Blog Archives

Identifying Pathways in the Consumer Decision Journey: Nonnegative Matrix Factorization

June 13, 2014
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Identifying Pathways in the Consumer Decision Journey: Nonnegative Matrix Factorization

The Internet has freed us from the shackles of the yellow page directory, the trip to the nearby store to learn what is available, and the forced choice among a limited set of alternatives. The consumer is in control of their purchase journey and can t...

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The Unavoidable Instability of Brand Image

June 4, 2014
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The Unavoidable Instability of Brand Image

"It may be that most consumers forget the attribute-based reasons why they chose or rejected the many brands they have considered and instead retain just a summary attitude sufficient to guide choice the next time."This is how Dolnicar and Rossiter con...

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Which came first, the preference or the choice?

May 27, 2014
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Which came first, the preference or the choice?

Obviously, preference precedes choice because choices are made to maximize preference. That is certainly the way we conduct our marketing research. We generate factorial designs and write descriptions full of information about products and services. Ou...

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The Purchase Funnel Survives the Consumer Decision Journey

May 19, 2014
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The Purchase Funnel Survives the Consumer Decision Journey

The journey metaphor is almost irresistible. All one needs is a starting point and a finish line, plus some notion of progression. Thus, life is a journey, and so is love. Why not apply the metaphor to your next purchase? McKinsey & Company takes s...

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The Mind Is Flat! So Stop Overfitting Choice Models

May 15, 2014
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The Mind Is Flat! So Stop Overfitting Choice Models

Conjoint analysis and choice modeling rely on repeated observations from the same individuals across many different scenarios where the features have been systematically manipulated in order to estimate the impact of varying each feature. We believe th...

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Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty: Structural Equation Model or One-Dimensional Dissonance

May 9, 2014
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Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty: Structural Equation Model or One-Dimensional Dissonance

Causal thinking is seductive. Product experience comes first, then feelings of satisfaction, and finally intentions to continue as a customer. Although customer satisfaction and loyalty data tend to be collected all at one time within the same question...

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Warning: Clusters May Appear More Separated in Textbooks than in Practice

March 23, 2014
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Warning: Clusters May Appear More Separated in Textbooks than in Practice

Clustering is the search for discontinuity achieved by sorting all the similar entities into the same piles and thus maximizing the separation between different piles. The latent class assumption makes the process explicit. What is the source of variat...

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Context Matters When Modeling Human Judgment and Choice

January 28, 2014
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Context Matters When Modeling Human Judgment and Choice

Herbert Simon was succinct when he argued that judgment and choice "is shaped by a scissor whose two blades are the structure of the task environment and the computational capabilities of the actor" (Simon, 1990, p.7). As a marketing researcher, I take...

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Metaphors Matter: Factor Structure vs. Correlation Network Maps

January 17, 2014
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Metaphors Matter: Factor Structure vs. Correlation Network Maps

The psych R package includes a data set called "bfi" with self-report ratings on 25 personality items along a 6-point agreement scale. All the details are provided in the documentation accompanying the package. My focus is how to represent the correlat...

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Finding the R community a barrier to entry, Python looks elsewhere for lunch

January 10, 2014
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Tal Yarkoni's post on "The homogenization of scientific computing, or why Python is steadily eating other languages' lunch" is an enjoyable read of his transition from R to Python. He makes a good case, and I have no argument with his reasoning or the ...

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