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The use of qualitative methods to research networking in SMEs

The use of qualitative methods to research networking in SMEs Network theory is becoming increasingly popular as a means of describing marketing in SMEs, stemming from the growing recognition that traditional marketing theories are somewhat inappropriate to the small firm. Of the research carried out to date, however, the greater part has employed quantitative methods. Current thought is that the concepts of networks and networking could be better investigated using more qualitative methods, and an appropriate methodology is suggested. This article describes an ongoing qualitative study which aims to discover how small firms use networks to make marketing decisions. The study has taken the form of semi‐structured interviews with owners and senior executives of 60 small companies across a wide array of industries in Northern Ireland. The key findings of the study are discussed together with plans for future research. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Qualitative Market Research: An International Journal Emerald Publishing

The use of qualitative methods to research networking in SMEs

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References (42)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 1999 MCB UP Ltd. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1352-2752
DOI
10.1108/13522759910269991
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Network theory is becoming increasingly popular as a means of describing marketing in SMEs, stemming from the growing recognition that traditional marketing theories are somewhat inappropriate to the small firm. Of the research carried out to date, however, the greater part has employed quantitative methods. Current thought is that the concepts of networks and networking could be better investigated using more qualitative methods, and an appropriate methodology is suggested. This article describes an ongoing qualitative study which aims to discover how small firms use networks to make marketing decisions. The study has taken the form of semi‐structured interviews with owners and senior executives of 60 small companies across a wide array of industries in Northern Ireland. The key findings of the study are discussed together with plans for future research.

Journal

Qualitative Market Research: An International JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 1, 1999

Keywords: Marketing research; Methodology; Networking; Northern Ireland; Relationship marketing; Small to medium‐sized enterprises

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