Client Point of View--With Regina Lewis

September 28, 2007

What is your most memorable research project you have ever worked on?

1997 extensive in-home ethnographic study of how women were using the internet. I did this in conjunction with P&G, and it really changed the way we all (I was at Networks at the time) viewed chat, info seeking, and much more!

How would you categorize the state of online research?

Online research is well on its way to full acceptance. I know that at this point, I only use phone for specific market questions that require sample beyond what current online panels can provide.

Is Ethnography playing a bigger role in your research plans? If so, how?

I have been a fan and user of ethnography for over 10 years now; however, I do see colleagues using it more extensively -- even internationally! I, personally, will embark on in-home work in China this winter

What do you think is the greatest need in the market research industry?

I say this throughout my press interviews ... but I will repeat it. The greatest need is for enhanced supplier quality control.

What type of research are you most frustrated with regarding it's ROI?

I can't truly answer this, Merrill. I am not a believer that research -- in any form -- lends itself to true ROI analysis. The potential costs of *not* conducting insights work are so high that they typically are immeasurable. At the most extreme, in my view, we should be pushing internal clients to think in terms of outcome / scenario planning versus research ROI.

How would you characterize the quality of the deliverables in 2007 vs. previous years?

I have seen a decrease in the quality of supplier deliverables. The year 2007, for my team, was wrought with data quality issues, poor judgment regarding everything from design to weighting, and powerpoint decks that needed to be reworked. I am confident that 2008 will be more solid. :)

From your standpoint what is the hottest trend in market research?

Probably, social media insights work. I personally have two calls in upcoming weeks to explore such possibilities.

What research conferences do you think you will you be attending in 2008?

I would like to attend Conference Board Council on MR meetings, + an Innovation conference (this may or may not be produced by the MR industry), + a Forrester conference. We will see.

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