1. Don't Assume Anything.
People often make decisions that they themselves cannot explain. These decisions emerge from the complex interplay of attitudes, emotions, beliefs, values and perceptions. At The Mellman Group we design our research to probe beneath the surface, to lay bare the structure of decision-making and individual choice. The result? An ability to read the complexities of attitudes and opinions and a track record of successfully changing them.
2. Master The Techniques.
Some pollsters simply report on opinions. We use the most sophisticated analytical tools available to understand the motivations of consumers and voters so we can intervene in their decision-making processes to produce the outcomes our clients want. Split sample simulations allow us to observe the differential impact of various messages on decision-making. Trade-off questions force respondents to assess the relative priority of conflicting goals. Multivariate techniques help us analyze how attitudes and perceptions cohere and how those attitudes drive decision-making. Strategic mapping graphically represents the psychology of choice. Each combination of techniques we choose helps us reveal the underlying structure of decisions for consumers and voters around the world.
3. Executive Research Without Bias And With Uncompromising Accuracy.
All of our research methods are worthless if the data we collect are inaccurate or biased. Our emphasis on accuracy is obsessive, and our reputation for unbiased research is nationally known. Maybe that's why we are consistently sought out by government agencies like the U.S. Department of State and by major news organizations like Fortune magazine and CBS News.
4. Stay Responsive. Stay Available.
We know that research and strategy do not mean much unless your pollster maintains a personal relationship with you. The consultative relationship is so important that we only accept a few clients at any given time and give them each individual attention from senior management. We also know our clients are constantly waging war against time and need a consultant willing to do whatever it takes to meet tight deadlines. We don't stop being responsive when the research is finished. We remain involved in the strategic process for as long as it takes to win.
5. Design A Creative, Research-Based Strategy.
A superior strategy is one that places the maximum available resources at the decisive time and place. In our work that means concentrating limited communications budgets on the single, most persuasive message. Throughout the world, consumers and voters receive tens of thousands of messages every day. To cut through the clutter, messages must be sharp and focused. Because our strategic recommendations are research-based, they target the right people, define the right time and place, and result in highly effective messages. Effective messages are far more than clever phrases - they are catalysts for change - and often mean the difference between winning and losing.
After the defeat of Propositions 74 and 76 in California:"Since January, I've relied on The Mellman Group to help shape the strategy that brought down [Governor Schwarzenegger's] appeal and defeated his initiatives. Moreover, when many polls were so far off, it was good to know that The Mellman Group data could always be trusted to be right on the money."
Gale Kaufman, Lead Consultant for the Defeat of Propositions 74 and 76 in California