Tag Archives: poll

The Fascinating Founders Of Market Research

 

In a past article, I created the quote: “Those who do not learn from market research history are doomed to average data.” As far as I know, the quote hasn’t made it to any social media memes or posters with cats. I still stand by it. I’ve advocated the importance of retaining some understanding (and context) of the history of market research—on this blog and in such sites like The American Marketing Association. As with the pioneering concepts of Edward Bernays, many market research ideas can actually go full circle and become relevant today.

In this article, I present a summary of all the principal Founders of Market Research. I drew from various resources, but mainly from Paul A. Scipione’s A Nation of Numbers: The Development of Marketing Research in America. It’s an excellent book we included in our article The Best Books On Market Research.
Get ready to journey on a Tardis of market research chronicles (or perhaps modified DeLorean if you have more American time travel sensibilities). I believe you will find that these fathers of market research to be far more interesting (and even controversial) than you could have imagined.

 

George H. Gallup (1901-1984)

 

 

Most Americans are aware of the Gallup Poll, but few know about the individual it’s named after, George Gallup, who also happens to be the chief developer of public polling.

Gallup began as a journalism and advertising academic, teaching in such hallowed institutions as Columbia University and Northwestern University. His breakthrough happened in 1932 when he helped his mother-in-law, Ola Babcock Miller, during her election for the position of Iowa for Secretary of State. No Democrat had won statewide office in Iowa since the Civil War. Gallup’s polling of the counties gifted Miller the insights to understand voters. The only question on his questionnaire was, “What are you most worried about?” Miller calibrated her political message depending on the majority answer of each county. This resulted in a landslide victory.

The Iowa election not only propelled Gallup to nationwide celebrity, it eventually led him to found the American Institute of Public Opinion, which soon became a perennial bellwether for national politics. His one black eye would be his calling for Thomas Dewey against Harry Truman in 1948 (Gallup blamed the blunder on closing polling too early).

Market Research Legacy: Gallup was a champion for dry quantitative research, claiming one should focus on the “what” instead of the “why” in research. He held little patience for research that delved into the subconscious motivations of respondents, as well as focus groups in general.

Quote: “I could prove God statistically.”

 

Arthur C. Nielsen (1898-1980)

 

 

Nielsen is also a household name like Gallup. His story is one of how adversity can create opportunity. During the Great Depression, Nielsen’s firm ACN (which tested and measured technologies) struggled like most businesses.

Struggling for income, Nielsen came up with two innovations in 1936: the Nielsen Drug Index (NDI) in 1933 and the Nielsen Radio Index (NRI). These innovations were based on his idea that he could develop a nationwide probability sample of drugstores. His company began auditing key brand statistics like purchase invoices and shelf stock, and then plugging those numbers into a proprietary equation. This analysis produced sales and mark share statistics for competitive brands of the over-the-counter drugs.

Large companies like Johnson & Johnson and Procter & Gamble soon began paying Nielsen for his insights. This gave birth to the power of price reductions, sales, and promotions within stores. In time, ACN became the first market research firm to exceed a billion dollars in annual revenue. Later on, of course, Nielsen entered the television market to become truly immortal.

Nielsen always claimed he “accidentally” entered market research.

Market Research Legacy: Beyond his sample statistic innovations, in 1948 Nielsen’s company built the first ever general-purpose computer, the Univac, for $150,000. Steve Jobs and Bill Gates would later work on cheaper products, thankfully. Moreover, Nielsen Ratings have been the standard-bearer for marketing television for decades.

Quote: “The price of light is less than the cost of darkness.”

 

Alfred Politz (1902-1982)

 

 

In this pantheon, Alfred Politz balances the dry countenance of Nielsen. His life is closer to that of a movie star or international spy.

Politz worked as a marketer in Germany in the 1930s, even though he was a physicist by education. He fled his homeland to the US, aided by chewing gum magnate William Wrigley. The reason was that Politz feared that Hitler would force him to work on weapons of mass destruction.

Once in America, Politz worked in advertising, claiming he wanted a job where he could make the most money for the least amount of thinking. His fiery personality led him through many companies, producing great marketing work but also great enemies. Eventually, he founded Alfred Politz Research, Inc., which would become a chief market research firm. His company dominated the development and implementation of new quantitative methods for advertising research for nearly 30 years. During his meteoric rise, he lived the life of a rock star: flamboyant and hedonistic (and often entertaining to the press).

Market Research Legacy: His advocacy of random probability sampling shaped market research. His influential, high-visibility studies for Life Magazine became legendary in marketing circles.

Quote: “Repeat exposure without repeat payment.”

 

Ernest Dichter (1911-1991)

 

 

We provided an exposition in Freud and The Intriguing History of the Focus Group. Like Politz, Dichter was a complex and fascinating character, a press celebrity who even appeared on The Tonight Show. Furthermore, the Viennese Dichter also came to America to avoid Hitler, but the reason was that he was a Jew.

Ironically, Dichter and Politz were lifelong enemies, their antagonism a symbol of the yin and yang tension of qualitative and quantitative polarities.

Certainly, Dichter was a trailblazer of qualitative research, as well as a Freudian who believed in manipulating the “beast mode” forces bubbling in the human subconscious. From phallic-looking cigarettes to the legendary tiger in the gas tank, Dichter played with symbols and archetypes to manipulate consumers.

Market Research Legacy: Developed and perfected the focus group (and coined the term), permanently injected psychology into market research.

Quote: “What people actually spend their money on in most instances are psychological differences, illusory brand images.”

 

Charles Coolidge Parlin (1872 – 1942)

 

 
Like Nielsen, you could say Charles Parlin accidentally entered market research.

A Wisconsin schoolteacher with no marketing experience, Parlin was hired by Curtis Publishing Company in 1911. He didn’t even receive a job title. His job was to provide better advertising insights on an agriculture magazine the company had recently bought.

Parlin created market research out of thin air, from data gathering to best practices, interviewing subjects and breaking down the findings in sober numbers. Almost overnight after his groundbreaking work for Curtis Publishing, logical rule replaced intuition in the marketing world. He eventually started his own firm, National Analyst, and further pioneered market research as we know it.

Market Research Legacy: Founded the first market research company in history, parlayed one set of simple insights into an entire set of standards that still govern market research and general marketing to this day.

Quote: “Advertising, properly applied, reduces selling cost. The consumer pays the expense of advertising which therefore justifies itself.”

 

Conclusion

 

 

If there is a main takeaway to the lives of these individuals, it would be that market research is often as accidental as it is analytical. It’s a cauldron of invention as it is a laboratory of data, producing a $24 billion a year industry that employs more than 150,000 workers nationwide. Also, market research doesn’t have to by dry and rigid, or at least perceived as such, and that often common sense rules the day for individuals trying to make sense of market forces.

Most of us probably won’t appear on The Tonight Show or have to worry about fleeing despotic governments. Nevertheless, we can have a good time and change the flow of this nation of numbers.

 

A version of this article appears in Quirks

 

3 Aspects of a Valid Online Survey

Woman's hand taking online survey on smartphone

Delivering the perfect online survey. Does it exist or is it as mythical as dragons, fairies or the Cubs winning the World Series?

We can speculate, but as researchers we can also ensure we provide the best possible surveys for respondents. There are many methods to do this, much of it shared on qSample’s blog. One key way is to warrant that an online survey comprises certain aspects that make it valid.

According to Russell Renka, political science professor at Southern Missouri University, there are three aspects to a valid survey/poll. To exclude any of these, in Renka’s view, means the data will be dangerously flawed.

Here they are:

  1. The questions asked must be clear, written in neutral language and provide a range of answers to choose from.

This might be basic for marketers, but often unclear or even subconsciously-driven messages can tilt the survey towards flawed data. For example, a client’s survey utilizing our veterinarian panel once asked: “Do you think microchipping dogs might lead to a safer life for the animal?”

The problem was the obscure “might” in the question. The researcher was in essence vacillating. Therefore, the answer to the question would be compromised. (We made sure to bring this to his attention, of course).

In other words, be clear and concise and short. Furthermore, as we’ve promoted, include opt-out questions like “Don’t Know,” “Not Sure” or “Undecided.”

Your panel will thank you with richer data and not microchip your research with failure.

 

  1. The respondents must be randomly selected.

Yes, more Captain Obvious information, it seems. Still, marketers often penny pinch and end up drowning in river sample (in fact, Renka denounces a market research company in the cited article, the chief reason he detailed the three aspects of valid online surveys).

Detail must be placed on a questionnaire, indeed, but it also must be placed on the quality of the sampling. Beyond a good online survey provider, double-check the persona of your respondents.

We consider qSample a quality sample provider, of course. Yet there are other companies who specialize in niche panels. They will all take care of your efforts, even if it’s slightly more strain on the proverbial budget.

 

  1. The sample involved must be large enough to keep the margin of error fairly small, about 5 percent.

According to Renka, that should be at least 400 respondents. At 300 respondents, the margin of error grows to 5.6%. Obviously, certain respondent demographics and certain budgets necessitate a sample to be under 400 respondents. But all things being equal, keep your respondent numbers at a healthy size.

There are other aspects (or safeguards) to quality good data in online research, and these may include:

Quality of questionnaire
Quality of project execution
Quality of analysis

We agree with Renka in the end that these three simple aspects can go a long way in making sure your market research doesn’t get more complicated that it needs to be. It may not be perfection, but it’s probably closer to it than the Cubs winning the World Series.

Hard to reach audience button

Will Office for iPad Make Tablets the Tool for Work?

Last month, Microsoft shook the tablet world by finally launching its Office for iPad apps, and the reverberations may be felt for years to come.

While tablets have become extremely popular, with many users preferring smaller to bulky and more awkward laptops, they have yet to truly find their niche in the business world. Even with bluetooth keyboards, and writing tools like Google Docs and iWork, many businesses refuse to adopt the device as a serious business tool. In the academic arena, many students prefer tablets for note taking and research, but find it awkward to use for papers and presentations. The launch of Microsoft’s Office for iPad apps is designed to change all that.

We conducted a survey with our general consumer panel to gauge their level in the new Microsoft Office for iPad app. The survey was fielded in less than 2 days during the first week of April, with more than 400 respondents sharing their insights on this new product and what it means to them professionally.

Survey results clearly indicate that tablets are still very popular with the general populaltion. Unsurprisingly, Apple was king among those devices with  almost half (40.45%) of our panel indicated they own a version of the iPad, but a mere 26.18% claim their primary uses for those tablets are for work and school. Confirming our suspicions, we found that entertainment rules the tablet world, with a staggering 69.12% of our panel logging on for fun. As always, internet surfing, watching videos, and updating social network pages continue to be a staple of tablet use.

Clearly this isn’t a hardware issue, and many who own Apple devices, such as the iPad, prefer to use the Microsoft Office software. This suggests that the new apps will be very well received by tablet owners, but there is a lot more involved than ease of use. Our survey showed that there was a strong positive reaction to the Office for iPad apps, as 63.02% said that they plan on using the new apps now that they are available, yet 76.56% didn’t feel that the apps were worth the $99 subscription fee. This is likely due to the abundance of less powerful, but free, programs/apps that will allow users to run similar tasks. Price does seem to play an enormous role, as 64.58% of our panel is considering the free Microsoft Office smartphone apps as a serious alternative. This poses the question of whether or not smartphones may find a place as a document editing tool in the business world as well.

The smartphone apps may be free, but lack many important features that are available on the iPad and laptop versions. In addition to features, portability seems to be a factor. Today’s “on-the-go” lifestyle means that document editing on a smartphone may be preferable to carrying a bulky laptop, or even a tablet. On the down side, small screens and lack of features may discourage users from choosing apps like Office for smartphones, even if they’re free. Our panel was also concerned about storage space on their devices. These apps can take up a considerable amount of space on users’ iPads, and 67.71% claimed that this alone would discourage them from downloading the software.

Cloud services have been available for some time, but there is no question that Microsoft has arrived very late to the game. This may be due to the company’s efforts to streamline their products for unconventional devices, or a simple lack of attention to the tablet market. In either case, this is definitely an interesting move for Microsoft. One pitfall of releasing the apps for the iPad is that this may have a negative effect on the sales of non-Apple tablets, including Microsoft’s own Surface. In addition, the Office for iPad apps are significantly better looking and much more streamlined than other versions. This may influence which tablets businesses buy for their employees, and ultimately hurt Microsoft’s Surface sales as well. Apple will receive a percentage of Office 365 subscription fees sold through iTunes, which will also add to the funding of their competition. All of these factors make the late release of the Office for iPad apps a very interesting decision. Only time will tell if Microsoft’s new launch was a brilliant strategy, or too-little-too-late, but in any case, the world is taking a second look at the tablet as a serious business tool.

Microsoft Office for iPad Infographic (3)

An Ivy League Of Their Own

What do 5 of the last 7 presidents and 100% of the Supreme Court Justices have in common?  They graduated from Ivy League universities.  Ivy League graduates are truly in a league of their own.  With a median household income of over $190,000 and a median net worth of $900,000, Ivies are a uniquely influential and affluent demographic, making them particularly appealing to marketers.

This November, the Ivy League Magazine Network and qSample teamed up to survey readers from the eight Ivy League Magazines. Partial results from the survey is depicted in the infographic below. The online study consists of data collected from more than 1500 survey participants. Each reader panel is comprised entirely of graduates from Brown, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, Columbia, University of Pennsylvania and Yale.

Readers of the Ivy League Magazines find real value in the alumni publication, with over 85% indicating that the magazine has helped them to become successful.  The relationship of mutual respect between panelists and publication fosters high response rates and honest responses from participants.

Over 75% of respondents are active on social media.  Facebook and LinkedIn are the 2 most popular social media sites among participants, with 60% on Facebook and 56% on LinkedIn.  However, usage of social media varied from panel-to-panel with Brown Alumni more like to use Facebook 69%.

Giving back is important to the Ivy League Panel participants with 77% indicating that they volunteer in their community, while 43% do so on a regular basis.

Ivy League Magazine Panel respondents are both affluent and influential among peers in consumer spending categories such as personal technology, automobiles, travel and financial services.

Over the next 12 months, 76% of participants own or plan to purchase a smartphone and 70% own or plan to purchase a tablet computer.  Among smartphone users, iPhone and Android operating systems are the most popular operating systems with 63% of respondents using iPhones and 20% Android.

Ivy League Magazine Panel respondents have the real spending power to make luxury purchases such as high-end vehicles and international travel.  Over the next 12 months, 21% of respondents own or plan to purchase a hybrid or electric vehicle and 34% own or plan to purchase a luxury automobile.

Panelists are frequent travelers with 99% of respondents planning to travel for either business or leisure within the United States this year.  Fifty-eight percent plan to travel to Europe, 17% to Asia and 20% plan to take a cruise.

With a median net worth of over $900,000, Ivy League Magazine readers strategically invest and protect their finances.  Over the next 12 months, 84% of respondents own or plan to invest in mutual funds, 80% own or plan to invest in stocks, 73% own or plan to purchase money market accounts and 71% own or plan to purchase life insurance.

In an Ivy League of their own, Ivy League Magazine Panel men and women have a uniquely affluent profile, difficult to find in any research panel.  The Ivy League survey is part of qSample’s EDU Intelligence series on educational research. The survey consists of more than 30 questions ranging from smart phone usage, financial investment, travel, philanthropy, social media, etc. To learn more about the EDU Intelligence series, email sales-team@qsample.com.

infographicRudFinal

Voters Blame GOP for Government Shutdown

Who’s to blame for the government shutdown of 2013? Depends who you ask.

In late September 2013, the House voted to make funding the government contingent on a one-year delay of the Obamacare healthcare reforms. Consequently, from October 1, 2013, the start of the government’s new fiscal year, to October 17, 2013, the U.S. government was shut down, placing hundreds of thousands of federal workers on unpaid leave. Select essential services remained open for public safety.

In an age of bipartisan politics, when uncompromising parties reach an apparent stalemate, the inevitable blame game ensues. But, we aren’t just a nation of Democratic and Republican citizens, who support our respective party no matter what. Despite the simplistic picture the media often paints, we are a bit more complex than Democrats supporting Democratic Party decisions and Republicans supporting Republican Party decisions; although, party loyalty is part of the story too.

qSample tapped into both its general consumer panel, SurveyGIANTS and its likely voter panel, VoterFeedback. Half of likely voter participants (50%) believe the Republicans are solely to blame for the government shutdown, while just 30% of the general population respondents blame House Republicans only. Thirty percent of likely voter respondents blame both parties and 45% of general population respondents say both are at fault.

govtshutdown1a

Both groups surveyed exhibited some apparent party allegiance with Democratic respondents being the most likely group to blame House Republicans solely. Fifty-three percent of the Democratic general population respondents and 81% of Democratic likely voter respondents blame just the House Republicans for the government shutdown.

On the other hand, Republicans from both groups surveyed were most likely to blame both the House and Senate for the shutdown, with 54% of Republicans from the general population group and 46% of Republicans from the likely voter group blaming both parties.

Where do Independents fall in his debate? Forty-eight percent of Independents from the general population group blame both parties, while 35% blame just the Republicans. The numbers are reversed when we look a Independents’ responses from the VoterFeedback group. Forty-eight percent blame Republicans only and 34% blame both parties.

govtshutdown2a

Where do these same groups of people stand on Obamacare? The majority of both the general population respondents (68%) and likely voter respondents (62%) are in favor or neutral towards Obamacare, with 26% and 35% opposed respectively.

Both groups feel effected in some way by the government shutdown with 34% of the general population respondents and 29% of the likely voter respondents saying that the shutdown affects them either personally or financially or both. Another 24% and 37% respectively say that the shutdown affects either their friends or family.

Whether a citizen is directly affected by the shutdown or feels empathy towards those going without pay or concern over the political system, economy or healthcare reform, the 2013 shutdown touched people in a lot of different ways. Voters will likely remember these events come election time, and the shutdown may even affect the outcome of some elections.

VoterFeedback is an online community of likely voters who have agreed to participate in various roundtable discussions on both national and local issues. To learn more about qSample’s VoterFeedback panel, visit voterfeedback.com.

Double_Info_Gov_Shutdown2

by Stacy Sherwood

Did Limbaugh and Deen’s Advertisers Bail Too Soon?

Turns out, not all press is good press. When public figures like Rush Limbaugh and Paula Deen recently made media waves with sexist and racist words respectively, it caused many of their advertisers to bail. In the case of Paula Dean, her career fell instantly like an imploded soufflé. So why is Limbaugh still on the air over 6 months after his ordeal while Deen’s TV show got canceled right away? We already know a big part of it is ad revenue. But, why do advertisers tend to jump ship long before the storm has the chance to settle? Why did Deen’s words rock the boat worse than Limbaugh’s? What does the public really think about the brands that are advertising on these shows?

Let’s take a closer look at the two stories. Deen publicly admitted to having said the n-word in the past and apologized profusely saying it was “inappropriate,” “hurtful” and “totally unacceptable.” Rush called Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law student, a “slut,” repeatedly during his show for speaking at a democratic hearing about the need for contraceptives both as birth control and for broader medical reasons. Limbaugh saw Fluke as an advocate for casual sex. All told, he tallied up approximately 70 personal insults directed toward Fluke on his on-air talk show, making it impossible for anyone to argue his remarks were just a fluke. Like Deen, Rush also apologized publicly. Why is Limbaugh still on the air but not Deen?

There are two main theories bouncing around the media that attempt to explain the difference between Limbaugh’s situation and Deen’s situation. First, we are reminded to consider that the two figures have different audiences with different expectations. Limbaugh built a career on being controversial. He speaks to a niche audience of mostly conservative white males that value him because of his bold opinions. Deen’s audience, on the other hand, seeks controversy-free comfort food and southern hospitality. Even a pinch of racism ruins the Paula Deen recipe of sugar and spice and everything nice.

The second theory is that a little sexism will be tolerated, but racism is never okay. In 2011, Gilbert Gottfried was dropped by Aflac as the voice of the duck after he carelessly tweeted jokes about Japan after the tsunami. Gottfried’s public persona is similar Limbaugh’s in the sense that his audience also expects a certain degree of edginess from him, but his tweets crossed the line. Here’s one example, “I just split up with my girlfriend, but like the Japanese say, “They’ll be another one floating by any minute now.”

Aflac originally hired Gottfried knowing that tact was not his strong suit. Gottfried is considered to be one of the first to make a joke publicly about 9/11. He quipped that he could not get a direct flight because “they said they have to stop at the Empire State Building first.” However, Aflac does a high percentage of its business in Japan, making Gottfried’s jokes deal-breakers.

Limbaugh is still on the air, and he is still at risk for loosing advertisers, ratings and potentially the renewal of his show. QuestionPro and qSample teamed up to take a quick poll of the SurveyGIANTS panel to find out what the public thinks of the brands advertising on his show. Only 13% of respondents said that their opinion would be negatively affected if a brand they trusted advertised on The Rush Limbaugh Show. Forty-seven percent said their opinion of the brand would be unchanged, while 32% said their opinion would actually be positively affected. About 8% didn’t know who Rush Limbaugh is.

Rush_Limbaugh_Chart

For the 32% who responded that they look favorably upon a brand continuing to advertise on Limbaugh’s show, it makes you wonder if the fleeing advertisers have got it all wrong. Perhaps the public is more forgiving than advertisers think. Everyone makes mistakes sometimes. Spouses say hurtful things, but it’s usually not grounds for immediate divorce. From the advertiser’s perspective though, there are plenty more uncontroversial fish in the sea. In business, there isn’t much loyalty, but the public may not be as quick to view Limbaugh and Deen as just tainted brands. Limbaugh and Deen are people who make mistakes, and they are public figures who are expected to lead by example. While the people might not agree with what Limbaugh and Deen said, they might be ready to forgive.

by Stacy Sherwood

Louisiana Statewide Survey

qSample’s pulse report is a collection of short research studies conducted each month, using one of the ten specialty panels currently owned and managed by qSample. We believe the survey results from these studies are of interest and we want to share them with you. The reports will be presented in an infographic, depicting research results on various topics. The monthly infographics will always reflect current events and topics of interest.

This past month, we tapped our Likely Voter panel to gauge Louisiana residents’ attitudes towards topics that affect them. The survey was deployed to our Louisiana Panel.

la

by Rudly Raphael

Pulse Report: April Spotlight on General Contractors

Following the success of the first Pulse Report, qSample is proud to release its April infographic. This month it decided to highlight one of its specialty panels comprised of general contractors. During the beginning of April, 340 individuals were surveyed to gain insight into currents trends and ideas in this industry. The results of the study are displayed in the infographic below.

Contractors are reporting price increases across the board for supplies, most notably for lumber, hardware, and hand tools. These price increases are affecting the way contractors run their business, with the majority seeing affects to their pricing models. However, on a positive note, these contractors are reporting that business is beginning to pick back up. About 43% of respondents indicated that in light of the recent economic conditions, business is increasing and about 9% indicated that business has increased but in new areas.

Contractors are hopping on the mobile bandwagon, as they are pulling out their smart phones while purchasing supplies. Almost 60% of respondents use their smart phone in some way while making purchasing decisions regarding materials and supplies. The most popular use is to check to see if they can get better pricing elsewhere.

contractorss

by Rudly Raphael

Holiday Wine Survey – Champagne and Sparkling Wine Lead the Way!

For many – the Holidays mean spending time with family. Our Holiday wine survey definitely reflects that. Results from the survey conducted by YourWineOpinion.com with Bacchus and Beery Wine Blog during the first two weeks of December reveal that 96% of respondents indicated they will be buying wine or bubbly for a Holiday celebration; almost half (46.1%) plan to purchase wine for a family dinner this year.

So whether your purchase of “good cheer” is to make your Uncle Frank more interesting, tolerate your Aunt Rachel’s nagging or as a thoughtful pairing for your sister’s beef tenderloin, consumers reach for many forms of wine during the Holiday season.

YourWineOpinion’s Holiday Wine survey spelled out what motivates casual wine drinkers and enthusiasts towards their purchases this season. Buying wine for a family meal topped the list as the number one reason for a consumer purchase, with “purchasing for party” coming in at 29.5% and “as a gift” at 23.4%.

It’s no surprise that price led the way in factors that influence Holiday wine purchases at 39%, and perhaps this is a good sign of economic recovery – more than 34% of survey respondents indicated they were willing to spend between $11-$20 for a bottle of wine this holiday season.

As many in the wine industry may already know – the Label is a key influencer when it comes to how consumers choose their wine. More than 15% of our survey respondents agreed. The data also revealed that varietal is the second leading influencer among survey respondents (24%). Red varietals beating out their white wine counterparts, and Merlot leading the charge at 13.2% for reds and Chardonnay at 12.4% for whites.

What kind of holiday wine survey wouldn’t include sparkling wines? Not ours! Over 70% of those surveyed said they were buying Champagne/Sparkling wine – nothing surprising there, but what maybe be considered novel is the fact that American Sparkling wine came in a close second at 31.6% to swanky and festive favorite French champagne at 33%.

sparkling

Of course, where consumers plan to buy wine is of interest, with the following categories in the top three: liquor store 25.9%, grocery store 18.3% and Discount/Wholesale store at 12.2%.

qSample’s Wine Enthusiast Panel – YourWineOpinion.com is an exclusive group of research panelists who are deeply profiled and agree to share their opinions on all things wine-related. Over 300 responses were collected for the survey with respondents from the following demographics:

• Over 50% are college educated
• 31.4% make over $56,000 in income
• 71% are between the ages of 25-34

Maybe this insight into our Wine Enthusiast Panel has sparked some ideas for your own Holiday purchases or ways in which you can use our specialty panels for your next research study? For more information, please contact sales-team@qsample.com.

by Rudly Raphael

Wine Continues to Gain Strength with U.S. Consumers

The holidays mean parties, presents and pressure. There is traditionally a marked spike in wine purchases during this time of year.

With the holidays fast approaching, qSample has collected valuable insight into consumer buying habits concerning wine. The survey was deployed to our wine enthusiast panel – YourWineOpinion.com. Not only does the festive holiday season promote increased wine purchases, but wine consumption in the United States is up 26% in the last ten years with over 784 million gallons of wine being sold in 2010.

wine

For the American public, wine consumption has become affordable, more social and accessible. Results from the survey indicate over 83% of wine consumers have attended some form of college, but you don’t have to be a wine snob to know what you like. Most grocery stores carry a wide selection of varietals for the convenience of their customers and over 53% regularly purchased wine at their local liquor, market or grocery store.

The characteristics of “aroma” and “taste” were noted as the most popular qualities influencing a buying decision for these consumers with “brand” coming in third. Indicating that a consumer’s senses seem to lead the way when making a wine purchase more so than a desire for a specific brand. Based in this finding, it makes “sense” (pun intended!) to increase sampling in stores, especially during this holiday season.

Holidays or not – more U.S. consumers are including wine as a lifestyle choice with 33% of our participants purchasing wine for consumption at home.

Also of note – 42% of the respondents indicated that they purchased wine on a daily or weekly basis, and over 70% spent between $1-$20 per bottle on their wine purchases.

What’s the favorite varietal choice? Merlot, at 13%, squeaked past Cabernet Sauvignon and Chardonay at the top of this list.

by Rudly Raphael