How Survey Mode Can Change Results

Goldman & Associates Blog

How Survey Mode Can Change Results

Question markThe mode of a survey is the way the survey is conducted. Examples of mode are by email, phone, online or letter. The survey mode can change the results, but not always. Pew Research Center has a great, short video that explains how the survey mode tends to get some people to respond differently in specific circumstances. They call it the “mode effect”. Knowing the mechanism used for the survey and the questions can help determine its accuracy. Pew Research Center commonly uses multiple modes to obtain their results ensuring that they are adjusting for the mode effect. You can watch their two minute video here.

Influencer Marketing: Problems with Fakes

pexels-cell photo-607812 (4)One wild west area of social media that is coming under increasing scrutiny is influencer marketing. Media stars have been enhancing their incomes by becoming influencers. They use their star power to sell brand products to their social media followers. Brands pay them well to do so. Mostly it is through subtle means such as being seen using the product while talking about other issues. Now, brands are finding micro-influencers, people who are not necessarily stars but have larger than normal followings, and paying them to do the same. These influencer marketing practices have spawned a cottage industry of fake influencers and followers. People are using technology to create fake followers and others are creating entirely fake identities with fake followers to garner brand attention. Instagram has been trying to address this issue with little effect, according to this story in The Drum. Recently, the New York Attorney General’s office has had some success fighting those who sell fake social media followers, as explained in this Hollywood Reporter story. These practices will likely come under increasing scrutiny, but as it stands now, brands paying for influencers and micro-influencers beware, you might not be getting what you think you are paying for.

Millennials End and Gen Z Begins When?

Z 2Each generation has its start and cutoff point. Where these begin and end are important to demographers and how one self-identifies. The selection of dates can be somewhat arbitrary, but often grow in acceptance over time. Also, naming these generations has its own challenges. What should the generation after Millennials be called? Generation Z, iGeneration and Post-Millennials are some that have been used. Pew Research Center recently posted their determinations on what the name should be and when the new generation began. Admitting that there is no scientific process to making this formal decision, they have relied on Google Trends to see what is most commonly used as a name. It is Gen Z and that is how they will now describe this group. Officially, for them, it began 1997. You can read more about their selection process and conclusions here.

The Right to Own Your Personal Data

PrivacyHere is a simple question posed by California lawmaker Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham in an Op Ed from the San Francisco Chronicle: Should we have the right to own our personal data? Ownership would mean you have full control over whether a company could use your personal data without your permission. Right now, that is how companies like Facebook, Google and Twitter make their income – by selling your personal data gathered from social media use on their platforms. Individuals presently have only very limited control over their privacy. On the surface, the answer would likely be … we should all have the right to own our personal data and the ability to determine who or what gets to have access to this information. However, the sale of this data is the premise on which Google and other search engines, Facebook and Instagram are built. How willing are you to give up use of these platforms? Read Assemblyman Cunningham’s concerns and see how you feel about the issue and his proposed regulation. Privacy is enshrined in our constitution, but very limited when it comes to social media.

Doing No PR to Make a Big Splash?

RivianA new electric vehicle automaker called Rivian decided it was in their best interest to remain very quiet until their first products were ready to display at the L.A. Auto Show in November. Unlike its better known, larger and very public rival Tesla, Rivian decided its low-key approach suited its style better. This NPR story explains more. Rivian is no small start up. It has already raised $500 million and has 600 employees. Though manufacturing hasn’t begun, it now has a sample pick-up truck and SUV making the auto show rounds. We’re not sure no PR is necessarily the best approach to gathering a following and developing pre-sales, but there is more to their quiet nature than meets the eye. Rivian’s website is quite stylized. Its messaging, especially its stories, is different than other automotive manufacturers. We find it subtle and low-key, but very effective. You take a look and let us know if you think their no PR tactic is in keeping with their brand image.

Did You Use Cash This Past Week?

CashThe reign of cash as king is quickly fading. More and more Americans are turning to other payment systems. Pew Research Center has been analyzing how many people use cash in a given week and that number is rapidly decreasing. In the past three years, Americans making purchases without any cash during the week has risen from 24% to 29%. Currency has been used for at least 7000 years, so this change to a cashless society is pretty striking. The demographics of those not using cash are not too surprising. They are most commonly under 50 years old and the wealthiest among us. You can read more about this research here.

Facebook Users Information On Target

Facebook cThough Facebook algorithms mostly classify users as having certain traits and interests accurately, about half the users are uncomfortable with Facebook having this knowledge once they are shown this information. Facebook users can go to this link, about their ad preferences, to get an idea of what the social media platform knows about them. Pew Research Center has been studying Facebook use and users for some time now. Their findings have shed light on how Facebook users feel about ads selected for them and what the social media site’s algorithms say about them. Roughly a quarter of all Facebook users think the company isn’t accurate about their politics, interests or racial and ethnic background, but that leaves a large group feeling the information is accurate. The study is comprehensive and much more detail has been analyzed than what we have discussed here. You can find the analysis at this link.

BBC Story on PR Causes PR Biz Controversy

BBC Radio 4This is somewhat inside baseball, but a story in the Financial Times discusses a controversy within the British PR industry over what constitutes public relations. It all started with an early January interview by BBC Radio 4 of actual PR companies about how they influence news. The show was called The Art of Public Relations. The controversy centers on the question of whether PR is simply publicity, which is how many people see PR, or is it more than that. The Financial Times believes it is publicity, but the Public Relations and Communications Association disagrees. Both make their case in the article. From Goldman & Associates Public Relations perspective, publicity is a tactic of PR and does not define our business. However, at times it has been a substantial part of our business. Employee engagement, community engagement, addressing social media issues and providing general PR counsel are just a few of the numerous areas that don’t generally involve publicity and were not addressed in the article.

Polls Hold Too Much Sway for Reporters

SurvyclipartAs the next presidential election inches nearer, there’s some talk among journalists about relying less on polls … it’s the subject of this piece in the Washington Post.

Congress’ New Members Amp Up Social Media

Share graphicIncoming members of Congress are making a lot of noise on social media and it’s just the start … the story from CNN.