Versta Research Blog

Versta Research Blog

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Versta Research is a marketing research and public opinion polling firm that helps you answer critical questions with customized research and analytical expertise.

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Versta Research Blog

Explore industry trends, research methods, and tips for your own research projects in the Versta Research Blog. All opinions are our own, and some may change over time.

First time reader? Check out the Best of the Blog for the most popular posts from almost 10 years of blogging. We’re glad you’re here.

Help Save the Census Today

Help Save the Census Today

It’s the week after Independence Day. You’re doing your best to re-focus on work after the holiday break. If only it could have lasted a few days longer! I can’t bring you a few more days vacation, but I can offer this suggestion for making the holiday last just a wee bit longer: Bring some…

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How to Ask Gender on Surveys

How to Ask Gender on Surveys

Gender used to be one of the easiest questions to write for a survey. There was male and there was female, so we simply asked: “Which are you?” But our culture has begun acknowledging the fluidity of gender identity and gender assignment, and now, too, must survey research. Just this week we had a potential…

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PR Studies: Advice for the Research Team

PR Studies: Advice for the Research Team

Research for PR is definitely not “research lite” as my former boss used to think. It is the opposite, and requires more attention to rigor than strategic research. Why? Because no other research gets such intense scrutiny from people outside our firm and from audiences beyond our clients. It can’t be “directional.” It has to…

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Public Release Studies: Advice for the PR Team

Public Release Studies: Advice for the PR Team

Just back from LIMRA’s 2017 Marketing and Research Conference, I am happy to report a successful and productive “meeting of the minds” from both the Marketing Side and the Research Side of this uniquely blended gathering of financial services professionals. No matter what some may say, research is not part and parcel of marketing. Nor…

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Versta Blog Makes Public Opinion Quarterly

Versta Blog Makes Public Opinion Quarterly

This familiar sentence opens the lead article of Public Opinion Quarterly’s 2017 special issue on survey research: “Telephone surveys are dead, claim some survey researchers, and should be replaced with nonprobability samples from Internet panels.” Hmm, I’ve said something similar to that in the past, I thought to myself. I guess I’m not the only…

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Five Cautions for Crowdsourcing

Five Cautions for Crowdsourcing

There is a small academic niche in market research that relies heavily on extremely cheap crowdsourcing for data. But before getting up in arms about the reliability and validity of such data, you should know this: They used to rely heavily on students enrolled in their college classes for data. Remember having to work six…

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When to Use Multi-Check vs. Yes-No Questions

When to Use Multi-Check vs. Yes-No Questions

Here are two ways you might ask a question to document multiple behaviors, purchases, interests, etc. They seem like they would be equivalent, but they are not. The first is called a multi-check format: The second is called a yes-no grid: If respondents were super careful, thoughtful, and unbiased in how they answer, the information…

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Good Reasons to Ask Bad Questions

In the Versta Research spring newsletter, Build a Better Customer Satisfaction Survey, we mentioned—but did not speak to—the seventh question in our newly developed survey for clients. It was added at the last minute. We put it right at the top, so it is the first question you see. If you didn’t yet test drive…

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