The posts here represent the opinions of CMB employees and guests—not necessarily the company as a whole. 

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Three More Take-aways From The Market Research Event: Innovation and Evangelization

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn

Mon, Nov 15, 2010

Last  week I posted three initial take-aways from the 2010 Market Research Event.   Now, I have three more that could easily be summed up by the notion that people like shiny objects, and quantitative research isn’t shiny.  But I’ll expound…

1.       The innovation conversation is focused on qualitative and distribution:  Judging by session attendance and the nominations for the EXPLOR and NGMR Disruptive Innovator awards, the vast majority of innovation is coming in the form of qualitative research methodologies and information distribution.  This is being driven by the continuing emergence of technology first companies into the market research space, as opposed to new entries using traditional ideas and techniques.  This new life in the industry is a good thing for sure, but getting from cool technology to useful insights is easier said than done and those who don’t understand the end goal of what researchers are trying to accomplish will likely fail.

2.       Quantitative topics aren’t sexy:  There was not much talk of advancements in quantitative research, and most quantitative topics focused on the simplification of surveys and necessary analytical trade-offs associated with them.   Particularly jarring for any quant. researchers in attendance was a keynote session that centered around the fact that stated importance is no longer a good metric and that MaxDiff was a better choice.  This was jarring simply because many firms have long since adopted this methodology and, at least here at CMB, moved on to things like Anchored MaxDiff and Adaptive Discrete Choice to increase the reliability of results.

3.       Selling insights internally and empowering employees is key to success:  There was a lot of interesting talk of broader use of technology to share insights within and beyond the corporate office.  Smart companies are using insights to enable a wide array of decisions at the corporate level and empower employees at all levels.  Our client from Avis Budget Group, Becky Alseth, showed how they are using the Voice of the Customer program to empower local managers to make improvements and Bill Hoffman from Best Buy showed how they gather insights from employees on the front lines and drive better one to one service at retail.

All in all, The Market Research Event was a hit and it is clear that an evolution is happening in our industry.  And as clients and providers get younger and more nimble (and less reliant on traditional methods) we are sure to see more changes by this time next year and into the future.  

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn. Josh is our VP of Marketing and loves live music, tv, great food, market research, New Orleans, marketing, his family, Boston and sports. You can follow him on Twitter @mendelj2.

Topics: qualitative research, quantitative research, conference recap

Innovations in Quantitative Research for Product / Service Development

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn

Mon, Jul 19, 2010

Product Development ResearchIn my blog post about multi-source, multi-method research last week I talked about the explosion in qualitative techniques over the past few years.  Tomorrow’s webinar about Innovations in Product and Service Development Research touches on some of the recent improvements in quantitative research as well.

The webinar starts at Noon ET and will feature CMB's Rich Schreuer and Amy Modini as they share the latest best practices and case studies from their years of conducting product and service development research across verticals.  (Click here to watch).

If you’d like to see how some of these techniques feel from a respondent perspective, click on the link for each to go through our demo questionnaires.

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn. Josh is our VP of Marketing and loves live music, tv, great food, market research, New Orleans, marketing, his family, Boston and sports. You can follow him on Twitter @mendelj2.

Topics: product development, webinar, quantitative research

More important for quantitative market research, mobile surveys or mobile friendly surveys?

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn

Tue, Jun 15, 2010

mobile market researchLast week I was riding home on the T (that's our subway here in Boston) and using my iPhone to check in on one of my fantasy baseball teams when I was recruited to take a CBS survey through their mobile app.  After starting to participate (but not completing due to length) I came back to a question that is always on my mind when it comes to mobile research, are we as an industry spending too much time developing "mobile" ways of doing research instead of optimizing our online research for mobile devices?  

For even the largest research firms, development time is limited and prioritizing resources is extremely important, so where should we be spending our time?

The case for truly mobile surveys:  Conducting surveys using a mobile app allows you to recruit people to participate based on their mobile behaviors or enabling them to opt-in based on an activity they are currently participating in.  It also ensures that the survey will be formatted correctly for use on the go.  If you can keep it very short (a requirement for truly mobile surveys), you can get information at the point of experience that can guide improvements to the customer experience.  

mobile market researchThe case for mobile friendly surveys:   As smartphone adoption continues to swell and the web browsers for even non-smartphones improve at a rapid pace, people are using their mobile devices as a primary, or at least heavily used secondary way to interact with the internet.  This means that the people who are most interested in your products, services, etc. are checking and acting on their email from mobile devices.  It also means that many of your "web" surveys are actually being completed via mobile devices.  Or at least people are attempting to complete them via mobile devices.  Researchers and panel companies need to recognize this fact and set parameters for layout and length that work with today's consumers.

So which is more important?

In the short term, I believe it is more important that every quantitative survey launched become mobile friendly and that how people are participating be asked up front.  This may impact the ability to use interactive questions and shorten the attention span of the people you want to get feedback from, but failure to do this means that you could be making it impossible (or at least very difficult) for your target audiences to participate.  After all, people who participate are a key audience for the market research industry and we all need to act in the way that best suits them and their evolving needs and behaviors.

Posted by Josh Mendelsohn. Josh is our VP of Marketing and loves live music, tv, great food, market research, New Orleans, marketing, his family, Boston and sports. You can follow him on Twitter @mendelj2. 

Topics: methodology, mobile, quantitative research