Advances in technology and computing power make it possible to fuse multiple research surveys. Essentially there is no more need for outdated brand diaries in 2018.
“Picture this,” says Peter Langschmidt, consultant to the PRC (Publisher Research Council). “It’s 1975 and paper diary research is state-of-the-art when conducting FMCG brand research. It’s now 2018, with exponential advances in technology and statistical methods available to the research industry, and yet in some circles, archaic diary surveys are still being implemented.”
Within the next few months, the PRC and Nielsen will be fusing their two respective data sets PAMS (Publisher Audience Measurement Survey) and CPS (Consumer Panel), and at a later stage both of these with the Narrative (previously Effective Measure)’s online audience data. This fused data sets offer numerous advantages over traditional diary surveys.
The biggest advantage is the cost, since fusion offers a 25% bigger sample for less than a third of the cost of a diary, and about 15 times less than creating a panel from scratch. South Africa is a small country and it is frankly irresponsible to ask marketers to pay for data (even indirectly) when it is already available for a fraction of the cost via fusion.
In addition, existing panel data can be continually fused in the future as opposed to a single week diary snapshot. The fused data is also based on actual bar code verified and audited purchases, not claimed purchases that are subject to memory decay and significant over- and under-claiming of certain product categories. In addition, the Nielsen CPS panel comprises of over 5000 FMCG brands as opposed to only about 2000 that can be accommodated on an AMPS type diary.
“Combining or fusing robust 20-year ongoing Nielsen FMCG panel data with PAMS makes the most sense. When one considers that PAMS data already includes retail, automotive, mobile and banking branded data, marketers and their agencies will soon have all the data they had in AMPS.
It’s time we stopped being trapped in a time warp and joined the rest of the world, employing the best and most commonly used practice of data fusion from multiple sources. This will offer more detailed, audited and comprehensive branded data at a fraction of the cost of any other solution,” concludes Langschmidt.
PAMS documentation and all Media Software bureaus where the fused data will be available can be found on the PRC website at https://prc.za.com/pams/.