|The TMDC building where the new lab will come up. Picture by Bhola Prasad|
Students of XLRI will soon be armed with hands-on market research skills, thanks to an advanced laboratory on campus that will allow them to delve into the mind of prospective consumers.
The behavioural marketing research lab, which will be inaugurated on September 17, is the brainchild of Marketing Association of XLRI, popularly known as MAXI.
Conceptualised last year, the ambitious lab is aimed at providing students and teachers with cutting-edge research tools designed to peer into the unconscious mind — said to influence consumer choices — and study behavioural trends.
The lab aims to explore market solutions, as crores of rupees ride on launch of products while a majority fails to impress consumers.
According to surveys, nearly 60 to 70 per cent of products flop despite intense pre-launch marketing research. Besides quality of products, political choices, social behaviour and economic patterns will also be studied in the XLRI lab. The basement of TMDC auditorium on XLRI campus has been chosen for the laboratory.
“We are setting up the lab at the basement of TMDC auditorium. We will soon complete work and inaugurate the lab on September 17. Hi-tech gadgets in the lab will introduce advanced research facilities on campus,” Sanjeev Varshney, a faculty member of the B-school’s consumer behaviour department, told The Telegraph. He added: “The lab will not only study marketing but also organisational behaviour and related areas.”
The lab will have a camera set-up to record people’s responses at an interview room. It will include a direct response machine, which displays through multiple monitors a subject’s reaction to the advertisement of a product. It will also have a video-mixing equipment and a conference room.
To set the stage for the best possible dress rehearsal for students before they enter the corporate arena, XLRI is also planning to team up with Apollo Hospitals Pvt Ltd and All India Institute of Medical Sciences, Delhi, to further enhance the upcoming lab with medical tools.
The B-school will also maintain a pool of 3,000 respondents, drawn from urban and rural areas, to help carry out surveys at any given time.