By Joe Jordan, Vice President, Panel Operations
When an agency or brand selects a panel provider for their next market research project, one of the main criteria that’s often used is panel size. The first question researchers ask vendors is, “How large is your panel?” Yet it’s often the wrong metric. In many cases, the industry has been trained to ask the wrong question. Panel size is important up to a minimum threshold, but then it becomes meaningless. Consider, for example, sites like Upwork, where companies hire freelancers for a variety of tasks. Companies don’t ask, “How many freelancers are in the database?” Instead, they ask, “Does this company have the right freelancers in the database?” The same premise applies to choosing a panel provider: Can they deliver the right number of your audience that you need? Let’s take a closer look at how market researchers can move toward asking the right questions to help them in their panel selection process.