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.

Versta Research Post

Research Could Have Spared J. C. Penney

We’re all for ditching research when you have strong intuitions about your business and have no pressing questions that need to be answered.  But too many business leaders are now following in the footsteps of Steve Jobs who was notorious for believing that consumers can’t tell you what they want. Aggressively ignoring market research has…

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Tell Me What I’m Doing Wrong

Tell Me What I’m Doing Wrong

If you have ever done “clicker training” with a dog, you know how amazingly effective positive rewards are in training, versus the old-fashioned method of “correction” and negative feedback.  Identify and reward the behavior you want, and you can teach an old dog new tricks within hours.  It works for people too, which is why…

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Versta Research Post

Why You Don’t Need Big Data

Some business managers and marketing executives mistakenly believe that “big data” will deliver better insight because of the sheer volume of data now at our disposal. Now we just need the statisticians, the computing power, and the analytics software to sift through it all, right? Not so. The truth is, for most purposes you don’t…

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Versta Research Post

Video: Why Research Takes So Long

Or better yet, we might say “Why GOOD Research Takes So Long.”  Our answer (before you feel inspired by the video embedded below) is that good research is creative and thoughtful and takes a great deal of intellectual energy at several crucial points: It puzzles over multiple ways (including data sources and methods) to get…

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Versta Research Post

Why I Love Creating PR Surveys

After leaving academic research for the world of applied research, I found myself doing a lot of surveys for public relations.  These surveys are designed to uncover surprising or newsworthy nuggets of data that companies use to focus attention on topics relevant to their concerns.  My first boss despised such work, believing that a public…

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Versta Research Post

The Best Way to Record Phone Interviews

We are in the midst of a couple projects that require in-depth telephone interviews (IDIs) with senior executives for B2B research.  With every new project, we start wondering whether new technologies and tools can make the work better.  For IDIs, however, I am always struck by how perfectly our old tools work.  If you ever…

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Versta Research Post

Get Smart This Summer

I was the kid who skipped recess to help grade quizzes; the graduate student who delayed getting a degree because it meant the end of school; the professor who told students that he was now in the 33rd grade and still loved school. Even now I can’t resist reviewing great opportunities for more coursework and…

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Versta Research Post

What Data Can’t Do

The title for this post quotes one of today’s New York Times editorials.  It perfectly captures something essential about our work that we need to trumpet as loudly as we evangelize the power and benefits of research.  Data can’t do everything.  In fact, the bigger the data, the less it can do relative to the…

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Versta Research Post

Seeing Red, Consumers Pay More (or Less)

“Mere color, unspoiled by meaning, and unallied with definite form, can speak to the soul in a thousand different ways,” wrote Oscar Wilde in The Critic as Artist. That’s just the problem for market research and consumer behavior.  Few design aspects of products, packages, brands, logos, advertising, and environments are more subjective than color.  Which…

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