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Marketing Research MKT 2110-05: Secondary Research

Narrative content

It is time for us to locate what is called "secondary data". You use secondary data all the time. When you look for content on the web, such as a webpage, post or social media site, you are reading what others are saying about a topic.

But how do I know that I can trust the opinion of others?

I can trust information that I find if I know it comes from a reputable source. In business, secondary data is what others are saying or writing about the company, the market or the product based on facts and research. 

Note: The following video helps demonstrates the concepts found in the narrative located on this page. 

Watch the video on the page or use this link -  Secondary Research

Secondary Research Video guide

Sources for secondary content

ABInform (Abstracts in Business Information) provides access to business news, reports, research studies and other articles on topics in the business field. To locate content you can search by a company name, an industry, a product or just a word term or other topic. Materials found here include all sorts of content. 

Click the link and try this search: Tesla and Market* - notice that we used the term Tesla since it is a unique name of a company or product. I then added the term Market*. 

  • The asterisk on the end of the word Market makes the database look for other words that start the same as the word Market - so marketing - marketers - markets. 
  • Using the asterisk works when searching via Google as well as library search engines. 
  • Also, I can focus the search by limiting to publication type and by date - I usually limit to the last 5 years. 

Here is a short list of what I found with the Tesla and Market* search

There is a lot! I limited to Scholarly Journals and found some very current narrative. Scholarly journals provide access to research, quality citations and long narratives. 


Click on the article image to see the complete article. The cite button will provide you with an APA citation to this article.  This article is one of the best in the group. Take a look. It is from a good journal source, it is current and provides a great deal of content. 

Need more? 

The asterisk works well but you should also try "quote marks". Here is a new search. It is looking for content on the market share that Tesla enjoys since I want to find more data about that topic.  

So try this search: Tesla and "market share" 

The quote marks make the source look for the words but only when they occur side by side.  

So here are those search results. 


Congratulations, you have collected data on what others are saying about your company or industry - secondary research. 

Reading a research article

As researchers we have to tell others (readers - professors) where we found information that we use in our papers, presentations, poster or even business presentations.  

Here is the citation to the article on Tesla and market share: It follows a very simple pattern. 

Authors. (date). Article title. Journal Name, Volume(issue), page numbers. http://doi

Journal article example:

Musonera, E. & Cagle, C. (2019). Electric car brand positioning in the automotive industry: Recommendations for sustainable and innovative marketing strategies. Journal of Strategic Innovation and Sustainability, 14(1), 120–133. https://doi:10.33423/jsis.v14i1.991

Browsing a research article: 

Articles are usually divided into sections.

  • Title and Author 
  • Abstract (summarizes the article) 
  • Introduction (what is the author trying to prove?) 
  • Methods (what did they do to prove their theory or idea?)
  • Results (what was the outcome?)
  • Discussion (this is where the author summarizes the results of their research.)

What do I pay attention to when I am reading?

  • Start with the Title and the abstract - is it current and does it cover what you are researching?
  • If yes - keep a copy and then later read the introduction and the discussion. 
  • Stop reading! For now that is all you need. 

Newspaper Sources

Looking for more? Newspapers are a great source for company and company marketing data.