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As medical research marches on, with an Ebola vaccine being tested on humans and the invention of an anti-HIV cream, some research proves to be far less useful. Here are 7 recent studies that didn’t need to be done:

1. Healthier habits lead to weight loss
A study published in 2014 made the not-so-shocking revelation that participants who maintained low-fat diets and continued regular physical activity over a 10-year period were able to maintain weight loss. In the words of the study: “Long-term weight loss maintenance is possible, but it requires persistent adherence to a few key health behaviours.”
Market Research Survey

2. University rankings influence applicants
A study done by researchers at New York university found that college and university rankings published each year influence where prospective students choose to apply! It reveals that students are actually interested in the quality of life and academic offerings of the schools they wish to attend.

3. Women prefer taller men
The long-held belief that women prefer to date taller men was confirmed this year thanks to a collaborative study from Rice University. More than half of women surveyed said they want to date only men who are taller than themselves, a preference attributed to a “matter of protection and femininity.”

4. Home field advantage lives up to its name
Home field advantage is, as it turns out, an advantage. Thankfully, an article published in February confirmed that a team playing at home enjoys a psychological edge thanks to encouragement from fans. Crowd influence on officials’ decisions and lack of travel or change in time zone also help prove that the advantage is, in fact, appropriately named.

5. Walking or biking are healthier than driving
A study published in August presented the groundbreaking news that walking or biking to work is healthier than driving. Active commuting, the study found, is linked to lower body weight and fat composition. Public transport was also tied to better health than private vehicle transportation.

6. Music can be empowering
Three top international business schools applied their genius this year to discovering that certain songs can have an empowering effect on listeners. Songs with heavy bass made people feel more powerful than songs with more mild bass tones. Of course, sporting event favourite We Will Rock You by Queen was among the most empowering songs.

7. Anonymous online comments more likely uncivil
After comparing thousands of online comments, University of Houston researchers found those posted anonymously were more likely to be vulgar, racist, profane or hateful. In comparison, posts with users’ names attached were more civil and respectful. Yes, the Internet conveniently allows users to hide behind anonymity to avoid responsibility for comments.

It appears not all research budgets are tough these days.

Do you believe surveys? Sometimes it is hard, we agree. But, hey, don’t we need to laugh too, so we wanted to share this digest with you. And it is a good excuse for us to say something we do believe.

You will be shocked at what some of us actually believe. Some of the numbers are funny and others are stunning. But they all say something about who we are.

 Fun Facts Survey

• 90% of all Americans believe they are eating healthy, while 36% of us are obese.

• 70% of all us do not feel engaged or inspired at our jobs.

• 60% of Americans are feeling “angry or irritable”, 10 points increase vs. two years ago. 36% of Americans admit they have yelled at a customer service agent last year.

• 65% of Americans are dissatisfied with the effectiveness of the U.S. government system. Only 8% believe that government is doing a “good” job.

• 56% of Americans believe that it is acceptable for the government to track telephone records of Americans in order to keep us safe. 51% agree that “it is necessary to give up some civil liberties in order to make the country safe from terrorism”.

• 30% of all American workers have $1,000 or less saved for retirement.

• 56% of all Americans are considered to have “sub-prime credit”.

• 29% of Americans under the age of 35 are living with their parents.

• 63% of all Americans between the ages of 18 and 24 cannot find Iraq on a map, according to the National Geographic Society.

• There are more Americans who believe aliens have visited Earth than those who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.

• 24% of people around the world consider the United States to be the biggest threat to world peace. Pakistan is on the second place…, according to a survey by the Worldwide Independent Network.

And don’t we just love technology. 61% of us believe that having a good knowledge about today’s technology is important. Well, then how do we explain this?

• 29% of us believe that “cloud computing” involves a real cloud.

• 11% think HTML is a sexually transmitted disease.

• 27% believe a gigabyte is an insect.

• 15% think software is comfortable clothing.

• 12% believe that USB is an acronym for a country.

• 18% believe Blu-ray is a sea animal.

• 42% think that a motherboard is the deck of a cruise ship.

And, finally, some facts of our every-day life:

• 48% of us sing in the shower.

• 40% never give or receive flowers.

• 18% brush teeth 3 or more times a day.

• 29% of us don’t like our neighbors.

Do we believe in surveys? Yes, we do. So let us help you with your next “meaningful” survey.

MaCorr Research a Free Consultation.

You’ve got a lot to choose from when it comes to cell phone plans. And figuring out exactly who to go with and which plan to choose can be difficult.

But you’re not the only one trying to figure out the market. A few major players in the US asked us to find the differences between the prepaid and postpaid cellphone market to help them better market new plans and services to their customers.
 Cell Phone Research

So in September 2013, we conducted a survey through Computer Assisted Web Interviews among a statistically representative sample of 1,003 postpaid cellphone users and 403 adult prepaid cellphone users in the US. Here’s what we found:

• 67% of prepaid cellphone users are women. That’s larger than the 51% of postpaid cellphone users who are women.

• 60% of prepaid cellphone users have annual incomes below $35,000, with 27% reporting income over $50,000.

• In the postpaid world, only 28% of users have an annual income below $35,000, with 57% reporting income over $50,000.

• Prepaid users lack full-time employment, with only 29% report being employed full-time, and 18% of them are not working.

• Over 44% of postpaid cellphone users are employed.

• Both prepaid and postpaid cellphone users prefer football (44%), baseball (26%) and basketball (24%).

• Both groups of participants enjoy rock, country and pop music.

• Hip hop tends to be more popular among prepaid users, with 37% of prepaid users enjoying hip hop compared to just 24% of postpaid users.

At MaCorr, we’ve been a key part of helping the wireless industry understand their market. To see some of the other insight we’ve garnered, read our post on wireless carrier pricing.

It’s not easy to go head-to-head with industry heavyweights that command a particular market segment. That’s especially true in the household cleaning industry, where major brands truly outshine and out-sparkle the competition.
How MaCorr Market Research helped a leading US manufacturer really clean up

But that didn’t stop one of our clients from trying to compete with the Swiffer family of products. A leading cleaning products manufacturer in the US, our client was known for its wide variety of household products, but the folks behind Swiffer had beaten them to the punch with their lineup of innovative cleaning solutions.

With a huge desire to mop the floor with the competition, our client wanted to launch a product that competed directly with Swiffer. But simply launching a competing product with the same offering wouldn’t be enough – especially given Swiffer’s market share and strong brand recognition.

So the manufacturer came to MaCorr and asked us to employ our Gap Finder and Concept Testing market research techniques.

Through our Gap Finder process, we pinpointed the gap that exists between what would-be Swiffer users deem most important about a product and the reality of what Swiffer actually delivers.

After narrowing down the gap, we took the rough, sketched out idea, and then tested and analyzed its potential. Our testing process included features expectations analysis, packaging and logo testing, name and USP assessment, and even at-home testing.

The result? Our client has successfully launched their product, which you can find in major retail chains – not to mention in clean homes all over North America.

There’s lots of talk in the wireless industry. And we’re not referring to subscribers talking to one another. We’re speaking of all the chatter about how the wireless industry will look six months, a year, and three years from now.

New wireless entrants. Takeovers. Mergers. Local carriers going global. Popular handsets becoming exclusive. Other handset makers shunning exclusivity. Voice plans threatened by free apps. And so much more.

Wireless carriers, even those that are recording record profits, have good reason to be worried about what’s ahead.

That’s why one wireless carrier came to MaCorr Market Research Online.

They wanted to know what’s most important to their customers. They wanted to know if they’re satisfied. And they wanted to find out the correlation between satisfaction, important, and expectations.

We didn’t just look at overall satisfaction. We looked at everything.

Value for money. Contract length. Pricing. Choice of handsets. Coverage. Network reliability. Technical support satisfaction. Customer service perception. And even self-service and online experience.

While the results are confidential, we can tell you that the information helped our client fine-tune what was most important to their customers. And today, they’re able to offer a better experience plus better-perceived value—without having to lower their prices in preparation of a different wireless tomorrow.

It doesn’t take market research and online surveys to know that more and more people want to do their part to help the environment. Most environmentally aware citizens recycle. We don’t litter. And a lot of us have switched from plastic bottled water to a reusable aluminum one.

So bringing a reusable fabric bag when you grocery shop seems like a no-brainer. You’ll keep plastic out of landfills. If fewer bags are made, less energy is spent producing them. And, if the grocery store charges for bags, you’ll save money.

But are US consumers embracing the eco-friendly grocery bag option as much as they have embraced the blue box? A recent market research study from MaCorr reveals the truth.

53% still buy single-use plastic bags
While the majority of frequent grocery shoppers in the US (53%) still use single-use plastic bags, 39% (or 2 out of 5 market research respondents in an online survey) have already switched to reusable polypropylene or fabric bags.

Forgetfulness and inconvenience leads to plastic bag use
Of the grocery shoppers who said they still use plastic bag in a recent market research study, 63% admit they do so because they forget to bring their reusable bag into the store.
market research

An overwhelming number choose fabric bags to help the environment
The majority of those who choose reusable grocery bags do so because they care about the environment.
customer survey

More than half of respondents leave their reusable bags in the car
57% of frequent grocery shoppers who choose reusable bags keep them in the car. 30% of market research respondents keep them in the kitchen. 68% usually take four bags or less into the store.
online survey

Bottom line? There’s still some resistance to fabric grocery bag use among US grocery shoppers mainly due to convenience, but those who value the environment go out of their way to make using fabric grocery bags a priority.

Recently conducted study explored the role of North American kids and their parents in the cell phone purchase decision making process.

The main objective of the study was to identify barriers and motivations of the first cell phone purchase for kids, explore intentions to buy and pricing expectations.

The study revealed that only 10% of tweens currently have a cell phone. 20% of parents of tweens are, generally, open to the idea and 70% reject it.

As expected, parents’ rejection of the idea decreases with increase in their kids’ age. By the age of 16 almost 60% of teens own a cell phone and only 20% of parent reject the idea.

Tweens see the importance of having a phone in case of emergencies or to call their parents. Safety is more important for them than social connection.
Teens, on the other hand, see the value in being able to connect for social reasons and to keep in touch with friends and family.

Parents of tweens are more inclined to want their child to have a cell phone in case of emergency (the same as tweens themselves), to teach them responsibility and time management.
Parents of teens are more interested in being able to reach their teen when needed and to keep in contact.

The “optimal” plan desired by parents and their tweens/teens include:
-Unlimited text and call display (common in parents and teens wish lists)
-Parents, in addition, would like the ability to monitor their child activities and handset replacement guarantee
-Kids, on the other hand, following text and call display, would like a cool phone, games and limited voice calling

Parents don’t want their kids to have long distance calling, BBM and unlimited data.
Parents’ purchase intent is strong at $20 level for single line and $15 for an additional family plan line.

MaCorr Research has recently conducted a study to better understand perceptions of email users toward personal and work email accounts.

The survey was conducted online among geographically representative sample of 1,002 US adults 18-65 years of age, who regularly use home and work e-mail accounts.

Among other finding, when asked to define their own “e-mail personality”, 55% of regular work and home email users thought they are “Deleters”, 30% – “Filers”, 10% – “Hoarders” and 10% – “Printers”.
Employee Satisfaction1

Deleter – 55%: You are conscientious and only keep an active inbox, deleting unnecessary e-mails and filing relevant ones. You respond to messages quickly and can be ruthless when deciding whether or not to reply.

Filer – 30%: You regularly start e-mail contact, and your e-mails are generally light hearted. Although you don’t answer immediately you wouldn’t leave it more than 1 day. You deal with a lot of e-mail so use inbox folders to keep conversations organized.

Hoarder – 10%: You have a relaxed attitude to e-mail. You rarely file or delete and don’t pay too much attention to how your email tone might sound. You only answer to e-mails when you are ready.

Printer – 5%: You print e-mails to read them and may also put them in paper files. You always reply with a prepared, considered response, so it could be that some e-mails aren’t answered for a number of days. You are polite and traditional in tone and language.

60% of the regular work and home email users find that “Being asked out on a date” and “Announcing major life decisions” are the most acceptable over e-mail. 59% also think that “Using improper grammar…” in email would not be a problem, as well.
Employee Satisfaction1

Not surprisingly, “Intelligence” is what regular home and work email users judge the most in other peoples’ emails. “Intelligence” is also what they would like to “transmit” by purposefully adapting language, style or tone of their own e-mails.
Employee Satisfaction1

Finally, the next day email reply is quite acceptable. Only 10% of the regular email users will become offended at having to wait for a reply for less than a day.
Employee Satisfaction1

MaCorr Research has recently conducted a study to better understand consumer satisfaction with the following subscription based industries:

- Internet
- Cable or satellite TV
- Traditional news paper or magazine
- Emergency car services or road side assistance
- Satellite radio
- Cellular phone

Traditional news paper or magazine subscriptions, along with emergency car services or road side assistance, enjoy the highest consumer satisfaction.
9 out of 10 subscribers are very satisfied with the services overall. 90% and 86% of the respondents, respectively, are satisfied with “value for the money” they receive.
More than 4 out of 5 (85% and 86% of the respondents, respectively) are very likely to renew the subscription with the current provider at the end of the term.

On the other hand, cellular phone and cable or satellite TV service providers have noticeably lower level of satisfaction among subscribers. 64% and 68% of the respondents, respectively, are satisfied with the services overall.
3 out of 5 (about 60% of the respondents) are satisfied with “value for the money” and less than 60% (56% and 58% of the respondents, respectively) would likely recommend the provider to a colleague or friend.
Customer Satisfaction Survey

The survey was conducted among a statistically representative sample of current subscribers in North America.
The satisfaction was measured on a 10 points scale, with 1 being very dissatisfied and 10 – very satisfied.

MaCorr Research has recently conducted a study to examine a correlation between sharing customer information within retail or CPG organisations and improvement in decision making and employees’ satisfaction levels.

The survey was conducted among a geographically representative sample of 351 head office and store management employees at Retail and CPG companies (50 employees or more) in the US.

The main hypothesis: Sharing customer information more widely within a retail or CPG organisation can lead to improved decision making and higher satisfaction levels.
- Individuals who have and use customer information feel more empowered and engaged
- Individuals who don’t have and therefore don’t use customer information are less empowered and engaged.

The research finding indicated that it’s not enough for Retail and CPG companies to just have access to customer information. To improve employee satisfaction; engagement and involvement in the company’s decision making process, customer information has to be shared effectively across the team.

If a retail organization or a CPG manufacture has access to customer information, but doesn’t share it effectively across functional team, its employees feel even more disengaged and dissatisfied than those who work for companies with no access at all to customer information.

Employees of companies that effectively share customer information feel more valuable and empowered to make business decisions. At the same time there are no significant differences between employees or companies that don’t have access to customer information and those who have access, but don’t feel that the information is shared effectively.
Employee Satisfaction1

Employees of organization that effectively share customer information feel that their companies make more effective business decisions. The employees are also more satisfied with the company.
Interestingly enough, employees of companies that don’t have access to customer information feel less frustrated than employees that have access to the information but don’t share it effectively.
Employee Satisfaction2

In addition, employees of companies that have and effectively share consumer information, feel that their businesses leverage social media much better.
Employee Satisfaction3