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The Top Five Market Research Articles of Q3 2012
By Kathryn Korostoff and Todd Haylon, Research Rockstar LLC

We live in an instant gratification society, or so it is widely said. If we want something (be it information or products), we click a few buttons, then wait for it to be delivered—instantly or via overnight shipping. One can debate the societal implications of this, or embrace the shift. For now, we choose to embrace it by bringing our version of instant gratification to market research article reading. No time to flip through pages of ads and irrelevant articles to find the gems? Here are our picks for the best market research articles of Q3 2012, in no particular order.

Measuring Emotions Through a Mobile Device Across Borders, Ages, Genders, and More
September 2012 ESOMAR Conference
Authors: Rolfe Swinton and Rana El Kaliouby
Remember when measuring consumer emotions was a new field that required clunky equipment?
That day has long since passed. In this paper Rolfe Swinton and Rana El Kaliouby discuss the use of mobile devices to capture immediate facial and verbal responses to advertisements.
Today’s smartphones are essentially handheld computers. And they have become widely used; indeed. Nielsen estimates over half of US adults have one. Smartphones, as our title suggests, span across age, gender, and many other demographics, allowing researchers to gather broad data.
Swinton and El Kaliouby started by testing smartphones as a way to investigate ad recall and emotional impact. Initially the researchers tested a slew of television ads in Brazil and a few other markets. After this initial research produced promising results, they proceeded to test 6 beverage ads in India, noting differences in responses from different demographic groups. The researchers came away with valuable findings, most notably:
 Mobile technology allows researchers to truly innovate, rather than just adapt existing methodologies to new technology.
 Measuring emotions with facial coding (as captured via smartphone) is feasible, unobtrusive, scalable, and avoids the bias of self-reporting.
There’s the Beef
August 2012 Quirk’s Marketing Research Review (Page 26)
Author: Scott Koenig, CEO of Consumer’s Eye View and Wendy Neuman, Director of Market
Research at National Cattleman’s Beef Association
The best athletes are not always those with the most physical talent. Rather, they are the ones with the highest, “sports IQ.” This is a common term used among scouts, but it really is impossible to

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measure. There are simply some players who see the game differently and always seem to be a step ahead of everybody else. This article begins with an interesting comparison to “The Great
One”, Wayne Gretzky. The authors note that Gretzky was great because of his ability to anticipate where the puck was going, allowing him to play the game a step ahead of everybody else. When the
National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) was faced with the research question of understanding beef consumption habits of those ages 13-30 they took a Gretzky-like approach.
They anticipated where their target market for the study (Millennials) was heading and thus chose
Facebook to conduct their market research.
Particularly with the demographic the NCBA was trying to reach (ages 13-30), it made sense to use
Facebook. According to the article, 75% of people ages 13-30 have some kind of social network profile. Interestingly enough, besides using Facebook, the market research methods were fairly traditional. Facebook was used as a recruiting tool to gather participants and as a forum for discussion. The NCBA then created a Facebook group and hosted online discussions over six weeks. Topics were posted 2-3 times per week and the recruited participants would respond and comment. As with any market research study, not every participant participated fully. However, the
NCBA’s innovative approach validated Facebook as a tool that can help market researchers without totaling abandoning many of the traditional principles.

The Secret to Customer Engagement in Social Media Isn’t a Secret Anymore
August 2012 issue of Alert! (page 34)
Author: Angelo Ponzi, Director of Client Services at PhaseOne
“Social media is not a marketer’s silver bullet.” Angelo Ponzi reminds his readers of this a few times in the article, The Secret to Customer Engagement in Social Media Isn’t a Secret Any More. What
Ponzi means by this statement is that, yes, social media is a powerful tool, but it is not the elixir for marketers. You cannot simply create a Facebook page or Twitter account and then sit back and wait for the followers. Successful social media marketing requires time, effort, and a strategic approach.
Based on a study of 22 brands to “identify what drives public engagement with a brand on social platforms… to identify the brand’s role in the world of social engagement”, the author shares key findings and implications for social media-leveraging marketers (and that is just about all of them these days, isn’t it?).
Ponzi identifies two brands that effectively use social media to drive consumer engagement: Audi and Red Bull. Both draw consumers in with powerful “Me Statements” in their advertisements as well as on their Facebook pages. Ponzi defines a “Me Statement” as saying something about consumers in terms of attitudes and personalities; lifestyles and behaviors; or values.
Audi, for example, uses advertisements about getting rid of “old” luxury and bringing in “new” luxury.
In this case, Audi is positioning itself as the new luxury vehicle, and portrays itself as a sleek, cuttingedge, modern car. This creates the “Me Statement” among consumers that, “I live a modern, cutting-edge, and high-end lifestyle.” Red Bull, through clever ads, creates the “Me Statement” of, “I am cool under pressure and can conquer any challenge.” Both of these statements push consumers closer to their idealized selves, and they are more likely to engage with brands that do so.
Towards the end of the article, Ponzi makes one very important point derived from his research.
While cultivating a strong “Me Statement” to associate with your brand is very important, the brands www.Training.ResearchRockstar.com Page 2

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with the strongest social media engagement were those that did not abandon traditional marketing principles. These principles, including communicating well, consistency in your messages, and delivering the message in a unique way, are still vital even as marketing moves more and more towards social media and “Me Statements.”

How Bad Surveys Can Turn Respondents Off
August 21, 2012 Relevant Insights
Author: Michaela Mora, President at Relevant Insights
Have you ever been taking a survey and about a third of the way through it, you feel like unplugging your computer, or even throwing it out the window? I exaggerate a little, but taking a poorly designed survey is extremely frustrating.
In this article Michaela Mora describes a survey she recently took that was full of flaws. It was riddled with typos, used inappropriate scales, and completely ignored its audience. At one point it was asking her about how car companies address women’s needs. Keep in mind that this was a survey tucked inside a magazine that has nothing to do with cars, yet the survey was exclusively about car buying experiences.
Mora goes on to take her experience with this bad survey
Did you miss the Q1 & Q2 and generalize it to common mistakes made by companies picks for best market research on their surveys. Her 8 bullet points of common mistakes articles? Just click here: Q1 seem elementary when you are reading them, but
Articles and Q2 Articles sometimes the simplest things are the ones that are most easily forgotten. Mora’s list is a great reminder and offers precise insight on how to ensure that your surveys minimize dropouts and maximize data quality.
Quantitative Trendspotting
August issue, Journal of Marketing Research (JMR)
Authors: Rex Yuxing Du (University of Houston) and Wagner A. Kamakura (Duke University)
Trendspotting is a buzzword that evokes images of brilliant futurists plucking predictions out of thin air, based on their observational superpowers. Ever since the book Megatrends became a bestseller in the 1980s, the notion of predicting trends has become a holy grail for marketers.
But is there a quantitative way to tackle it?
The authors of this provocative, and extremely detailed article, say it is feasible. Using online keyword search data from Google Insights for Search and applying dynamic factor analysis (DFA), the authors have created a compelling case study using the automobile market. And yes, the model does account for seasonality.
However the article also acknowledges that there is a difference between predicting revolutionary and evolutionary trends, noting, “…quantitative trendspotting is more evolutionary, focusing on uncovering hidden trend lines that already exist, which may then be extrapolated into the near future, whereas qualitative trendspotting is more revolutionary, attempting to seek out radical departures from the past that may potentially reshape the marketplace for years to come.”

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Honorable Mentions
Other articles that almost made the top 5 and are worth a read.

The Names of the Games
Research (online) July 31, 2012
Author: Joe Fernandez, Senior Writer/Deputy Editor at Research Magazine and Research Live
Boston’s Fenway Park is unique in many ways, one of them being that it is one of the few remaining stadiums without a company sponsorship. Even the iconic Boston Garden became the TD
Banknorth Garden; it just doesn’t have the same ring, does it? Personal curiosities aside, how do companies decide if and how to sponsor sports stadiums or events? Joe Fernandez’s article gives a glimpse into the amount of research and time that companies put into these huge sponsorship decisions. The article takes a quick look at five companies that spent large sums of money sponsoring the Olympics, and looks to see how they used research to ensure a good return on their investment. The five brands are EDF Energy, Lloyds TSB, BT, Cisco, and Heineken.
There were some interesting differences across the five brands’ goals, strategies, and target audiences. But the most noteworthy content was about the similarities—how they all used
“conventional” research methods: two of them report using focus groups in the research mix, and most report using surveys. Indeed only one company, EDF Energy, specifically mentioned using more innovative methods—such as mobile research and ethnography—in their mix.
Why an honorable mention? Because while the details are very light in these mini case studies, it really is interesting to see how five different brands discuss their Olympic-sponsorship research.

Social Media’s Influence on Traditional Qualitative Research
August 2012 Quirk’s Marketing Research Review
Author: Kelly Hancock, QRCA
Another brief but informative article is by Kelly Hancock of the Qualitative Research Consultants
Association (QRCA), who sheds light on how social media is changing qualitative research methods.
Every “like” on Facebook, or tweet on Twitter, or pin on Pinterest provides data for researchers. It is just a question of what the best way to gather and leverage all of it is. Researchers are now able to gain great detail and see consumers in their element through video and pictures. As a result, qualitative research methods are becoming more and more sophisticated. In order to leverage the use of videos and pictures, new research methods have been developed. By no means is this revolution over. Social media is still young, and evolving. As it becomes more integrated into daily life, people may share even more information in unique ways. This creates new data for researchers to leverage, and as a result, the author suggests that new research tools and methods will emerge.

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