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The Resurgence of Single Source Data

After a few years of relying on individual media currencies provided by separate media owners because of the lack of an independent products and brands survey, single-source data is once again flexing its muscle and reflecting the totality and complexity of the South African society. Having already shown the strength of its data in quarterly releases, in October 2021, the Marketing Research Foundation (MRF) will be presenting the first full-year data of Marketing All Product Survey (MAPSTM).

In the past South Africa was at the forefront of data collection and SAARF’s AMPS survey was the general go-to for all media planners and strategists. However, the unfortunate demise of this single-source data led to a void in the media planning process, and many agencies were forced to use old data to try and track an increasingly changing, segmented and fragmented market. The current scenario where there are individual JICs reporting on their own media currencies have further complicated this process.

“The MRF was born as an independent, non-profit company, acting as the custodian and repository of research expertise for the marketing industry and their advertising industry partners,” says MRF’s CEO, Johann Koster. “The MAPS survey has been introduced to fill the void that marketers have been clamouring for.”

The Foundation’s main objectives are to establish, commission and manage comprehensive, valid, reliable, and continuous consumer behaviour research, surveys, investigations and reports, that provide data for targeting and segmentation, as well as multi-product/brand usage and multi-media information that reflects the totality and complexity of the South African society.

“MAPS offers the familiarity and comfort of AMPS but is modernised, updated and greatly enhanced,” comments Koster. “MAPS is designed to be independent of any commercial interest and to be the heart of an organisations consumer data and insights strategy. MAPS should form the focal point for developing marketing strategies including market sizing and segmentation, consumer profiles, brand profiles, media profiles, etc. Once these elements have been compiled, the media currencies should be used for detailed media planning and purchasing.”

With the advent of the COVID pandemic, it was believed that MAPS would probably be a pipe dream.  But after receiving the results of the first 5000 interviews, followed by March and June, the MRF were back on track and the general response from the market has been very positive. Next month will see the validation of years of work that has been put into MAPS when the full-year dataset is released to subscribers.

And MAPS is certainly gaining the support of the marketing industry! The research is transparent and free of influence from commercial interests – allowing marketers to make informed choices based on data generated by the input of their own questions. The completely modernised survey, including innovations such as multi-platform behaviour, decision-making questions and geo-codable data, enable synergies between media planning and marketing strategy resulting in cost-effective advertising.

This large-scale sample and single source data will enable the MRF, in collaboration with MASA and other industry partners, to develop a much needed Segmentation Model, which will replace the old LSM segmentation.  This model will be shaped in partnership with industry stakeholders and fellow JICs. The industry urgently requires one segmentation model that everyone believes in and that can be used for years to come by the entire marketing and advertising industry.

Like the proverbial phoenix, single-source data is on the rise and for the first time in five years, the marketing and media industry has demographic, intermedia, behavioural, product and brand data in one survey.

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MRF’s MAPS quarterly 9 month data released

The Marketing Research Foundation (MRF) is pleased to announce that the next quarter’s Marketing All Product Survey (MAPS) data, fieldwork period of July 2020 to March 2021, is available to subscribers and their agencies from 30 June 2021.

“The MRF Research Committee has meticulously scrutinised the next quarterly instalment of demographic, intermedia, behavioural, product and brand data and has given their stamp of approval,” says MRF’s CEO, Johann Koster. “Nine months’ worth of single source, geo-codable MAPS data is now available to subscribers and their agencies.”

Subscribers, with many providing their own marketing questions in the survey, will now have a sample of 15 000 to analyse all market segments to determine the age-old marketing questions of ‘what’, ‘where’, ‘when’ (well, that’s until March 2021 right now) and ‘how much’.

During the fieldwork period 15 030 interviews were conducted, 7792 diaries collected, 1880 Economic Area’s (EA) visited with 3942 backchecks completed which has resulted in a world class, fully comprehensive and robust dataset.

“We’re enthusiastic to go back into the field to start the next quarter of data, but that is of course dependent on the easing of current Lockdown restrictions,” concludes Koster. “It’s an extremely exciting prospect to know that we are only one quarter away from a full year’s worth of data, with results expected to be released in October this year.

Thank you once again to all our subscribers and committees for the continuous support and valuable input.”

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MAPS 9-month data to be released in June

The Marketing Research Foundation (MRF) is pleased to announce its quarterly release of the Marketing All Product Survey (MAPS). The next release encompasses nine-month data (July 2020 to March 2021) and will be released towards the end of June 2021 before fieldwork continues for the first full year dataset, set for release in October.

“The data collection for the first quarter of 2021 has been completed and is currently being verified in preparation for the MRF’s scrutiny process,” says MRF’s CEO, Johann Koster. “I can confirm that this is an intensive task that tests the integrity and stability of the data, which is managed by the MRF Research Committee.”

Just as the MAPS Wave 1 data was completed, the data will be prepared for final release together with the data tree going to the software bureaux beforehand enabling subscribers and their agencies access to the updated data. The exact release date will be confirmed at a later stage by the MRF.

Data from Wave1 (July – Dec 2020 fieldwork period) was presented to subscribers on 18 March and to the broader industry on 25 March this year. “We are exceptionally pleased that the results have been so well received and feedback from subscribers has all been very positive,” confirms Koster. “I would also like to thank Plus94 Research for the sterling and professional work put in to complete, and the continuation of the MAPS fieldwork.”

“Conducting research during the global pandemic was challenging but it will be interesting to see how the consumer’s behaviour changed from the release of the first wave to the results of the 4th quarter,” says Virginia Hollis, the MRF’s Board Chairperson. “Notwithstanding the hurdles MAPS’s fieldwork faced during Covid, we and our subscribers are confident that this data will have a great impact in the daily planning and strategic focus of our marketers and agencies.”

Currently, the MRF is in the process of reviewing both the MAPS face to face questionnaire and branded diary. The first six-month fieldwork period and data release has afforded the MRF the opportunity to gauge the performance of the questionnaire in field as well as the data that has resulted. These learnings will be applied to improve the MAPS questionnaire.

Over and above the learnings taken from the results to date, MAPS subscribers were asked to send proposals of what changes they would like to see in the questionnaire, and excellent feedback was received.  These proposals will now be considered by the Research Committee over the next couple of weeks, when the questionnaire will be finalised for fieldwork starting on the 1st July 2021.

“Fieldwork for the second quarter of 2021 has progressed well and we aim to release that data in October 2021 which will be the first full twelve-month dataset with quarterly updates continuing every three months thereafter,” concludes Koster.

“We look forward to sharing the updated MAPS quarterly data next month and getting the fieldwork started for the very first iteration of our full year dataset.”

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