Tag Archives: research

Does Market Research Have a Seat at the Table?

Market research has undergone big changes in the past few
years. Even with transitions and restructuring of teams, market research andinsights proves to still be relevant in virtually every industry. Companies are
always going to need to know their customers’ wants, needs, values, motives,
goals and more.
In order to capture these indispensable insights, research
teams must adapt to the ever-changing digital world and have leaders to charge
their teams forward and impact the bottom line of businesses with strategic
consumer insights. 
So, do you think Market Research has a seat at the table?
Share with us in a
short survey here: http://svy.mk/2b94NwB  By filling out the survey, you will automatically be entered to win a free pass to TMRE 2016! 

We look forward to hearing your feedback!

Also, don’t miss TMRE:
The Market Research Event taking place October 17-20, 2016 in Boca Raton, FL.
With over 150 sessions to choose from, TMRE is the most comprehensive event in
the industry. Every presentation is tasked to leave you with actionable
insights you can implement back at your organization. For more information
about the event or to register, click here: http://bit.ly/2bkcKzO
The TMRE Team


Customer Sentiment Drives Differentiation

By: Rick Kieser, Ascribe 
Customer Sentiment is more than just a feeling ‘ it is a
critical mile marker on the road to brand differentiation. In my last blog, I
discussed the opportunity to compete based on customer experience ‘ what that
means, and how tricky it can be.  The follow up question: HOW do you
harness CX insights to deliver a truly differentiated experience?
I also outlined three things you must do in order to truly
compete on the basis of differentiated customer experience. Let’s dig in a
little further to understand how you can use customer sentiment and insight
from open-ended and other survey data to accomplish your goal.
1) Identify what
makes (or could make) you special in the eyes of customers

When you ask customers about their experience, there are
likely a few words they use more than others. In fitness centers, for example,
‘locker rooms’ is a phrase mentioned over and over again.  Chances are
this is an opportunity for differentiation. To determine whether or not you’re
there yet, take a look at what your best customers ‘ your biggest fans ‘ say
about your most important words. Are THESE customers satisfied with THIS part
of the experience? Customer sentiment can reveal a wealth of directional cues
about where you are and where you can and should be.
2) Understand the
underlying drivers of the customer experience

It’s one thing to identify a key component of your
customers’ experience; it’s a whole other challenge to understand what factors
drive how they feel about it. To stick with the ‘locker room’ example, we might
guess that clean towels, friendly attendants or special amenities could
contribute.  But how do we know what tips the scale between poor, average
and exceptional? The point is, until you uncover those insights, you will only
be guessing at what to invest in, tweak, reinforce or promote.
3) Deliver
consistently, and monitor customer sentiment relative to your differentiator

Once you know what customers care about most and how to make
sure YOU deliver it uniquely or better than anyone else, ongoing analysis can
tell you if you are succeeding, if customer sentiment or experience is
changing, and how consistently you are executing across your organization. All
it can take to degrade your competitive advantage is one kink in the system,
and watching variations among subsets of customers can help you stay ahead.

WholeFood’s CEO Discusses Leadership and Insights at TMRE: The Market Research Event

TMRE is the only event
that brings you face to face with the brightest minds in business on the
keynote stage. These gurus and best-selling authors have tailored their content
specifically for the TMRE audience to leverage their insights for immediate
The TMRE Keynote Stage..where Ingenuity is your ally, and
Routine your enemy:
Dubner, Best-Selling Author, Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics
key takeaway: Inspire change in both your organization and your customers’
minds by understanding the power of incentives.
Mackey, Co-Founder & Co-CEO, Whole Foods Market, Best-Selling Author,
Conscious Capitalism: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business

key takeaway: Grow and evolve your leadership skills with help from John
Mackey, to push employee growth and engagement, ultimately leading to growth of
the company itself.
Ross, NYT Best-Selling Author, The Industries of the Future, Former Senior
Advisor for Technology & Innovation at the State Department
key takeaway: Gain a better understanding of the next wave of innovations
that are going to disrupt markets and workplaces around the world, for better
and for worse.
David S.
Duncan, Co-Author, Competing Against Luck: The Story of Innovation and Customer
key takeaway: Hear how the ‘theory of jobs to be done’ can be used to shape
innovations that have a greater chance of success and how the approach can be
institutionalized in your organization to create enduring competitive
Zain Raj,
President & CEO, Shapiro+Raj, Amazon Best-Selling Author, Marketing for
Tomorrow, Not Yesterday and BrandRituals: How Successful Brands Bond with
Customers for Life
key takeaway: View the future of market research and see how next
generation methodologies are crafting tomorrow’s marketers and meeting the
demands of today’s consumer trust, respect and loyalty requirements.
Glebas, Author, The Animators Eye and Directing the Story, Director, Storyboard
and Visual Development Artist, Disney, Dreamworks Animation
key takeaway: Explore storytelling and visual presentation techniques from
the storyboard artist for Fantasia and Pocahontas to help insights executives
better sell our research into the organization
Eagleman, Neuroscientist, NYT Best-Selling Author, Incognito: The Secret Lives
of the Brain, Host of PBS’ The Brain with David Eagleman

key takeaway: Hear new data to show how people use the same brain circuitry to
relate to brands as they do to one another, suggesting strong motivation for
companies to work on reputation, loyalty and trust ‘ subconscious issues which
powerfully navigate customer decisions, but are missed by traditional methods
of market research.
Lobel, Author, Sensation: The New Science of Physical Intelligence,
Internationally Recognized Psychologist, Professor at the School of
Psychological Science, Tel Aviv University, Visiting Professor, Harvard
key takeaway: Gain insights on how the strong influence of the physical
sensations have direct implications to products and package design, to user
interface as well as to business and personal interactions with family and
Soon Yu,
Global Vice President of Innovation, VF Corporation
key takeaway: Uncover the ‘T shaped’ leadership model that goes beyond just
developing inspired ideas to the organizational influencing skills required to
execute them.
Chance, Author, Better Influence, Assistant Professor of Marketing, Yale School
of Management

key takeaway: Learn the six keys of influence (Moments of Truth, Social Proof,
Consistency, Anchoring, Reciprocity & Scarcity), why they work and how to
recognize them.
Plus, check out the VIP package upgrade to join these
experts for private lunches, breakfasts, Q&A sessions, and workshops!
ONLY TMRE can give
you that level of access. Download the complete TMRE agenda: http://bit.ly/2aaZk3S
Use code TMRE16LI for
an additional $100 off. Buy your tickets: http://bit.ly/2aaZk3S
The TMRE Team

5 Ways Traditional Market Researchers Can Stay Relevant

By: Amanda Ciccatelli,
Content Marketing & Social Media Strategist, Informa
Insights have become a vehicle for influencing marketing and
ultimately, the world. That’s why we asked Adam Coleman, Director, Consumer and
Market Research, Microsoft, for his advice to traditional researchers on
staying relevant in the changing market research and consumer insights space.
Here is his advice:
Experiment with new approaches to solving problems ‘ use the 70/20/10 model
to look at your budgets and spend at least 10% of dollars (if you can) on
trialing side by side tests.
Multiple Data Sources.
Ensure you are using (or assessing) multiple data
sources which may require you to ‘up’ your collaboration skills with teams you
may not previously have thought you’d need to work with. Particularly as Social
Intelligence and Behavioral data come to the fore.
Get experience to get comfortable with these new types of data
sources so you have at least an educated understanding of them and their
limitations/advantages – don’t get left behind.
Attention to Innovation.
Don’t jump to use the first new shiny approach you
see! There is so much innovation going on that a new firm, or one of the bigger
firms with Innovation at the center, may have a better solution. Increase your
networking with industry peers, or meet with other non-competitive firms who
you can share new thinking with.
Forget the Core Principles of Research.
Don’t get away from what are core
principles of research, whatever the data or information formats ‘ Continue to
ask yourself these types of questions: Do we have research learning or are
there secondary sources that can already answer the question? Is it
representative of the audience, market, or other requirement? What level of
confidence do we need to answer the question ‘ hence, can we assess the
significance to the level we need? Does it truly answer the business question
at hand?
‘The world of product development and marketing has simply sped
up in almost all industries,’ Coleman explained. ‘There are more choices for
customers every day, and more and more smaller competitors coming into markets
they were not in before. Keeping ahead of the competitive threats and
responding quickly requires even more agility without losing the appropriate
research quality needed to help guide decisions.’

Partnering With Data Scientists: How Market Researchers Make the Most of Big Data At LinkedIn

An interview
with Sally Sadosky, Group Manager in Marketing Research, and Al Nevarez, Senior
Manager in Business Analytics, from LinkedIn

The introduction and evolution of big data
has opened up a whole world of new opportunities for market researchers.
However, it has also brought with it a set of challenges, not least around the
skills gap traditional market research teams are facing.
With 400 million members, maximizing this
wealth of data is more pressing for LinkedIn than most. We
spoke to Sally Sadosky, Group Manager in Marketing Research, and Al Nevarez,
Senior Manager in Business Analytics, from the social media giant about how
internal partnerships between departments has helped them gain invaluable
insights from their data.

has market research changed with big data?

SS: ‘There’s been lot of changes and all
for the positive. At LinkedIn because we are able to look at the behavior of
the members, we are able to do a lot more research in advance ‘ looking at
behaviors, looking at trends, testing hypotheses. When we actually talk to
members, either through quantitative surveys or qualitative methods, we can
really focus our questions.
We have already fully analysed what we know
to be facts, so we don’t have to spend time asking them what they do, now we
can spend all our time on the ‘whys’. Our surveys tend to be a lot shorter,
which is great for response rates and completion rates. Our in depth interviews
tend to be a lot more focused as well, as we can say ‘we noticed you do this,
tell us why.’

skills does a market research team need to take advantage of the big data

AN: ‘It starts with a healthy, inquisitive,
imaginative mind. We like to look at this Venn diagram of skills that refers to
software skills, maths skills and business skills. We look for folks that have
all three. If you only have two of those it is dangerous; if you’re the hacker
with the business but don’t know the math and statistics, you can come to
erroneous conclusions.
At the end of the day, it’s about being
comfortable with all kinds of data ‘ we have 400 million members on LinkedIn
which is a lot of data. But we don’t collect 400 million survey records ‘ that
data is smaller. It’s about being creative and understanding the technology
well enough that you can bring the little data and the big data together to
help make big decisions.’
tips do you have for other market researchers interested in collaborating with the
big data aspects of their organization?

SS: ‘It’s a little bit of a scavenger hunt
in the beginning because the data scientists are scattered throughout the
company and they don’t report in to marketing where I sit. You have to create
those relationships. I focus on small wins. We are jointly storytelling and
that gets people asking for more, so I can go back and ask for dedicated
resource, hire more people or ask for 20 hours rather than 5 hours.
It has to be a very proactive thing as in
many companies they are still considered very separate disciplines with very
separate approaches. We think about the same thing; we think about member
empathy and telling the story of our members, and now we have a lot of facts
and a lot of opinions and we are able to put those together in a seamless way
which tells really good member stories. It’s being proactive and being
persistent in getting those small wins.’
AN: ‘If you’re thinking about a data science
team, think about how that team can really drive the bottom line for the
company and then that will help that team thrive and grow and therefore be able
to support all these other organizations.’
the full interview below: 

Exclusive Interview with Microsoft: New and Emerging Data Sources

At TMRE last year, we
sat down with Reed Cundiff, General Manager of Customer and Market Research at
Microsoft, to discuss the impact of new and emerging data sources.
Here’s a sneak peak of the interview:
Why do we need new or
alternative data sets or data sources these days?

Cundiff: It’s
simply a natural evolution of how our discipline has evolved for decades.
Thinking about what we bring into our stakeholders as we are trying to drive
business impact, and thinking about new data types is just a simple part of the
natural evolution.
As these new data sources are coming online, then the
question is: If we don’t look at how we can incorporate them into the insights
that we bring to our clients and our internal stakeholders, then odds are
somebody else will. So, let’s think about doing that in a more integrated way,
as opposed to having the insights that we bring sit in a silo that then sits
next to another data silo.
What kinds of new and
emerging data sources are capturing your attention?

Cudiff: One that
we’ve been working on for a number of years to try and get our arms around and
make meaning out of has been social data. I don’t think Microsoft is alone in
thinking that the information that exists in social data applies to our
category and a variety of other categories. So that is something that we spent
several years trying to understand in detail. In particular, not just
understand volume metrics, not just what sentiment looks like around a given
theme or category, but really understand how what’s going on in social can
relate to, in fact, ideally predict what happens in the offline world.
The second area is behavioral data. Microsoft has a wealth
of information that comes online, especially as we move into a services world
where we are able to gather data around how people are using our products at a
significant level of depth. Tying that with the perception data that we already
pull together can help us get a much more well-rounded picture of what’s
happening with a customer, a competitor within a marketplace as whole.
To watch the full interview, click here: http://bit.ly/29tceh8
Reed spoke at TMRE: The Market Research Event 2015. TMRE
helps command the boardroom by delivering actionable strategies to leverage
insights as a vehicle for influence. The best in the industry will converge to
talk technology, disruptive trends, professional skill development, hot new
sectors, and the future customer.
Download the brochure
for this year’s agenda: http://bit.ly/29khNzk
Don’t miss out!

Use exclusive Blog discount
code TMRE16BL for $100 off the current rate. Buy tickets: http://bit.ly/29khNzk

Is online qualitative research as effective as in-person research?

By:  Shelley Miller, April Bell Research Group
We’ve had some of our long-term clients wanting to explore
different ways to ‘replicate’ in-person focus groups online. Surprisingly, this
is being driven not only by time and money constraints but also by scheduling
conflicts.  Although in-person qual facilitates
the kind of rapport and connection that is challenging to replicate online, we
also believe conducting online qual can give insight ‘ if you use the right
methodology and platform for the objective.
We currently have a great bulletin board platform (Recollective) we use for gaining
in-depth exploration into consumer’s habits and practices ‘ it’s a great tool
and we use it often as a supplement to in-person.
But finding the right tool to ‘replicate’ an in-person
experience ‘ where stimuli can be shown and feedback can be given in context
requires a synchronous platform (not a bulletin board ‘ asynchronous platform)
So we recently renewed our discovery process to review new
platforms and we were pleasantly surprised by how advanced the technology has
become. Although not perfect, it’s clear that many of them have become more  ‘researcher friendly.’ So, while it can seem
overwhelming based on the number of options available, we found the following
process can help narrow the choices in order to choose the best platform for
your needs.
the Experience:
With so many bells and whistles, it’s easy to get swept
away with a lot of the features available. 
We found as we were doing demos, that clarity was found if we focused on
what the experience would look and feel like as we were conducting the
Decide: Asynchronous
or Synchronous?
  There are pros and
cons of each but both can be beneficial based on what you are trying to learn.
For example, Asynchronous is great for ‘exploration’ or ‘going deep’ with individual
consumers while allowing flexibility for both the researcher and respondents;
however, the analysis is typically more disjointed and time-consuming.
Synchronous platforms, on the other hand, require a specific ‘meet up’ time.  They work well when you want group feedback
(ex: stimuli) because they allow data to flow in context ‘ and the analysis is
Text only or Webcam?
  This is an
important step when determining which platform to use because some platforms
are better at conducting Webcam interviews/groups (Intervu by
FocusVision) while others provide a great Text Chat Group feature (Inside Heads and Visions Live).  Again, there are pros and cons to each method
that should be carefully evaluated based on your client team’s wishes. For
example, Text Chat Groups do not allow you to see and hear respondents while Webcam
groups require much more technology requirements.
Creating an ‘evaluation process’ not only helped us identify
the right platform for the need, it also helped us overcome technology
‘overwhelm’ and create excitement for a shiny, new research tool! 

8 Reasons to Be Excited About OmniShopper in Chicago

OmniShopper is less than
2 weeks away! Don’t miss your opportunity to connect with the key players in
your industry and uncover new insights and activation strategies that you can
bring back and champion in your organization ‘ what are you waiting for?
Here are a few of the
top experiences waiting for you at OmniShopper 2016:

He’s an insights industry legend and Nobel Prize Winner in
Economic Sciences. And he’ll be taking the keynote stage to help you better
understand what shapes consumer decisions. 
Sure, OmniShopper unites hundreds of market research and insights
professionals from the retail industry in one place, but it’s not always easy
for you to connect with the people you need to meet. That’s why OmniShopper has
introduced a NEW matchmaking program to ensure you meet the RIGHT people to
drive YOUR business forward.
The State
of the Industry ‘ Revealed.
Jet.com and Lowe’s Home Improvement lead the
discussion from a retailer perspective ‘ on creating successful omnichannel
shopping experiences now and in the future ‘ while ConAgra, PepsiCo and
Unilever dive deeper from a manufacturer’s perspective ‘ on driving the new
path to purchase in a world where the consumer is in control.
Shopper Insight Lifecycle.
How is an insight uncovered? What methodologies
should you be using? How do you action the insight? Find out with best
practices from The Hershey Company, SmartRevenue, Wrigley and Capre Group
during an in-depth workshop on Sunday, July 10th.
World’s Most Powerful Consumers ‘ Women.
Bridget Brennan, Author, Why She
Buys, offers powerful insights on the consumer behavior of Millennial women, as
well as techniques on how you can stay relevant to female culture. Millennial
women’s consumer behavior and techniques on how you can break through the
clutter and stay relevant to female consumers.
OmniShopper brings all the players in the retail space together
for a common goal ‘ to define the future of retail through insight and
activation strategies. Collaboration is key, that’s why we’re giving insights
leaders from manufacturers AND retail the chance to come together to discuss
the new value of insights, new P2P, total store shopability and more.
Go beyond the insights at OmniShopper. Uncover the secrets to making
your work speak loudly and resonate with others with the help of  the
author of Louder than Words: Harness the Power of Your Authentic Voice. Todd
will share how to uncover, develop and use your authentic voice to connect more
effectively and consistently.
Digital Revolution.
It’s no secret that, like every other industry out
there, digital has changed the game at retail. Seth Shapiro, Principal, New
Amsterdam Media and Adjunct Professor, USC School of Cinematic Arts will
explore how you can leverage digital innovation to expand your global retail
opportunities and grow and prosper in the new retail landscape.
And so, what are you waiting for?! The future of retail
won’t be defined in isolation ‘ make sure you’re a part of the conversation.
Join us in July and tell us @OmniShopper what you’re excited
about right now #OmniShopperEvent.
Use exclusive Blog
discount code OMNI16BL $100 off the current rate. Buy your tickets here: http://bit.ly/295su6e
See you in Chicago!
The OmniShopper Team

Insights as a Vehicle for Influence: Build a Culture of Adaptation & Exploration

By: Amanda Ciccatelli,
Content Marketing & Social Media Strategist, Informa

Insights have become a vehicle for influencing marketing and
ultimately, the world. That’s why next in our Insights as a Vehicle for
Influence series, we sat down with Ben Smithee, CEO of the Smithee Group. In
our conversation, he shed some light on how research is changing in the digital
age, how researchers can stay relevant in the changing insights space, why it’s
important to be agile in market research, and more.
Here’s what Smithee had to say:
How are research
operations teams changing in the digital age?

Smithee: I think
the core change is the breadth and diversity of skill sets, paired with the
speed and agility required of the team members. People are forced to know much
more with the impact of digital/social, and a new mindset and skill set is
What is your advice
to traditional researchers trying to stay relevant in the fast changing market
research and consumer insights space?

Smithee: The
biggest things are embracing change and staying up-to-date with content.
Spending the first 30-minutes of your day consuming solid content on the
current state of digital, decision intelligence, social, etc. is absolutely
key! It’s how I stay on the front-end of what’s going on and important.
What is the best way
to build a high performance team in today’s MRX world?

Smithee: Build a
culture of adaptation and exploration. We still must provide excellence in
intelligence and a trusted source for our clients and internal clients, but a
high-performance team is one that embraces new and exploratory methods and
strategies. The environment is changing so fast, you can’t always resort to a
‘proven’ approach. The ability to embrace and execute in this manner requires a
strong culture.
Why is it important
to be an agile market research today?

Smithee: The
consumer climate is changing too fast to not be agile. Decisions are needed in
real-time or near real-time, and businesses require accurate but timely data
and intelligence. This is true for both the qual and quant worlds. Time is a
luxury, and there are so many more needs in today’s business environment. Being
agile is truly a requirement.
How can a company
create a research innovation culture?

Smithee: It
really starts at the core. It’s not enough to talk about it or preach
‘innovation.’ It has to be something that is truly integrated into a company’s
culture. The unwillingness to just default to the old and traditional, and the
insistence to continually ask “is this the best way’ is imperative. Challenge
your team members to learn. Support education, and spend on keeping your team
at the top of their game. Organizations must truly invest in the future of
their company, by investing in the future of their team members. Instill a
culture of respectful challenging, and a more democratic approach. Make sure
your younger team members have a voice, and make sure your seasoned team
members stay up-to-date on the current topics and tactics.

What Marketing Researchers Can Learn From Digital Marketing: 5 Common Mistakes

By: Eric Lindner,
Client Operations Team Lead, Americas, Lightspeed GMI

Originally published on
GMI Blog
I recently attended a webinar where Linda West, Director of
Digital Marketing at Act-On Software, discussed five common digital
marketing mistakes. After hearing what Linda had to say about the five common
mistakes, it got me thinking about what we, as Marketing Researchers, can learn
from digital marketing. While digital marketing strategies are laser focused on
creating value for the consumer, we should have that same focus on our
panelists. Panelists are a core part of what we do in the Marketing Research
industry, and our panelists are people. These people’s voices and opinions
are front and center in how we interact with them.  
So, how are those five common mistakes relevant to Marketing
missed opportunities for testing and optimization
. Avoid making
assumptions about how people will respond. Don’t delay, test out your
innovative questionnaire design, gamification, quizzes, etc. at your next
Curse of
unrealistic expectations in testing and optimization
. Allow time for
your test to mature and be realistic about how soon to expect results. It will
only waste time by ending without conclusive results. See it through to the
shiny objects
focusing on the new
and hot vs. the best for your research
. Doesn’t mean that you should
abandon everything, but may be a good idea to explore. Keep doing what works
for your research, even if it is not what’s trending. A part of your budget
should be reserved for experiments (10%), and accept that a percentage of them
to fail. As with anything, introduce change in small doses. You want to find
the right balance of old standbys and new hot techniques.
mobile is just for B2C.
 It is increasingly important to know your
audience. Every interaction you have with people should be optimized for the
device that they are the most comfortable using. Test, test, test! People
should be able to easily interact with things like surveys from a mobile
content quality
. By offering something unique, getting personal with
your interactions, and taking a data-driven approach will help you stand out.
Good research begins with a good understanding of the people you’d like to hear