Heather Magaw

Recent Posts

Reaping the Rewards of Big Data

Posted by Heather Magaw

Thu, Apr 09, 2015

HiResIt’s both an exciting and challenging time to be a researcher. Exciting because we can collect data at speeds our predecessors could only dream about and challenging because we must help our partners stay nimble enough to really benefit from this data deluge. So, how do we help our clients reap the rewards of Big Data without drowning in it? Start with the end in mind: If you’re a CMB client, you know that we start every engagement with the end in mind before a single question is ever written. First, we ask what business decisions the research will help answer. Once we have those, we begin to identify what information is necessary to support those decisions. This keeps us focused and informs everything from questionnaire design to implementation.

Leverage behavioral and attitudinal data: While business intelligence (BI) teams have access to mountains of transactional, financial, and performance data, they often lack insight into what drives customer behavior, which is a critical element of understanding the full picture. BI teams are garnering more and more organizational respect due to data access and speed of analysis, yet market research departments (and their partners like CMB) are the ones bringing the voice of the customer to life and answering the “why?” questions.

Tell a compelling story: One of the biggest challenges of having “too much” data is that data from disparate sources can provide conflicting information, but time-starved decision makers don't have time to sort through all of it in great detail. In a world in which data is everywhere, the ability to take insights beyond a bar chart and bring it to life is critical. It’s why we spend a lot of time honing our storytelling skills and not just our analytic chops. We know that multiple data sources must be analyzed from different angles and through multiple lenses to provide both a full picture and one that can be acted upon.

Big Data is ripe with potential. Enterprise-level integration of information has the power to change the game for businesses of all sizes, but data alone isn’t enough. The keen ability to ask the right questions and tell a holistic story based on the results gives our clients the confidence to make those difficult investment decisions. 2014 was the year of giving Big Data a seat at the table, but for the rest of 2015, market researchers need to make sure their seat is also reserved so that we can continue to give decision makers the real story of the ever-changing business landscape.

Heather is the VP of Client Services, and she admits to becoming stymied by analysis paralyses when too much data is available. She confesses that she resorts to selecting restaurants and vacation destinations based solely on verbal recommendations from friends who take the time to tell a compelling story instead of slogging through an over-abundance of online reviews. 

Topics: Big Data, Storytelling, Business Decisions

CMB: Our People Make the Difference

Posted by Heather Magaw

Wed, Apr 30, 2014

CMB, Careers, Open PositionsAnyone who’s ever managed a service-oriented team knows that success or failure is often contingent on the successes or failures of your employees. Their professional successes—and sometimes even their personal successes—have a positive and lasting impact on your organization. Then, of course, there’s the flip side of that coin that can result in collateral damage across an organization.At CMB, we take talent management seriously because it’s serious stuff. We literally live and breathe in a team-oriented environment to deliver against our client commitments. To do this day-in-and-day-out takes both the hard skills required of market researchers coupled with softer skills required for teams to thrive.  From the interview process to active team management to individual development plans, we are building and supporting teams and individuals that align with our core CMBehaviors:

  • Accountability

  • Attention to Detail

  • Autonomy

  • CMB Citizenship

  • Collaboration

  • Communication

  • Flexibility

  • Initiative

  • Problem Resolution

  • Strategic Thinking

The CMBehaviors aren’t just a bulleted list of the latest organizational buzz-words; these concepts have both meaning and impact, in addition to being closely related and producing significant interaction effects. For instance, Strategic Thinkingis a hallmark of CMB and one of the reasons we have a history of successfully helping clients solve their unique business problems. It’s not good enough to have only the senior-most team members engaged in Strategic Thinking—it’s expected of the entire project team. This, of course, can only be realized through effective Collaboration. Project teams are often greater than the sum of their parts, but to fully realize the full potential of the team requires clear and concise Communication.

It’s not easy to hire and manage to these standards, but we believe it’s part what our clients recognize as unique (and dare I say better?) about working with CMB. Our commitment to our colleagues (we like to call ourselves CMBers) is a direct reflection of our commitment to exceptional client service.

Heather is VP of Client Services and is awestruck with the potential and commitment of the current Client Services team members at CMB. She’s proud to be a member of the awesome team who get to call themselves CMBers.

Would you like to work with some of our top clients like eBay, Facebook, Hilton, Bank of America, Starbucks, Avis-Budget, Neiman Marcus, and Electronic Arts?

Join our team! We are a Honomichl Top 50 company offering the flexible collaborative environment of a small company with the big world expertise that comes from working with leading brands across a wide array of industries.

Check out our open positions here.


Topics: Chadwick Martin Bailey, CMB People & Culture

Celebrating Our 30th Year!

Posted by Heather Magaw

Tue, Apr 01, 2014

CMB 30 year infographic

On April 1, 1984, Chadwick Martin Bailey was founded in Boston by Anne Bailey Berman and Dr. John Martin. What began 30 years ago on a day known for pranks, continues to thrive today as a Honomichl Top 50 market research and consulting firm.Staying true to our April Fools’ Day origins, we never take ourselves too seriously, despite our commitment to providing insights for confident, strategic, decision-making to a select group of the world’s leading brands.

While clients appreciate our rigorous approach to market science blended with our unique business decision focus and rock solid execution, it’s our genuine and collaborative approach to partnership that our clients tell us they value most. In fact, one of the greatest compliments we can receive is when clients tell us we're “fun to work with.”

Today we celebrate 30 years of helping our clients get the answers they need to grow, innovate, and stay ahead of the competition, and our co-founders who set us on the path toward success.

Thank you, Anne and John, fellow CMBers, and our fantastic clients!

Heather is VP of Client Services, she loves both a good April Fools' gag and birthday celebration!


Topics: Chadwick Martin Bailey, Infographic

Does Steven Spielberg Have What it Takes to be a Market Researcher?

Posted by Heather Magaw

Thu, Feb 21, 2013

By Heather Magaw

It's Oscar week, time for me to reveal a few of the lesser-known parallels between two glamorous industries—Hollywood and Market Research.

Just as the Academy is abuzz about Lincoln and Argo, market researchers can't get enough of two topics: 1) Big Data and 2) Storytelling. You can’t go to a conference or read a blog without hearing at least 5 new takes on both concepts. For us, figuring out how to tell a compelling story with massive amounts of data is exciting stuff. Maybe we should recruit some big-name, box-office talent, like Steven Spielberg, to join the CMB ranks for our next Blockbuster client project.

What? You’re not convinced Mr. Spielberg is cut out for the life of a market researcher? Movie producers and directors sift through mountains of footage, leaving the vast majority of it on describe the imagethe cutting room floor; an extensive team effort transforms hundreds of hours of film into 90 minutes of entertainment. Really, it’s very similar to what we do every day at CMB: analyze mountains of complex data, synthesize it into a focused story, ultimately crafting a business decision focused research report.

At first blush, you may think that research reports don’t stack up to a movie for entertainment value, but for our research junkie clients and information needy executives, a well-written research report that helps them tackle their most difficult business challenges is often even more compelling than the latest blockbuster flick. The art of storytelling in a research report is just as important as it is to movies. Just as audiences would never willingly sit through hours upon hours of raw footage, business leaders have little appetite for sifting through reams of data tables.    

So, I ask, why shouldn’t we be recruiting Steven Spielberg as our next great Practice Leader or Senior Consultant at Chadwick Martin Bailey? As my colleague Athena mentioned last week, our neighborhood has served as a backdrop for a number of well-known movies, he might feel right at home.

Heather is VP of Client Services and always makes a point to read and finish the book before viewing movie adaptations.

Can't get enough excitement? Register for our upcoming webinar, February 28th at noon: Segmentation as a Strategic Change Agent, with Jeff VanDeVelde of SunTrust Bank.

Topics: Chadwick Martin Bailey, Storytelling, Media & Entertainment Research