Fake Data

Market research in the age of data – Weeding out fake data to reveal true insights


Consumer research has changed dramatically over the past 20 years. Whilst there have been many positive advances enabled by the Internet and computers, other negative developments threaten the very integrity of the data collected. Bad data, fake respondents and professional survey takers are “dirtying” the database with false details.

Fake data in market research is a huge problem which can lead to direct and indirect damage to the company. Direct damage includes the cash cost for rewarding the fake respondents and getting the invalid results from the research projects. Indirect damage includes making business decisions based on fake insights.

This year at MRMW 2019 Tia Maurer will pick up the challenging task of “Weeding out fake news and alternative facts to reveal the truth in research. We talked to Tia in the run-up to the event about her choice of topic and motivation to join MRMW.

Tia Maurer, Group Scientist at Procter & Gamble says, “The market research industry is plagued with professional survey takers and posers who misrepresent their identity and product usage experiences to maximize their income. Consequently, the data provided by these panelists is faulty and misinforms our business decisions.”

In Tia’s opinion, there are four focus areas where researchers can employ process-level changes in their studies to improve the ability to collect valuable and accurate consumer insights, and ultimately, improve our ability to predict success in the marketplace:-

  1. Behavioral observation
  2. Recruitment
  3. Survey Design
  4. Data Cleaning

Having worked both the client and the supplier side of research, she is familiar with research from both angles. This enables her to identify professional panelists who try to qualify for as many studies as possible to maximize income and is also aware of the challenges that researchers face to gather consumer feedback.  These years of experience have helped her to craft best practices to help research teams gather trustworthy data which she will share during her talk at MRMW North America 2019.

When asked about the current state of consumer insights Tia concludes, “In the age of big data and social media, it is easy to obtain consumer feedback on marketed products and services, but obtaining feedback and insights on new-to-the-world products and services is becoming increasingly difficult.  Attention spans are shorter and time is more valuable.”

P&G’s Group Scientist is looking forward to speaking at MRMW North America 2019 as she believes the event enables market researchers to come together and share ideas and new approaches for gathering feedback and insights that are otherwise elusive.

Join Tia at MRMW North America 2019. Additional speakers include representatives from PayPal, Facebook, Foursquare, Eastman Chemical Company, Verizon, Celgene, Celebrity Cruises, iHeartMedia, Intuit, Turner, Borderless Access, Ipsos, Zappi and many more! Don’t delay your registration! Book your tickets now!


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