China is also very famous for its festivals because they are a very unique part of their culture. For example, in the UK festivals are not even similar to the ones in China because Eastern festivals have features which characterize this very part of the world. One of the most important features of Chinese festivals is wide application of all kinds of firecrackers and brightness of decorations. “The sound of firecrackers is a distinctive feature on Chinese festivals and joyous personal occasions. ” (Leisure in China. [Online]. Available at: http://www. omf. org. uk).
The Chogyang festival is one of the most popular festivals in China. “The festival is based on the theory of Yin and Yang, the two opposing principles in nature. Yin is feminine, negative principle, while Yang is masculine and positive. ” (Leisure in China. [Online]. Available at: http://www. omf. org. uk). As the research has shown, the differences in the leisure activities in China and the UK are very large, and they all have to be taken into the consideration when designing the questionnaire and providing marketing research.
There is no general rule for the choice of research methods in order to obtain the necessary information and enhance data interpretation and analysis: “In its rawest form, a great deal of sociological data is textual; for example, interviews, answers to open-ended questions in surveys, ethnographic accounts. How to analyze such data and draw inference from it is a largely open question. (Raftery, 2000, p. 654). It is possible to conduct research on two types of data: primary and secondary data.
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“Marketing research routinely utilizes many types of data and information. The single most prevalent type is data and other pieces of information that were first collected for another purpose. ” (Patzer, 1995, p. 5). Despite the wide use of primary data, some types of research are usually based on secondary data, for example, “generally, marketing research relies on secondary data to complement primary data. ” (Patzer, 1995, p. 5). In the developed research program on China and UK, only the primary data is applied.
The use of primary data for the investigations has some advantages and disadvantages. On one hand, this approach has very important advantages because it enables us to obtain the information, which has not been misinterpreted by other sources. Secondary sources are subject to the deep impact of their author. Therefore, it is very hard to obtain an objective point of view from such a source. Primary information received as the result of three research methods use can be much more reliable than in the case of secondary information analysis.
The use of secondary data is particularly not helpful for the research of Chinese market because the company needs to feel the country and its preferences by itself, not through the prism of any researchers. In the UK, the culture is easier to understand by Western researchers, even if they are not British. Chinese preferences in leisure are not as easy to grasp without deep analysis. Therefore, the choice of the research methods needs to be even better discussed in the case of China.
However, there are some disadvantages of the primary sources of information. Among them it is possible to mention additional time, expenses connected with interviewing and the need to analyze the data after the survey. Those disadvantages are not present in research based on secondary data. As Patzer states, “for marketing researchers and users of marketing research, an advantage of using secondary information is that numerous costly activities in the marketing research process are avoided.
These activities are those normally associated with primary data collection and include the following: sample; data collection; data analysis; fieldwork. ” (Patzer, 1995, p. 17). Despite some disadvantages of the use of primary data in the marketing research, all of its advantages argue for the use of primary data versus secondary data. When designing the survey for China and UK, it is necessary to consider the choice of qualitative and quantitative methods. Qualitative and quantitative methods always follow one another.
Some elements of quantitative research need to be applied through the use of 5-Point Likert scales (strongly disagree/disagree/neutral/agree/strongly agree) during the survey. Likert scales are particularly important for the questionnaire because they enable to measure the level of people’s interest in leisure activities and their satisfaction. Likert scales are considered a very useful approach in hypothesis confirmation. “A Likert scale (named after its deviser, Rensis Likert, 1932) provides a range of responses to a given question or statement” (Cohen, 2000, p. 253).
The choice of the optimal alignment among quantitative and qualitative methods of research is very important for the validity of research of leisure preferences in UK and China. Many authors argue that it is necessary to balance both types of research: “The “qualitative-quantitative debate” as it is sometimes called is one of those hot-button issues that almost invariably will trigger an intense debate in the hotel bar at any social research convention. ”
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