Since 1997 Hansa Research brought out IRS findings on time. Though it wasn’t error-free and didn’t always satisfy all the publishers but it was something, which people say is better than nothing. No data for more than one and a half years now is a concern for the print industry.
A publisher who wishes to remain anonymous said, “Honestly speaking Hansa Research was doing a better job and the most importantly they were more glued to it. We were expecting Nielsen to perform well as they announced latest technologies but we only received flawed data and anomalies. Personally speaking, I have lost interest in the survey.”
Prabhat Khabar’s Vice President, Uma Shankar said, “Now very honestly we have to understand in the first place that why MRUC moved from Hansa to Nielsen. Because Hansa research was not error free and there were flaws in it. Any research agency has nothing to do with it, it’s the basic methodology that we need to look upon.”
He further elaborated, “Even if Hansa Research comes back what is the guarantee that publishers will not go to court, if the fresh data is not accurate. The basic idea is to correlate the data, what was earlier done by Hansa Research did was a benchmark.”
Methodology vs Agency
A large chunk of publishers felt that methodology is the main criteria and appointing new agencies will not work out. Agencies do their job whatever is told to them, until and unless methodology isn’t changed it’ll not help to get accurate figure.
Rahul Kansal, President, Brand Function, BCCL said, “ Hansa Research was not empowered with latest technology, When MRUC appointed Nielsen as the research agency Hansa was also in the race and was a very strong contender. Kansal also pointed out that agency is not the problem but methodology is the biggest issue. He said, “Not having a robust methodology both in terms of sample size and data impacts the industry.” He suggested, “MRUC needs to ensure tamper- proof field work with larger sample size and robust data.”
Shreyamas Kumar, Director, Mathrubhumi also feels that methodology and approach are the two big things to look at. He said, “The problem with MRUC is that they don’t bother at all and come out with whatever they want; in one of the surveys, they showed readership is below the circulation. We have written to MRUC not to use our masthead and we have unsubscribed from it. If they want to release accurate data, then do the research in a fair way.”
Jwalant Swaroop, COO, Sakal Media said, "It is important for any research company to understand the client's brief and create an implementation plan best suited to the brief. I feel it should be able to deliver results and credible trends. "