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Canadian Publications Mail Agreement #40033932


What if we Treated Participants Like Gamers? How Social Consciousness Gives Brands Edge Visualize your Data with Storytelling Community Rewarded Research

Cover photo: Neil Chakraborty

the magazine of the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association

JUNE 2014

THE FIVE PATHWAYS We are pleased to release The Five Pathways to obtaining your CMRP and there is bound to be one that is ideal for you:

Certification is a way to measure the competency of individuals within our industry, based on both a certification evaluation and the practical application of marketing research competencies. Our wellknown Certified Marketing Research Professional (CMRP) designation helps to ensure professional competence while enhancing the prestige of our profession by raising standards.





















This certification pathway is designed to build a solid foundation of professional competence by raising the bar for new practitioners. In addition to two years of industry experience, we are providing Mentor support by leading CMRPs (in person and online) to enhance industry knowledge and deepen the candidates’ overall understanding of MR while preparing for the CMRE exam. Mentors are provided at no cost to the incumbents and represent some of our industry’s thought leaders. This is a unique and valuable opportunity opportunity to pursue your CMRP.

You’ve graduated from University and have developed a distinct taste for marketing research. You miss the thrill of learning and the challenge of proving your abilities. If your eye is on the future, then this path is for you, as the traditional, tried and true way to obtaining certification, and with a touch of flexibility. It requires completion of MRIA’s 12 Core Courses, combined with experience and the added help of a Mentor which we provide at no charge.

You’ve been around the block and have seen some dramatic changes to marketing research in your six years in the biz. You’re good at what you do; even your boss says so. You live on the edge and are not at all interested in reading volumes about research methodology. We get it. You can prove your mettle by telling us about your experience and writing the CMRE exam. Period.

You are the one that comes to mind when people talk about experts in marketing research. With more than ten exciting years in the market research field, you are the ‘go to’ person when questions arise on ethics or polling or margins of error. Task forces and boards of directors seek your participation and opinion. Even other CMRPs will vouch for your expertise and would applaud your continued success as a CMRP. We can get you there in a few short steps.

It’s called respect. Ask any client who one of the top thought leaders in MR is, and your name comes up. You are seen at high level meetings, in the media, and at MRIA policy meetings. Often called to speak at events, your international schedule is jam packed. Google your name and many pages appear….. Any time spent feeding your mind can only be spent with the very best industry thought leaders, innovators, movers and shakers. Learning about advances in leadership is always welcome. Hearing about innovations from your peers can be priceless.

You will be learning from the best and getting a better view!

We’ve got the courses so bring us your mind!

We know you’ve got what it takes!

Get the recognition you deserve!

CMRP – be known for what you know!

Continuous learning is the new standard – let us help you expand your knowledge base and reach outside of your comfort zone. Kara Mitchelmore, MBA, FCMA CEO, MRIA

Fergus W. Gamble, CMRP Chair, MRIA Professional Development & Certification Committee

Stephen Popiel, Ph.D., CMRP Dean, Institute of Professional Development & Certification

Insti tute fo r Professi o na l Deve lo p me nt

Robert Wong, MA, MCIP, CMRP, FMRIA Member, MRIA Professional Development & Certification Committee Paul Long, CMRP Member, MRIA Professional Development & Certification Committee

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Commentary 4 Editor’s Vue 6 Letter from the President 8

Letter from the CEO


President’s Tour

SPECIAL FEATURE 12  The New Paradigm of Big Data: Is Marketing Research at Crossroads? Neil Chakraborty

Features 15 What if...We Treated Participants Like Gamers? A proposal for a new industry magazine Betty Adamou 18 How Social Consciousness Gives Brands Edge Lindsey Boyle 20 Community Rewarded Research Jonathan Clough

Industry News 22 Qualitative Research Registry (QRR) 23 Seeing the Hidden Targets: Humber RAPP Forum 24 Research Registration System (RRS) 25 People and Companies in the News 28 Research Registration System (RRS)

MRIA Institute for Professional Development 29 Courses

Columnists 30 Bright-Eyed 30 It’s a Qual World 31 Ask Dr. Ruth 31 Off the Deep End

ADDRESS The Marketing Research and Intelligence Association L’association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing

94 Cumberland Street, Suite 601 Toronto, ON M5R 1A3 Tel: (416) 642-9793 Toll Free: 1-888-602-MRIA (6742) Fax: (416) 644-9793 Email: Website: PRODUCTION: LAYOUT/DESIGN LS Graphics Inc. Tel: (905) 743-0402, Toll Free: 1-800-400-8253 Fax: (905) 728-3931 Email: CONTACTS CHAIR OF PUBLICATIONS, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Annie Pettit, PhD, Chief Research Officer, Peanut Labs (416) 273-9395 MANAGING EDITOR Anne Marie Gabriel, MRIA ASSOCIATE EDITOR Fiona Isaacson COPY EDITOR Diane Peters Interested in joining the Vue editorial team? Contact us at 2014 ADVERTISING RATES Frequent advertisers receive discounts. Details can be found by going to: Please email to book your ad. The deadline for notice of advertising is the first of the previous month. All advertising material must be at the MRIA office on the 5th of the month. Original articles and Letters to the Editor are welcome. Materials will be reviewed by the Vue Editorial Team. If accepted for publication, they may be edited for length or clarity and placed in the electronic archives on the MRIA website. The opinions and conclusions expressed in Vue are those of the authors and are not necessarily endorsed by the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association. Publishing Date: June © 2014. All rights reserved. Copyright rests with the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association or the author. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the prior written permission of the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association or the author. All requests for permission for reproduction must be submitted to MRIA at RETURN UNDELIVERABLE CANADIAN ADDRESSES TO The Marketing Research and Intelligence Association L’Association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing 94 Cumberland Street, Suite 601 Toronto, ON M5R 1A3 Canadian Publications Mail Agreement #40033932 ISSN 1488-7320

COMM E NTARY / CO MME NTAIR E Editor’s Vue Annie Pettit

I recently did some research about writing surveys in a more humanized fashion. The survey included slang words and phrases, a few humorous remarks (May the survey force be with you!) were interspersed among the questions and answer options, and some of the grammar wouldn’t pass the standards of any respectable grammar guide. After reviewing data quality, data equivalence, and responder satisfaction, the conclusion I came to was that researchers need to lighten up. We need to write surveys like human beings in the year 2014, not like Charles Dickens in 1839. We all know that sentences shouldn’t end prepositions but, really, is that a serious problem you can’t cope with? And when was the last time you spoke to your friends without interjecting a little humour along the way? (What’s worse than a pie chart? A 3D pie chart!) Most readers agreed with my conclusion particularly since it was supported with data. However, one reader commented that it was the worst advice ever. Ever. Which means I struck a chord. Which brings me to point number two. When was the last time you performed a standard research task in a completely novel way, a way that could potentially unnerve your colleagues? This year? Ten years ago? When was the last time you stopped what you were doing, stared at it with a completely open mind, and challenged every aspect of the task? Does it need to be that word? That colour? That order? That method? That targeting strategy? Really? And why can’t it be something else? Why can’t it be something that is surprisingly better? And on that note, I hope you’re enjoying how Vue magazine has done something new and lightened up over the last few months. We’ve got a sense of humour too!

J’ai récemment fait de la recherche sur la rédaction de sondages « conviviaux ». Un des sondages que j’ai étudiés incorporait des mots et des expressions populaires et, ici et là, tant dans les questions que les choix de réponse, quelques remarques teintées d’humour. Et croyez-moi, jamais Grévisse n’en aurait approuvé la grammaire. Après avoir examiné la qualité et l’équivalence des données, de même que le taux de satisfaction chez les répondants, j’en suis arrivée à la conclusion que nous, les sondeurs, devrions adopter une approche davantage décontractée. Nos questionnaires devraient ainsi être rédigés dans un français local et contemporain plutôt que dans un francais figé au XIXe siècle. Veillons bien sûr à la grammaire et la syntaxe, mais ne soyons pas esclaves d’une rectitude qui compromet la juste compréhension des questions et réponses. Quant à l’humour, quand communiquez-vous avec vos amis sans interjecter un peu d’humour dans votre discours? C’est ce que je pensais. La majorité de mes lecteurs a appuyé mes conclusions, qui étaient étayées de données pertinentes. Par contre, un des lecteurs n’était pas, mais pas du tout d’accord. J’avais, de toute évidence, touché un nerf. Ce qui m’amène à cette question : Quand avez-vous accompli la dernière fois une tâche de recherche ordinaire d’une façon complètement originale, qui risquait de désarçonner vos collègues? L’année dernière? Il y a dix ans? À quand remonte votre dernier questionnement des approches que vous privilégiez? Faut-il vraiment utiliser ce mot, cette couleur? Le recours à cet ordre, cette méthode, cette stratégie est-il incontournable? Vraiment? Pourquoi pas autre chose? Quelque chose de mieux. Voilà. Ma montée de lait est terminée. J’espère que cette livraison de Vue vous plaira et que vous appréciez le ton plus léger que nous avons adopté ces derniers mois. Bonne lecture !

Annie Pettit PhD, Chief Research Officer / Directrice de la recherche, Peanut Labs Editor-in-Chief, Vue / Rédactrice en chef, Vue • Email: • (416) 273-9395 • t @LoveStats Please share your opinions about Vue articles and columns, or submit your cartoons and infographics to the Editor. La rédactrice vous invite à lui faire parvenir directement vos commentaires, opinions, caricatures ou infographies. 4

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CO MME N TARY / CO MME NTAIR E Letter from the President Anastasia Arabia

This past year as MRIA president has been one of the most rewarding of my career. The passion and dedication of our member volunteers cannot be overstated. Our new CEO, Kara Mitchelmore, is an agent of change, and in her first 90 days has accomplished more than I could have imagined. I’ve had the great honour of travelling across the country and meeting many members; also to Buenos Aries and Istanbul to represent MRIA at ARIA and ESOMAR, respectively. One of my best moments this year was walking into a president’s tour event and seeing a member who, at the AGM last March, had stood up and vocalized concern about the direction of MRIA. I remember saying at that time, “It is great that you want things to change. Get involved, volunteer; make your voice count.” To walk into this recent meeting and see this brilliant mind there volunteering and creating change was very rewarding. This is not to say it has all been roses. This past year has had its share of tough choices. There have been difficult financial realities to face. MRIA has had a cycle of cutting services/declining membership over the past few years. This has (some would say greatly) impacted our value proposition. During the special general meeting on May 9, we as a membership made the bold choice of moving forward and investing in MRIA initiatives. The strategic plan and resulting business plan lay out a detailed path for growth and increased value and services over the next three years. There is much to celebrate ahead of us, including: • A  smaller, more strategic and nimble board (reduced from 19 to 12). • N  ew (global) research standards rolled out in October (and fully enforceable). • U  pdated bylaws for full compliance with the new Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act.


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Mon année à la présidence de l’ARIM a été l’une des plus satisfaisantes de ma carrière. Je ne pourrais, par exemple, exagérer l’engagement et la passion de nos membres bénévoles. Par ailleurs, notre nouvelle PDG, Kara Mitchelmore, est une vraie agente de changement; jamais je n’aurais cru qu’elle pouvait tant accomplir en seulement 90 jours. J’ai aussi eu l’honneur de rencontrer des membres un peu partout au pays et de représenter l’ARIM à Istanbul (ARIA) et Buenos Aires (ESOMAR). C’est toutefois à l’occasion de la tournée des présidentes que j’ai vécu le moment le plus encourageant et révélateur de l’année : un membre qui avait émis des inquiétudes quant l’orientation de l’ARIM lors de la dernière AGA, au mois de mars – et que j’avais encouragé à s’engager et à faire entendre sa voix – était là comme travailleur bénévole et faisait sa part pour concrétiser le changement qu’il souhaitait. L’ARIM a cependant connu son lot de difficultés. À la suite d’une baisse de l’adhésion au cours des dernières années, et de la baisse conséquente de ses revenus, l’ARIM a dû faire des choix difficiles, notamment à la rubrique financière. Des services ont ainsi été coupés, réduisant du coup l’attrait de notre proposition de valeur aux membres. Le 9 mai dernier, à l’occasion d’une assemblée générale extraordinaire, les membres ont bravement décidé d’aller de l’avant et de mettre en oeuvre d’importantes initiatives. Les plans stratégiques et d’affaires adoptés précisent la voie à suivre pour renouer avec la croissance de l’adhésion et le rehaussement des services au cours des trois prochaines années. Relevons parmi ces initiatives : • un conseil davantage stratégique et souple, qui passe de 19 à 12 membres; • de nouvelles normes de recherche, contraignantes, qui prendront effet dès octobre; • l’amendement de nos règlements administratifs en vue d’une conformité intégrale à la nouvelle Loi canadienne sur les organisations à but non lucratif;

commentar y commentaire • T  welve new core courses, the first few to be rolled out this fall. • A  lternative pathways to CMRP being rolled out this summer. • F  ive new professional development offerings to be rolled out this fall. • Q  RD and Net Gain conferences in Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal. • F  ree memberships for students from coast to coast. • N  ew school program affiliates across the country that build on our success with Georgian, Algonquin, and Humber. • More webcasting and simulcasting of events. • Increased office services. I am so proud of us and what the future holds for MRIA. As I finish my term on June 8, I am confident there is a bright future in store for this association.

“It was really enjoyable to have a visit from Anastasia; the work she is doing with the MRIA this year is so important to the continued success. It was also very exciting to meet the new CEO Kara Mitchelmore who clearly has a vision for rebuilding and recalibrating MRIA and taking the association to the next level.” Jay Thordarson, CRC Research

• douze nouveaux cours de base, dont les premiers seront offerts dès l’automne prochain; • aussi cet été : de nouvelles voies à l’obtention de l’agrément PARM; • cinq nouvelles formations de perfectionnement professionnel dès l’automne 2014; • des conférences QRD et Net Gain à Vancouver, Toronto et Montréal; • l’adhésion sans frais pour tous les étudiants canadiens dans le domaine; • de nouveaux partenariats avec des institutions d’enseignement un peu partout au pays, afin de bâtir sur les réussites avec les collèges Georgian, Algonquin et Humber; • davantage de webémissions et d’événements diffusés en simultané; • davantage de services administratifs. Je suis fière de nous et de l’avenir que nous réserve l’ARIM. À l’aube de la fin de mon mandat, le 8 juin, je suis aussi confiante que l’ARIM est promise à un brillant avenir. « J’ai beaucoup apprécié la visite d’Anastasia; ses efforts en faveur de l’ARIM cette dernière année pavent la voie à de nouvelles réussites. J’ai aussi grandement apprécié ma rencontre avec Kara Mitchelmore, notre nouvelle PDG. Il est clair qu’elle a une vision directrice pour relancer et recalibrer l’ARIM, et, du même coup, de propulser l’association vers de nouveaux sommets. » Jay Thordarson, CRC Research

Anastasia Arabia, Partner / Partenaire, Trend Research Inc. President, Marketing Research and Intelligence Association / Présidente, L’Association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing Email: • 780-485-6558 ext./poste 2003

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COMME N TARY / CO MME NTAIR E Letter from the CEO Kara Mitchelmore

MRIA is currently at a crossroads. After years of relative success and building the organization from a volunteer-driven association to one with offices and staff, the lack of strategic focus in the past few years has cost the organization deeply. With prior strategic plans being comprised of motherhood statements containing no objectives, initiatives, tactics or accountabilities, MRIA presently finds itself in a position where it must fight for survival and rebuild both its membership and its relevance in the industry. Members are disengaged and not renewing their commitment to the association. This trend has continued year over year, leading to low membership numbers, operating losses and deep cuts in funding initiatives that should have been used to regenerate interest. Standards are outdated, leading to the perception that MRIA is not championing industry standards, and that these standards are not being enforced and have no “teeth.” Member participation is considerably lower at MRIA events, leading to less engaged sponsors. Our education programs are outdated and now competing with rival programs that were not in existence five-to-10 years ago. All this, combined with a perceived lack of customer service from the administrative team, has led to a critical situation. In order for MRIA to survive, it will require a major overhaul in its operations, advocacy, education, standards and perception of member value. The business plan for the remainder of 2014 has been prepared using the three-year strategic plan as a guideline. Tactics, initiatives and metrics have been assigned to ensure alliance with the themes of quality growth, member value and operational excellence. These themes were identified by the board of directors as being crucial to the association’s survival and relevance to the membership and the industry at large. MRIA is anticipating a busy yet exciting remainder of 2014 as we actively pursue excellence, better understanding of our stakeholders and building and delivering relevant, timely services. Front-


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L’ARIM se trouve aujourd’hui à une croisée des chemins. La carence de vision stratégique ces dernières années et le passage d’une organisation fondée sur le bénévolat à une organisation professionnelle dotée d’un siège social et d’employés, ont finalement coûté cher en termes de conséquences. Les plans stratégiques antérieurs et leurs voeux pieux ne comportaient pas d’initiatives, d’objectifs, de tactiques ou de mécanismes de responsabilité. L’ARIM se voit donc aujourd’hui obligée de lutter pour sa survie, de relancer l’adhésion et d’affirmer sa pertinence. Les membres se désintéressent et ne renouvellent pas leur adhésion, avec de graves conséquences pour l’ARIM, notamment des pertes d’exploitation et des coupes aux initiatives qui auraient pu relancer l’adhésion. Nos normes sont périmées et créent ainsi l’impression qu’elles sont sans réel effet, que nous ne veillons pas à leur respect et, pis encore, que nous n’appuyons pas l’adoption de normes plus strictes. La participation des membres à nos événements est elle aussi à la baisse, tout comme l’intérêt des commanditaires. Nos programmes de formation sont « passés dus » comme on dit, et font face à la concurrence de programmes qui n’existaient même pas il y a cinq ou dix ans. À tout cela s’ajoute la perception que l’équipe administrative n’offrait pas un service efficace à sa clientèle. Bref, la situation est critique. Si elle espère survivre, l’ARIM devra repenser et rehausser son exploitation, ses activités de représentation, ses normes, ses programmes de formation et ses propositions de valeur aux membres. Le plan d’affaires pour le solde de l’année 2014 se fonde sur le nouveau plan stratégique de trois ans. Nous avons prévu des tactiques, des initiatives et des indicateurs de performance qui correspondent aux objectifs de croissance de qualité, de valeur aux membres et d’excellence opérationnelle de l’ARIM. Les administrateurs estiment que l’atteinte des ces objectifs est essentielle à la survie de l’association et à sa pertinence auprès des membres et du secteur dans son ensemble. L’ARIM aura donc fort à faire ces prochains mois. Nous continuerons ainsi de viser l’excellence, de chercher à mieux comprendre les besoins des membres, et de proposer des services utiles et pertinents, à la fois améliorés et disponibles en temps utile. La formation professionnelle et des alliances avec d’autres associations de recherche

commentar y commentaire and-centre will be industry-specific training and education, alliances with other research associations nationally and internationally that offer new areas for growth and working closely with our stakeholder groups to enhance value and brand exposure. In addition, MRIA will overhaul its current member services portfolio to ensure that members perceive value for their investment. The focus will be providing exceptional value through enhanced customer service initiatives to support students, candidates and members throughout their professional life cycles. Initiatives will include: revamping of standards with increased sanctions and enforcement; greater government and market advocacy; increased brand exposure at universities to encourage marketing research as a first career choice; increased avenues into the CMRP designation; and greater value for gold seal, corporate and individual members through RAC, CSRC and QRD. I understand the scope of the task ahead for MRIA. It will take courage of convictions and a focus on the future. However, I am confident that the association will not only survive, but thrive as we focus on the needs of our members, our clients, and the industry at large. To the challenge at hand I say, bring it on.

nationales et internationales sont au coeur de nos plans. Nous voyons là de belles occasions de croissance et de collaboration avec les parties prenantes, dans le but de rehausser la valeur aux membres et l’image de marque de l’ARIM. L’ARIM prévoit également revoir le portefeuille de services aux membres afin que ces derniers y voient une proposition de valeur attrayante. Nous axerons nos efforts sur des initiatives qui rehausseront la qualité des services aux membres à tous les stades de leur carrière (études, obtention de l’agrément et carrière comme telle), notamment une révision des normes, qui deviendraient davantage contraignantes, une représentation plus dynamique auprès des gouvernements et acteurs du marché, une plus forte présence de notre marque dans les universités, de façon à promouvoir la recherche marketing comme premier choix de carrière, de nouvelles voies à l’obtention de l’agrément PARM, de même qu’une valorisation des adhésions individuelles, corporatives et Sceau d’Or, par l’entremise du Conseil des agences de recherche (RAC), du Conseil des chercheurs côté client (CSRC), et de la division de recherche qualitative (QRD) Je suis bien consciente de l’ampleur du défi auquel l’ARIM fait face. Pour le relever avec succès, nous devrons tous avoir la force de nos convictions et une vision claire de l’avenir. J’ai cependant confiance que l’ARIM sortira de cet exercice aggrandie et encore plus forte, davantage axée sur les besoins de ses membres, de sa clientèle et du secteur. Ce défi je le fais mien et, avec vous, je le mènerai à bien.

Kara Mitchelmore, MBA, FCMA, Chief Executive Officer/Présidente-directrice générale Marketing Research and Intelligence Association / L’Association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing Email: • (416) 642-9793 ext./poste 8724

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COMME N TARY / CO MME NTAIR E President’s Tour

“This was the best MRIA luncheon event we’ve ever had.” Don Mills, FMRIA Past President, Chairman & CEO, Corporate Research Associates “It was extremely informative to learn of the new and bold directions for MRIA from the President, Anastasia Arabia and Kara Mitchelmore, the new MRIA CEO. Exciting times ahead!” Cam Davis, PhD, FMRIA, MRIA Past President, Opportunity Insight Researcher “Ottawa MRIA members were delighted to meet Anastasia and Kara, and discuss the exciting new initiatives that MRIA plans to undertake. While in Ottawa, our two guests also took the time to speak to the Algonquin MBIR students and attend our Chapter board meeting. It was very worthwhile.” Randa Bell, CMRP, Ottawa Chapter President, ASDE “It was great to meet Anastasia and Kara in-person and to hear about the exciting changes happening at the MRIA.” Cheryl Hooper, River East School Division I found the President’s tour to be a very lucid summary of the MRIA moving forward and an honest discussion of the challenges facing the association. The MRIA National Board appears to be focused on improving the role of the association in providing value to its members and serving the needs of the marketing research industry in a time of rapid change Frank Grigel, CMRP, Institutional Research Analyst, SAIT Polytechnic “I was pleased to have both Anastasia and Kara join us to discuss how we are making towards growth of the MRIA membership and hear about the combined efforts being made across chapters to provide value to members. The tour helps us to connect more directly with our National leader and opens the door to join the conversation.” Cora Waters, CMRP, Toronto Chapter President The students in the MBIR post graduate program at Algonquin College enjoyed the visit of Anastasia and Kara to their classroom. Anastasia encouraged the students to consider job opportunities across Canada and to grow their careers by taking advantage of the networking that MRIA can provide Nancy Johansen, MBIR Post Graduate Program Coordinator, Algonquin College, Ottawa


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During April and May 2014, Kara Mitchelmore, MRIA CEO and Anastasia Arabia, MRIA President traveled to the Chapters coast to coast for the MRIA Presidents Tour. The format changed slightly city to city but in general there was a message from the President, information shared about what is happening nationally and a chance for members to meet and get to know Kara. Most importantly, the meetings included a “town hall” type discussion where we learned from members about their experience with MRIA, how MRIA intersects with their working life, what MRIA is doing right, and what we need to improve. Feedback and discussions were very consistent across the country. Our three main themes in the new Strategic Plan (Quality Growth, Member Value and Operational Excellence) are right and resonate with members. Some highlights of the discussion were: • Standards, and in particular standards that are enforceable, are still a main priority of members. • MRIA members are very enthusiastic about the new 12 core courses and professional development offerings being unveiled this fall. • T  he new CMRP Alternative Pathways garnered much support and excitement. • W  e heard that more events should be organized, and that for many members in-person events (organized by Chapters) were their most valued touch-point to the organization. • T  he change in making student membership free was well supported (and actioned on) during the tour. The President’s Tour was an amazing opportunity to get to meet and know members across the country. I am honoured to have been a part of the process.

Connections Marketing Research and Intelligence Association L’Association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing

94 Cumberland Street Suite 601 Toronto, Ontario M5R 1A3 Tel: (416) 642-9793 Toll Free: 1-888-602-MRIA (6742) Fax: (416) 644-9793 Website: Visit us on LinkedIn and Facebook


Anastasia Arabia Shane Skillen, CMRP Carolyn O’Keefe, CMRP Tricia Benn Kara Mitchelmore

Trend Research Inc. Hotspex Inc. MQO Research MDC MRIA


Anastasia Arabia Shane Skillen, CMRP Sandra Janzen Fergus Gamble, CMRP Carolyn O’Keefe, CMRP Julie Sylvestre, CMRP Paul Street Tricia Benn Tracy Bowman, CMRP Joseph Chen Kamal Sharma Margaret Brigley, CMRP Adam Froman Mark Wood, CMRP Dave McVetty, CMRP Kristian Gravelle Christian Bourque, CMRP Carol Wilson, CMRP

Trend Research Inc. Hotspex Inc.

MQO Research Sylvestre Marketing Bell Media MDC Protegra Unilever Canada Sobeys Inc. Corporate Research Associates AskingCanadians TNS Canada (Canadian Facts) Parks Canada Kraft Canada Inc. – Consumer Insight & Strategy Group Leger Spielo International


Shaftesbury Associates Protegra Unilever Canada GfK Canada Corporate Research Associates CorbinPartners Inc. Hotspex Inc. Parks Canada Conversition Strategies Corporate Research Associates AskingCanadians CorbinPartners Inc.


Tracy Bowman, CMRP Carolyn Kildare Christina Waddy, CMRP Adam DiPaula Randa Bell, CMRP Tracy Bowman, CMRP Daniel Brousseau, CMRP Cora Waters, CMRP

Protegra Mercer Corporate Research Associates Sentis Market Research Inc. ASDE Survey Sampler Protegra TNS Canada (Canadian Facts) Cora Waters Research Consulting


Kara Mitchelmore Etta Wahab Lucy Pizunski Anne Marie Gabriel Grace Woo Erica Klie Lynn Forth Amy Mullen Dan Jackson

Ext. 8724 Ext. 8721 Ext. 8722 Ext. 8723 Ext. 8730 Ext. 8727 Ext. 8729 647-825-6565 Ext. 8721

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The New Paradigm of Big Data:

Is Marketing Research at Crossroads?

Neil Chakraborty

Is marketing research continuing to provide value to organizations? The findings from a global study executed by Frost & Sullivan in 2013 suggest that marketing research results hardly make it into the decisionmaking process in the executive boardroom. Another confirmatory study reported that nearly 90 per cent of blue-chip companies aren’t fully leveraging their market research functions (BCG, November 2009).

Marketing research still has to grapple with the challenges of providing valuable insights for strategic decision making and justifying its existence in the form of ROI to the stakeholders. Time and again, a constant refrain of researchers is to move away from a marginalized dataproviding role to become a strategic thought partner or ongoing business consultant to clients. What are some of the challenges marketing researchers face today? Traditional marketing research relies disproportionately on data collection. Quite often, traditional methodologies focus on very narrowly defined issues ignoring the larger environment and basing their results on inadequate and small sample sizes that lack statistically significant results.1 Much of the research process is slow and becomes irrelevant by the time research projects are proposed, approved, designed, fielded, processed and reported. A large proportion of the primary research is overreliant on antiquated research methods that involve administering long surveys and putting relentless insistence on old norms and trends; often missing

or inaccurately responding to fast-moving trends in the process. Emergence of Big Data Faced with the realities of irreverence, the marketing research profession is encountering a new and disquieting form of disruptive innovation – big data. What is big data? Is it the latest passing fad or for here to stay? These are a few questions researchers are struggling with. The decision maker at the top is witnessing increasing availability of big data, e.g., non-survey, passive, unstructured data such as: stats on website usage and behaviour; offline and online purchases; retail transaction data; recorded customer service calls; social media postings; and store traffic recordings. The big data concept is characterized by three Vs: volume, velocity and variety, where these respective attributes are denoted by size, frequency and diversification of data sources. The key finding from a report from Oracle revealed that 94 per cent of C-level executives indicate their companies are collecting more data

SP ECIA L FEAT URE than two years ago. A few of the staggering statistics point out that 90 per cent of the data that exists today was created in the last two years (IBM), data volume is growing at 50 per cent a year, and more than doubling every two years (IDC, Technology Research Firm). A report by the World Economic Forum from January 2012 called “Big Data, Big Impact” declared data to be a new class of economic asset, like currency or gold. The link between data and decision-making is critical. A study of 179 large companies conducted at MIT suggests that firms that adopt “data-driven decision making” achieve productivity gains that are five per cent to six per cent higher, controlling for other variables. With big data becoming crucial as a way of competitive differentiation, firms are ramping up their capabilities on data collection, storage, retrieval, and further automation and performance improvement. Big data is delivering innovation through greater data agility, rapid trial and error, and faster learning; resulting in accelerated speed to market, and in new forms of tailored customer experiences and uncovering new connections within customer subsegments. For example, Hertz keeps its finger on the pulse of its customers by collating insights from customer satisfaction surveys with big-data advanced-analytics solutions that help it process information much more quickly and provide a level of insight previously unavailable to the company.

audits, people meters, loyalty cards and web analytics would transform 50 per cent of current marketing research revenue. Framework for Survival of Marketing Research The key to relevance and success of marketing research in this new context will be its ability to extract and use information effectively to help firms gain a competitive advantage and enhance business performance. It is the type and speed of marketing research information use that will determine its validity and future. The building of large databases that combine internal customer data with large amounts of information available externally, as well as the proliferation of quantitative data analysis such as artificial intelligence, neural networks and genetic algorithms will lead to effective marketing strategies. As an example, text analytics tools such as social mining and sentiment analysis coupled with sophisticated techniques such as latent class analysis and structural equation modelling will play an important role in transforming transactional data into useful information. With more and more data, the researcher would be able to bypass the current challenges of unavailability and unwillingness of the respondents and the data collection demands imposed on them. The new tools can connect data on behaviour, attitude, knowledge, emotional state, environment and stimulus that were almost impossible to link directly through single-source

Much of the research process is slow and becomes irrelevant by the time research projects are proposed, approved, designed, fielded, processed and reported. Along with emergence of unstructured large datasets, there has been a plethora of emerging tools and methodologies ranging from biometrics, e.g., eye tracking and brain activity measurements derived from neuroscience to virtual reality experiments, social media enabled qualitative market research, social media listening, “quantification” of social media through sentiment analysis and other types of text analytics. There has been a radical shift towards data democratization: cost-effective survey tools like Zoomerang, Survey Monkey and Google consumer surveys have exponentially increased the amount of information collected and considerably decreased the turnaround time. The impact of these new tools in the field of marketing research has been slow, but they are undoubtedly gaining traction. The doomsday camp has highlighted the decreasing role of marketing research and how the value proposition from researchers will need to shift to data mining and analyses, and extracting valuable business insights, and away from the world of conventional data-gathering through surveys and qualitative techniques. It is indeed important to acknowledge that the role of MR will be undergoing a paradigmatic shift in the next decade or so. Interestingly, an ESOMAR Global Market Research report in 2010 predicted that big data from store

data generated by traditional research. This has led to the possibility of data agnosticism and a shift towards reliable, credibly data-driven decision making, regardless of its source, which in turn leads to a more comprehensive 360-degree, holistic understanding of customers. The war for marketing researcher survival will be decided on two fronts – usefulness and timeliness. One of the rare academic studies that have looked into usefulness of marketing research finds that decision research was more useful and relevant to decision-makers compared to background research, though surprisingly, background research predominates as a research activity.2 Decision research is instrumental and action-orientated and involves the direct application of research findings and conclusions to solve a business problem. Examples of decision research are: confirmatory studies of product/ concept testing; price determination; promotional mix selection; and channel and segmentation studies. Conversely, the term background research is used to refer to conceptual, knowledge-enhancing and understanding research and includes: exploratory studies of customer preferences/needs; customer perceptions of new products; competitive products’ attributes/prices; awareness of company and/or its products; market share and/or growth rate; customer satisfaction; vue | JUNE 2014


SPEC IA L F EAT U RE product/brand performance; and tracking studies. As big data and technology tools continue to improve and get leveraged, decision research will increasingly dominate and will replace background research. Marketing research has to be timely and adopt an agile and lean method of gathering consumer insights, amid condensed business-decision cycles and shrinking budgets. With the increasing ability to develop insights on a real-time or quasireal-time on-demand basis, this is an area where companies can gain an edge if they acquire the ability to mine data for immediate insights and are then able to act on the insights very quickly for business optimization. The key is to make the data from marketing research easily integrate with other big-data sources to develop metric-based approaches.

scientist. The new world order will demand a whole different skill set from the unwilling researchers who have to move their roles from mere data collection and analyses to that of data integration, triangulation, pattern recognition, predictive models and simulations. Many of the competencies will focus on analysis of unstructured information, synthesis of the information across multiple sources and doing real-time analysis. The researchers’ ability to test hypotheses, understand relationships and generate insights sooner will be very much in demand, along with broadening skill-set base, becoming expert at data synthesis techniques and new software and business intelligence tools (e.g., Hadoop) and problem solving. Finally, the key to successful transition is technology. Providers will have to invest in building data mining and

Marketing research is embarking on a journey of disruptive innovation brought about by the emergence of big data. Concluding Observations Is big data the answer to all evils? The recent BRITE-NYAMA Marketing Measurement in Transition study suggests that 91 per cent of senior corporate marketers believe successful brands use customer data to drive marketing decisions. Contrary to that perception, a substantial percentage (39 per cent) admit they cannot turn their data into actionable insight. More than one-third of marketers (36 per cent) report that they have access to a multitude of consumer data within their organizations, but don’t utilize it for business gains. An assessment from Gartner Group reports that through 2015, 85 per cent of Fortune 500 organizations will be unable to exploit big data for competitive advantage. Again, the data-mining techniques from big data might lead the researcher to false discovery and biased conclusions; seeking a meaningful needle in massive haystacks of data. As the role of big data continues to evolve, marketing researchers will only be able to reap the benefits of using it if they are effective in managing changes to conventional mindset and training. There are three key focus areas that have to be tackled. First and foremost, marketing researchers have to seize the window of opportunity, as being in the consumer insights business helps them to get first-mover advantage. They have to assimilate all available sources of information to recommend business insights and solutions, not just attitudinal data collected from surveys and focus groups, along with behavioural and demographic data collected on customers 24/7. Any recommendations and insights will have to align the results from traditional research methodologies with those obtained from non-traditional sources such as qualitative behavioural data generated by conversations on a brand community or social networks and scanner data. Secondly, another area is evolving competencies of researchers toward those of an analytical expert or big-data 14

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business intelligence platforms that will be able to handle volume, velocity and variety of the big data sourced from client websites and databases, and integrate it with existing panels and social communities. It might mean more analytical tools and the ability to display the triangulated real-time information into business intelligence application. Marketing research is embarking on a journey of disruptive innovation brought about by the emergence of big data. It’s akin to big-bang disrupters creating dilemma and triggering disasters for the entire profession. The future might run contrary to the Clayton Christensen’s classic model, and is likely to change the rules of the game. That has the potential to decimate the profession until the MR community wakes up to the challenges and strategically moves forward to exploit all the armour it has in its disposal. Please contact the author regarding clarification on any references behind views expressed in this paper. 1 Daboll Peter. 5 reasons why big data will crush big research. 2013. Available at:

data-will-crush-big-research. Accessed March 30, 2014. 2 Ganeshasundaram, Raguragavan and Henley Nadine. The prevalence and usefulness of market research: An empirical investigation into ‘background’ versus ‘decision’ research. International Journal of Market Research, Vol. 48, No. 5

(2006), pp.525-550.

Neil Chakraborty, PRC, PMP, MPhil, MS, is a researcher and analytics professional based in Toronto. He has extensive experience in Canada, U.S., and India with some of the leading marketing intelligence and consulting firms, and has donned many hats as a marketing research manager, project manager, modelling consultant and institutional researcher. He can be reached at


What if we Treated Participants Like Gamers? A proposal for a new industry magazine (but one that’s not for us) The marketing research industry and the games industry face similar challenges, although this might not be so obvious at first glance. Betty Adamou

Both industries want and need to reach out and encourage people to engage with the interactive platforms they produce. This is essential in order for both industries to survive. And these interactive platforms – games and surveys – are created and distributed with similar economical, technical and design constraints. Another commonality between both industries is that games and surveys need to be multi-device accessible, so that both industries can engage players/participants wherever they might be. However, in the case of the games industry, such is the fandom and dedication of players that there are no boundaries to playing a favourite game; they’ll even buy completely new hardware systems and other game paraphernalia just to play it. And it is here, in the fandom and level of engagement of gamers, that the similarities between the marketing research and games industry end. Yes, there’s lots of work being done to engage participants in and around the survey, through game-based trackers and gamified ad-hoc surveys and panel companies utilizing game mechanics to keep participants coming back. But I’m interested in developing the engagement of participants in our industry, and our relationships with those people, even further. Just like the games industry does with its players.

Figure 1: Chun-Li from Streetfighter cosplay

The games industry offers a multitude of ways that gamers can engage with their favourite games and their stories, characters, environments and artworks. But many of these forms of engagement outside of the game are not industry produced, but gamer and fan produced. This is video-game culture. Some of the most popular (and arguably, the best) games news sites, YouTube channels, forums and blogs have been produced by players vue | JUNE 2014


FEATUR E showing game walk-throughs, how-to’s and more. Works of fan art can be seen all over the Internet,1 and go to any game event (Eurogamer, for instance) and you’re bound to see someone committing an act of cosplay (costume play: where people wear costumes to represent a specific character from a game, book or film) or at the very least, wearing a T-shirt with some pun harking back to a favourite game or character. And game-based fan fiction is some of the most creative writing I’ve ever come across. Gamers further the storylines that already exist in games, or fill in some of the (obvious and not-so-obvious) gaps in game narrative.2 In fan fiction, the participants’ imaginations are the only limitation. This alone is proof that an engaged human being can write huge amounts of text and still be creative, which tends to throw our “max five open-ends” limitations for surveys out the window. And the same goes for the amount of reading people can tolerate. In marketing research, we have strived to make question text shorter by finding creative ways to be more succinct. But in games like World of Warcraft, there can be huge amounts of text to scroll through in order to understand the conversations between characters. My five-year-old nephew will read through tons of text in his Kung Fu Panda Xbox game. In some computer role-playing games like Zork, it is only text that exists on the screen. In Grand Theft Auto 5, characters can converse for what seems like an eternity. It seems that when people are engaged, there is much more leeway in how much text people can read, write and listen to. When people are engaged, they can be fans. And finally, there are games magazines. There are over 70 publications covering every and all aspects of games from indie game magazines teaching new and seasoned developers how to create a game on a shoestring, to console-titled magazines that act more like a catalogue for current and upcoming games. It’s worth noting these magazines aren’t free.

And what is in these games magazines? In front of me now I have some fresh and old issues of Edge, Xbox, PlayStation magazine and Retro Gamer. Flicking through, I can see reviews of games and interviews with game developers, art workers, academics as well as the bigwigs from massive games companies like EA. There’s also letters/emails from gamers with questions or comments and plenty of information on the technology behind the games. Sometimes there’s retrospective and prospective reviews, articles listing the top 10 games of the ‘90s and top five upcoming multi-player games, and so on. With so many aspects to games, it’s not surprising that there is so much content to cover and share through magazines. But marketing research has many aspects too. But why do I draw a comparison of the games industry and its magazines, and not say, the film industry and its magazines? It’s not because I make games for research! Films are not (in the majority) interactive. No one in a film is asking you, as the viewer, to shape the story or to give input about what you think and feel. As a result of this low level of interactivity, the film industry doesn’t face the same technical, design and budgetary issues as the games or marketing research industries. Without a shadow of a doubt, the games industry produced/is producing the most engaging platforms that exist in our lives. It’s the only other industry, aside from marketing research, that needs people to be actively and interactively taking part in the platforms it produces. We are two industries that would not survive without the engagement of participants and players. But would it be weird to have a magazine for our research participants and discuss the same kind of things that games magazines do? Not really. At random, I’ve taken an old copy of Impact magazine (produced by the Market Research Society) and Edge magazine. Both issues are from 2013. Can you spot the similarities? Impact is looking at how organizations are adapting to a multi-screen world, and the tagline is “thinking outside the box.” Edge is all about the future of interactive entertainment.

But it seems the goals of both magazines are one and the same: engaging people through interactive platforms, and doing a lot of future planning and future-proofing. And if you’re wondering about readership, think about this: one newly released online game has the potential to be 16

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FEAT URE played by only a few hundred people in its first few days. By comparison, a survey produced by a research agency can reach thousands of people in the same amount of time. The marketing research industry communicates with hundreds of thousands of people per year, as does the games industry. Having a magazine is another way the marketing research industry could engage with people, but it’s also another platform to give participants a voice, and to let them in on what we do. We can share with them what a day in the life of a marketing researcher is like, and present interviews with programmers who are producing some of the best surveys around. If we ever had an award for best survey of the year, we could let participants nominate their favourites. We can share what we’re doing as an industry to be more tech-savvy and ethical. We can share ideas about survey-tool developments that we’re working on, and see how participants feel about those developments. We can tell participants about massive upcoming tracker studies they could be part of, and about exciting opportunities to work in our industry. We could share the highlights of local and global conferences and heck, even get a couple of participants out to our conferences (they could win free tickets through a competition, for instance). We could have our readers participate in our industry awards. Why not let respondents vote for the Ginny Valentine Badge of Courage, or on new innovative companies in the Insight Innovation Exchange? With such a magazine, is it too far-fetched to think that we could even inspire participants to create some innovative ideas of their own, which in turn will help to evolve our industry further? Could they co-create with agencies and brands alike, to produce new sustainable, ethical, powerful and engaging platforms? Respondents themselves have told us that they’d like to be part of the research process, and see the outcomes (I refer to a March 2010 article on Research Live3) so why not give them that kind of feedback in a magazine? Just as the game industry allows, through magazines, gamers and fans to shape how developers/artists/companies make/design and distribute games, so can the marketing research industry produce a magazine that allows participants to let us know how they think we should make/design and distribute surveys. We could explain why, suddenly, surveys are including gamification and what the future holds for new forms of data collection. We could let a respondent use different kinds of futuristic data collection methods for a day, and invite them to write about their experience afterwards. In a brief chat about producing this article and such a magazine with my PhD supervisor, we had begun to talk about the developing relationships between researchers and respondents in online communities. He went on to say:  t the core of online communities lies engagement, with A researchers and respondents building a relationship. A magazine could be a forum that can voice the joys and frustrations they (the participants) experience in being questioned and observed. – David Birks, member of Association of Survey Computing, dean of faculty, business law and sports, University of Winchester

Indeed, if we argue that our industry (whether in online communities or not) relies on engagement, then why not engage participants further with a publication that cuts right through the cynicism and lets us articulate the value of what we do, and what participants do too. Let us create a marketing research culture. And who should produce such magazine? I don’t know any marketing research industry magazine that’s owned by a magazine publisher (but wouldn’t it be nice to have the funds from Conde Nast??). But if magazines like Vue can be produced through the care and time volunteered by dedicated people, then I’m sure that a magazine that allows researchers to communicate with respondents directly will also gain a dedicated team of volunteers. And what an exciting opportunity it could be for those who are starting up the first ever marketing research industry magazine specifically for participants! Imagine the sense of joy, pride and excitement in being the first group of people to develop a magazine that would have such an open and professional dialogue; bridging the gap between research and participant like never before. I for one would love such a magazine to be produced. But it doesn’t have to stop there. Why not have an accompanying website, app, and even a conference? Why not turn the entire industry on its head and let respondents organize conferences in which they talk to us about how they have shaped the development of a survey design, or even invented a new mode of surveying altogether. Is it that absurd? After all, many games conferences that celebrate and discuss games have been started by non-game industry professionals. We’ve learned and adopted so much from the games industry already (knowingly and unknowingly) by utilizing ways in which it measures and creates engagement, produces software and hardware for interactive digital media (in the future, I predict researchers will be using the Oculus Rift for data collection) and more recently, we’re even using game mechanics in surveys themselves. Unthinkable 10 years ago. Through a magazine, we will allow participants to be part of our journey, and we will be a part of theirs. Through the course of time, a mutually beneficial magazine will allow us to track the collaborative evolution of our industry through all the issues we produce. Just as long as we don’t call it The Respondent. 1 2 3

Betty Adamou is CEO and founder of Research Through Gaming Ltd. She can be reached at betty.adamou@researchthroughgaming. com and tweets at @BettyAdamou. vue | JUNE 2014



How Social Consciousness Gives Brands Edge

Lindsey Boyle

In a recent interview, a 19-year-old said something familiar and almost predictable: “Toms is the model.” In primary research, we increasingly hear young people point to Toms Shoes as a brand that inspires them and they want to buy from. Toms is a U.S.-based company that donates a pair of shoes to a person in need for every pair purchased, and it is one of the most successful examples of buy-one-give-one marketing, both in terms of sales and cultural relevance.

Given the youngest millennial is now 19, it is likely more important than ever for brands to consider their pro-social stance. The next generation (born 1995 onwards), coined Generation Edge by The Sound Research, has greater expectations of brands than any generation before them. Pro-social values such as empathy and environmentalism will become increasingly important for brands as Gen Edge hits the age of majority. Here’s why, and how to research your brands prosocial values, products, and initiatives with integrity and impact. The Recession’s Silver Lining The coming-of-age reality for Gen Edge is an economic recession emerging from failure of the “system.” This next generation is mistrusting in general, but particularly of promises made by big business and governments. The bright side is the emergence of a reformist Gen Edge that experts suggest will be more pro-social than millennials. Academic research shows the recession has made teens more likely to contribute to international relief funds and feel it’s “important to correct inequalities.” “When young people experience hardship, at a societal level, they become more empathetic,” says Heejung Park, PhD candidate in psychology at UCLA. Glocal Goodness Social media, globalization and technology mean today’s teenagers are exposed to what’s happening in all corners of the globe. Being a global citizen is just as important as belonging to a local community. “Glocal” defines who they are. Gen Edge can’t escape scary news of international disasters or conflicts, but being connected also exposes them to positive role models from around the world – with no borders to what they can access and share.

Gen Edge’s Parents Aren’t Sugarcoating Anything Gen Edge kids are being raised by Generation X, who are defined 18

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by being realistic, cynical and independent. Gen X parents want to give their kids the tools to deal with the harsh realities of the world today, so they’re not shielding them from reality. “I don’t expect life to be easy for him, but I think I’ve given him the tools; the rest is up to him,” says one Gen Edge parent. As a result of this tough love, Gen Edge is responding by seeking alternatives and challenging the status quo. Unlike idealistic millennials, Gen Edge wants to do something! Simply believing they will make the world a better place when they grow up won’t make it happen. “If you like something, go out and do it. Don’t like it on Facebook, do it!” says Haley, 15, of Chicago. These forces have nurtured a generation of youth with a uniquely interconnected compassion for others. While millennials aspire to success through entrepreneurialism, Gen Edge aspires to making positive change through causes and social enterprise. As Heather Jack, founder and president of The Volunteer Family, explains, “They are joining causes on Facebook. They are planning their own fundraising events. They are encouraging their friends and families to help out. They are embracing the traditional ideal of giving back, but they are finding new and unique ways of doing so.” Gen Edge Has More Ways Than Ever to Give Back Before, giving back meant giving of your time or money. Now, it’s ingrained and made easy through ethical purchasing, social media campaigns, microcredit and cause crowdfunding and voluntourism. Gen Edge doesn’t have to wait for parents or the government to make change. Changemakers are the shining minority who start a social enterprise, charity or movement to improve a problem they see in the world – this could be in their school, their town, or across the world. If they see inequalities, they will take action themselves, and then tweet and Instagram about it.

FEAT URE Purchasing Power We predict Gen Edge will be more engaged by causes than campaigns. Their increasingly pro-social and environmental values mean they want to exert their purchasing power to do good. Research has shown they’re also looking for brands and products that seamlessly integrate product and cause. Don’t complicate things by calling it something vague like “sustainability” or “philanthropy” – call it innovation. Call it a prosocial choice, a better choice. An example of this emerged through a recent study conducted by The Sound Research for a leading sports-shoe company. The client approached the research with an altruistic lens and was emphatic that “we aren’t doing this to sell shoes.” Instead, it was looking for research to help develop opportunities to inspire and enable environmental ambassadors, a step removed from the company’s actual product. However, the insight gained from the research was that offering a better shoe that “does good,” whether through organic materials or a sustainable manufacturing process, is considered progress as much as a movement or initiative to create change. Or more so, because buying a shoe is accessible to everyone, not only the leading-edge changemakers. Research Inspiration However, not all businesses can or want to offer a buy-one-giveone model like Toms. Brands may not know where to start in terms of exploring and establishing pro-social values. To research a brand’s pro-social values, The Sound recommends approaching it from multiple angles: 1) Experts lend a valuable perspective – experts such as sociologists and journalists can share academic research on social issues. Sustainable event planners and social media experts can share reallife examples of how brands have achieved the “triple bottom line” – for people, the planet, and profit – in an authentic way. 2) An online discussion over several days will generate reflective discussion about people’s lives, values, and identity and where social or environmental issues intersect. Explore triggers and barriers to awareness and emotional engagement with the specific social or environmental cause a brand is considering, in order to gauge fit and authenticity. 3) Mobile research via an app, such as The Sound Wave mobile app – where respondents can snap photos and video on their smartphones to bring to life both functional and emotional insights such as what they do to be pro-social, how it makes them feel, and what they notice brands doing to be pro-social that inspires them to share with their networks. Or the opposite: what brands or companies are doing or saying that turns them off and leads to negative buzz. All this real-time insight done prior to F2F research (with the same respondents) means we can then craft stimulus based on their realities and guide in-person discussion to touch back on their emotions and behaviors, keeping it very real and personal. 4) In-person research (in facility or in home) allows for full exploration of competitive stimulus to define what works and what doesn’t in terms of communication.

5) If possible, thought should be dedicated to developing prosocial concepts to help explore response to products, initiatives or partnerships to understand what makes sense, and what appears genuine and credible. Even high-level concepts are useful in stimulating discussion as concepts can be nebulous or regress to only top-of-mind examples (again, Toms). Combining as few as two of these research methodologies can yield valuable insight with a modest budget. Our sports-shoe study combined expert interviews with online discussions over three days. An interview with Sean Markey, associate dean, Faculty of the Environment, Simon Fraser University, shaped design of the discussion with respondents by providing learnings for how to get around challenges with key terms such as “sustainable,” which is often misunderstood in consumer research to mean “durable.” Lorien Henson, founder of Limelight Events, a sustainable event production company, provided inspiration for event marketing initiatives that achieved the triple bottom line. This generated examples such as Stanley Thermos’ drilling of an artesian spring at a music festival site where concertgoers filled up their reusable water bottle (or purchased a Stanley one), an initiative that would otherwise be off the client’s radar. Recruiting a sample of respondents from across North America was also particularly valuable as it gave insight into the impact of public transit, recycling programs and even weather on proenvironmental behaviour. For instance, while composting has high participation in some cities such as Vancouver due to municipal services, it was believed to be completely unattainable in other parts of the country. The biggest advice we offer our clients, regardless of the generation of their target market, in approaching prosocial research is to not focus on whether cause marketing or sustainability alone will drive purchases. If the question is, “Will this make you buy brand X?” the answer will likely be a resounding “no.” Time and time again, we’ve seen research respondents openly admit a green feature or pro-social cause marketing campaign will not trump key benefits. For example, for shoes and apparel, style and performance are essential key benefits and for food, it’s taste and health. Even Toms would be nowhere without its fashion-forward colours and understated hipster style. However, with Gen Edge in particular, and for a growing number of the North American population at large, pro-social values and initiatives do build brand equity. Giving back – with patience and consistency – is good for business. Blake Mycoskie, the founder of Toms Shoes, puts it this way: “When you incorporate giving into your business in an authentic way, you turn your customers into your most avid and loyal marketers.” He makes it sound easy. But for brands that don’t yet have this vision, research can help determine how to establish pro-social values, products, and initiatives in an authentic way.

Lindsey Boyle is senior vice-president of The Sound Research, cofounder of, and the proud mum of two little Gen Edgers. She can be reached at vue | JUNE 2014



Community Rewarded Research A new approach to respondent recruitment and incentivization for children, young people and families

Jonathan Clough

There is no denying that the research sector is overcrowded. And the emergence of technology, in particular the Internet, has brought about the commoditization of research panels. This has all but diminished the USPs of many of the companies out there, with most having to significantly reduce prices in order to remain competitive and relevant. Many are now focusing on their pricing structure – rather than the quality of their panels and data collected – to drive and win clients, much to their disadvantage. Collecting reliable and consistent data is notoriously difficult, with panellists often becoming disengaged with the subject matter of the survey they are participating in. When you extend this to children, young people and parents, the task becomes even greater. Offering incentives to panellists is now the norm within the industry, with monetary enticements the most popular method of convincing people to partake in surveys. The final amount is often dependent on the length of the survey. Does this have a detrimental effect on the quality of answers and data? Are the survey results positively or negatively biased because respondents are given an incentive to contribute? We find the use of monetary incentives actually reduces nonresponse and bad answers, such as “don’t know” or “not sure.” Yet, in order to collate more robust data, ResearchBods revisited the incentives offered to our panellists. Understand Where the Industry is Going Wrong First and foremost, we needed to confront the perceptions many clients held about panels and respondents. The industry seems to skirt around this issue on a daily basis, but this can no longer be the case. We knew it was time to stop avoiding the challenges and instead come up with a viable solution to rectify the problem. The industry is now reliant on technology to create fantastically designed surveys, manage panels and organize payment schemes, which we


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shouldn’t and certainly don’t discredit, as they are an essential component in delivering quality panels and attracting and retaining respondents. But these are being used more regularly to cover the failings of panellists not being motivated to engage honestly. So far, the industry has failed to tackle the problem that is often leading to flawed research. While you’d think data quality would be the top priority for clients, it is an issue that is quite often skipped over and ignored by those that are focused on the price (although the vast majority make the right noises about needing quality data and findings). Panel companies are just as bad, with the majority of conversations taking place around new technology solutions because these are more visible, sexier and easier to demonstrate. We knew we needed to pioneer a whole new approach in order to address these issues. We needed to better understand why people participate in online surveys and how we could attract those that would not normally contribute, so as to make our findings more representative of the general public or target demographic. From our own research, we found that two key things were missing: • A real relationship between the panel company and the panelist. • A genuine motivation for the panellist to take the time to participate, and participate accurately and honestly. Both of these key points are not mutually exclusive; we found that the relationship between the company and panellist has to exist before the motivation to participate can occur. Does this mean that the better the relationship, the more likely the respondent is to participate and participate well? If a panel organization spends time building up the relationship, concentrating on trust and respect, then there is a much greater chance that the panellist will spend time giving honest and considered responses. However, at present, this relationship simply does not exist. Panellists register their details to an unknown company or online brand that promises to pay them for their

FEAT URE time and opinions. The bulk of panel companies maintain a distant relationship with their respondents, many of whom were recruited from a variety of online sources by third party recruitment companies or affiliates. This lack of relationship from the very beginning, plus the blatant and purely financial incentive that they offer, provides little compulsion or reason for the respondent to give worthwhile, honest answers. We realized that we needed to understand why people gave up their time in return for little to no reward. The obvious starting point was charities, but once again we hit a brick wall, in that there was a clear lack of relationship and also a wariness from people with regard to an overused and overworked charitable sector. After some further research, the solution soon became apparent. People will participate in something if they feel that the little contribution they make is part of a bigger picture. They will also take time and effort if the benefit directly impacts themselves and those around them. EduVoice Our answer to all the above was EduVoice, a fundraising program that we run though educational establishments, member organizations and community groups. Parents, teachers, pupils and members complete surveys while raising muchneeded and valued funds, but with the benefit of also earning incentives for themselves, should they wish. Institutions register with EduVoice and once verified using stringent checks, are issued a unique code that they use to invite others to join our panel. As soon as they are registered, their accounts are linked to the organization so that funds are correctly attributed. Should a parent wish to, they can set up an account for their child, if their child is aged 11 years or older. This unique feature enables us to go directly to teenagers with appropriate surveys, allowing them to not only play their part in earning funds, but also allowing us to collect rarely available data for our client base. This format provides a platform that attracts a varied mix of demographics, as all parties register and participate for different reasons. It offers an opportunity to recruit people who would not normally take part in surveys online and prevents professional respondents from joining, which in turn keeps the validity of the data high. The incentives are split between the respondents and the establishment, the percentage of which is dependent on the panellist selecting how much they wish to go towards their organization. We use a sliding-scale system whereby the panellist can choose to donate between 100 per cent and 50 per cent of their incentive. EduVoice and the Community Benefits EduVoice provides a platform and incentive for respondents to voice their opinions on a wide range of topics. This, in turn, delivers a truer representation and more robust data for clients and supports the idea of working together in partnership to achieve a greater good as a community than they can as individuals. This is why we have come to think of it as community reward research.

We’ve had great success with our new offering because of the increasing financial pressure school and community groups find themselves under. Everyone involved is continually looking to new ideas to help fundraise, with many parents having to dedicate time, money or both to help their local school or group. Teachers and parent-teacher associations have found that a growing number of parents are fed up with the continual pressure to raise funds. EduVoice provides an opportunity for them (and their wider family and friends) to contribute with less effort and without having to put their hands in their pockets. While each individual incentive is small, usually just a few dollars, when collected together they can quickly add up to go towards more expensive equipment (i.e. new computers, white boards, sports kits). As a guide, a school with a 150 panel members can expect to earn over the course of the year more than the equivalent of $3,000 in Canadian dollars. Recognized bodies have acknowledged EduVoice, including the Parent Teachers’ Association UK. This organization is actively promoting us to every school and college throughout the U.K. There is no denying that the benefits operate two ways, as it has enabled us to recruit genuine respondents to our panel. We are able to monitor respondent quality through our invitation-only registration process, which eradicates potential panellists whose intentions aren’t what we require. Since this program was put into operation, we’ve seen much higher response rates – currently just over 35 per cent. Not only this, but respondents are fully engaged, which can be seen through the length of time taken to complete the surveys; they now typically take 25 per cent longer to finish. And engagement is also seen in the considered responses to open-ended questions. This has led us to provide higher quality data with a much higher level of confidence. In our opinion, we have created and built a unique business model that has motivated and inspired a new set of panellists thought out the U.K. While it is imperative that we continue to develop our relationship with our panellists and nurture them accordingly, we are focused on the issues that are impacting the industry as a whole. The continuing reduction in CPI rates, the tendency to increase the length of surveys and practice of screening respondents out five minutes into a survey are all issues that need to be addressed. As an industry, we must continue to challenge the above whenever we encounter them. If we remain ignorant, then we will harm our already delicate relationships with our panellists even further. Something that we cannot afford to do. If we do choose to ignore, then there is every chance that the quality and engagement of our respondents will continue to decrease to the point that panel companies will not be able to produce anything close to accurate data.

Jonathan Clough is cofounder and director of ResearchBods. You can contact him via email at and he tweets @ ResearchBods. vue | JUNE 2014



QUALITATIVE RESEARCH REGISTRY In accordance with federal privacy laws,

MRIA’s Qualitative Research Registry (QRR), or Registre de la recherche qualitative (RRQ) in French, was created to provide an ongoing, userfriendly vehicle for tracking those who do not want to be contacted or should not be contacted for qualitative research studies.

QRR is a comprehensive do not call list of those who have recently participated in qualitative research studies, those who have asked not to be contacted further, and those felt by recruiters and moderators to be best served by not being contacted. These respondents are marked as “do not call” in accordance with established MRIA Standards.

However, the ability of the system to function effectively is directly related to the co-operation received from firms who provide recruitment services. If you are a full service research firm or field supplier that is currently participating in the Qualitative Research Registry program – thank you very much and keep up the good work!

All field and full-service companies are encouraged to submit a list of their qualitative respondents for entry into the QRR system each month, including those who do not wish to be contacted.

If you are not currently participating, please get involved! If you are interested in submitting to QRR, please visit the MRIA website at for further explanation and guidance on how to submit qualitative research participants’ names, along with the required electronic forms.

Participating firms will receive monthly updates of respondents to be screened from qualitative recruitment samples. QRR works effectively to increase the quality and integrity of the qualitative research process, by serving as a control to ensure respondents are not contacted more frequently than is necessary.





Barbara C. Campbell Recruiting Consumer Vision Dawn Smith Field Management Services Inc. Head Count I & S Recruiting Ipsos Reid Nexus Research Opinion Search Quality Response Research House Inc.

Ipsos Reid SmartPoint Research Inc. Trend Research

Ipsos Reid MBA Recherche Opinion Search

ATLANTIC Opinion Search

If you have any questions about or wish to submit to the QRR please send an e-mail to: Information regarding the QRR can be found at

Rules of Conduct and Good Practice for Members of the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association (2007), Section C Rules Specific to the Conduct of Qualitative Research:

20. R  ecruiters should provide accurate data to the Qualitative Research Registry, where such exists, on a consistent basis and check all respondents against the Registry. 21. M  oderators buying recruiting services should give primary consideration to recruiting agencies which submit to the Qualitative Research Registry, where such a service exists, on a regular and ongoing basis.


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Seeing the Hidden Targets: Humber RAPP Forum Mikayla Allen, B.A., Hons. Communication Studies & Linguistic Cognitive Science, McMaster University 2013

On Wednesday April 2nd, research professionals, Humber College faculty and the second cohort of Humber Research analyst students gathered together at the second annual Humber College Research forum. In keeping with the theme of “shifting landscapes: a look into new research technologies”, several students presented their impressive original work to a round-table audience of industry influencers and seasoned research veterans. The audience was blown away by their insights on topics such as the influence of social media on television watching habits, to mobile survey technology, to innovative methods of big data visualization. Not at all dissuaded or intimidated by the crowd, the students came up in succession – one student presenting alone – and discussed their contributions to the research discourse using new technology. The first group, a vibrant and eccentric trio, conducted an analysis study in partnership with BBM on social media viewership and how conversations on cooking shows could help identify and engage wider audiences. The second presentation introduced tableplots as a novel way to visualize the ever-elusive “big data” that is such a buzz in the industry. The third student group shared their experiences using online focus groups for their research project, and the advantages of using the innovative focus group platform BlogNog. Finally, the last group offered some information on the benefits and disadvantages of taking the classic survey to

mobile platforms. The student presentations were broken up by lectures from keynote speakers Cam Davis and Sean Keith who shared gems of knowledge on how to stay afloat in the ever-fluid world of market research. Cam’s advice included using webinars to stay informed and educated on upcoming trends in the industry. Keith’s lecture was geared more towards how to find a home for abstract skills and use traditional market research methods in the non-profit space, reminding the audience that the key to genius is hitting targets no one else can see. There was also a brief intermission where a buffet-style lunch was served and attendees had the opportunity to mingle and visit some of the industry booths set up. The day wrapped up with an informative Q&A with a diverse panel of industry professionals featuring; John Crockett from Environics; Adam Hughes of Children’s Aid Society of Toronto; Cristina Ilas of Ministry of Education and GFK’s Stephen Popiel. The panel addressed questions about challenges new researchers could expect to face when breaking into the industry, the current state of technology in market research, and areas of opportunity available for new technology. Each member of the panel also presented the audience with a nugget of take-home wisdom from their own experiences over the years.

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Research Registration System (RRS) The Research Registration System (RRS) is one of the MRIA’s most established self-regulatory mechanisms; in fact it has been around longer than the MRIA itself. The RRS was designed to provide the public with a simple and accessible way to verify that the research they are participating in is legitimate (as opposed to mugging or sugging). It also provides consumers with a conduit to register a Mark Wood complaint. Research buyers also benefit from the RRS as cooperation rates could be higher – as consumers can verify the research as legitimate which will controls costs but more importantly greater cooperation provides quality samples through greater representation. Research agencies benefit from the RRS as the system is a level of protection against government actions that might restrict their ability to do business. As a brief history lesson, the government passed a bill (C-62) in 1992 giving the CRTC regulatory powers over telecommunications and this bill painted legitimate market research with the same brush as telemarketing. To this end, our industry could have seen proposed changes that would have placed a number of restrictions on how we conduct business. The Canadian Survey Research Council (CSRC), one of the three predecessor organizations to the MRIA, initiated the RRS to address this regulatory threat and boost the credibility of our industry with decision-makers and with the public. Needless to say, the RRS has continued to prove its value to this day. When the RRS was introduced 20+ years ago, telephone and face-to-face data collection were the norm but the market research landscape has changed considerably. While a large portion of research in Canada is now conducted using online access panels, the importance of registering legitimate market research projects has not lessened. One could argue that the opt-in process used by access panel providers develops a relationship between the respondent and the panel company such that no registration of surveys is required as all surveys should be legitimate. The counter argument would be that due to multiple panel participation, consumers are not always sure which panels they have signed up to conduct surveys for and may get invites from an ‘unknown’ panel company. This was the central reason behind a complaint by a panel member to the Privacy Commission in 2013 (see Executive Director column in May 2013 Vue magazine). Looking forward, Canada’s anti-spam legislation (CASL) will come into force on July 1. This act is designed to protect Canadians from spam, malware, phishing, and other electronic threats through the “commercial electronic messages” that are sent to consumers. The definition of the “message” is quite broad and includes anything sent by telecommunication (i.e., e-mail, text messages, voicemail, social media communications). The MRIA has been working with


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the government to ensure that the CASL will not apply to legitimate market research. While market research has gone through a number of changes since 1992, the role and importance of the RRS has not, especially in light of the CASL. By ensuring that our industry maintains a strong self-regulatory mechanism, we are taking responsibility for policing ourselves and ensuring that outsiders cannot begin regulatory intervention in our industry. This means, as has always been that case, that ALL research studies must be registered with the RRS regardless of how the sampling was conducted. Survey registration for the RRS is done through MRIA’s portal and requires completing a “short survey” on the general specifications of the project (e.g., dates, geographic coverage, data collection mode, industry). After registering the survey, a unique code is provided that consumers can use to verify the legitimacy of the research study should there be any questions. In addition, the RRS application in the portal has administrative functions that allow for review of any public comments about the survey as well as a timeline of all past surveys registered. All research suppliers should be registering their surveys but Gold Seal companies are mandated to register all of their surveys. Unfortunately, the RRS is not a free service as there is a cost to register surveys. For non-Corporate members there is a flat fee per completed interview while Corporate members enjoy a preferred rate by pre-paying their registration fees once per year (cost paid is based on a range of expected surveys to be completed). Recently, the Research Agency Council (RAC) has reviewed the RRS fees structure and, after Board approval in October 2013, the RRS fees will no longer be tied to the number of completed interviews but will be incorporated into the overall Corporate fee structure (non-Corporate members who use the RRS will still pay a fee/complete). RAC feels that by removing the completed survey ranges, companies will be more compliant with registering all their surveys (versus potentially paying more by moving to a higher completed interview range). This will also remove the questions about double-counting and who should be registering the survey, the research agency who sub-contracts field work or the sub-contractor. Under this new system that will come into play for 2015, both should register as it provides ultimate protection for the industry versus neither registering. The Research Registration System was designed to benefit all those involved in market research: public, research agencies, and research buyers/users of the data. Although the Canadian market research industry has changed, the overall importance of the RRS has not. For the next survey you participate in, either through supplying or buying, ask “has this been registered with the MRIA’s RRS?” Mark Wood is the Vice-chair of the Research Agency Council and Vice President at TNS. He can be reached at

IND U STRY NEWS n To read more news online, or to submit your “People and Companies in the News,” s imply fill out our online form at n The Vue editorial team reserves the right to select and edit your submission for appearance in Vue. n MRIA is neither responsible for the accuracy of this information nor liable for any false information.

To help the industry understand some of the opportunities and challenges in the use of mobile technologies for the collection of survey data, AAPOR’s Emerging Technologies Task Force report, available at The report highlights the ways these technologies are used to conduct surveys as well as the features on mobile devices that can be used to augment or in some cases replace more traditional survey approaches, such as GPS, scanning, visual capture, connected devices, and mobile apps. MRIA – Join the Team as CCRE The primary role of the Coordinator Customer Relations & Events (CCRE) is to provide administrative support to Customer Relations and Events (CRE). Working with members, suppliers and internal staff, the incumbent is an effective communicator who is diplomatic, polished and customer service oriented. This position reports directly to the Manager, Communications. For more information Research Dimensions is sad to announce the sudden passing of David Kay, Founder and Past President. Before recently semi-retiring, David, along with his wife and partner Nancy Siller, successfully ran Research Dimensions for over 35 years. David was a man of ideas and inventiveness, and was passionate about seeking new approaches to better solve business issues. David was not only a great researcher and leader but, along with Nancy, made the company feel like a family, and not just a business. His good cheer and warm heart will be deeply missed. All current and past employees express their deepest condolences to Nancy and sons Michael and Joseph. GfK Revenues Down, Profits Up in First Quarter GfK has announced results for the first quarter, with an organic decline of 0.7% in sales, reported as EUR 334.9m, a decline

of 3.5% due to currency effects. However the Group said it achieved ‘a significant increase in all profit indicators’, and has confirmed its forecast for the year. Adjusted operating income was up 2.7% to EUR 23.6m, with margin up from 6.6% to 7.0%. Cash flow from operating activities was almost doubled at EUR 18.3m. Web site: Nielsen ‘Acknowledges’ Sampling Problem in NE USA In the US, Massachusetts-based station Channel 5 has taken the unusual step of writing to its advertisers to blame Nielsen for its ‘puzzling ratings decline’ in recent months. Reports suggest Nielsen has acknowledged a problem with sampling and is at work to redress it. According to, WCVB’s General Sales Manager Andy Hoffman told clients the ratings giant appeared to sample ‘too many young people and too many New Hampshire residents’, writing: ‘The Massachusetts segment of the DMA (designated market area) has become under-sampled while the New Hampshire segment has become over-sampled’. Optimism Rife among World’s Marketers Optimism among marketing execs remains high, according to the May wave of the Warc Global Marketing Index (GMI), with respondents generally upping their forecasts for marketing budgets and positive about trading conditions. The global score for marketing budgets remained steady on 55.7, with Europe and the Americas rising slightly and Asia Pacific down this month by 2.6 points, to 53.0. Meltwater Buys Canadian Firm Strategic Planner Online intelligence solutions provider Meltwater has acquired Canadian online content analytics firm Strategic Planner, the seventh company Meltwater has bought in five years. The service targets small and medium-sized businesses unable to take advantage of some of the more corporate solutions offered

People and Companies in the News generously sponsored in 2014 by:

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INDUSTRY N EW S by other firms. According to Meltwater, the buy will lead to product, data and team synergies, and enhance innovation. Strategic Planner is based in Montreal, Canada, but founder and CEO Michel Besner and key architect Iannick Brouillette will now join Meltwater’s product team in San Francisco.

into social relationship platform HootSuite. “With this new integration, Crimson Hexagon customers are able to plug their analytics directly into HootSuite streams for real-time engagement with customers and turn social data into immediate engagement,” said Ryan Holmes, CEO at HootSuite.

AOL Buy Adds Further Cross-Platform Analytics Clout Venerable online giant AOL has announced the acquisition of TV audience targeting provider PrecisionDemand, via its division, as it looks to strengthen its offer to marketers looking for cross-platform reach and measurement. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Just two weeks ago, AOL acquired attribution modeling and marketing analytics technology specialist Convertro, in a deal valued at approximately $101m. AOL bought last year for $405m, and has since announced a deal with Mediabrands Magna Global – part of Interpublic – establishing it as a core element in the latter’s TV audience-buying platform. Websites: and

SurveyMonkey, a DIY survey software provider headquartered in the US, has opened an office in Sydney, Australia, to serve as a customer support centre for users in the Asia Pacific region. The company already has several major Australian corporations among its clients, including Qantas, Commonwealth Bank and Foxtel. Over the next few years, SurveyMonkey plans to staff the office with 25 personnel.

Millward Brown Buys Romanian Firm Daedalus Millward Brown has agreed to acquire its Romanian partner agency Daedalus Consulting S.R.L., along with its whollyowned subsidiary Visionwise Consulting, for an undisclosed sum. The firms will now become Millward Brown Romania. Last December, MB acquired a 70% stake in Moscow-based custom research firm ARMI-Marketing. Co-founder Daniel Enescu will remain as the new firm’s Chairman, while MD Daniela Lazar retains her role and will report to MB’s Regional MD for Central/ Eastern Europe and the Nordics, Jean-Michel Janoueix. GMI Opens in Frankfurt Kantar-owned research technology and panels firm GMI (Global Market Insite) has opened a new office in Frankfurt, and appointed Key Account Director Norman-René Schwalme to lead it. Founded in 1999 in Bellevue, WA, GMI was acquired by WPP’s Kantar in 2011, and was then merged with online specialist Lightspeed Research. The company has operations in America, Asia Pacific and Europe – including established German offices in Munich and Hamburg. Website: NUVI Co-founder Moves into CEO Role In the US, social media analytics specialist NUVI has moved Chairman and co-founder Keith Nellesen to the role of Chief Executive Officer, replacing David Oldham, who takes a seat on the firm’s Board of Directors. Lindon, Utah-based NUVI offers real-time social media listening, engagement and reporting. Its platform analyzes data from sources including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+, Delicious, Reddit, Vimeo, Flickr and more than three million RSS feeds. Resulting data is presented visually as a display of conversations, measuring influence and sentiment. Website: US – Social intelligence provider Crimson Hexagon has announced a partnership with HootSuite The partnership will see Crimson Hexagon’s ForSight platform stream social media posts, blogs, news and more directly


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CSquared Networks has announced that it has acquired media industry benchmarking survey I-MIS, a benchmarking survey that provides analysis on the reputations and perceptions of international media network agencies and media brands. It was launched last year by Will Nicholson of The Vision Network and Belinda Barker of BSB Media. This year’s survey is currently in field, having launched in April. Nicholson and Barker will continue to manage the survey for the duration of 2014, and will remain involved through sitting on an advisory board that will help to develop I-MIS as the industry’s benchmarking survey. Bonamy Finch has announced the launch of a new significance testing app. The app, which is free to download, is available for both Apple and Android devices. It can report on whether differences between pairs of mean scores, proportions


MRIA: LAUNCH *new* Pathways to CMRP See ad on inside front cover

September 7–10 ESOMAR Congress Nice, France

June 4–6 MRA Insights Chicago, IL

September 28–October 2 CASRO Annual Conference Four Seasons Denver, Denver, Colorado

June 8–10 MRIA National Conference 2014 – Dig Deeper & Discover Saskatoon, SK June 10 MRIA Gala Awards Dinner Saskatoon, SK Chapter Events Quebec – June 12 Ottawa – June 18 BC – June 23

MRIA Courses See ad on p 29 MRIA members enjoy discounts to partner events - Call us or visit our website

or correlation coefficients are statistically significant; estimate confidence intervals around those types of values; and provide feedback on sample sizes needed to achieve a specific confidence level. Facebook has struck a deal worth “hundreds of millions of dollars” with the ad group Publicis for video ads and audience data, according to a report. The deal reportedly focuses on video ads that appear within Facebook and on its mobile photosharing app Instagram. Publicis will also get access to Facebook user data as part of the deal, allowing the ad agency to gauge performance of ads that appear on the two platforms. Schlesinger Associates has added Affectiva’s Affdex Discovery facial coding tool to its portfolio of qualitative services. The method measures non-verbal emotional engagement responses to video stimuli, revealed through facial expression. During a session, emotion traces are captured via webcam and reported back to a moderator console in real time. “We sought a partner to develop a solution for our insight clients and moderators which could quickly and effectively gauge respondent emotions in a non-invasive and cost-effective way,” said Anne Hedde, executive vice president of Schlesinger Interactive. Ipsos MediaCT has announced the launch of a new data science unit. The team, headed by chief data science officer Neil Farrer, brings together “a number of technical and methodological experts into one hub to focus on applications for the industry.” The intention is to make it easier to provide clients and researchers with optimum support and advice in technical and big data projects. Initial focus for the team will be on data fusion techniques, analysing mobile and web usage data and integrating external and client data sets into standard applications. Georgian College – Research Analyst Students looking for Internships ! Students are the future of our industry. Need help with research projects this fall? Don’t miss out on talented students who are eager to help. Now accepting job postings for fall internships. Pat Roberts, Career Consultant – Creating Springboards for people in transition (705) 728-1968 Ext. 1226

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INDUSTRY N EW S RESEARCH REGISTRATION SYSTEM Since 1994, the RRS has allowed respondents to verify the legitimacy of a research project; helped legislators and regulators differentiate between legitimate survey researchers and unscrupulous telemarketers, phishers and scammers; and protected the industry from unnecessary and unwanted regulation. MRIA’s Research Registration System (RRS) has long been a cornerstone self-regulatory mechanism for the marketing, survey and public opinion research and market intelligence industry in Canada.

Combined with other self-regulatory initiatives such as our Code of Conduct and Good Practice and our Charter of Respondent Rights, the RRS has paid huge dividends in protecting the industry’s positive reputation and good name with Canadians. All Gold Seal and Basic Corporate Research Agency members of the Association are obligated to register all of their research projects with the RRS, and Client-Side Corporate members are encouraged to require their agency suppliers to do so.

MRIA’s Research Agency Council provides strategic, policy-level oversight of the Research Registration System, and receives aggregate data-only on the System’s performance. Questions about the Research Registration System should be addressed to Erica Klie, Manager, Member Support Services, at 1-888-602-6742 or (416) 642-9793, ext. 8727 or

The following companies have registered research projects with the Research Registration System so far in 2014 Gold Seal Corporate Research Agencies Academica Group Advanis Inc. Advitek Inc. BBM Analytics BBM Canada BrandSpark International Campaign Research Canadian Viewpoint Inc. Cido Research Consumer Vision Ltd. EKOS Research Associates Inc. Elemental Data Collection Inc. Forum Research Inc. GfK Canada

Greenwich Associates Head Count Ipsos Reid Maritz Research Canada Market Probe Canada Market Pulse Inc. MBA Recherche MD Analytics Inc. MQO Research Nanos Research Nielsen Consumer Insights NRG Research Group Opinion Search Inc. Quorus Consulting Group Inc.

Basic Corporate Research Agencies Dialogue Research Inc. Goss Gilroy Inc. Nexus Market Research Inc. Quality Response Inc.

R.A. Malatest & Associates Ltd. Research Dimensions Research House Inc. Research Now SmartPoint Research Inc. Tele-Surveys Plus / Télé-Sondages Plus The Logit Group Inc. TNS Canada (Canadian Facts) Trend Research Inc. Vision Critical Gold Seal Corporate Research Agencies PENDING Illumina Research Partners

INDIVIDUAL MEMBER ORGANIZATION Burak Jacobson Research Partners Inc. Phase 5 Consulting Group Inc.

Rules of Conduct and Good Practice For Members of the Marketing Research and Intelligence Association (2007): Section A (5) Members must uphold the MRIA Charter of Respondent Rights. Charter of Respondent Rights, Article 2 You can verify that the research you have been invited to participate in is legitimate in one of two ways. You can either obtain a registration number and the MRIA’s toll-free telephone number for any research registered in the MRIA’s Research Registration System or you can obtain the contact information of the research director who is conducting the study.


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IPD MRIA INSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT Marketing Research and Intelligence Association l’Association de la recherche et de l’intelligence marketing

What’s *new* for Spring? Lots of fresh ideas and new paths to take… On May 26th MRIA introduced Five Pathways (see ad on inside front cover) to obtaining the prestigious CMRP designation – including an executive retreat. Members will receive pathway updates in the coming weeks, directly via email. Information is also posted on the MRIA website, in social media and in future issues of Pulse and eVue!

Need answers fast? Contact So, what’s coming up in Courses? 402–Techniques d’analyses multivariées

12 et 13 juin 2014


302–Market Intelligence

June 19, 2014


Create Winning Research Presentations and Reports that Deeply Connect with your Audience July 24, 2014


201–Marketing Research Design: An Applied Course

September 30, 2014


CMRE Prep Workshop

October 7-8, 2014


Semiotics, Introduction: How Symbols, Packaging & Advertising Communicate

October 7, 2014


Semiotics, Introduction: How Symbols, Packaging & Advertising Communicate

October 17, 2014


101–Introduction to Marketing Research

November 4, 2014


Registration closes approximately 1 week prior to course start. Les cours disponibles en français sont au

Need a refresher? These courses cover the minimum that a Certified Marketing Research Professional (CMRP) would know. Course

Next in-class session

101-Introduction to Marketing Research 102-Ethical Issues and Privacy in Marketing Research 201-Marketing Research Design: An Applied Course 202-Questionnaire Design 203-Marketing Research Statistics & Data Analysis* 204-Qualitative Marketing Research 301-Competitive Intelligence, Mystery Shopping, and Benchmarking 302-Market Intelligence 303-Marketing Management for Researchers 401-Online Research, Best Practices and Innovations 402-Advanced Analysis Techniques 403-Advanced Qualitative Marketing Research

November 4 Fall 2014 September 30 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 June 19 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015 Fall 2014 - Spring 2015

11 of these 12 core courses are available anytime online

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Bright-Eyed Dylan Cody Insightrix Research Inc.

Susan Abbott, CMRP Abbott Research & Consulting

I decided to do something different for this issue and discuss a few potential habits that a new market researcher should shed before his or her next performance review.

You know that research about communication that says 7% of meaning comes from words, 38% of meaning comes from tone of voice, and 55% of meaning is communicated by facial expression? That’s actually not quite right. But it’s sure easy to find this online. In fact, I recently heard a man of science cite this factoid in a serious professional presentation. (Interestingly, he chose to supplement his facial expressions and tone of voice with PowerPoint slides containing words.) We are living in a new age of myth. New communication technologies have democratized publishing capabilities to such an extent that confirmed facts are like corks bobbing in a sea of misinformation and general BS. Complex science gets distilled into sound bites, which then take on a life of their own. The research cited above originated with Albert Mehrabian, now an emeritus professor of psychology at UCLA. Professor Mehrabian has made many contributions to the field of communications that are relevant to marketers; a brief summary would be longer than this column. Mehrabian, on his own website (, notes that his research looked at the “relative importance of verbal and nonverbal messages” based on experiments “dealing with communications of feelings and attitudes (i.e. like-dislike). “Unless a communicator is talking about their feelings or attitudes,” Mehrabian says, “these equations are not applicable.” His formula was specifically derived from research into inconsistent messages of feelings and attitudes. The actual formula is: “Total Liking = 7% Verbal Liking + 38% Vocal Liking + 55% Facial Liking.” We might imagine that Mehrabian has mixed feelings about the popularity of his research. He has

Treating work deadlines like school deadlines: I can sit here and reminisce about the days when I would leave an assignment to a few nights before the deadline, stay up all night to work, and still receive a good grade. Well folks, those days are over. I quickly learned that procrastination does not fit into the deadline-driven world of marketing research, and if you want to deliver a quality report that will wow your client, it’s essential to think ahead and take advantage of all the time you have. Being reluctant to challenge ideas: While I frequently challenged ideas during my time in university, entering the world of marketing research, an industry that I was completely new to, left me feeling uncertain about the value of my input. Luckily, the firm I work for supports new perspectives, and I quickly realized that one of the best ways I can learn is to challenge concepts, perhaps get it wrong, and then understand why I was wrong. Treating reports like academic essays: Gone are the days when long paragraphs should be used to explain every point in detail. Although I took a few business classes, it was not until I entered marketing research that I learned to write concisely. Trust me, I am still learning. Communicating with too many words: Learn to cut down on excessive words, whether in reports, internal and external emails, or calls with clients. You will learn quickly that most people are very busy and expressing key points is the only way to go.


It’s a Qual World

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a lot of company, of course. Look at the challenges of modern public relations in correcting misinformation or outright lies once they start to circulate. Consider the challenges of scientific medicine in dealing with the misinformation floating around about health care in general and specific topics like vaccination. This new age of myth has a lot of implications for marketers in general, and even more for the marketing of people and ideas. Your customer may have done extensive online research into some topic, but still be operating from a state of ignorance, because they have found mostly half-truths. Your customer may have been influenced by questionable or biased sources. Depending on their general outlook, they may be skeptical of all sources of information, including your carefully vetted corporate communications. On the political front, it now seems possible to propagate and defend statements that are outright lies. Or at least have no basis presenting themselves as either facts or data. If this sounds like something Mark Twain said, you are correct! “The most outrageous lies that can be invented will find believers if a man only tells them with all his might,” Twain wrote in 1867. Our challenge today is that outrageous lies move faster and spread farther than ever before. There’s a great saying, attributed to W.Edwards Deming, “In God we trust; all others must bring data.” Today, we all have data – or at least we think we do. Welcome to the age of myth.

Ruth Corbin, CMRP CorbinPartners Inc. Dear Dr. Ruth This is a bit complicated, and I’m not sure what parts you or MRIA can help with. I’m what you call a “biker chick”, with a Harley Davidson and the whole leather thing to support my passion for riding. I recently bought an expensive “Screaming Eagle” brand leather vest from a Quebec retailer, which is Harley Davidson’s famous brand of clothing. Now I find that my vest is NOT a Harley Davidson product, but the product of a small Canadian clothing company that must want you to think they’re a Harley Davidson offshoot by using Harley’s “Screaming Eagle” brand name. I wore the vest on a road trip to Arizona last summer (yes, really rode all that distance and back!), and the store won’t let me return the vest for a refund. I wrote to one of their executives complaining that it wasn’t “Harley Davidson quality”, and the answer I got back defended the quality of their products by pointing out that they had won several Consumer Choice Awards. I’m pretty sure the Consumer Choice Awards are based on a survey done by an MRIA company. So here are my questions: will MRIA support me in a complaint to the Screaming Eagle company about deceptive marketing based on improper use of research? Is the MRIA company who did the survey guilty of collusion and shouldn’t they be sanctioned? Can I lodge a complaint to get the MRIA company to reimburse my $80 + HST that I paid for the vest? Screamin’ Mad. Dear Screamin’ Screaming Eagle (let’s call them SE) is indeed a Canadian retail company selling leather clothing and biking accessories independent of the HarleyDavidson company. They’ve been in business for more than 20 years. Coincidentally, there has already been a lawsuit about their brand name, but it was SE who sued Harley Davidson for putting the “Screamin’ Eagle” brand name on clothing sold in Canada (not

the other way around.) SE’s lawsuit wasn’t successful, but the judge did not challenge SE’s right to keep on selling clothing under the Screaming Eagle brand name in Canada. The research company that carries out the polling for Consumer Choice Awards likely has a mandate far removed from your complaint. Whatever the circumstances, an MRIA Complaint Resolution process would never end up

requiring a research company to reimburse an $80 purchase made at retail. Not the HST either. My advice is to enjoy the warmth of your vest and the thrill of the open road. d.r. Please submit your forensic research and standards questions to rcorbin@ or anonymously via the MRIA blog, https://mriablog.

Off the Deep End Brian Singh, CMRP zinc tank Data science needs marketing research. We have all seen the posts on our social media feed within the last year: What makes a good data scientist? A quick scan indicates that data science has evolved out on a combination of management consulting and IT data analysis. The discipline stresses business acumen with a solid foundation from computer science, statistics, math, modeling and analytics. It also incorporates development and data architecture skills. But all articles conclude that data science is “part analysis, part art.” The question arises: where does that art lie? It is within our industry. Data science is a discipline that is a marriage that emerged out of this world of big data and the increasing desire and need to integrate data analysis into all aspects of operations. It stresses technical and quantitative skills. These can be learned. But the art really is in the interpretation of the data – which brings into play substantive skills of meta- and qualitative analysis - and the communication of the findings. It is about telling the story of the data to support business objectives, spur on innovation and realize new opportunities.

This is what our industry has been doing for years. But marketing research has been largely ignored by the emerging data science community. And yet they claim to do almost everything we do a subset of their skills. Most of the articles concur that it takes approximately five years to be a good “data scientist.” Recently, we have seen many of our own move into different organizational roles such as innovation and insight, and CROs are now welcome at the C-suite table. Our experience and intuition has become recognized beyond traditional marketing and communications.


Ask Dr. Ruth

With organizations now moving towards a more data centric operating model, it is imperative upon our industry to adjust to this reality. This will include incorporating more programming and management consulting elements into education and training programs. But one of the foundations of data science is understanding people and culture, to ensure data-driven solutions are implemented and stick. And our industry is among the best in this understanding. At this critical point, it is imperative that we get on our soapbox to promote the value of our skill set and acumen to organizations and the public to let them know we need to in the foundation in this growing discipline.

vue | JUNE 2014



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MRIA Vue Magazine - June 2014  
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