Oct 22, 2012

Highlights from the 37th Annual CASRO Conference

Written by: Diane Wagner

RPA recently attended and exhibited at CASRO’s 37th Annual Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona (October 8 – 11, 2012). As members of CASRO, we attend this event every year.

First off, as usual for this conference, it was fantastic seeing a variety of C-suite executives and company heads from within the Market Research Industry – from companies such as Toluna, SSI, Paradigm Sample, Harris Interactive, Vision Critical (and many, many more).

Then, there was the gorgeous setting of the Four Seasons Resort in Scottsdale.  What’s not to love about the Four Seasons – frankly anywhere – let alone in such a beautiful setting, high in the Sonoran Desert?

Four Seasons Resort, Scottsdale, at Troon North

Equally stimulating were the sessions.  Below, we’ve summarized just three that stood out to us.

1.Shelley Zalis – Chief Executive Officer, Ipsos Open Thinking Exchange

A 20-year veteran of the Market Research industry, Shelley carries a big stick with any MR crowd – including the one at CASRO.  When she strongly admonished the audience for thinking that they understood social media (but really didn’t), you could hear a pin drop.  While Shelley’s a compelling speaker, it’s her passion for social media – and its implications for the industry – that’s truly riveting.

Of particular note, Shelley referenced Andrew Robertson from BBDO who compared learning social media with learning a new language – essentially, that there are 3 phases:
  1. I can understand you but I can’t talk (you can’t speak the language – for example: Spanish);
  2. I can understand you and I can talk (ex: you can now speak Spanish); and
  3. Oh my gosh!  I just had a dream in {Spanish}!  The trick, he believes, is to get everyone to dream in digital.

In Shelley’s mind, we’re still in phase 1 and need to get out – fast!

No doubt, Eric’s credentials (and credibility) is impressive – currently Vice-Dean and Director, Wharton Doctoral Programs, The K.P. Chao Professor, Professor of Marketing, Statistics and Education and Co-Director of the Wharton Customer Analytics Initiative at The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.  Whew – I’ve got to take a break after all that typing.

Sorry, I’m back.  Eric talked about “The Golden Age of Market Research is Now – And I’ve Only Said That to Myself 5 Times Over My Career”.  He covered the evolution of the MR Industry from the 1950s onward focusing on how each era seemed to be the Golden Age but wasn’t (including today).  In order to get to that truly Golden Age, he feels MR needs to do three key things:

  • Better incorporate the use of new technologies and  tools (including web scraping, user generated content, sentiment analysis) with traditional approaches;
  • Better converge data from multiple sources (big data and traditional data) – in real time – with more automation; and
  • Balance the need to leverage technologies for research with the need to protect privacy (to do that, Eric is focusing on data aggregation).

3. Carol Haney (VP, Global Product Marketing, Toluna) & Mihkel Jaatma (Founder/CEO, Realeyes)

Together, they presented a case study on a new method for copy testing using a tool to read emotional expressions from faces.  Based on the fact that only a tiny bit of human’s brains are actually conscious, Mihkel from Realeyes introduced a new tool for research which captures and analyzes facial expressions in real-time.  Their case study showed how ads from the London Olympics were tested by equating different facial expressions with various emotions such as “happy,” “angry,” and “surprised.”  This appears to be an innovational methodology that just may help the industry to consider neuroscience-related methods easier to understand and more within reach from a cost perspective. 

So, once again, a great, thought-provoking conference – and one which we look forward to attending next year without doubt.

Oct 5, 2012

RPA to Attend CASRO 37th Annual Conference

Written by: Diane Wagner

Scottsdale, Here We Come! 

RPA’s US Team continues on with a very busy conference season.  Less than a week after the AMA Research & Strategy Summit in Las Vegas, we will exhibiting at CASRO’s 37th Annual Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona.  As members of CASRO, RPA attends this event every year.

Entitled, “Taking Control: Strategies for Transformative Times,” this year’s conference should have something for everyone – lessons from Wharton and Stanford, nuggets from social networking giants Facebook and Google, and a dive into Social CRM from Gartner.
So, when we’re not at the Booth, what will we be trying to check out?  There’s a lot to choose from, including:

  • Google’s entrĂ©e into DIY surveys (Paul McDonald from Google will share how Google plans to make custom market research easy);
  • Facebook’s Sean Bruich (Head of Measurement Platforms & Standards) will discuss how MR firms can best integrate data from a multitude of new sources; and
  • Exploring social behavior with Mark Earls, author of I’ll Have What She’s Having (the title alone makes me want to check this out).

Troon North Golf Club 

Besides the intellectual fodder, the CASRO Annual always has great recreational activities to enjoy.  This year, we can choose from:

  1. A golf outing at the renowned Troon North Golf Club (I don’t play golf but, depending on who’s going, maybe I’ll caddie?)
  2. A scenic river tour (with no rapids!) to introduce guests to the beauty of the Sonoran Desert.
  3. An excursion to Old Town Scottsdale to discover the heart and soul of the city.  Boutiques, art galleries, restaurants – oh my!  This may be the ticket for me ...
So, if you’ll be attending, we hope to see you – at the RPA Booth, a session and/or an outing!  

Oct 4, 2012

Research Panel Asia Turns 3 and Wins 2012 Red Herring Asia 100

Written by: Diane Wagner

This Award Signifies RPA Is Poised for Tremendous Growth

This is an exciting time for us at Research Panel Asia.  On October 1st, we celebrated our three-year anniversary.  And, just prior to that, on September 12th, winning a place on the 2012 Red Herring Asia 100! 

Since 1996, technology industry executives, investors, and strategists have valued the Red Herring Top 100 lists for discovering and advocating the most promising private ventures from around the world.  The Red Herring 100 Asia celebrates the exceptional accomplishment of Asian technology companies and entrepreneurs, recognizing those companies best positioned for explosive growth.  For the 2012 awards, Red Herring editors selected a short list of the most innovative and promising companies from a pool of hundreds across Asia.

To win, our CEO, Toshiki Sano, presented at the Red Herring 100 Asia Event in Hong Kong, China held September 10 – 12, 2012.  The event brought together 200 C-level technology entrepreneurs, corporate strategists, and venture financiers from across Asia to present their companies in the final stage of judging.  Sano-san presented a compelling case for why RPA is positioned for tremendous financial performance and growth, including:

  • A client base that includes more than 70 of the world’s largest market research and online research firms from around the globe;
  • An unparalleled ability to meet demands in emerging markets through a combination of RPA’s local insight, 24/7 operations, high quality and low cost; and
  • A very aggressive growth strategy to expand throughout APAC – and beyond.

CEO Toshiki Sano Winning Red Herring Asia 100

Everyone at RPA is thrilled to be a 2012 Red Herring Asia 100 winner!  And we’re looking forward to much more industry recognition in the future as we move forward.