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

Bon Appétit’s Big Lie Survey

I received this e-mail invitation because I subscribe to Bon Appétit: Important survey from Bon Appétit – We need your help to get 100% participation. At Bon Appétit, we really care what you think. That’s why, as Vice President & Publisher of Bon Appétit, I’m personally asking for your help with this online survey. As…

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Versta Research Post

Newsrooms Flooded with Silly Surveys

Journalists and newsrooms are inundated with ever more data, information, and press releases that highlight survey findings in hopes of grabbing reporters’ and readers’ interest.  While many surveys are poorly done and grossly self-serving, findings from other research surveys continue to generate newsworthy stories. Consider this view recently expressed by a business columnist at the…

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Versta Research Post

Rules of Thumb for Survey Length

It is hard to resist the temptation of asking “just one more question” when you’ve got an engaged respondent answering your survey questions online or on the phone.  But it is crucial to do so because plenty of research shows that longer surveys result in bad data.  Survey respondents may be willing to answer just…

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Versta Research Post

Do You Have a “Metrics” Fetish?

If there is a downside to the success of research in helping organizations make smarter decisions, it is the belief among some business colleagues that research is needed all the time, everywhere, and for everything.  It is manifest in an obsessive focus on dashboards, KPIs, analytics, customer satisfaction surveys, pop-up website surveys, net promoter scores,…

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Versta Research Post

Finding Insights in Virgin’s Data

One lesson I have learned serving on the board of the American Marketing Association in Chicago is that for most companies, research and marketing can no longer be separated.  Why not?  Because marketers now deal with immense volumes of data.  If they want to make smart decisions and execute campaigns effectively, they need to use…

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Versta Research Post

Webinar on Polling for News and PR

Election years are a perfect time to learn about (and brush up on) the fundamentals of survey research.  Not only are the airwaves inundated with public opinion polling, but methodological experts are called upon to talk about developments and current best practices as new technologies and methods become central to measuring consumer and public opinion…

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Versta Research Post

Just Published: Handbook of Web Surveys

Many of us in marketing research have been deploying web surveys for over ten years, and web surveys are, by far, the dominant mode of data collection in our industry nowadays.  But our techniques and methods are an amalgam of practices adapted from other data collection modes, learned in part through trial and error, and…

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Versta Research Post

Focus Groups Save Spider-Man!

In last year’s cliffhanger episode of “Can a Focus Group Save Spider-Man?” we pondered whether market research was powerful enough to save a Broadway show from doom and destruction.  After crushing reviews from theater critics, the producers hired a market research firm to help them rewrite the show. Guess what?  It worked. 

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A Path to Better Research with Geo-Maps

A Path to Better Research with Geo-Maps

Given how common mapping capabilities have become via the Internet and smartphones, it is surprising that we don’t see more geographic mapping in market research.  Researchers nearly always look at customer demographics, and a key component of a person’s demographic profile is where he or she lives.  This data is far more compelling if you…

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Versta Research Post

Your Margin of Error Is Probably Wrong

Even if you are not involved in political polling, it is worth paying attention to the methods and best practices of political pollsters.  One reason is that few other areas of research offer a way to completely validate one’s methods.  Pollsters are using sampling and survey methods to predict the behaviors of a much larger…

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