It was now Anita’s turn to school me. Tom had mentioned using surveys in order to analyse consumer behaviour and Anita along with her Carat Insight and Evaluation team are the people behind these surveys.
The secret behind good insight is good data so how does Carat go about acquiring the best data they can find? Well they roll out a consumer connection survey (CCS) of 11,000 people, this being the largest single source media survey. It’s so large and extensive that it is used for planning in the whole Aegis family. The survey is dynamic and changing so is constantly being tweaked in the wake of new technological developments and behaviours such as the rise in tablet use and mobile technology. It has also been rolled out to 50 countries around the world so in each case needs to be localised for different cultures and practices.
Within Insight and Evaluation, Carat also has a Social Listening team the role of which is to monitor blogs, Twitter etc. for mentions of the brands and performance. Part of this involves sentiment checking for which they have software that gives positive, negative or neutral evaluations. Anita pointed out that this needs to be checked with a human eye because as yet the software is unable to pick up on more idiosyncratic comments or things like sarcasm.
Anita is also involved in campaign research which is a process of asking people where they saw the advert in question and from there they work out the effectiveness of the ad. Anita mentioned that with the rise of digital it is becoming more and more difficult to find an audience as niche activities make behaviour more diverse.
I asked how much pure digital data they use and the answer was that offline data combined with online data equals good data. In terms of working for Carat, here was one of the real plus points for Anita, the changing tech and changing market keeps her role diverse and exciting.