Sugar buzz in Philly


I was reminded this week how LONG it has been since I had a statistics class…and of the difference between scientific and applied research. Building on what Richard Kalehoff already noted in his post this week, I was struck that this kind of intensive research is very different from what I imagine would be utilized in most professional settings where you could tap the power of online polling, surveys, A/B testing, etc. to quickly draft a plan specific to your client’s goals.

Soft-Drink Study

All that said, I do find the kind of indepth attitudinal research the Philadelphia campaign undertook very interesting and appreciate that it provides guidance for other campaigns on children’s nutrition.  In the pre-post survey, I was struck about how different message delivery systems (TV, display, radio) had different impacts and that overall, the motivators most successful were factually (weight gain and diabetes prevention) not emotion (doing something good for your family), except in the television commercial. That makes sense to me in that in the TV commercial parents might connect more with the mother than they would a static image in print or audio-only in radio.

Still the research found that if a parent connected on the “doing something good for your family” they were more likely to have a higher intention of reducing the beverage consumption than those who reacted to “weight gain.” I wondered if that was personal baggage – the parent might be obese as well — so I poked around and found this article about the study and found Amy Jordan, one of it’s authors, explain:

” First, they (parents) don’t notice when their kids gain weight.  ‘We found that although parents were able to recognize when they themselves were overweight, they didn’t recognize when their children are overweight,’ she says. Although as many as half of the city’s children are overweight, only 20 percent of parents notice. That may be because as more children in the neighborhood get heavier, it’s harder to notice their own children’s weight gain.”

Canadian vs. Chineses web behavior


Reading the online behavior research comparing Canadian college students and Chinese students in Canada, I found myself really wanting to see which websites they used for testing to get a better sense of what they classified as low task relevance vs. high task relevance. But in the end, I wasn’t surprised by the bottom line: “Service providers should enhance the hedonic aspects of the website for the Chinese and the utilitarian aspects for Canadians.”


1. So let’s pretend was one of the sites used in the Canada/Chinese study. What would you classify as a low task relevance vs. high task relevance feature?

2. Do you think the findings in the soft drink study could be translated to other campaigns about children’s nutrition, say such as eating more vegetables or less sugar over all? Why or why not?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s