Warning: Esoteric (and very raw) musings on survey construction (ahh, but this is what a blog is for)
Websites are asking people if the like/dislike a product. But not about what those products "mean" to people.
Is a possible way to figure out "meaning" to set emic anchor points that people could give us, and then use those anchors as a Lickert scale of how to evaluate if the product is making them happy?
Is a new kind of survey philosophy that takes advantage of the computational power we now have and allows us to construct individualized scaled understandings for each person (respondent) on what is the axis of happiness with appropriate anchor points derived from their individual perspective and only then have them rate products and services and how they fall along that constructed metric. So instead of mass customization fabrication of products, this is mass customization of survey research. It is Eliza, the computer program that simulated a consulting psychologist mashed up with the hunch.com and a sprinkled with a bit of computer-adaptable SAT-like testing.
Analysis might look something like:
- Creating a lexical semantic space from the parsed corpora (transcript of respondents walking a researcher through the multidimensional scaling graphic) and their axis, or
- Cultural consensus modeling, or
- Factor analysis on each result set and then doing meta-level analysis on the factor rankings.
Possible uses of the analysis would be:
- Warning on large scale cultural changes as to what makes people happy. Allowing companies to shift feature/functions toward those that register on the appropriate axis, or
- Identification of various subcultures or "taste" cultures that could be targeted with more niche products
- New "package" level constellations of valued features/functions that are more meaningful for customers