Marketing Research Happenings

RG+A : Reconsidering the Value of Small Samples in Marketing Research by Bruce Duncan Do you remember the famous line from Animal Farm, “Two legs bad, four legs good”? I suspect that we quantitative researchers have a similar one that goes “small samples bad, big samples good.” Small samples make us nervous. We can’t believe they are representative or that they can capture the diversity of a large population. We have visions of extreme groups dominating the results. When we hear “small sample,” we fear the outcome will be misleading. The time has come that we should be reconsidering the value of small samples in marketing research.
RG+A : Lessons in Simulation 1: How a Negative Debate Led to a Positive Solution by Roger Green Prescribing simulation emerged 20 years ago from the verbal and philosophical equivalent of a food fight over the best way to test a physician’s price sensitivity for medicines. (Irony alert: back in those days, doctors never cared). There were fundamentally two camps: conjoint and monadic. The conjoint camp argued that a basic choice exercise could indicate the relative importance of price in the offering for a new pharmaceutical as well as thresholds at which price beings to matter. The monadic camp argued that any method in which physicians could manipulate price of a medicine was inherently flawed.
RG+A : It Took Twenty Years to Become an Overnight Sensation by Roger Green At a Spring PMRG meeting, the highest rated presentation, given before a standing-room-only audience, debuted a new mode of marketing research called patient simulation. The presentation focused on how this method provided more reliable data than traditional allocation and estimation methods and improved response and interview completion rates dramatically.
RG+A : Can Patient Chart Pulls Help Predict Physician Behavior? by Tim Deckman Patient chart pulls offer significant advantages to allocation studies, but come with their own set of weaknesses. In a patient chart pull, physicians bring actual patient charts into the study and relay information about their patients and their treatments to researchers. One benefit of a patient chart pull is that they can offer a wealth of information about real-life patients. Researchers can look at physician treatment decisions across any of the patient characteristics collected.
RG+A : Estimating physician treatment behavior with allocation – we can do better! by Tim Deckman Predicting how physicians will act in the future is at the heart of almost every healthcare commercialization challenge. Having accurate information on how physicians are using currently-available medications as well as how likely they are to use future medications informs a multitude of decisions, from pricing to positioning to in-licensing, among others. For example, creating a launch forecast for a new drug is an extremely demanding task, and there is too much at stake to risk having anything but the most accurate information possible on future physician behavior.
RG+A : Can Qualitative Research Be Used to Detect Segments? by Bruce Duncan Many factors determine sample size for qualitative research. They usually include practical considerations such as size of budget, number of unique groups being interviewed and in the case of in-person, the number of cities in which interviews are being conducted. They may also include subjective “comfort” factors such as what has been done in the past and good old “gut feel” for what will be sufficiently reassuring and persuasive to decision makers.
RG+A : Everything I Should’ve Known About Urgent Care Centers But Didn’t by Colin DiBenedetto What are urgent care centers and how many of them are there? Urgent care centers (UCCs) are typically stand-alone locations where a person can see a medical professional for an unexpected acute condition or event. Such events might include respiratory conditions, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, urinary tract infections, rashes, insect bites and headaches, minor sprains, strains, cuts, fractures and the like. Urgent care facilities differ from primary care offices in a number of ways: no appointment is necessary, operating hours are typically longer and include nights, weekends, and holidays, and expanded services are typically available (e.g., x-ray, lab services, casting).
RG+A : Failure is not an option by Kevin Kelly Regardless of what we call it – business intelligence, customer advocacy, decision support – the fact of the matter is that the needs and expectations of marketing research’s customers have evolved, and we as an industry need to evolve with them. Whether you are a marketing research supplier or you work within a client-side department, “value” has become the yardstick by which we are all measured.
RG+A : Telling Suppliers Your Project Budget by Bruce Duncan There seems to be an unwritten rule that says you should never share your project budget with a market research supplier. It probably derives from a concern that letting suppliers know your budget is an invitation for them to take advantage of you. You will end up with three bids all on or near your budget whether that is the true project cost or not.
RG+A : How Should Marketing Research Resolve Its Identity Crisis? by Roger Green Over the last ten years, colleagues in marketing research have, like Ms. Capulet, lamented the name of our profession. We’ve seen the groups that execute marketing research in major biopharma companies shift their names to labels such as “Business Intelligence,” “Customer Insights,” “Business Insights and Analytics,” “Marketing Sciences,” “Disease Class Analytics”— very nearly anything except for… “Marketing Research.”
RG+A : Balancing Process and Red Tape in a Small Professional Services Company by Tim Phelan Standard operating procedures (SOPs) aren’t always glamorous, but they can be vitally important to ensuring a healthy and efficient organization. But how do you know when too much process has turned your organization into a bureaucracy, where employees are ignoring independent decision making in favor of blindly adhering to some steps in a training manual?
RG+A : The Four-Month Black Hole by Roger Green Last week, I called a client who serves of CEO of a publicly traded company to discuss a study we had recently completed. With study results and models in hand, he was in the process of negotiating a major acquisition. He stressed how helpful our work was in guiding him to a “win-win” posture. When the discussion turned to future projects, he said, “I’m too busy to think about anything until at least July.” However, when I asked about future strategic challenges, he described a pivotal issue that will require a decision in four months.