Bad Respondent Experiences are Killing the Insights Industry

I received a survey invite from a market research community I had recently joined. Clicking on it, I was sent to an opening page that asked me to enter my age. I was told I qualified for a survey and was sent to a large, well-known survey router service. The landing page told me the survey was 18 minutes long and to click the link to begin the survey. So, I did.

Then I was met with a screen that, after whirling a bit, said “Unfortunately, based on your responses to pre-qualification questions, it looks like your profile isn’t a great fit for the survey we had in mind for you. Hold on while we check to see if we have something better…” At least they let me down gently and promised me another survey.

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InsightsMonica Low
CMO’s Challenges: An Interview with PwC Consulting’s Pina Sciarra

It’s tough being a CMO. They have an enormous mandate, are required to stay on top of a rapidly changing toolkit and have very little time in which to make their mark. Are Canada’s marketers keeping up with the pace of change? That’s the question we set out to answer with a recent survey of more than 100 Canadian CMOs and senior-level marketing decision makers. Together, APEX Public Relations, ruckus digital and Maru/Blue launched CMO Lab™, a research-driven project to equip senior-level marketers with the insights they need to help their organizations succeed.

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InsightsMonica Low
Bad Sample and Misleading Results: A Cautionary Tale

Sampling is not something people think much about. It gets taken for granted and is often treated like the making of sausages—people don’t necessarily want to know what goes into it. But people ignore the issue of sample quality at their peril, because bad sample can lead to deeply misleading results. And when those misleading results are made public, they undermine the reputation of the entire insights industry—as we’ll see in a cautionary tale from a recent election. 

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InsightsMonica Low
Interest in Cannabis Beverages—Higher in America: Feedback From our Cannabis Community

Cannabis became legal in Canada a few weeks ago, making it the second country in the world (after Uruguay) to repeal the prohibition of marijuana. While the world watched with a mix of skepticism, interest, and humor, Canada got excited for a few hours, then carried on as usual. Sure, there were some long lines at cannabis shops, stock ran low and selection was limited. Legalization became water cooler talk around the country…but after the initial excitement, life continued as usual.

Interest in Cannabis Beverages—Higher in America: Feedback From our Cannabis Community

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InsightsMonica Low
A Cautionary Tale Of How Badly Research Can Fail If We Don't Take Sample Seriously

“Something that is reliable is usually boring and we don’t think much of it. When the office building you are sitting in doesn’t suddenly become a splintered mass of glass, concrete and steel girders do we send a thank you note to the architects and engineers? Nope. We just take these things for granted and assume that we can count on the science behind them?” I wrote that, with my colleague Andrew Grenville, in our whitepaper (Still) Boringly Reliable. This paper provides evidence of the reliability of our market communities; Springboard America and Maru Voice Canada.

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InsightsRob Berger
The Plea To Think Of Respondents As People Not Sample

As an industry, everything we do hinges on the information we get from people who answer our questions. But we tend to take them for granted, and think of them as just "sample." And we ask a lot of them. We ask them to give us their time, put up with our obscure and often boring questions, work their way through long grids, and plow through long, mobile-unfriendly surveys. And then after we're done taking from them, we say thanks and goodbye. We don't ask "was it as good for you as it was for me?"

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InsightsRob Berger
Springboard America Is The #1 Online Quality Sample Source, According To Nate Silver

At Maru/Blue we take great pride in the quality of our market communities. We go to great lengths to ensure they are of the highest quality. We know they are representative and reliable, but it’s great when a respected researcher’s analysis proves it, again.

Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight website aggregates election polls and makes predictions based on those aggregations. As part of their process, they weight the polls based on their accuracy.

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Profiling People Leads To A Superior Survey Experience And Better Information

Data shows that 9 out of 10 people who are being routed through sample exchanges as river sample fail to qualify for a survey they are screened for. So they get asked to qualify for another study—and get asked basics like age, gender, race and region over and over again. That’s a terrible respondent experience. And it is completely unnecessary.

A well-profiled community allows you to target the right person with the right survey.

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We Are Maru/Blue: 5 Declarations

Blue evokes the limitless possibilities of the open sky, the depths of the ocean, and the purity of a blue flame. This suits our sample and data services offer perfectly because Maru/Blue make it easy to connect with an almost limitless number of deeply profiled community members, whose consistency and quality is proven.  

Our communities are representative of everyone. That’s why we’re the #1 online pollster in Nate Silver’s 538 pollster ratings. We reflect reality. No bias. No skew. Just the voice of the people—all the people.

 

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What Keeps Researchers Up At Night? Sample Quality. And They Are Right to Be Worried.

Concerns about the quality of sample bubbled to the surface when a sample of 1,533 researchers from around the globe—both client-side and supplier—were asked an open-ended question about challenges that exist in the research industry today.

We’re glad to see that people are concerned about sample quality—they should be. We’ve been tracking this problem for years and it’s getting worse, not better.

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Known Respondents Yield Quicker, Less Expensive Survey Results

If you were heading to the mall to get a new smartphone, would you go randomly from store to store asking whether they sell smartphones? Or would you want to know which store sells them and to go straight to that store?

Chances are you don’t want to a) waste time going from store to store, or b) look like a fool by asking the clerk at the women’s clothing store if they sell smartphones. You just want to get straight to the smartphone store, right?

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InsightsMonica Low
The High Cost Of Cheap Sample

“At least it will give us directional information. I mean, how wrong can it be?” I’ve heard those remarks and many like them bantered about when people rationalize using cheap sample sources.

The fact is, bad or “cheap” sample can give you information that is dead wrong. So wrong that the information it provides is directional—it’s just pointing in the wrong direction.

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InsightsMonica Low