Report on Marketing Research. Do It Right. Part 1


Perhaps one day you will have to write a similar report in order to demonstrate your knowledge to the professor. If you can properly compose a similar paper, then you are not bad at this subject, and this is already quite a lot. Therefore, we want to tell you more about this. We have already talked about the format of such papers in the previous article.

Criteria for Writing a Report

A report that achieves the goal of effective communication of a researcher with a reader usually satisfies the following special criteria: completeness, accuracy, clarity, and expressiveness. Of course, these criteria are closely interrelated. For example, an accurate report is complete. However, it is methodologically advisable to discuss these criteria as if they could be clearly distinguished from one another.


This criterion is used to evaluate the research report specifically as to whether the report provides all information that readers need in a language they understand. This means that you should constantly inquire whether any topic put into an original task of the research program was introduced. What alternatives were tested? What was discovered? When preparing an incomplete report, it is implied that supporting reports will be presented in the near future. And this may cause irritation and delay the case.

The report may be incomplete because it is too short or too long. You can skip necessary definitions or give short explanations.

On the other hand, the text of the report can be long but difficult to understand because of your unwillingness to throw any collected information to a wastebasket. In a paper full of information that is not of paramount importance the main issues are often lost in chaos of secondary results. Among other things, a large report can be confusing to a reader when he or she tries to comprehend its content.

Thus, readers are key to determine completeness. Their interest and abilities determine what results need to be highlighted additionally, and which ones should simply be omitted. Typically, the amount of detailed information should be proportional to the amount of reader’s direct knowledge of the areas that are discussed. If, for example, a prospective reader is a product advertising manager, it is usually wiser to omit a lengthy discussion of possible guidelines for improving production techniques.


This criterion is used to evaluate whether the argument is logical and informative. The earlier discussed stages of the research process are undoubtedly important for initial assurance of accuracy. However, even if everything is entered correctly, inaccuracies can arise due to insufficiently responsible processing of data, illogicality of the argumentation or inept phrases.

Possession of scientific degrees does not save you from dangers. In fact, the more educated a person is, the more he or she tends to get bogged down in excessive verbosity.

Inaccuracies also arise from errors in grammar, in punctuation, in writing words, in using tenses, in matching the subject and the predicate, and so on. Close attention to detail is paramount in such issues.


This criterion is used to evaluate whether the phraseology of the report is accurate.

Probably, violation of the quality criterion of the text, which we define as clarity, is more common than violation of any other ones. Clarity is achieved as a result of clear and logically consistent thinking, as well as of accuracy of expressions used. When underlying logic is vague or presentation of materials is imprecise, readers have difficulty understanding what they have to read. They are forced to make guesses. The similar consequence of Murphy's law can be applied in this situation: "If a reader is offered the simplest opportunity to misunderstand, he or she will most likely misunderstand."

However, clarity requires effort. The first and most important rule is that everything should be clearly organized. In order to comply with this rule, you must first clearly define the purpose and how you intend to achieve it.

Prepare a general outline of your main emphases. Arrange them in logical order and place the details that support them appropriately. Notify readers about the subject you intend to cover, and then proceed to what must be done. Use small paragraphs and short sentences. Try not to look evasive or ambiguous. Once you have decided what to say, go straight and say just that. Carefully select words, try to use the most accurate and understandable ones.

Do not expect that your first option will be satisfactory. Be prepared for the fact that it will have to be rewritten several times. When rewriting, try to reduce the length of the text by half. This will help you simplify the exposition and free the text from chaos. This will also help you think about every word and its accuracy, to assess whether each word helps you say exactly what you want to say.

The words we write and say reflect what we are. If your words are bright, accurate, well combined with one another, and humane, then that is what your nature is like.

When you write, you need to constantly ask yourself: "What am I trying to say?" If you treat this in good faith, you will be surprised that you often do not know what you want to say.

First of all, you have to think about how to start each sentence, and then you should think about each word.

Then you should look at what was written and ask: "Was it worth to say? Is it clear enough that no one immediately gets confused about it?" If such risk is real, then something that broke the structure you created got stuck in the text. A writer who can express his or her thoughts clearly has a cool head to recognize the sign of obscurity in it.

It is not easy to write even a simple affirmative sentence. However, there is one surefire way. Think what you want to say. Write your statement on paper. Remove all participles and adjectives from the sentence. Cut the sentence down to its bare skeleton. Allow verbs and nouns to do their work.

If this skeleton expresses your thought inaccurately, an incorrect verb or noun is chosen. Get to the right main parts of the sentence. Nouns and verbs are instruments of the main caliber to write a well-structured text. Adjectives and adverbs are just beautiful means of strengthening the main statement – place them beside the subject and predicate.

So, our recommendations:

  • Use short words. Always prefer short words to long ones if their meaning is the same;
  • Avoid fuzzy definitions, "apathetic" adjectives and adverbs, use only strong ones. Some texts are so full of weak definitions that turn into cliches. Choose only those adjectives and adverbs that give semantic accuracy;
  • Use exact and specific language. Avoid technical jargon. There is always a simple "earthly" word that expresses the same idea that an effectively intricate or indefinite abstraction does;
  • Write as simply and naturally as you speak. Use only those words, phrases and expressions that you could really say to a reader if you were face to face with him or her. If you could not, if it does not sound like your own words, then do not write it;
  • Remove words that are not necessary. Usually spoken figures of speech undoubtedly suffer from the excessiveness of phraseology.

Read the continuation in the next part of the article. You will find even more advice and academic help on

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