“What’s in it for me?” Incenting Others to Increase Participation and Engagement

Incenting Others to Increase Participation and Engagement

I’m entering the dating scene again this year after not being in it for 22 years. It’s a bit of a daunting transition, truth be told. The last time I was dating, popular internet “dating” options included talking with people in AOL chat rooms. The way in which I met my would-be-suitors were all via personal connections—through friends and family, through classmates and through colleagues. Things have changed substantially since I was dating in the mid-90s, with meeting romantic partners through friends down notably over that period (from 38% to 29%), as well as meeting through family (down 14% to 7%), and through coworkers (down 19% to 10%)[1]. (Note that meeting at college is holding steady at 9-10%, but I’m not in college and don’t plan to return anytime soon, so this seems a moot point.)

While my prior methods are all trending downward, several ways of meeting partners have gone up over this same period. Meetings at bars is up (from 19% to 24%), as is meeting online (from 16% to 22%)[2]. This is all well and good, but I don’t really want to hang out at bars all the time, nor am I ready to fill out my online dating profile yet. So…given all of this, might I alter the system a bit so that I can continue to rely on my preferred methods of meeting others and have good results? This is the question I have been asking myself. And over drinks with a friend the other day, I stumbled upon one method for bettering my chances at meeting a potential romantic partner: offering an incentive. Continue reading

Giving Thanks to Market Research

With Thanksgiving right around the corner, I have been giving a lot of thought to what I am thankful for. Obviously, I am thankful for my family, my friends and my health. These are things I am thankful for every year. But, this year, I have a lot to be thankful for in my professional life, too.

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Ten Ways to Increase Response Rates Among B2B Audiences

2013-08-responseB2B audiences are a hot target for market research and marketing communications, which can make it difficult to get their attention for surveys.

Market Strategies has conducted research among hard-to-reach B2B audiences—including IT managers, physicians and executives—for more than 25 years. In our experience, securing healthy response rates boils down to:

  • Establishing rapport
  • Providing just compensation
  • Managing respondent fatigue
  • Following up appropriately

To help, I’ve identified ten ways to motivate response rates. Many of the suggestions increase cost and some are not appropriate for certain study designs. So, the approach that best balances response rate, budget, timing and analytic needs depends on your research requirements. Continue reading

Ancient Greeks and The Focus Group

aristotleI’ve never had anyone wear a toga to one of my focus groups. (Once, a bearded man walked in wearing a floral-print sarong and introduced himself as “the premier ass-waxer” in the city. He went by the name of Bambi. And, yes, he was a great respondent.)

Now that I have your attention, I’ll ask for a bit of patience. There is a connection between togas and focus groups, but it’s a meandering path. Last summer, Market Strategies launched a center of excellence for qualitative research. We already were doing a lot of qualitative research—well over $10 million a year—but we wanted our qualitative practice to rival the breadth of expert staff and innovative track record of our quant practice. The effort has entailed hiring more than a dozen senior researchers from a variety of backgrounds, including brand consulting, advertising and behavioral sciences. A few of my peers have asked what prompted such a large investment in qualitative methods, especially at a time when so much of the research industry is moving toward “a world without questions,” where we rely on methods like big data, social media monitoring and neuroscience to find answers without ever engaging a respondent in a dialogue. All of those methods have a home at Market Strategies and merit their own investments—but none is about to replace qualitative research.

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