Tag Archives: behavioral science

Brand Tracking: How Coca-Cola Found Their Olympic Feeling

On TMRE Day 3, in the Macro Trends track, Coca-Cola Brazil detailed
how they’d drawn inspiration from behavioral science to meet the challenge of
the Rio Olympics. Coke’s Patricia Fonesca 
faced a problem any big brand will be familiar with ‘ how do you measure
marketing effectiveness when you have so many different sources of information
on your brand and your business that it’s almost impossible to piece them
The answer, according to Fonesc a and research agency
BrainJuicer, is not ever-larger datasets. ‘Your data is probably already big
enough,’ said BrainJuicer’s Gabriel Aleixo. Instead, you need to transform the
way you think about consumer behaviour. You must look at consumers for who they
are ‘ people making quick, emotional decisions at a ‘System 1′ level. 
By adopting a new model of human behaviour based on this
truth, Coca-Cola looked to improve their ability to predict performance.
Their new model had its roots in work starting in 2013,
designed to track the long-run up to the 2014 World Cup, held in Brazil.
Coca-Cola moved away from metrics like ad recall, purchase intent and brand
attributes ‘ ‘system 2′ measures that demanded too much consumer memory and
self-knowledge. Instead it tracked emotional response and simple recognition of
campaigns as the best way to establish how consumers were reacting to
touchpoints in real time.
For the Rio Olympics, Coca-Cola scaled up this marketing
effort and added a new dimension ‘ a simple way of tracking brands based on
Fame, Feeling and Fluency, the core heuristics that lie behind System 1
decision making. Fame is familiarity ‘ if a brand comes readily to mind, it’s a
good choice. Feeling is positive emotion ‘ if you feel good about a brand, it’s
a good choice. And Fluency is ease of recognition and distinctiveness ‘ if you
recognise a brand or its ‘distinctive assets’ (like red for Coca-Cola) quickly,
it’s a good choice.
These three core metrics, according to Coca-Cola, are all you need to know to understand brand performance: they predict
85% of market performance, and also forecast future share and the brand’s
ability to charge a price premium. 
Coca-Cola is a ’5-Star brand’ in Brazil, according to the
model, with sky-high Fame and Fluency. But it faces a constant battle to
maintain the level of Feeling its status demands ‘ fail to make people happy,
and a brand can quickly become a dinosaur. ‘Why are brand feelings so vital’?
asked Fonesca, ‘They are a lever of market share gains.’
Coca-Cola’s campaign was designed to boost Feeling.
To keep Feeling high, Coke needed great emotional marketing, and it needed reach. Despite the rise of social media, even for
younger Brazilians TV is an incredibly important medium and a guarantor of
reach. The brand came up with a winning emotional idea ‘ ‘what does gold feel
like’? which performed brilliantly in emotional testing: a true 5-Star ad. With
the real-time tracking, Coca-Cola could see that 20 million people were being
touched a day by the brand during the Rio Olympics, and that 3 out of 4
Brazilians had seen the ads. That kind of massive reach is what a large brand
has to aspire to in order to maintain its dominant position.
For Coca-Cola, the investment in emotional marketing paid
off. The brand saw its Feeling scores reach unprecedented levels during the
Olympics, and this showed up in two ways. First, of every brand in every category,
Coke was the brand with the highest Olympic association. And second, higher
Feeling led to brand growth, as the brand’s tracked share rose by 1.5 points.
Coca-Cola credited this success to two key factors. First, a
really powerful core creative idea (the ‘gold’ campaign). And second, the
real-time intelligence to guide them so they knew where and when to move their
efforts between channels. For instance, their real-time tracking helped them realise that packaging was the key to communicating that creative idea – an insight they might not otherwise have reached.
And how could other brands take advantage of behavioural
science to modernise or reinvent tracking? The presentation ended with three
key thoughts.
First, focus on the basics of decision making, and remember
it’s fast and frugal, not complex and reasoned.
Second, make sure brand tracker insights always lead to
action ‘ maximise impact with simple metrics delivered at speed.
Third, make brand trackers accountable. Simply tying them to
equity measures isn’t enough ‘ they must relate to real business results.
Get those things right, and the tracking gold medal could be

Behavioral Science: Meeting In The Ladies Room

Why, asked Stephanie Magnan of Kimberly-Clark in her
enthralling TMRE Day 2 presentation, does behavioral science stop at the
restroom door?
From moving candy out of employees’ way to incorporating
play and stress reduction, modern workplaces use behavioral science in all
sorts of ways. The concept is simple: discreetly ‘nudge’ people into behavior that
does them good and makes them happy. Small changes in the environment can make
a huge difference in this, because they shift people’s emotional response. As
Magnan put it, ‘we think much less than we think we think’. Emotions are the
But very few behavioral science studies look at workplace
restrooms. And that’s a bizarre omission, given how critical they are to employee
wellbeing and the fact that, well, everybody uses them. At Kimberly-Clark,
Magnan’s team made a few small changes ‘ adding lotions and boxes of Kleenex to
the restrooms ‘ and were wowed by the results. Restroom satisfaction jumped
from 17% to 77%. People reported lower stress and greater wellbeing. And there
was a knock-on effect on perceptions of workplace cleanliness as a whole. The
real insight? All these changes were most pronounced (by orders of magnitude)
among women.

Behavioral makeover required.

Something about restrooms was critical to women’s experience
of the workplace. But what?
With the agency Brandtrust ‘ specialists in behavioral
science based projects, who use psychoanalytical techniques to probe emotions
in far-ranging 1-on-1 interviews ‘ Magnan and her team vowed to find out. 
Standard satisfaction surveys are of very limited use when
you’re looking at emotional response, because they tend to play back
post-rationalised reasons instead of getting to the guts of an experience.
Magnan described how Brandtrust and Kimberly-Clark instead wanted to ‘ask the
bigger question’ ‘ getting to the difficult, perhaps uncomfortable truths
lurking behind such dramatic shifts in opinion. Empathy, she pointed out,
precedes innovation ‘ to respond to someone’s needs to have to walk in their
shoes, not just listen to their voice.
So in this case the bigger question turned out to be ‘ what does it feel like to be a woman at
By answering that question Magnan was able to get a fuller idea of
the unique role the restroom plays in women’s working lives.
The women she talked to described a ‘cycle of vulnerability
and confidence’ ‘ working lives made up of small victories and disappointments,
including dealing with levels of workplace discrimination. In an open office
environment, women feel all eyes are on them ‘ meaning they are always somewhat
alienated from their authentic self.
In this context the bathroom is a vital space ‘ a place you
have permission to be alone in, where you can sigh, relax, and refocus
yourself. While American restroom stalls are perhaps too bijou for it, in other countries women talked about praying or
practising yoga in the restroom. It is a sanctuary ‘ a safe space of utmost
privacy. No wonder small changes made such a huge difference. The restroom is a
space where women ‘prepare and repair identities’ in the gendered panopticon of
the modern office. But it’s also a space where they can connect ‘ hierarchy relaxing
side-by-side in front of the mirror.
Magnan used her insights to refashion a Staples restroom,
adding Kleenex boxes, flowers, full length mirrors (to check outfits properly)
and slates with inspirational quotes. The results were a huge success. As one
woman put it, ‘it reminds me so much of my restroom at home’. Exactly.
Magnan’s presentation is an example of the power of
behavioral science. Not just to transform experiences and emotions, but as a
way in to asking far bigger questions which can lead to deeper human truths
emerging. She left the audience with four take outs. First, empathy precedes
emotion ‘ only by empathising can we find insights. Second, risk asking the
better question ‘ go wider, deeper, less straightforward. Third, know your
mission ‘ remember the ultimate goal of your behavioral project. And finally,
find your passion within the mission ‘ Magnan’s obvious love of and belief in
her work shone through this presentation.

Qualitative Research: If it ain’t science, it’s crap

Without a doubt, quantitative research is science. It involves systematic observation and experimentation to better understand consumer behaviour.

Surveys represent the bulk of our quantitative work, converting wide-ranging written and verbal, and positive and negative opinions into carefully coded numerical values that can range from -100 to 100. Neuroscience converts brain waves, skin responses, and eye-tracking behaviours into even finer grains allowing us to better understand the differences between men and women, buyers and browsers, high-income and low-income people, and so many other distinct groups of people. Big data has jumped on the science bandwagon with even more intensity. Billions and trillions of numbers can be categorized and re-categorized into untold numbers of groups and associated with untold numbers of perfectly coded, perfectly transcribed analyzable data points.

But qualitative research? That’s a completely different story. To be valid and reliable, as well as reputable and respected, marketing research needs to behave as a science. Does qualitative research meet the criteria to be considered a science?

First, science is systematic. Are any of these characteristics systematic?

Delineation of precise characteristics in the selection of individual interview participants, according to demographic, psychographics, and personality characteristics such as age, gender, income, education, region, language, sociability, product usage, product opinions, and more

Preparation of standardized discussion guides to ensure consistency across multiple focus groups and multiple interviews

Standardized training of group and session leaders to avoid introducing, creating, or encouraging bias due to group think, dominant group members, reluctant group members, hostile group members or any of the wide assortment of other potential problems

Detailed understanding and selection of the tool best suited to uncover the problem at hand from among hundreds of possibilities such as grounded theory, narratology, storytelling, ethnography, shadowing, participant observation, focus groups, interviews

Detailed methods for converting non-verbal and non-numerical results into standardized data points such as coding books used for both manual and computer-assisted coding

Second, science is experimental. Are these characteristics experimental?

Preparing products in a variety of colours, shapes, sizes, formats such that research participants can be exposed to some or all of them in pre-determined orders

Examining the reliability and consistency of opinions, across people, across groups, etc, by choosing complimentary and/or contradictory research tools and research leaders

I recently spoke with a qualitative researcher who insisted that qualitative research isn’t science. They insisted that qualitative researchers can’t talk about data and can’t use numbers except in nominal ways. Perhaps some qualitative researchers take pride in not partaking in science. Maybe it’s a nice topic of discussion when it comes to talking with clients about why they should go with one method or another. Maybe my friend is wrong.

Is qualitative research is a science? I have to say yes.

Annie Pettit, PhD is the Chief Research Officer at Peanut Labs, a company specializing in self-serve panel sample. Annie is a methodologist focused on data quality, listening research, and survey methods. She won Best Methodological Paper at Esomar 2013, and the 2011 AMA David K. Hardin Award. Annie tweets at @LoveStats and can be reached at annie@peanutlabs.com.

How to Build Habit-Forming Products in Four Steps

Can New Model Help Get Respondents Hooked on Research?

By Marc Dresner, IIR
Email, Facebook, Twitter’most of
us engage in one or more of these and other, similar types of pursuits every
day, usually many times a day, without fail and typically without being
prompted to do so.
Some of these activities we can justify.
Maybe not Angry Birds, but we all
need email, right? Our jobs demand it.
Even on vacation’with autoreply’when
all projects and accounts are in safe hands and you’ve dotted all the i’s and
crossed all the t’s before walking out the door’
Let’s be honest: Do you tell your
colleagues not to email you while you’re away on vacation or is it usually the
other way around?
My boss once threatened me with
an additional week of vacation if I emailed
her again from whatever beach I was suffering on.
And I’m not even a workaholic.

Sometimes, it’s not a
matter of choice; it’s an inescapable compulsion.

Deprivation studies show that separating someone from their smartphone for just one day produces intense anxiety

Indeed, deprivation studies show time
and again that when separated from one’s favorite device’usually a smartphone’for
even just a single day, people frequently experience intense anxiety.

Nir Eyal refers to the apps and
such to which we as a society seem increasingly tethered as ‘habit-forming

products somehow draw us to use them’It’s unprompted engagement.’
Nir Eyal

‘These products
somehow draw us to use them,’ said Eyal. ‘It’s unprompted engagement. They
don’t necessarily say, ‘Hey, come open this app,’ and yet we still take out our
phone and do it anyway.’

short, a ‘habit’ occurs with some regularity and usually with little or no
conscious thought.
And in his new book, ‘Hooked: How to Build Habit-Forming Products,’ Eyal explores the how and why behind this
behavior and introduces a model for developing products that cultivate it.

pattern that habit-forming technologies take time and again is a four-step
process: the ‘Hook Model’

process, the pattern that we see habit-forming technologies take time and time
again is a four-step process I call the ‘Hook Model,” Eyal told The Research Insighter.

‘The Hook Model is very
simply an approach to connect your user’s problem to your solution with enough
frequency to form a habit,’ he added.

could the Hook Model be applied to increase research response and cooperation?

this should appeal to anyone in product development for obvious reasons, geek
that I am, I couldn’t help but wonder how the Hook Model might be applied to increase
research response and cooperation.

To what
extent do we see Hook Model principles effectively used in some of our more
engaged panels and research communities?
these principles be introduced with minimal risk of biasing sample?
In this
interview with The Research Insighter‘the official podcast series of the Future of Consumer Intelligence conference’we’ll review:
‘ The four-step
process for getting someone ‘hooked’
‘ The
roles frequency and perceived utility play
‘ How
to increase the habit-forming potential of a product or service, and much more’

Editor’s note: Nir Eyal will present ‘Designing Habit-Forming Technology‘ at The Future of Consumer Intelligence conference taking
place May 19-21 in Universal City, CA.

As a loyal reader of this blog you will SAVE 15% on your registration to attend The Future of Consumer Intelligence when you use code FOCI14BLOG today!

For more information or to
register, please visit www.futureofconsumerintel.com 

Want to hear more from Nir Eyal? Check out his blog: NirAndFar.com.
Marc Dresner

Marc Dresner is IIR USA’s sr. editor and special communication project lead. He is the former executive editor of Research Business Report, a confidential newsletter for the marketing research and consumer insights industry. He may be reached at mdresner@iirusa.com. Follow him @mdrezz.