Articles and Updates

Avoiding Failure By Walking Away From Success

Success is often impending failure in disguise.

July 10, 2017

Success is often impending failure in disguise. Witness Blackberry and Motorola which doubled down on current products without listening to consumers about the future.  The keyboard and thin trends were too enticing to abandon. In the early 2000s, I did a lot of mobile handset research. The writing was on the flip-charts that consumers wanted […]

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Pulsing Between Personas

People are not black and white. They're shades of grey.

June 12, 2017

Companies spend millions on buyer segmentation profiles.  While accurate to some degree, they are not fully revealing. Today’s buyers are fickle, conflicted, and tortured. They may feel X today about a product but Y tomorrow.   They pulse between different behaviors while continuously trading up and down with buying decisions. It does not mean companies should […]

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100 Words Or Less

Our new approach to blogging.

May 3, 2017

We’re flooded with content.  Blogs. Newsletters.  Social media.  You cannot read it all and neither can we.  Yet, as you want to keep in touch with your customers, we want to keep in touch with you. Starting today, the only non-project related emails from me will be 100 words or less with no fancy graphics and […]

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Lately, when I ask people about some of the most interesting new products they have seen, they mention ones that are not even on the market. Kickstarter and, to a lesser extent, brethren crowd funding sites such as Indigogo and Rockethub have become emporiums of innovative new products that capture consumers’ imaginations and checkbooks. Indeed, […]

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The Failure of Price

March 9, 2017

Pricing is one of the most important questions researchers ask. Is it too much? Too little? Can we charge more? Can we charge less? In traditional qualitative, researchers often ask about pricing in ways that bring many pitfalls. Typically, such questions are the result of last-minute requests to get some “feedback on pricing,” rather than […]

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Join Us for Dinner

February 12, 2017

Hosting a dinner party instead of a focus group takes courage, but that courage is rewarded with authenticity. See what happened when we got together with this group to talk about travel over dinner…  

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Answering The “To-be-Done” In Customer Jobs Research

January 14, 2017

Over the last few years, the “jobs to be done” framework has steadily risen in popularity with marketers of all sorts.  Made popular by Clayton Christensen, the esteemed Harvard professor, JTBD theory explains that innovations succeed when consumers “hire” products for jobs-to-be-done. A quick scan of the net provides countless examples of viewing the demand […]

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Why I Work With Independent Recruiters

December 11, 2016

With a few exceptions, I always use a single outside recruiter for my projects regardless of where they occur.  It’s best for my clients and best for me. Simply put – facilities (and online qualitative technology providers) are in a different business than recruiters.  The former’s role is to ensure that I have the right […]

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A Guitar Amp Shows What’s Wrong With So Much Research

November 4, 2016

Why do most new products fail despite the vast sums of money spent on research and marketing?   The answer is this: market researchers often ask the wrong questions. Let me explain why by switching hats – from interviewer to consumer. The Guitar Amp The other day I received a very expensive electric guitar from a […]

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Extreme Co-Branding In Hotels – A Talk Show Research Study

October 21, 2016

In the hotel industry, co-branding is nothing new.  Guests are accustomed to branded toiletries and the familiar “We serve Starbucks” complimentary in-room coffee packets.  In some higher end properties, there may even be branches of a renowned spa or restaurant. However, a recent Candor Company project with frequent travelers suggests that travelers may want a […]

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