Back to Basics

Today’s post comes from TMRE Guest Blogger, Katie Clark. She is also known as @InsightsGal on Twitter and a client-side market researcher, project manager, and social media maven. 

As we prepare to head off to TMRE in a few short weeks, I know we’re all thinking about the latest in research strategy and innovation that we’ll learn about while on site in Boca Raton, as well as taking advantage of the myriad of networking opportunities!

But let me take this moment to bring us back down to earth for a moment and share a cautionary tale about remembering the research basics.

I spoke with an industry peer recently who is graciously allowing me to share his story. For the sake of this blog, let’s call him Todd (not his real name!).

Over the past year, Todd and his team have been following the mobile research trend and were excited to get approval to pilot a mobile research strategy at one of their one-day events. They had done extensive research to understand how active their audience was on mobile, especially tablets.

Todd and his team were very thorough in setting up tablet optimized session surveys to be available for launch at the end of each session time, as well as some other short surveys and activities meant for tablet use.

Sounds great, right?

However, from the keynote kickoff in the morning to the lunchtime round table discussions, Todd’s team saw lots of note taking…on paper! Pens and pads of paper were the rule of the day. After observing this in multiple sessions, Todd did some intercepts to find out where they went wrong with their tablet research.

Come to find out their tablet research was spot-on: pretty much everyone Todd stopped brought an iPad or other tablet device, but had left them in the hotel rooms due to sky-high WiFi rates that by that point were non-negotiable with the conference center/hotel.

The lesson we can all learn from Todd’s story? Be sure you cover the basics, especially around logistics, when launching a new research venture. The epilogue? Todd and his team did some quick thinking and were able to field some paper surveys for the afternoon sessions.

For more learning from your peers, be sure to catch some of the interactive discussion sessions at TMRE with Intel, Johnson & Johnson, Bloomberg News, and more.
More about Katie: Based in Portland, Maine, Katie manages the market research team at Diversified Business Communications. She has worked with companies large and small and in industries such as seafood, 3D laser imaging, software, fragrance, finance, and entertainment to help them move the business forward through actionable insights derived from market research. She is passionate about bringing the’Voice of the Customer’ inside the organization. The opinions expressed here are her own and not those of her employer.

If you’d like to join Katie at TMRE 2012 this November 12-14 in Boca Raton, Florida, register today and mention code TMRE12BLOG and save 15% off the standard rate! For more about this year’s program, download the agenda.