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Owners’ brand perception research proposal prepared for Meteor Motorcycle Company

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Prepared for
Meteor Motorcycle Company

Good Stuff!

Dated: September 7th, ____

Conceptual Map
The research team at Good Stuff! will

  1. study Meteor and Comet Chopper owners’ brand perceptions of heavyweight cruiser motorcycles,

  2. so that the Meteor marketing team can better understand the appeal of these brands to specific customer segments,

  3. so that the Meteor Motorcycle Company can improve the positioning of its brands in the marketplace and achieve a 30 per cent annual growth in sales revenues in the coming year.


Meteor Motorcycle Co. is one of the industry's leading manufacturers of customized, high-performance bikes in the luxury cruiser class. It is one of the only custom motorcycle makers equipped with full-service design, engineering, manufacturing, paint, and polishing and administrative teams.

The company has four different kinds of bikes under production. They are all individually branded under Meteor X, Meteor Y, Meteor Z, and the Comet Chopper brand names, and represent the company’s varied product offerings ranging in price from $23,000 to as much as $100,000 and above. The company has seen a tremendous growth from approximately 27 bikes sold in 2000 to an impressive 2700 in the year 2004. Comet Chopper, the brainchild of the creative force behind Meteor, Jeff Branson, currently accounts for nearly 55% of the current annual company sales of approximately $70 million.
Comprehensive background information for the purpose of this project was conducted and divided into client interview findings and other supporting material.

Client Interview

On September 11, 200_, the Meteor marketing team met researchers from Good Stuff! at the Meteor headquarters. The presentation included the history of the Meteor Motorcycle Company, its founders, the brand types and other useful inputs. The Meteor marketing team was open to allowing the Good Stuff! researchers to participate in the Harvest Biker Fest event to be held in the Kansas City metropolitan area. Details of the event and other issues were discussed during the same session. It was also agreed that Meteor would provide a list of existing Meteor Chopper owners to help Good Stuff! in its research.

Supporting Material

Meteor Motorcycle Company was previously involved in similar projects with Good Stuff!. In the Fall of 1998 and in the Spring of 2000, Good Stuff! conducted Meteor’s first dealer and customer satisfaction phone surveys. The results had immediate operational impact for Meteor. The client interview revealed that in the past five years, sales have increased 1800 per cent. The Good Stuff! researchers assigned to the Meteor X team, Meteor Y team and the Meteor Z team were allowed to review these past projects to gain a better understanding of the previous research methodologies and issues. This background information proved to be very useful to the current Good Stuff! researchers.


Currently, Meteor’s marketing team needs to better understand the demographic profile of its customers. Part of this is because Meteor sells through a network of dealers, some of whom do not always record details about the demographics of motorcycle buyers. In addition, Meteor also needs insight into the attitudes, interests and opinions (psychographics) of Meteor brand and Comet Chopper brand owners. Meteor also needs to understand how these customers regard four brands relative to each other: Meteor, Comet Chopper, Harley, and Big Dog. Finally, because of the unexpected sales success of the Comet Chopper motorcycle, Meteor needs to understand what are the major factors for the appeal of the Comet Chopper.

Accordingly, four modules of research will comprise the joint research project.

  • To describe the Comet Chopper owner in terms of demographics and psychographics thereby gaining a better understanding of the existing customer profile.

Good Stuff! will explore the demographics of the Comet Chopper owner in terms of age, sex, income, occupation, and education level in addition to psychographics such as attitudes, beliefs, consumption habits and interests.

  • To identify and gather information about existing competitors that buyers consider when buying a Comet Chopper.

Good Stuff! will gain an understanding of who in terms of competitors are Comet Chopper owners’ considering during the buying process, and why.

  • To understand the appeal of the Comet Chopper.

Good Stuff! will explore the demand for the Comet Chopper by examining the appeal. Good Stuff! will determine what the appeal of the Comet Chopper is, to further understand the feelings, stories and attitudes behind the Comet Chopper customer.

  • To understand the level of brand awareness between Meteor and the Comet Chopper.

Good Stuff! will research the customer’s perception of the brand relation between the Meteor brand and the Comet Chopper (made by Meteor). Good Stuff! will research customers’ awareness levels, identify degrees of brand awareness and examine issues related to dual branding.


For the purpose of this research Good Stuff! will undertake primary research to collect both quantitative as well as qualitative data, as follows:

  • Web Surveys: Primary source of data collection will be through an internet site; that will host the electronic questionnaire. One hundred Meteor owners and 200 Comet Chopper owners will receive a letter from Good Stuff! explaining the purpose of the study and inviting their participation. This 2:1 ratio of Comet Chopper to Meteor owners reflects the current sales ratio of these two brands. The letter will direct them to the website and request then to complete the survey. A $2 cash incentive will be included in each recruiting letter. Importantly, those taking the survey will be entered into a raffle for a leather Meteor varsity jacket.

  • Phone Interviews: A concerted effort will be made to identity and approach those Comet Chopper owners that failed to complete the web survey. The contact details of the current Chopper owners would be provided by the Meteor marketing team.

  • Observations and Interviews: Good Stuff! researchers will attend the Harvest Biker Fest on September 19 and September 20. It is believed that the Rally will provide us with an opportunity to observe chopper owners in their environment and to interview them, as well.

Coding and Data entry

  • Survey allows the researchers to download data into Excel spreadsheets.

  • After conducting the phone interviews, the responses will be transferred into the excel spreadsheets, as well.

  • Numerical data will be entered for close-ended questions.

  • Entered data will be checked for accuracy and edited if necessary.

After the spreadsheet has been edited and checked for accuracy, it will be converted into an SPSS data file. After completing the coding and data entry for the closed and open-ended questions, results will be tabulated.


Some of the various techniques that will be utilized to analyze the data are

The following are some examples of results of data analysis that Meteor’s marketing team can expect to see in the final report.





Meeting with Meteor marketing team

Sept 11

Harvest Biker Fest

Sept 19& 20

Proposal & Questionnaire Submission

Oct 7-10

Survey Loaded in the Web Server

Oct 10-20

Letters mailed to Comet Chopper owners

Oct 10-14

Data Collection

Oct 14-30

Follow up Telephone Interviews

Nov 1-7

Coding, Data Entry and Data Cleaning

Nov 7-14

Preliminary Analysis

Nov 14-21

Final Analysis and Report

Nov 22-30

Presentation to Client

Dec 4

Information Investment




Upfront Consulting Work and Design


$ 8,000.00

Designing & Producing Questionnaires ($55/hr)

80 hours

$ 4,400.00

Research & Compilation of Name List ($55/hr)


$ 440.00

Final Analysis & Reporting ($75/hr)


$ 7,500.00

Internet Survey**



Phone Line / Calling Cards (1 min @ $0.10)


$ 1,500.00

Telephone Interviewers (150 phone interviews @ $10 per interview)


$ 1,500.00

Incentives to Respondents ($2 @ X 300 respondents = $400 jacket)


$ 1,000.00

Data Entry (1 survey @ 10minutes @ $6.50/hr)


$ 325.00

Coding the Data (programming work & compatibility of data)


$ 2,500.00

Other Overhead Cost (Office Supplies-binders, photocopying)


$ 500.00



Note: Other operating expenses encountered during the conduct of the project will be invoiced additionally to Meteor at the conclusion of the project.

* Hours and hourly rates are presented for Good Stuff!’s internal use. These would be deleted in the version of this proposal given to the Meteor marketing team.

** The Internet Survey cost includes the programming and the designing of the Web module, server and usage fee and data retrieval.


At the conclusion of the project, the following will be delivered to Meteor:

  • Three copies of the final written report with all the appendices. The final report will include an annotated survey with the percentage of responses for each possible question response. Detailed data tables will be included in the report to summarize important information found in the research. It will also include the final conclusions and recommendations made based on the research study.

  • Three CD’s with the electronic version of the final report, the PowerPoint slides and the SPSS data files.

Mark Peterson

Research Team Leader
Mark Peterson received his Ph.D. in Marketing from the Georgia Institute of Technology in March 1994. Mark received the Academy of Marketing Science’s Alpha Kappa Psi Dissertation Award for his lab and field study of consumers’ emotional responses to television ads. Mark’s scholarly works have been published in the Journal of Business Research, the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, the Small Business Management Journal among others. Prior to launching Good Stuff!, Mark was a statistical methods consultant for SDR, Inc. in Atlanta, and an associate professor of marketing at the University of Texas at Arlington where he taught in the Masters of Science in Marketing Research program.

Jim McGee

Research Team Associate
Jim McGee received his MSMR degree from the University of Texas at Arlington in 1996. Since that time, Jim has worked as a project manager for a variety of marketing research firms including Campbell Research and Global Mapping International. Jim is pleased to be reunited with Mark Peterson at Good Stuff!, as both were members of the legendary “Gold Team” at SDR, Inc. in the mid-nineties. Jim regards his most rewarding skill to be applying conjoint analysis – a multivariate statistical technique – in survey research to solve problems for client firms.

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