Is it possible, that since the IR section was introduced, GMAT test takers are only required to solve "analyze an argument" tasks instead of "analyze an argument" or "analyze an issue" ?
All tests I take ask me for the analysis of an argument.
Whatever, here is my second trie - if somebody has 5 minutes of time and would give a comment, I would appreciate
The following appeared in a market research report examining consumer perceptions of a chain of clothing stores:
"A recent survey commissioned by the market research department of XY Gen Stores indicated a high level of recognition among consumers of the brand and the nature of the apparel sold in XY Gen Stores. However, the survey also indicated that approximately 60% of those surveyed that recognized the name of XY Gen Stores had never shopped at one of the company's stores. Because of this result, XY Gen Stores executives should launch a significant rebranding and marketing campaign to change the company's image and thereby bring new consumers into the stores.
Discuss how well reasoned you find this argument. Point out flaws in the argument's logic and analyze the argument's underlying assumptions. In addition, evaluate how supporting evidence is used and what evidence might counter the argument's conclusion. You may also discuss what additional evidence could be used to strengthen the argument or what changes would make the argument more logically sound.
The argument presents the results of a market research report regarding customer recognition of XY Gen Stores and tries to find a solution for the high level - 60% - of customers, who recognize the stores, but have never been to one of those. The conclusion indicates the necessity of a rebranding and differentiating marketing campaign in order to attract new customers to the stores.
The logic of the argument seems to be flawed: many customers already know the stores very well and therefore, the branding and marketing of the company is not as bad as indicated above. Perhaps, the introduction of a new campaign would rise the level of consumers recognition but would not guarantee an increase in instore-visits. Accordingly, a better strategy would focus more on advertisements to attract customers to the stores. For example by special sales offers or exclusive events with special discounts that are only available at the stores.
Moreover, the argument is based on some assumptions that are not mentioned above. The market research report should have been done properly so that the results can be taken as a legitime source of data. Important to know would be if the basis of questioned people was taken properly, how the sample was chosen, if the sample was representative and if it was free from error and bias. As one can see, the underlying assumption is, that the people questioned were in the target focus of XY Gen Stores customers.
Furthermore, some more evidence would be great to add. This could include the number of sales via alternative distribution channels - e.g. the internet, retailers, wholesalers etc. And finally, the most important information is not mentioned by the report: WHY do people recognize the stores but never shop there? On the basis of these information, a more proper conclusion can be drawn by the management of XY Gen.
To sum up, the argument is based on the results of the research report and flaws therefore in some points of logic. By the provision of some more evidence with regard to other distribution channels (this aims the question WHY customers never shop in XY Gen Stores) the argument presented above could gain more potential to fully convince the reader.