Get a good foundation
Successful online research starts with a good foundation. That foundation is your sample. This guide gives you the framework to follow when evaluating and buying the services of online sample providers. More than just a checklist, the guide offers you the tools to have the right conversations with the sample provider to get the best sample possible.
This guide gives you the questions you need to identify the key issues and introduce consistent terminology. It explains why each question should be asked and indicates the issues buyers should expect to be covered in an answer.
Behind the scenes
Watch and listen to our experts explain how they went about making the document and the challenges they resolved for you when it comes to buying and using online samples.
Introducing the project teamDiscover their expertise and their experiences
The toughest challenges resolvedWhat were the hardest questions to give guidance on according to the project team?
How should the questions be used?Is it a checklist, a marketing tool for sample providers, or something different?
How do you know if you've got good samples?The metrics that help to judge the quality
Are there any wrong or right answers?Describing the red lines not to be crossed.
Responsibilities for the buyers of online sampleWith great power comes great responsibility
What will the future look like?Forecasting how online sampling might further change
Who should use this document and why?Back to basics, the project team explain whether this document for you
Crafted for you by our project team
This guide was produced by a dedicated team of international experts in online samples, ensuring the guidance is informed by global best practices and real-world experiences.
Judith PassinghamESOMAR Committee Member, Chair of the Professional Standards Committee at ESOMAR
Judith Passingham has worked in the Market Research industry for over 35 years, in many different roles from General Management, Client Account Leadership, Service Development, to Sales and Operations – on a Global and European basis.
She started her career at the British Market Research Bureau working on the TGI and various media measurements, then working at AGB, subsequently TNS where she ran the UK and then global panel division as CEO of ‘Worldpanel ‘ and as Joint CEO of Europanel – a joint venture between TNS and GFK.
Judith was appointed CEO of TNS Europe and then following the WPP acquisition of TNS oversaw the integration of RI and TNS in Northern and Eastern Europe. In 2014 Judith joined Ipsos to run its Access Panel services where she drove service integration into one global entity, launched device agnostic interviewing and programmatic sampling.
In 2016 she took on responsibility for Ipsos’s Operational capability. She retired in 2019 and volunteers for Pilotlight and for the Maple Lodge Nature Reserve. In January 2020 she was appointed as Chair of the Professional Standards Committee for ESOMAR.
Reg BakerESOMAR Ambassador, ESOMAR Ambassador for North America at ESOMAR
Reg is the North American Regional Ambassador for ESOMAR, the global voice of the data, research and insights community. He also serves as a consultant to ESOMAR's Professional Standards Committee.
Previous to his work with ESOMAR, he was Executive Director of the Marketing Research Institute International (MRII). Prior to his retirement from full-time work in 2012, Reg was President and Chief Operating Officer of Market Strategies International, a US-based custom research and analytics company. Before joining Market Strategies in 1995, he served as Vice President of Research Services for NORC at the University of Chicago.
Throughout his career, Reg focused on the methodological and operational implications of new data technologies. He writes and presents on these and related topics to diverse national and international audiences and blogs off and on as “The Survey Geek.”
Melanie CourtrightESOMAR Committee Member, Chief Executive Officer at Insights Association
Melanie serves as the Chief Executive Officer at the Insights Association. As the leading voice, resource and network of the marketing research and data analytics community, the Insights Association helps its members create competitive advantage by investing in quality standards, legal and business advocacy, education, certification and direct support that enables our members to thrive in an evolving industry and drive business impact.
Melanie has spent more than 25 years designing, executing, and interpreting research for agencies and corporations, and is an industry voice in market research for quality, trends and the next generation of data collection. Known as an expert methodologist, she started her career at a full-service research firm in Dallas where she spent ten years developing her strong research background. She then followed that with a decade specializing in all forms of digital research including online, mobile and social. Melanie has successfully developed and launched leading sampling platforms, routers, methodology best practices, panels and research products.
Melanie contributes to standards and codes of conduct, is heavily involved in chairing and speaking at industry events, and is an award winning writer, researcher, and voice of data quality and best practices.
Pete CapeESOMAR Individual Member, Global Knowledge Director at Dynata
Pete has over 30 years experience in Market Research. Initially a specialist in international telephone research, he was a founder member of TNS Interactive in the late 90s and has concentrated on online research ever since.
Joining Survey Sampling in 2005 he oversaw the rapid development of their online business in the UK and became Global Knowledge Director in 2006. He is a frequent speaker at conferences, seminars and training workshops around the globe and a regular contributor to research and marketing publications.
Peter MillaESOMAR Individual Member, Data Protection Officer at Cint
Peter Milla is consultant and Cint’s Data Protection Officer providing services in a number of areas including, information security, compliance and contract support and research quality.
He has expertise in a range of information technology, insights, market/survey research, data protection and information security subjects, applying expertise in IT and research methods. He has extensive experience with the application of information technology to research.
Peter has held IT and data protection leadership positions at a number of research companies, including Survey Sampling International, Harris Interactive and Roper Starch Worldwide.
Peter is also an Associate at Cambiar, a consultancy that advises research agencies and departments and a Fellow of the Ponemon Institute, a research organisation that advises business and government on responsible information and privacy management practices.
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