Chief Revenue OfficerP2Sample

Times are changing and so is the sample industry. So why do we keep focusing on things that don’t matter anymore? While our end goals remain the same – wide, diverse reach; quality; and dependability – how we get there has changed drastically. The fact is that most people are operating on dated views of the relevant issues and have only a dim understanding of how the proverbial sausage is made. We need to get beyond simplistic and dated views of the space and address the fundamental changes brought on by the digital age. To truly be able to judge suppliers, here are the factors you need to consider. 

In the past, reach meant big proprietary panels and numbers in panel books, which often had little to do with real-world project feasibility. Many still believe this is how the industry runs and nothing could be further from the truth. 

Reach today: Variety of recruitment sources. Due to the fact that true probability sampling is expensive, difficult and nearly impossible to achieve, our industry uses the relative ease of convenience sampling and has done so for years. With this in mind, we can take a step back and look at our recruitment methods specifically with a grain of salt. Whereas many still feel double opt-in panels are the “gold standard,” we have the opportunity to reach a deeply profiled, broad and diverse audience by using automation and various forms of recruitment. 

Skepticism whirls around the idea of river sample, which earned a bad name a couple decades ago due to fundamental problems in execution. Yet, even companies that are the staunchest advocates of more “acceptable” techniques like double opt-in panels are now openly admitting they use real-time sample sources. The truth is that whether respondents have joined a panel or are just “dropping by” to do a survey in real-time, sample matters little. Both recruitment methods ...