasted around 3 hours rather than all day would appeal to new audiences such as females between 15 and 44, as well as families. This suggested that a cricket match restricted to 40 overs (240 balls bowled), the equivalent of 3 hours of play, would help the game to become more consumer focused. For the ECB, this idea represented a...
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Page 7: Conclusion

The programme of market research has proved to be an invaluable tool in helping to develop a more consumer focused approach to cricket. The year 2003 marks an important step forward for the professional game. The ECB anticipates that this venture will yield long-term benefits that will help the game within England and Wales to become stronger at all levels, both professional and amateur.
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Related: JD Sports
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