Monday, January 31, 2011

The Benefit Real Life Testing Outweighs the Payoff of Looking Good

Having grown up in the more traditional pen and paper world of marketing, I have to constantly remind myself that it's OK to make a mistake.   I have to keep reminding myself that not only are most marketing tests or published pieces not carved in stone -- they aren't even printed on PAPER!  So what am I freaking out about?

Testing by Launching

I'm not advocating rushing out into the world with just anything, but when you're at the 80% mark and you need to do some testing -- don't be afraid of testing live or pre-launching your product or service.

That's what Survey Analytics did with their new SurveySwipe product.  They had developed a mobile market research platform but needed some real life input to tweak the bugs.

They weren't shy about it either - they decided to pick the State of the Union address as their test.  I think that was BOLD and very visible.  The risk to most of us traditional marketing types might be "BUT WHAT IF WE FAIL"  what if people can't use the tool?  What if they think badly of us?  What if... What if...

Well - what if we TELL them it's a test?  And what if we expect that there will be issues and what if we approach the whole thing as a game and as an exciting learning opportunity where we're are all learning something together?  That would be a whole different kind of event.

The result might even be a more energized and excited consumer base -- one that accepts that this is a test and can't wait to see the bugs worked out.  WHAT A DIFFERENCE!

What Survey Analytics Learned

  • Mobile Platforms are Definitely Exciting. Based on the overall engagement -- this is HOT HOT HOT!

  • Email or push - not both. This is a valuable lesson for all of us - how does your market want to be notified?  Be sure to ask what they want and then do it exactly that way.

  • Don't be afraid to wing it. This is my favorite lesson.  The Survey Analytics team KNEW that one of the features was getting real time data.  Instead of playing it safe - they started PLAYING and polling in real time with their beta testers -- asking questions on the fly!


You can read all the details of what they did well and what the Survey Analytics team learned from their SurveySwipe beta test.  But the real lesson here wasn't in the technology, but in the mindset.

Today's technology makes it virtually impossible to really test anything to perfection.   In fact, the standard practice for web content is to actually create several versions of the content and split test using tools like Google Web Site Optimizer.

Wondering what to charge for a product or service?  Chances are you can post a description and prototype on ebay at a variety of prices and see which sells best.

It's clear that the old days of testing something to death have been overtaken by actually putting it out there and working out the kinks in real time.

How do you feel about that?  What are your tips, Do's and Don'ts about when it's ok to test a beta in real time and when more traditional pre-launch analysis is required?

Thursday, January 27, 2011

SurveySwipe - Introduction

Welcome to the SurveySwipe blog. Please check back frequently for updates from our team.

Text Analytics - State of the Union - DiscoverText

DiscoverText has released the Raw-Data sets for the State of the Union Text text analytics portion. Dr Shulman is still working on the visualization of such a large data-set and we'll keep you posted as things get updated. Meanwhile, If you;d like to play around with the data yourself please click on the link below:

http://discovertext.com/sotu.aspx


 

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Webinar Slides & Recording Available: DIY Market Research Trends to Watch & Take Advantage of in 2011

Thanks to everyone who registered and attended our webinar:

"DIY Market Research Trends to Watch & Take Advantage of in 2011"

We had a wonderful turn-out and discussed many trends from the death-watch of paper surveys, text analytics technologies, crowdsourcing research opportunities,, to the rise of online and offline mobile research platforms. Included in this post are the slides and recording to review and share.
[slideshare id=6711874&doc=diyresearchtrendswebinar2-revised2-110126122608-phpapp02]

Recording:
[brightcove vid=762883241001&exp3=69413262001&surl=http://c.brightcove.com/services&pubid=69222484001&pk=AQ~~%2cAAAAEB37SCE~%2cqPzYMoHg_QVXfN_ppi7Wcrgb-jDlNozv&w=300&h=225%5d]

Let us know what you think about these new trends coming down the pipeline. Do you think they will change how you currently conduct research?

Mobile Research - State of the Union - The DataSet

The mobile research initiative using SurveySwipe and partners like ProgressiveCongress.org, Personal Democracy Forum, Netroots Nation etc. was conducted yesterday.

The methodology/process


We invited (though our partners) users to register and download a mobile app - SurveySwipe. The intent was to try out 3 ideas:

  1. Mobile Polling/Data Collection in general (iPhone, Andriod and Windows Phone 7)

  2. Pulse - On-the-Spot polling using Push Notification (iPhone Only)

  3. Dial-Testing on the mobile phone (iPhone Only)


Here are the results:

We did 5 surveys in all - A PRE, 3 Pulse surveys and a POST survey. I've already documented some of the lessons learned with this exercise. This post is about the data we collected.

The SOTU Panel Profile:





The Dial Test


We are still compiling the individual dial-test data - but this is the profile of the users who completed the dial test.

The PRE Survey



Pulse 1 - Seating Arrangement / Employment



Pulse 2 - Wealth/Afghanistan/Humor

Pulse 3 - Broadband / PUblic Transportation

Final - Post Survey

Dial Testing - Raw Data


We are still compiling the results of the dial test. We had ~300 users take the dial-test in real-time. We'll be posting the raw data of the dial test also in the next day or two.

DiscoverText - Text Analytics


We are still waiting on Dr. Shulman to provide us with the data-set for the DiscoverText data for text mining. We'll post it on the blog as and when it gets available.

Thank you.

How to Determine if Your Study Should be Conducted Online

The target audience for a survey is an important consideration in deciding whether it should be conducted online.  The target audience must have access and preferably use the Internet on a regular basis.  Until recently, senior citizens were generally not good candidates for online surveys because they were not as familiar with the Internet as younger groups.  Young children that are not yet able to read and type so they would not be good candidates for online surveys because they would need to be coached through the questionnaire.  When conducting business-to-business research, executive-level respondents may be difficult to recruit via email.  Therefore a phone survey may be recommended for certain audiences.

Online surveys were initially conducted among technology workers because they were the first to have a large portion of their population with access to the Internet.  Many companies were hestitant to use online research until recently because it was believed that not a large enough proportion of populations under investigation would be connected to the Internet.  As long as the target population is connected, it is safe to say that an online survey can be conducted and in most cases, is the most cost effective, time efficient way to go.

In research, answers are rarely black and white.  Because research is not a perfect science, answers are typically found through evaluting the different requirements, the pros and cons of an approach, objectively thinking about the impact on the business and research outcomes.  In most cases, it is quite simple to determine if a study should be conducted online, but with certain research areas, it may be more difficult to determine the proper method.

Business needs are the most important consideration when undertaking market research.  The business need drives the request for proposals and defines what type of research is to be conducted, whether it is exploratory, qualitative or quantitative in nature.  Once the business information needs have been defined, then study design can be established.

It is important to always adhere to strict ethical research principles when implementing a study.  This is one reason it is generally recommended to use a third party to conduct a market research survey.  The business needs can sometimes cloud the objectives at hand and a survey can be designed that leads respondents to specific answers.  A professional market researcher should always have the ability to push back if the business need impedes on ethical research design.  The Council of American Survey Research Organization (CASRO) rules outline standards of ethical conduct for the industry.  This information can be found at www.casro.org/codeofstandards.cfm.

It is important to understand the research implications of the survey design regardless of whether the survey is for an Internet or a telephone audience.  A sound methodology ensures that research principles are adhered to in order to report objectives and correct data.  The length of a survey and the impact on customer survey fatigue is one example of what must be taken into account.  The researcher wants to always ensure that the questions can be displayed in a manner that can easily be understood by the respondent.  Evaluating the potential affects alongside technology, administration and business needs will help determine whether a phone or Internet survey should be conducted and will help guide how certain questions are asked.

Technology has improved the quality, speed and efficiency of Internet surveys.  It is important that the programming rules for a study not be overly complex.  Single response, multiple response, scale, open-ended response or even grid questions are the most common types of questions seen in a survey.  Branching rules to skip questions based on respondent qualifications, substituting values into specific questions or answer, or auto-populating variables should all be standard features in a research tool.

Online research studies are almost always inherently cheaper than mail or telephone studies.  It is still important to factor in the cost of the research tool, the time saved doing the study in-house versus outsourcing, any extraneous costs such as language translations, or sample acquisition costs.  One important cost element is that some Internet survey tools have built-in processes that are not always the easiest to administer.  Outsourcing in any type of market research can not only give you piece of mind that your project is being handled by professionals, but that you will also get the best representative sample available.

About the Author: Michael Holmes is the President of EMI Online Research Solutions, an online research panel company with over 80 panels from 80 different countries.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Webinar 1/26/11 9AM PST: DIY Market Research Trends to Watch & Take Advantage of in 2011



Tuesday 1/26/11

9:00AM PST

Sign up here:

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/400354803

As January is speeding past us it’s not too late to learn about new DIY market research trends to look out for in 2011. Interactivity, collaboration and open source concepts are changing how we collect feedback. Marketing research is evolving. It’s more than surveys and focus groups. It’s more than those thousand dollar reports produced by Freedonia or The Conference Board. Today, finding out what your customer is thinking is a hands-on process.

SurveyAnalytics is proud to be a part of this free live webinar featuring panelists: Ivana Taylor, Marketing Strategist and Editor of DIYMarketers.com; and Esther Rmah LaVielle, Chief Education Director of SurveyAnalytics.

In this fast paced session, we’ll be exploring:

- 2011’s Top research trends that have influenced how we collect feedback

- Resources where you can see examples of these trends in action.

- Tools that you can use today to get started

Register today to discover how your peers are leveraging insight into defined opportunities to innovate via today’s technologies for tomorrow’s research!

Sign up here today! https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/400354803

About the Presenters:

Ivana Taylor is the President of Third Force, a strategic marketing firm that helps small to medium sized companies get and keep loyal, profitable customers regardless of price.  She is the publisher of DIYMarketers.com an online publication that provides small business CEOs with low cost marketing strategies, ideas and resources.



Esther LaVielle is the Chief Education Director at QuestionPro and SurveyAnalytics, which was started in 2002 in Seattle and is now one of the fastest growing private companies in the US. Prior to her adventure at SurveyAnalytics she spent 3 years as a market research project manager

http://www.surveyanalytics.com

Mobile Research - State of the Union Pulse - The Good/Bad and Ugly

So, we just finished up with our first mobile pulse polling project for the State of the Union. This was our first app based real-time research project that we did. I'll document some of the issues bugs and ideas that got generated as part of this.

Emails + Push Notification

We decided to send email as well as push notification (for iPhone users) -- turns out this pisses people (and confuses people) - we should _either_ send push notifications or send emails. Sending both does not make sense (of course in hindsight.)

Opt-Out link on Email:

The Opt-Out link was not getting appended to the emails. Again a rookie mistake. We were so busy focusing on the iPhone/Andriod user experience, we missed out the opt-out piece on the emails. We also need an opt-out on the app itself. Deleting the app (from a technical standpoint) does not help because, we are not guaranteed notification of the deletion of the app. That is a simple technical issue -- will be fixed next time around.

Multiple Emails:

OK - some reason some folks were getting multiple emails for each survey. The way we set this up was to send out a "pulse" when we did a survey. I think when we do these live polling models, we should NOT be sending emails - just rely on push notification. A single email with a launch would probably have sufficed. We ended up sending about 5 emails (we did a PRE, 3 pulses and a POST survey) -- ok - probably too much - but we had to keep all our partners also on board. Next time, we'd probably limit the PRE event survey to about 5 questions -- pulses are not emailed and then a post-event survey also via push notification.

The data-set:

This is where things became interesting. Each of the pulses were filled out almost instantly. We got 85% of the data within the 5 minutes of sending the pulse - . We'll be sharing the data-set after we scrub the data for privacy artifacts like IP addresses etc.

The other thing we did was to create the pulse questions on the fly. All the partners had a group chat session and we decided on the pulse survey. This is probably where we got carried away and we sent about 3 pulses. For example, after seeing the seating arrangement, we pulsed the question around the seating arrangement. This is where real-time polling gets interesting -- where the questions can be defined and executed in real-time.

Top Line data:

We did 5 Surveys all up: PRE, 3 Pulses and a POST. IN addition we also had a dial test running in parallel. (Yes a lot of stuff to happen - but this was a first pilot and we wanted to push the limits to see where the limits are!) If we did not push the  limits, we would never know where things break. We had told everyone that this is a beta test and the first time someone has even attempted (at this scale) a mobile research project of this scale. We had over 20 partners and collectively deciding the questions on the fly on a real-time chat system and pushing the surveys to the users.

Here are some top line reports:

PRE: http://surveyanalytics.com/s/1-8-1997285

POST: http://surveyanalytics.com/s/1-8-1997341

I'll be posting more data as we clean things up.

Finally, The mobile software SurveySwipe is still in beta; in many ways this project tonight was a full scale field test. With that in mind, I am not surprised that there may be a few bugs yet; I've yet to see any of the mobile survey apps that don't have them. I suspect that the opt-out challenge is just part of that beta process.

SurveySwipe Lets You Tell Obama What You Think of His Speech - IN REAL TIME!

There is a really exciting project going on this evening during the President's State of the Union Address -- YOU will have the opportunity to literally DIAL your response to the speech from your smartphone!

If you've got an iPhone, Android, Blackberry or Windows device, you can DOWNLOAD THE MOBILE APP HERE.

Then watch the speech and literally swipe your reaction as the president is speaking :



That is ALL THERE IS to it!

Ahead of the address, people who have downloaded the app will receive a push notification asking if they would like to participate in the State of the Union pulse poll. SurveySwipe will then launch, and the user can agree or disagree with what is being said by during the State of the Union by moving a slider up and down a scale on the mobile screen.

The idea of pulse polling is similar to “dial testing”  to find and study the phrases, the moments, and the inflections in a speech.

With SurveySwipe, “we want to make the technology cheap and simple for everybody to use,” says SurveyAnalytics' Rob Hoehn. Outside of State of the Union, for example, a small nonprofit could do live polling at their event, so long as the attendees or participants have smartphones and have downloaded the SurveySwipe app.

This is a new and exciting customer survey technology that takes advantage of the power of mobile devices and the wisdom of the crowds.

You Can See How YOUR Community Will React to the Message!

Here's the really exciting (or scary) part- depending on your perspective.  The person who owns the project (i.e. the state of the union in this case) will have access to how the different communities actually react to a given event.

This project is a joint effort between SurveyAnalytics, SurveySwipe, Cooper Strategies, and UMass Amherst. The SurveySwipe solution is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad devices as well as most other major smartphones including WP7, BlackBerry, and Android. The SurveySwipe technology was combined with UMass Political Science professor Stu Shulman's research tool - DiscoverText™ to analyze the data from social networks in addition to data provided by participants over their devices in real-time.

All data collected in response to the State of the Union address will be "open-sourced." It will be licensed using the Creative Commons Attribution License and will be available to the public.

"It's very important to us that we make these innovations both valuable and available," said Vivek Bhaskaran, President and CEO of SurveyAnalytics, "Everyone that creates a community for the State of the Union will have access to their own data, as well as an aggregate view of data across all communities. And instead of the results being generated by a small sample of a few hundred people, the results will reflect a sample of thousands more."

"The explosive growth of smartphones makes these devices the perfect platform to collect real-time, participatory feedback during live events," says Hoehn, "It's also become more and more important to understand how people feel, think, and respond as events occur and it's changing the way that brands, companies, and blogs engage with people."

How to Participate:

  1. DOWNLOAD THE MOBILE APP HERE.

  2. Then watch the state of the union

  3. As the president speaks literally swipe your finger over the scale -- keep it to the left (low - Nah, you are full of it or I don't like what you're saying or how you're saying it), move it to the middle (ok, or neutral) or move it to the right (I agree completely)


Then stay tuned for the results- we'll have them published for you right here!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Hot Trends in Business to Business Marketing

The DIY Marketing Trends is a hot hot hot topic these days -- in fact, if you want to make sure that you're on top of what's going on in the world of DIY Marketing, it would make sense to take a look at what trends are driving business-to-business marketing overall.

In full self-disclosure, this list comes from a series of conversations that I'm following over at www.Focus.com. a wonderful community of small business experts who ask and answer small business questions.

The first question I'm going to summarize is about what topics will be hot on the marketing blogosphere.  When I looked at the answers, I realized that these topics were really broader trends that will affect the world of Market Research.  Also notice how these question and answer formats are basically research in and of themselves that can be analyzed as "social media chatter." If you want to learn more -- you'd better register for Wednesday's Webinar NOW.

Trend: In Bound Marketing: If you're not familiar with the term, it means using marketing strategies and methods that attract your ideal customer to your web site and get them to register or purchase what you are offering.    Pushing your marketing message with an obvious in-your-face-advertising campaign isn't very popular these days.  Consumers are savvy searchers and only want to receive information from companies and products that they are interested in.

Research Tip: Get to Know Your Ideal Customer Put your research focus on getting to know your respondents and providing them with the information that will help them get educated on how to choose .  Make sure that the "Why they should choose YOU" is highly linked to what your ideal customer values.

Trend: Right Place Right Time.  As if profiling wasn't enough - you've got to hit the right person at exactly the time when they are most likely to be open to what you're offering.  This is the equivalent of becoming a genie in a bottle hanging off your customers' key chain.  The company, product, person or offer that is THERE in front of them at the exact time that they are ready to purchase will get the sale.

Research Tip: Find out what triggers your customer's need for your product. A really great way to do this is to interview your ideal customers and get to the root of what events got them to start searching for your product, how they got choose you and why they choose you.  Once you have that profile set - you can easily put together a survey instrument that takes a snapshot of your target market and identifies those people who are experiencing the trigger event that signals the need for your product.

Trend: Word of Mouth Marketing Evolves. Word of mouth marketing is how busy buyers weed through the myriad options that they are bombarded with daily.  It takes too long to evaluate hundreds of products via the web.  It might just be easier to ask your LinkedIn group or Focus.com expert communities what they would recommend.

Market Research Tip: Provide Data. There is an opportunity for savvy market researchers to use their skills and resources to profile and research the communities that they know best.  Maybe you can do research on specific market segments and create a public data set (register for the  DIYMarketing Research Trends webinar to learn about this one)

These are just a few trends that smart people are chatting about.  I hope that you'll join us tomorrow at 9am Pacific and 12pm Eastern to learn about more DIY Marketing Research Trends

Friday, January 21, 2011

State of the Union 2011

State of the Union 2011 - Mobile Dial-Testing/Polling Initiative

Any size organization - a blog publication, a small town, or a large government can introduce real-time polling for the State of the Union. The unique project involves polling your audience in real time as users are watching the State of the Union - Using a mobile app. We've partnered with UMass Political Science professor Stu Shulman and will be leveraging his 10 year NSF-funded text analytics research tool - DiscoverText™ to analyze the data from social networks as well as data provided by participants in real-time.

The explosive growth of smart phones, coupled with its inherent location-based underpinnings make these devices the perfect platform to collect real-time, participatory feedback during the State of the Union. We think this represents a huge opportunity to engage with your constituents in unique ways.

Interested in collaborating? Compare your data with others? - See FAQ

http://surveyanalytics.com/sotu

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Andrew Jeavons Joins Survey Analytics

I just wanted to let everyone know that I have joined Survey Analytics (surveyanalytics.com) as Executive Vice President as of today.

I’m very excited to be joining such a dynamic company which is one of the market leaders in accessible in online survey and analytical tools. Survey Analytics clients include McGraw Hill, Experian, Roku, Career Builder, Texaco, Microsoft, Motorola, Qwest and many other leading companies.

Survey Analytics is fast becoming a leader in the consumer intelligence and “DIY” market research field, with innovative companies such as BadgeFarm.com and SurveySwipe.com, a new smart phone interviewing system.

Vivek Bhaskaran, CEO and founder of Survey Analytics commented:

“We are delighted that Andrew is joining us at this critical new phase of our growth. His experience and insights into the business domain are already proving of incredible value”.

You contact me on andrew.jeavons@surveyanalytics.com .

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Business to Business Marketing Trends for 2011



2011 is here and that means B2B marketing professionals are in the final stages of evaluating plans and have allocated budget for the year. Each company has unique goals as well as challenges, and what works for one company may not for another—there are no universal marketing solutions. However, the same key trends will impact every company, and marketers who capitalize on these trends will be better positioned to achieve their objectives.



Buyers Crave Content

Buyers crave useful, relevant content to help build their internal business cases and justify buying decisions. It’s up to you to provide valuable content to help buyers make informed purchase decisions and help your company earn new sales.



Take stock of your existing content and match it to your audience needs. Then fill in any gaps. Maybe you’re short on content aimed at the economic buyer. In that case, create an ROI calculator. Maybe analytical buyers don’t understand your novel approach to solving a problem. That might call for a case study. If you need more visibility and authority in the market, launch a blog.



Also, you don’t have to start from the beginning when developing content. Often you can re-purpose existing content for use across several media. For example, the white paper that becomes a Webinar that becomes a video. Or the technical article that becomes a presentation at a conference that becomes a series of blog entries.



Users Want a Multimedia Experience

As with audiences everywhere, professionals are now reading and watching and listening online. This year is a perfect time to take advantage of this trend by offering more than just words on paper or screen. Thanks to inexpensive technologies and high bandwidth, media such as video is simple to produce and easy to deliver to your audience.



There’s plenty of source material to create videos. You can record interviews, product demos, presentations—delivering anything from expert analysis and advice, to product announcements, to quarterly business results. You also can use videos to promote events before they occur and to record and archive them for future consumption.



Don’t forget to promote your videos everywhere you can: on Web sites using links and banners, in blogs, through e-mail, and via social media tools.



Social Media Requires Your Attention

Many marketers are not sure what commitment they should make to social media right now. While there is a great deal of buzz and noise surrounding social media, adoption in some business sectors remains low. It’s important to understand how your prospects and clients are adopting social media, and ensure that your level of investment matches your audience’s use.



Your first task is to understand how your target audience uses social media and what platforms they prefer. You may want to survey your own base for their usage.



Once you understand how your audience uses social media, you can develop an appropriate social media strategy. Remember that social media doesn’t take the place of other marketing, but is a complement to other marketing efforts. You’ll need to place someone in charge of social media efforts, integrate social media into your existing marketing program, and establish success metrics to measure ROI.



New Marketing Channels Await

With the near universal adoption of the Internet by your customers and prospects, you now have more marketing channels than ever to choose from to reach your target audience. From search engine optimization and paid search, to online directories and searchable catalogs, to social media and e-newsletters.



One marketing channel that’s experiencing significant growth is the online event. These virtual tradeshows offer a complete interactive experience for both suppliers and attendees, with features such as live chat, virtual booths, discussion panels, keynote presentations, content distribution, Q&A and more. Plus, no one has to leave their desk or incur travel and other related costs.



It’s important to integrate all of your online marketing channels into a cohesive program that can become more than the sum of its parts. Work with media partners who understand your needs and can help you pull together the right programs designed to meet your goals.



Maintain Focus on ROI

The requirement for marketers to demonstrate ROI is a trend that is here to stay. This year, choose measurable marketing programs and define your objectives and the success metrics against which you will measure your success. It’s an old saying in the business world, but it never really grows old: you can’t manage what you can’t measure.



By completing your marketing plans for 2011 with these trends in mind, you will put your company in position to gain advantage, because the decisions you make will help you become highly visible to, and discovered by, more potential customers.





About the Author: Chris Chariton is Vice President of Supplier Marketing and Marketing Services for GlobalSpec, the leading specialized vertical search, information services, e-publishing and online events company serving the engineering, technical and industrial communities. Chariton oversees many of the company’s marketing initiatives including e-mail marketing, demand generation and social media, public relations and advertising, and product management.  She can be reached at cchariton@globalspec.com.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Slides & Video from 1/18/10 9AM Webinar: Unlock the Power of Text Analysis with DiscoverText

Thank you for joining our webinar with DiscoverText today. You may view, download, and share the following slides from our presentation. A recording of the presentation  available below. [slideshare id=6614225&doc=sa-discovertextwebinar-110118091738-phpapp02]

[brightcove vid=754247605001&exp3=69413262001&surl=http://c.brightcove.com/services&pubid=69222484001&pk=AQ~~,AAAAEB37SCE~,qPzYMoHg_QVXfN_ppi7Wcrgb-jDlNozv&w=500&h=450]

Monday, January 17, 2011

How To "Engineer" Your Unstructured Data

Engineers are all about  structure. Especially civil engineers. I should know. I'm married to one. It's fascinating (and boring at times) to know how much research is done just to build a road, tunnel, or bridge. That includes sample testing, design, and quality assurance to ensure the dirt below the foundation is structurally stable enough to build on and to make recommendations on which materials to use. Failure to do so will result in major catastrophes and lower the quality of life in  particular environments. My husband loves to tell people that "engineers saves more lives than doctors."

Taking everything I've soaked in about engineering I thought about how we as researchers may apply it to the research industry. Obviously the more structure we have in place the more efficient we will be in gathering, segmenting, and analyzing data as well. With the growth of the internet and social media marketing many companies are wondering how to better understand what clients are saying when they are leaving comments on the company blog or speaking to them via Twitter or Facebook. "How can I compare my open-ended comment answers from a survey with what Facebook fans are saying?"

In the old days text analysis will be out-sourced to a research firm with a coding department where actual people would thumb through paper surveys that were sent in the mail and mark/sort them according to the categories set forth by the client. These days new text analytics technologies are popping up everywhere to fill the void and cut costs while allowing analysts more control over the process. Trend watchers say text analytics technologies is one of the top 15 trends to watch in the next 3 years.

If you are interested in learning more about this growing trend and want to know more about how to bring "structure" to your unstructured data I urge you to join us for tomorrow's webinar:

Tuesday 1/18/10 at 9:00 AM PST

Unlock the Power of Text Analysis with DiscoverText


Dr. Stu Shulman, President and CEO of Texifter, LLC, will present the following:

* How to augment your research with powerful, time-saving text tools
* Import thousands of documents from various sources and formats
* Discover information using powerful software and human techniques
* How easy it is to get started!

We will then show you an example using existing data from SurveyAnalytics and how easy it is to send your text files to DiscoverText, set-up codes, and reporting capabilities.

The session with conclude with a Question and Answer Session.
All slides and recording of webinar will be available on blog.surveyanalytics.com within 24 hrs of the presentation.

Space is limited so register today: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/967147715

About The Presenter:

Dr. Stuart Shulman, CEO and founder of Texifter, LLC is a spin-out company based on text analysis research He is also the founder of QDAP-Pitt and current Director of QDAP-UMass. Over the last 10 years, Dr. Shulman has conducted research primarily in the domain of electronic rulemaking, with a specific focus on the development of human language tools for reviewing large numbers of public comments. Over the past three years, he has been sole inventor on five distinct software applications that support tasks ranging from text classification, blog capture, and manuscript review management, to the development of better annotation for improving optical character recognition. New research focuses on the detection of threats and novel ideas communicated in public comments, blogs and other media. Texifter is a vehicle for the commercialization of new tools developed in the QDAP labs.

Timing is the Next BIG Small Business Trend

I have a knack for picking movies in a series that have some kind of common thread.  Now, I don't do this intentionally. It just happens.  In fact, I'm not even aware that I've done that until we watch the films, a pattern emerges that seems almost eerie.

Well, apparently, I do the same thing with books.  Over the last couple of months I've either picked up a book at a books store or received a review copy from a publisher and started reading -- only to find that they have a certain theme or lesson that I couldn't have designed better myself.

This month the theme looks to be "Timing."

Shift!: Harness The Trigger Events That Turn Prospects Into Customers. What if you could predict the exact moment when your customer would be most interested in buying your product or service and then you'd be there at the right place at the right time? Talk about using observation as an analytical tool.  Craig Elias decided to delve deeper into his successes and discovered a magical window of opportunity -- actually he calls it a "Window of Dissatisfaction" where his prospects were most open to change and listening to his offer.

Watch my interview with Craig Elias here and check out my expanded book review.

Selling to the C-Suite is a book I couldn't resist off the Amazon "You might like this" recommendations.  And I was right.  There is no shortage of sales books about how to sell to the CEO - but this particular one is based on in-depth-interviews with over 500 companies.  Not only that, but when you buy the book, you'll get tons of templates and tools that you can use in your preparation for the sales meeting with the CEO.

So, can you guess what the KEY learning was in THIS book?  TIMING, of course.  CEOs get involved early in the buying cycle -- while they are still thinking strategically about the problem.  The idea is for you (as the seller) to have done your homework on what issues your potential customers might be having and focus your selling on the problem they are trying to solve and not the solution that you offer (just yet).

I've already told you about The 24-Hour Customer. It's one of my favorite books for 2010 because of it's focus on time.  In my previous article, I gave you lots of examples from the book about how companies used time and time slicing to squeeze themselves into the ever smaller bits of time that customers have to allocate.

Have you noticed a "Timing" theme too?  In what ways has timing affected market research?

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Creative Ways to Profile Your Ideal Customer in 2011

There are really only two questions that every small business owner needs to answer:

1) Who is my ideal customer?

2) What's important to them?

Once you've answered these -- marketing should not only be easier, I promise it will be more fun and WAY cheaper than you think.

Creative Tips to Profile Your Ideal Customer

  1. Profile a real person. Find a customer you love working with and start your profile there.  Find out what magazines they read, what their hobbies are, the kind of music they like, etc.  It helps to start with a real person and work your way outward toward larger populations.

  2. Create a magazine cover for your ideal customer.  Go and get yourself a sketchbook or poster board.  Then go through magazines that your ideal customers read and pull out pictures, ads, bits of copy that resonate with what you're offering.

  3. Pile of Files: Another of my favorite methods to profile customers is to literally walk over to a file cabinet and pull a customer file.  Look at it and put it on a pile.  Then pull another file and take a look at it.  Would you put it on the same pile as the first or a new pile.  Don't think too much about it - just decide quickly - immediately.  Now go on to the next file and follow the same process.  You'll find that you have intuitively created piles of customers that you feel belong together.  All you have to do is connect the dots as to why they are all together.

  4. Draw your customer's experience. You don't have to be an artist to do a great job of this.  Simply put yourself in your customer's shoes and draw out how they might experience your product.  For a great example, take a look at the web site for one of my favorite books, Back of the Napkin. Draw out what their problems look like and then draw out your solution and the benefits.


I've decided to pull the last step out of the list and describe it separately.  Once you've profiled your customer, you'll be ready to map out what they want, what you offer, the benefit and then ask yourself the most important question -- What if we.... or what else can we....

I've pulled together an "Ideal Customer Worksheet" that you can use to start the profile process for yourself.

You can do this profiling process on your own or you can include your whole team.  The benefit to including your team will be that everyone in your organization will have input into the process and will be on the same page when it comes to creating new product or service offers for your customers.

Give this process a shot and let us know how it worked for you.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Webinar Tues 1/18/11 @ 9am PST: Unlock the Power of Text Analysis with DiscoverText

Tuesday Jan 18th, 2010

9:00 AM PST

Click here to register: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/967147715

Have you ever wanted to learn how to better understand your open-ended text comments?

SurveyAnalytics has partnered up with DiscoverText.com to offer a comprehensive and robust tool that will allow you to self-code, evaluate, and present your open-ended findings that will result in actionable results.

Dr. Stu Shulman, President and CEO of Texifter, LLC, will present the following:

* How to augment your research with powerful, time-saving text tools
* Import thousands of documents from various sources and formats
* Discover information using powerful software and human techniques
* How easy it is to get started! No software to install as our cloud-based application is securely hosted for you.

We will then show you an example using existing data from SurveyAnalytics and how easy it is to send your text files to DiscoverText, set-up codes, and reporting capabilities.

The session with conclude with a Question and Answer Session.
All slides and recording of webinar will be available on blog.surveyanalytics.com within 24 hrs of the presentation.

Space is limited so register today: https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/967147715

About



Texifter, LLC is a spin-out company based on text analysis research by Dr. Stuart Shulman, the founder of QDAP-Pitt and current Director of QDAP-UMass. Over the last 10 years, Dr. Shulman has conducted research primarily in the domain of electronic rulemaking, with a specific focus on the development of human language tools for reviewing large numbers of public comments. Over the past three years, he has been sole inventor on five distinct software applications that support tasks ranging from text classification, blog capture, and manuscript review management, to the development of better annotation for improving optical character recognition. New research focuses on the detection of threats and novel ideas communicated in public comments, blogs and other media. Texifter is a vehicle for the commercialization of new tools developed in the QDAP labs.


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

SurveySwipe Webinar - 8AM PST

Here is the presentation we'll be using for the SurveySwipe Webinar:

Note - if you are viewing this in an email - you'll likely not see the embedded flash presentation from SlideShare - Link to Slideshare below:

[slideshare id=6515045&doc=surveyswipe-webinar-110111030240-phpapp01]

http://www.slideshare.net/bubek/surveyswipe-webinar-jan-11

[brightcove vid=746360916001&exp3=69413262001&surl=http://c.brightcove.com/services&pubid=69222484001&pk=AQ~~,AAAAEB37SCE~,qPzYMoHg_QVXfN_ppi7Wcrgb-jDlNozv&w=486&h=412]



The GotoWebinar link for the webinar itself is here:

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/133167419

Monday, January 10, 2011

Register for SurveySwipe Webinar



Just wanted to remind everyone: Please join us for SurveySwipe - Mobile Research Platform

Tuesday January 11th, 2011 at 8 AM PST

Click on the gotomeeting link below to register for the webinar:

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/133167419



Hello there - I wanted to give you a heads up and a early update on a few very exciting and new businesses we will be launching in Q1 this year - One of them is SurveySwipe - Our mobile research platform.

As you might know, we run a couple different business and brands - QuestionPro, IdeaScale, SurveyAnalytics and MicroPoll. Over the last 3 months of 2010, we've been working on our mobile strategy that can help round out our offering:

SurveySwipe - Mobile Research Platform. As consumers move their lives into their smartphones it's imperative that we follow and innovate on that trend. Along those lines we'll be launching out mobile research solution on Jan 18. The solution is essentially around:



  • A community of users downloading a smartphone app - We are targeting all 4 major smartphone platforms - iPhone/iOS, Android, Windows Phone 7 and BlackBerry for the Jan 18 launch.

  • Users then get points for filling out surveys - incentivized research. Better engagement.

  • Users are also profiled for segmentation purposes (Gender, Age, et. al.)

  • We've partnered with Amazon and Apple to give AMZN Gitft Certs. and Apps as the currency for redeeming points. We believe that, the App model for incentivizing users to take surveys, is not only the appropriate one, but the one of the most innovative solutions in the marketplace today. In fact, we think is innovative enough to apply for a patent in this!

  • Push Notification and Location - obviously both these constructs play a huge role in collecting feedback. Smartphones give us that ability right off the bat.

  •  

Here is our "Pitch Deck" on SurveySwipe.



If you are interested in learning more about SurveySwipe and how it can used for your research initiatives please feel free to reach out to me or your account manager. Depending upon interest level and speed of execution, we are thinking of doing a webinar or have 1-1 conversations around the solution.


Please join us for SurveySwipe - Mobile Research Platform

Tuesday January 11th, 2011 at 8 AM PST

Click on the gotomeeting link below to register for the webinar:

https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/133167419
Thanks and happy new year!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

How to Present Research: Bring Flowers to Your Presentation!

When presenting the dry subject of research, research methodology and research results it is a real challenge to keep your audience awake. In fact you will have people intermittently waking up during your presentation just to tweet about how boring you!! Lucky for us Dr. John Medina wrote the brilliant book ‘Brain Rules’ that can help us understand why that happens and what we can do about it!

John’s book isn’t about bold or brave presentation techniques, but its findings are pure presenter gold because they help us with two things: (1) making sure that we use our brain to its full potential when creating a presentation, and (2) to make sure that we design presentations that  resonate with the brains of our audience. That is why we reworked his book’s value propostion from ‘Surviving at Work, Home, and School’ to ‘Thriving Pitches and Presentations’:



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Consequently, the following explores how John’s Brain Rules can help specifically presenters.

Brain Rule #1 - Exercise boosts brain power.

We are more alert and energetic after a workout. Reason for this is that “exercise gets blood to your brain, bringing it glucose for energy and oxygen to soak up the toxic electrons that are left over. It also stimulates the protein that keeps neurons connecting.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

When you have the initial presentation brainstorming sessions, don’t have your team sit around a box of bagels and doughnuts, but have a ‘stand-up’-meeting, or even better have the discussion while walking around!

Don’t sleep in on the day of the presentation or let the room service bring breakfast to your doorstep. Instead, get up early and get a workout in before you present. At all cost avoid presenting seated. Many prefer this because it is less ‘sales-y’ and you seem part of the audience when having a ‘seat at the table’, but it is all wrong. When the slides go up you lose their attention and become an announcer’s voiceover. You also lose your ability to use bodylanguage. 90% of our communication is non-verbal so it’s like removing 90% of your vocabular (even if you are presenting on the phone, stand up, you and your voice will have a different energy).

Don’t forget that the same logic applies to your audience, so try to have them move during the meeting. Obviously you can’t have them running around, but ask for a raise of hands and you will see audience attention increase noticeably immediately as they raise their hands above their heads (Tony Robbins makes extensive use of this when he does his “Say I”-routine).

Brain Rule #2 - The human brain evolved, too.

Our brain evolved, ”we started with a ‘lizard brain’ to keep us breathing, then added a brain like a cat’s, and then topped those with the thin layer of Jell-O known as the cortex—the third, and powerful, ‘human’ brain.” Medina says that the neocortex gives us the unique ability to form relationships and communicate which helped us survive and climb to the top of the food chain even though we not the fastest, nor the strongest.





[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Make ample use of your ability to create relationships and to connect with people, chances are that there is lot of creative talent hidden in one of your neighboring cubicles that can help you to take your presentations to the next level. Also having a close relationship with your audience (usual internal and external clients) will allow you to understand its needs better and make sure that the presentation really resonates. Building relationships is not easy, and most people avoid anything that goes past the superficial LinkedIn level, but once you go deeper you will really connect with people understand them better and thereby you will be able to help more people and more people will be able and willing to help you.

Brain Rule #3 - Every brain is wired differently.

“What YOU do and learn in life physically changes what your brain looks like – it literally rewires it. We used to think there were just 7 categories of intelligence, but categories of intelligence may number more than 7 billion—roughly the population of the world.  No two people have the same brain, not even twins.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Bottom-line is we are all very different. Savvy companies caught on to that, that is why no two people’s Amazon page looks the same and why there is a whole aisle dedicated to roughly a 100 different kinds of spaghetti sauces in your local supermarket.

For the same reason it is NOT ok to frankenstein your presentation together using parts that were designed by somebody else for a different audience, and it is NOT ok to just use your company’s standard product template!! Take time to learn about your specific audience and create a presentation that caters to that exact audience. You will be surprised how many people will stay awake the next time you present;)

Brain Rule #4 - We don’t pay attention to boring things.

We all know that we don’t pay attention to boring things, “we pay attention to things like emotions, threats and sex. Regardless of who you are, the brain pays a great deal of attention to these questions: Can I eat it? Will it eat me? Can I mate with it? Will it mate with me?”








[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]



This means you need drop all the charts, graphs and numbers, and instead distill the main point out (stick to one point per slide) and communicate it in a way that connects emotionally with the audience.

Example: in a recent presentation at the eTourism summit in New York we tried to communicate the results of a survey that showed that have gotten much more careful with their travel spending. The first version of the slide showed the detailed top two boxes results table for each question and their relative weight; it was like Christmas for data-geeks, but a bore-fest for everybody else. We moved the table details to the notes section, and distilled the true message for the final version of the slide, showing the deathgrip travel customers have one their dollars:



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Brain Rule #5 & 6 - Repeat to remember & Remember to repeat.

Rules number five and six deal with our short and long term memory. “The human brain can only hold about seven pieces of information* for less than 30 seconds! If you want to extend the 30 seconds to a few minutes or even an hour or two, you will need to consistently re-expose yourself to the information. Memories are so volatile that you have to repeat to remember. Repeated exposure to information / in specifically timed intervals / provides the most powerful way to fix memory into the brain.”





[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

For us presenters, that means we should not try to cram fact after fact after fact down our audiences’, but confine ourselves to a handful of key points and repeat those points throughout the presentation. You know you are dealing with a clueless presenter when you hear the words “we have a lot to cover let’s get started…”

*Note to self: it also means that this post should be limited to 7 brain rules, not 12, oh well!

Brain Rule #7 - Sleep well, think well.

Don’t be a hero and come in the office bragging about the all-nighter you pulled! “Loss of sleep hurts attention, executive function, working memory, mood, quantitative skills, logical reasoning, and even motor dexterity. Ever feel tired at 3PM? The brain is in a constant state of tension between cells and chemicals that try to put you to sleep and cells and chemicals that try to keep you awake.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net net]

Accordingly, your priroity should be that you and your audience are well rested when you hold the presentation. Get rest and sleep well the night before, do not spend the whole night in your hotel room changing and adding the slides in the 11th hour, because your boss texted you another oh-so important data point. Your cognitive skills are just not up to par and it just will take you longer to produce lower quality results. Same applies to your audience, but since you don’t have any influence on their bed time all you can do is to make sure you schedule your presentation before the 3pm.

Brain Rule #8 - Stressed brains don’t learn the same way.

“Stress impacts your body’s defense system—the release of adrenaline and cortisol—is built for an immediate response to a serious but passing danger, such as a saber-toothed tiger. Chronic stress, such as hostility at home, dangerously deregulates […], adrenaline creates scars in your blood vessels that can cause a heart attack or stroke, cortisol damages the cells of the hippocampus, crippling your ability to learn and remember.”

This is one of the most important rules to internalize. Not only because you want avoid setting yourself up for a stroke, but because you need to avoid stressing your audience. Packing too much stuff on a slide causes stress and anxiety. They eye does not know what to focus on, or in what order to look at all the data and footnotes you tetrissed (def.: packed too tightly) on your slide. This doesn’t even take the normal stress of correlating your spoken words to the slide content into account. Limit yourself to one point per slide and speak first then introduce the new slide (press ‘W’ or ‘B’ in presentation mode to whiteout or blackout the screen). Make ample use of whitespace, to minimize cognitive stress.



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Brain Rule #9 - Stimulate more of the senses.

“We absorb information about an event through our senses, translate it into electrical signals (some for sight, others from sound, etc.), disperse those signals to separate parts of the brain, then reconstruct what happened, eventually perceiving the event as a whole. Our senses evolved to work together—vision influencing hearing, for example—which means that we learn best if we stimulate several senses at once.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

In short the more senses you stimulate the easier it will be for your audience to follow and remember your presentation. The information presented will be encoded together with information about smells, sounds, and visuals and will therefore be easier understood and better remembered. The easiest way to achieve this is to provide fresh tasty food for your audience and bring aromatic flowers.

Brain Rule #10 - Vision trumps all other senses.

“We learn and remember best through pictures, not through written or spoken words. We are incredible at remembering pictures. Hear a piece of information, and three days later you'll remember 10% of it. Add a picture and you'll remember 65%. Pictures beat text as well, in part because reading is so inefficient for us. Our brain sees words as lots of tiny pictures, and we have to identify certain features in the letters to be able to read them. That takes time”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]



That means for us that we need to reduce the text on your slides and add pictures. This is best done in three steps: (1) Remove half of the words on your slides, (2) remove half of the words that left, (3) add a picture that ties into the point that you are trying to make.

Brain Rule #11 - Male and female brains are different.

“Women are genetically more complex, because the active X chromosomes in their cells are a mix of Mom’s and Dad’s. Men’s X chromosomes all come from Mom, and their Y chromosome carries less than 100 genes, compared with about 1,500 for the X chromosome.” The difference in genetic complexity corresponds to the way that “men and women respond […} to acute stress: Women activate the left hemisphere’s amygdala and remember the emotional details. Men use the right amygdala and get the gist.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

Rule # 11 ties back to rule #3 that said that everybody is being different already and complicates things even more by telling us that men and women are fundamentally different on a cognitive level. Nowadays you should rarely encounter an audience of only men or women, so you need to make sure that your presentations caters to both in order to effectively communicate. However, if you get a question on a critical point of presentation and from a female attendant you should support your point with emotional detail, whereas it is easier to get away with a “bottom-line is that… ”-comment when you are dealing with the a genetically less complex male specimen.

Brain Rule #12 - We are powerful and natural explorers.

“Babies are the model of how we learn—not by passive reaction to the environment but by active testing through observation, hypothesis, experiment, and conclusion. Babies methodically do experiments on objects, for example, to see what they will do.”



[click here to download these slides via slideshare.net]

If you want your audience to understand and remember your presentation you can not underestimate the importance of rule number twelve. Design and hold your presentation so that your audience can explore the topic with you, draw its own conclusions and test hypotheses. Instead of just just dumping facts and statistics over them. This does not require elaborate presentation design, but is actually very simple: just ask your audience questions (this works best when you single out a specific person in the audience), ask them to contribute their opinions, conclusions and their experiences.

This is often considered a time prohibitive luxury, when it really should be the essential component of any presentation. Because when you do it right you can tie all 12 brain rules easily together and have people are actively participating, stimulating each others thought processes, building relationships by sharing their different opinions and views, having a grand old time at your presentation instead of sleeping through it. Most importantly the audience will remember you and your story.

Now go, buy John’s book here and start using your brains!



Brought to you by www.americanswagger.us, a communication consultancy determined to create bold pitches and brave presentations that woo your audience, and close your deals. For more presentation advice follow americanswagger.us on twitter or like it on  facebook. Thanks!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Gleanster Offers Easy Access to Market Research

Today I wanted to share a resource with you that I just learned about; Gleanster.  There are two things you should take away from this resource:

  1. Great secondary research for anyone dealing with technology companies and products.

  2. An interesting market research opportunity for professional market researchers.


First, let's talk about the secondary research component.  Back in the day, secondary research wasn't all that exciting - or informative.  Of course you had demographics and some completed market reports that you could buy for thousands of dollars.  But these often didn't provide the information you wanted or needed and you were left with data holes that needed to be filled with expensive primary research -- or you just took what you had.

Gleanster is yet another resource for market data that you can use in your marketing plan -- especially if you're in the technology industry.  Here's what Gleanster does:
Gleanster benchmarks best practices in technology-enabled business initiatives, delivering actionable insights that allow companies to make smart business decisions and match their needs with vendor solutions.

You'll find the following kinds of reports on this site:

  • How Top Performers Achieve Business Objectives

  • Social Media Monitoring

  • Social Media Marketing

  • Lead Nurturing


And many, many more.  This is a terrific source for best practices in a variety of areas -- no matter what your industry, you will get worthwhile insight into what the best practices are.

And if you're thinking that your industry isn't represented and it won't be worthwhile for you -- I would disagree.  One of my favorite marketing strategies is called "adapting."  That means that you look and see what other industries are doing and adapt it to your own.  So don't discount this wonderful market research data resource.

How is This a Market Opportunity for Market Research Professionals?

Gleanster speaks to an interesting trend that I see popping up -- ready access to data.  Instead of seeing yourself as market research providers -- you can see yourself as an information provider.  With the rise of DIY Marketing and DIY Marketing research - marketers and business owners that would normally HIRE a market research firm are spending their time and money researching and consuming ready-to-use-data.  In other words, what might have been considered PRIMARY research data is now secondary research data.

Think about that and let us know how this trend occurs to you.  What have you seen in your world about how your customers look for data and in what ways you can take advantage of this trend.

Monday, January 3, 2011

New Research Reveals Goal-Setting Gender Gap

Today is probably the most optimistic day of 2011.  It's the first working day of 2011 and I'm sure that many of us have visions and hopes of a clean slate and are looking at the upcoming year with lots of hopes and visions for good things.

If you aren't into setting goals and resolutions because you just haven't had good results with the process.  I'd recommend you get yourself a copy of Hard Goals: The Secret to Getting From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be by Mark Murphy.

This is book is a combination of "Law of Attraction" theory that focuses on have a clear vision of what you want to create and achieve an combines it with practical goal setting processes.

Just to whet your appetite - here's a release the author's publisher put out about a study that they did that distinguishes the differences in how men and women set goals.

Study Shows Key Differences in How Men and Women Tackle Goals; Surprising Findings Guide the Sexes to Optimize Goal Achievement

Men and women process goals differently, finds a groundbreaking international study of 4,690 men and women released today by Leadership IQ*, one of the world's top providers of leadership training.

 

While the goals men and women pursue are relatively similar (and their failure rate too), the study found four dramatic differences in how each sex approaches and carries out their goals:

 

#1:  Women care about their goals more than men

Because women are more emotionally connected to their goals than men, they’re more likely to stick to their goals when the going gets tough.

 

#2:  Men visualize their goals better than women

Like the visualization used by elite athletes, men more clearly picture their goals than women. This gives them greater direction and focus.

 

#3:  Women are more likely to procrastinate than men

Women feel less urgency to achieve their goals than men.  This results in procrastination, and potentially, goal failure.



#4: Women set tougher goals than men

Women are more likely to leave their comfort zones and set challenging (and even scary) goals. This leads to both greater achievement and fulfillment.

 

 

 

- more -

 

Based on these findings, the following advice is offered to women and men to achieve goals more effectively:



Women:

 

• Women need to spend more time visualizing and picturing their goals. This could mean pictures, drawings, vision boards, etc., but whatever the form, women need to tap into the focus and direction that men get from more clearly picturing their goals.

 

• Women need to attach a greater sense of urgency to their goals, avoiding procrastination by setting more urgent deadlines, immediate rewards, limiting choices, etc.

 

• Women need to accomplish at least one thing each day that pushes them closer to their goals. By asking “What must I have accomplished today in order to keep on track to achieve my goals,” women can achieve higher levels of focus and urgency.

 

Men:

 

• Men need to develop more emotional attachment to their goals. Pursuing a goal without a deep emotional commitment can lead to wavering. Whether the commitment is intrinsic, extrinsic or personal, men must answer “why do I really care about achieving this goal?”

 

• Men need to set more difficult goals. Men need to increase the difficulty of their goals by asking themselves questions like ‘what will I have to learn to achieve this goal?’ ‘How will I grow as a person as a result of this goal?’ ‘What new skills will I have acquired by virtue of pursuing this?’ If men find that their goals aren’t stretching their minds (and helping them leave their comfort zone), they should increase their goals' difficulty by 20%.

 

• Men need to generate more social accountability for their goals. This doesn’t mean that men have to tweet or facebook post about their goals, but should identify somebody in their lives who will engage and help them stay on track toward their goals each day. This helps keep men emotionally connected to their goals and ensures they keep them appropriately difficult.



The failure rates for both sexes have been staggering -- in fact, some 85% of New Year’s Resolutions are abandoned within just 90 days.

 

 

 

 

- more -

 

 

 

 

"With a heightened awareness of our differences, we can each achieve our important goals more effectively -- not just New Year's resolutions, but achieving meaningful goals all year long," notes Mark Murphy, founder and CEO of Leadership IQ, and author of HARD Goals: The Secret to Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be (Nov 12, 2010; McGraw-Hill).

 

About Leadership IQ

 

Leadership IQ is a top-rated provider of goal-setting training, leadership training, employee surveys and e-learning. As the force behind some of the largest leadership studies ever conducted, Leadership IQ’s programs have yielded remarkable results for such organizations as Microsoft, IBM, MasterCard, Merck, MD Anderson Cancer Center, FirstEnergy, Volkswagen and Johns Hopkins.

 

Leadership IQ’s research has been featured in Fortune, Forbes, BusinessWeek, U.S. News & World Report, Washington Post, as well as on ABC’s 20/20, CBS News Sunday Morning, Fox News, among others news outlets. Founded by bestselling author and leadership expert Mark Murphy, Leadership IQ’s research can also be found in his books, including Hundred Percenters: Challenge Your People to Give It Their All and They’ll Give You Even More, and his latest book HARD Goals: The Secret to Getting from Where You Are to Where You Want to Be. Leadership IQ is headquartered in Washington, DC with offices in Atlanta, GA and Cincinnati, OH. www.leadershipiq.com

 

Survey Process

 

During September-October, 2010, Leadership IQ surveyed 4,690 individuals about their goals (2,506 women and 2,184 men responded). Study participants came from a range of countries with the majority coming from the United States and Canada.

 



























 

Geographic participation

United States                                                                                     88.52%
Canada5.68% 
Europe1.54% 
Asia1.39% 
Other (including Australia, Africa, South America)2.87%

 
 

 

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Can You Really Take QR Codes Too Far?

A can't say that there's no humor in market research!

Over at Research Access, Dana Stanley contributes his artwork as a statement on taking QR codes entirely too far --

I'm not sure if he's altogether off base with this.  QR codes have been on again and off again in terms of popularity.  Most of the problem lies with people not really knowing how to use them.

Here are a few selected articles that you can explore to see creative ways to use QR codes

Mobile QR Codes: Check out this insane guy who put a QR code on his cow

Creating an impact: This company used a giant Microsoft tag to attract and grab trade show visitors

50 QR code examples: Not sure what to do with your QR codes - try any of these 50 QR code examples.

Hospitals: Even hospitals use QR codes!  My favorite examples is Hershey Medical center where they use QR codes to download maps for the hospital - YES!

So don't forget about using QR codes this is the ideal time to start planning how you will use QR codes in your business and with your market research.

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