2017 Conference - Friday Full Schedule
2017 Friday agenda

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This page provides details on each scheduled session and other program highlights for Friday, January 20. To see detailed information for the other days of the conference, please use the navigation links to the right.

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Friday, January 20

7:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Registration Open

7:30 – 8:30 a.m.

Healthy Connections: A Lazy River Adventure

For a refreshing start to your day, come join us as we walk against the current in the JW Marriott’s Lazy River. After 30-45 minutes of walking, for our victory lap, we will cruise down the river on inner tubes. Tubes and towels will be provided. Wear water-appropriate clothing. Fun tip: one round against the current in the Lazy River is like walking 4 miles on land!

Meet at the entrance of the hotel pool
Cost: FREE

8:00 – 9:00 a.m.

Breakfast and Optional Chapter Meetings

9:00 – 9:50 a.m.

Roundtable Discussions #1

10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Breakout Sessions

Delaying Objectivity for Deeper Empathy
Presenters: Susan Sweet and Jay Picard

We always attempt to get a more holistic view of our clients’ challenges and our participants’ real-life issues… but how do we actually do that? We’ve found that employing deep empathy, delaying objectivity until it’s needed, and thinking like curators can create outcomes with profound impact. This session will debunk some traditional research beliefs, such as maintaining objectivity by the removal of self, and shift our thinking about the power of the researcher’s own perspective and an empathetic mindset at all stages of a project. We’ll share examples from multiple categories and build organic case studies with attendees, as well as provide a step-by-step take-away tool for QRCs to use with their own clients.

Target Audience: Experienced QRCs who want something new, something that challenges typical research thinking and moves toward strategic consulting.

Susan SweetBio: Susan Sweet is a passionate qualitative research consultant focused on illuminating insights and making the process fun for both clients and participants. She founded Sweet Insight Group in 2012, and has worked alongside some of the best in research and strategy for the past 20 years. She has served two terms on QRCA’s Board of Directors and currently serves as co-chair of the Industry Relations Committee. Susan loves hiking with her dog, dancing like no one’s watching, eating and drinking in foreign countries, and hugging her kids.

Jay PicardBio: Jay Picard is a human-centric brand strategist who seeks global culture and creativity in all its forms. He founded Think Say Feel after almost 20 years in strategic planning roles. Jay’s work is rooted in human behavior, going beyond the stats to create bonds between people and brands. He is an active member of the Pacific Northwest chapter of QRCA, and serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Seattle Symphony. Jay loves coffee, dogs, hockey, travel, the outdoors and Maine.

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Shoestring Global: A Guide to Conquering Global Research with more Flair and Less Dinero
Presenter: Stacy Elsbury

We all dream of growing up and crossing the pond into global research, but for many of us, the challenges and financial requirements seem too overwhelming to even dip a toe in. While it’s true that global research presents a set of unique challenges, it’s also true that they can be cracked with a little creativity, and a lot of help from our QRCA friends. In this presentation, we’ll share a unique approach for going global without going crazy, all on a shoestring budget.

Target Audience: Those who dabble or dream of dabbling in global research, but fear the logistics and price tag attached.

Stacy ElsburyBio: Stacy Elsbury is President and Founder of Good Run Research & Recreation, a tiny and mighty global research firm based in the rising capital of market research: Richmond, Virginia (wait for it, y’all). She and her team have Big Plans for the industry and for sunny Richmond, where they are prepping to open The Rec Room—every Quailie’s dream research (non) facility. Call her a rebel or what you will (she’s been called worse), Stacy lives for a challenge and gets her kicks from indulging wild hairs and trying new approaches. Let’s face it, y’all: Research is just a fancy name for figuring stuff out. Sometimes the way to do that is tried and true, but often the challenge is new and tricky, and the just-right solution isn't something that can be pulled from a box. Stacy and her team thrive on these challenges, and have become (in)famous for methodological solutions that perfectly balance “what-the-what?!” and “ah-ha!”

Off the Clock: You’ll find Stacy on the clock. But on the clock, she’s been known to eat her body weight in sushi and wash it down with a martini, dirty. Occasionally she’ll run it off, but more often she’ll think about running it off, and opt for another martini instead.

Research Blind Spots: Understanding the Impact of Culture and Literacy Levels
Corette Haf

The gap between the have’s and have not’s is widening in many countries, both in the developed world and in emerging markets. Lower income, less educated people form the mass market in many economies. Understanding their needs and habits, or improving their access to products and services, can uplift these consumers and offer new growth opportunities to marketers.

Cultural differences and low literacy skills can negatively impact the quality of market research data collected by inappropriate questioning or complex projective techniques.

The session will highlight the dangers of researcher pitfalls and offer examples of activities that can reveal these misunderstandings and allow you to unlock deeper insights. The presentation will share the outcome of research with fellow QRCs in major emerging economies as well as developed countries with multi-cultural markets. Colleagues from these markets will share examples of instances where they needed to adapt discussion guides and questioning approaches to allow the voices of their customers to be heard. They will provide examples of projective techniques that work well for the particular culture or for less educated consumers with low literacy skills and how they created or adapted existing projective techniques or other activities to enable more meaningful understanding and insights.

Target Audience: QRCs who conduct research in multi-cultural and emerging markets

Corette HafBio: Corette Haf has been involved in marketing research for more than 30 years. She holds a BA (Honors) degree in Industrial Psychology and Psychology. Since 1993 she has managed her own specialist qualitative research consultancy. She is passionate about all aspects of qualitative research but has a special interest in digital and online qualitative methodology. In 2006 she pioneered online qualitative research in South Africa and is one of the country’s leading experts in the field. Corette is an active member of QRCA since 2004 and served on the board of directors from 2012 to 2016.

Signature Phrases: A Good Moderator Should Never Say "Moderating through the Lens of Language"
Presenter: Naomi Henderson

When talking to respondents, there are some phrases that inspire respondents to lower their shields and truly deliver below top-of-mind answers. As well, there are words/phrases that can cause respondents to raise their shields. Some of these terms — on both sides — have been around for 70 years.

Discover the deadly ones and the dynamic ones and expand not only your skill set but also your probing repertoire. Words and phrases are the “coin of the realm” for moderators. This session will explore the impact moderator “words/phrases” have on respondents and provide specific examples of what works and what doesn’t. The presentation will be a blend of information, interactive exercises and demonstrations. Participants should be prepared to share effective words, probes, phrases from their experience and challenge the speaker!

Target Audience: If space is limited, the session would be ideal for “emerging or novice moderators” (i.e., led less than 200 groups). If there are no limits on space, a moderator at any level will find something of value in this presentation — either to cause them to revisit some of their current practices or learn new ways to expand their abilities to get below top-of-mind answers from respondents.

Naomi HendersonBio: Naomi Henderson is the founder and owner of RIVA Market Research and co-founder of the RIVA Training Institute since 1981. She has 50 years of experience in research, with 35 years specializing in qualitative market research. She has conducted more than 6,000 qualitative research sessions and spoken to over 55,000 respondents both nationally and internationally. She holds a BA and MEd in Education & Psychology and is a licensed NeuroLinguistic Programming [NLP] Practitioner.

Naomi speaks at various colleges, seminars, and qualitative research associations. She is a blogger at www.rivaqualblog.com and tweets at www.twitter.com/RIVAinc.com. She is a member of QRCA, IWWG, NAFE and Who’s Who of American Women.

11:30 a.m. – 12:20 p.m.

Roundtable Discussions #2

12:30 – 1:30 p.m.


1:30 – 2:30 p.m.

Presenters: Chris Kann, Markus Kasunich

Creativity is a fundamental part of our true nature. It is an essential aspect in human expression, and it is especially necessary for qualitative researchers. This session will help attendees to cultivate a deeper understanding of the nature of creativity and how it works...

read more

Breakout Sessions

2050: A Qual Odyssey
Jennifer Dale

Get in and buckle up, we’re heading into the future! Change can be challenging to see when you’re in it, so we’re blasting through time to get a different perspective. Peer into what populations around the world will look like in the year 2050. Our future forecast is a multicultural extravaganza and the party is just getting started. Did you know that in just 3 decades, there will be 400% more people over age 60? Or that 1/3 of US residents will be Hispanic? Take in these amazing facts and dozens more while you engage in this eye-opening and thought-provoking presentation. Learn how qualitative research will be affected and brainstorm solutions as a group. Attendees will leave with a newfound perspective of a future that’s not so far away.

Target Audience: QRCs who conduct consumer research

Jennifer DaleBio: 25 years in market research, I conduct quantitative & qualitative studies for clients in a variety of industries across the globe. QRCA member since 2006. Co-wrote Qual-Online: The Essential Guide with Susan Abbott in 2015.

The Canary in the Political Coalmine
Brian Gottlieb

Brian Gottlieb, former political pollster and Republican campaign strategist, joined Purple Strategies in 2012. Since then, he’s applied the lessons learned from political campaigns to some of the largest Fortune 500 brands in the world, spanning the energy, health care, consumer packaged goods, pharmaceutical, defense and entertainment industries. In addition to providing relevant political qualitative research examples from his career, Brian will walk through the 2016 election season, and the insights he gained from focus groups about the candidates, including Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton (Jeb and Bernie, too). He will dive into examples of either problems or opportunities that arose in the qualitative research long before quantitative polls, and long before the national news media picked the stories up. He’ll draw from three campaigns he’s worked on, using footage and quotes from focus groups to show how qualitative research is the canary in the political coal mine — and what campaigns can do when the canary sings. Attendees will have a better understanding of how surprising qualitative research findings can inform a quantitative methodology. They will also leave with an understanding of how applying a political-style research protocol to a brand and market approach can lead to a desirable campaign strategy and better insights.

Target Audience: The intended audience for this presentation is individuals who are curious or interested in politics, but do not necessarily have campaign experience. We’d like for the audience to walk away with a unique perspective — so they do not need to have extensive political experience (or any). We believe that those with either a brand, consumer or marketing background would be most interested in this presentation.

Brian GottliebBio: Brian brings a balance of research, corporate and political experience to Purple Insights. With nearly 20 years of experience working in public policy and politics, Brian has been an integral part of many successful ballot initiatives and political campaigns across the nation. He has conducted research for the Republican National Committee, National Republican Congressional Committee, Republican Party of Kentucky, Senator Elizabeth Dole, Senator Richard Shelby, Congressman Brett Guthrie, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Anheuser-Busch, Altria, Reynolds America, The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers Association, Gorton’s, and the National Fisheries Institute, in addition to the 2008 Romney Campaign. Brian began his career on Capitol Hill with former U.S. Representative Peter Torkildsen (R-MA). Since then, he has held positions in Federal Government Relations for both the American Society for Microbiology and the American Chemistry Council. In 2002, he joined Voter/Consumer Research (the firm that conducted research for President George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004) as a Vice President. From 2008 until joining Purple Strategies, Brian ran his own research firm, Got-Focus LLC.

Listening Between the Lines
Amanda Dunn

Our company brings brand stories to life by designing three-dimensional, experiential spaces for our clients. To create smart and emotionally compelling brand experiences, our team undertakes a discovery process to uncover the depth of a brand’s story, because it’s not enough to simply ask questions of the most obvious people. Led by our creative team, we use a range of tools to develop the richest possible picture. We interview everyone from a line worker to the CEO, immerse ourselves in the world of their customers, spend time with stakeholders, and read everything we can get our hands on about our clients. The result is an immersive experience that brings a story to life. This session will cover a detailed approach to our discovery process as inspiration for others, as well as guide you in translating learning to those who are responsible for implementation based on our learning — including designers, writers, and architects.

Target Audience: Anyone seeking a fresh perspective on listening and those interested in hearing how others outside the research industry approach discovery.

Amanda DunnBio: Amanda has over a decade of experience working with the top brands in the world. She’s worked with people in the Chaco Region of Paraguay, the Dolomite Mountains in Italy and across the Middle East. Her global travels have taught her that a good story can be found anywhere — as long as you are listening. This helps in her role at The Brand Experience as she listens, learns and organizes all of the elements of clients’ stories. Amanda lives in Cincinnati with her husband, two tiny humans who call her mom and a carnival goldfish who may outlive us all.

2:30 – 3:00 p.m.


3:00 – 4:45 p.m.

Plenary Sessions

Liquor Stores, Cardboard Signs, and Actors: Why Radical Listening Matters
Presenter: Benjamin Mathes

Urban Confessional founder Benjamin Mathes will detail how the Free Listening Project started a worldwide movement that can impact the way you listen, ask questions, and gather data. And, who knows, it may just help you change the world! Qualitative Research Consultants are some of the most practiced listeners in the world. Whether you’re moderating a focus group, speaking with clients, or just communicating with colleagues, the art of listening is paramount. This presentation will include insights from conference attendees who participated in the Free Listening Workshop, and will finish off with exercises that heighten everyone’s sensitivity to the importance and power of listening.

Benjamin MathesBio: Benjamin is an award winning actor, producer, teacher, author, and founder of Urban Confessional: A Free Listening Project, a worldwide movement that spans 50 countries and 40 US states. His work has been featured in The Atlantic, The Huffington Post, Fast Company, and in over 20 international publications, and continues to inspire a message of non-judgmental, active, and radical listening.

Now What? Ready, Set…Plan of Action!
Presenter: Anya Zadrozny

It’s day three of the conference and your head is full of great new techniques and perspectives that are very pertinent to your business. You’re also feeling inspired and motivated by your fellow conference attendees. However, finding the time, resources and motivation to implement your new learning can feel like a daunting and impractical task — especially once you are back to your normal routine.

You’ll leave Los Angeles with an action plan and proven methods and tools to implement these new learnings — and maintain your motivation now and throughout the year. Anya will also guide us through an exercise to share the pieces of gold we’ve picked up during our time in LA. This presentation is built upon information from research findings, books, articles and interviews from motivated, driven, goal-oriented people in a variety of industries. You'll make the most of your conference experience and improve your business.

Anya ZadroznyBio: Anya Zadrozny is the founder of AnyaZMedia.com, a qualitative market research and video production company. Before starting her own business, she worked as a producer and on-air host for MTV and Vh1 Radio. While there, she interviewed some of the most goal-orientated and motivated individuals in the music and entertainment industry. She’s conducted over 1,000 interviews with celebrities, musicians and cultural innovators at MTV’s headquarters in Times Square, as well as at the Academy Awards, the Grammy Awards and the MTV Video Music Awards. She was a 2014 QRCA Young Professional Grant Winner and currently serves on the QRCA Marketing Committee, the Qcast committee and the LA Conference Committee.

4:45 – 5:00 p.m.

Closing Remarks



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