Market Research History in Adelaide

The history of market research is formed by developments in statistical analysis, political polls and market(ing) research. Below an overview of happenings in the history of the market research industry worldwide and in Adelaide.

1824 First recorded straw polls appeared in the presidential election of that year.

1893 Karl Pearson was the first to mention Standard Deviation in writings.

1905 The Commonwealth Bureau of Census and Statistics (CBCS) was established under the Census and Statistics Act in, with Sir George Knibbs appointed the first Commonwealth Statistician. It was founded to serve the need for a National Statistical Office to develop nationally comparable statistics.

1911 Charles Coolidge Parlin undertakes "Commercial Research". His first study of the agricultural implement industry results in a brief 460 page report, which is said to be the first ever formal marketing research study.

1923 Founding of ACNielsen

1929 The first Australian recorded consumer study was carried out by Rudi Simmatt of J Walter Thompson.

1932 Invention of the Likert Scale by Rensis Likert. A Likert scale is a psychometric scale commonly used in questionnaires, and is the most widely used scale in survey research. When responding to a Likert questionnaire item, respondents specify their level of agreement to a statement. The format of a typical five-level Likert item is Strongly disagree, Disagree, Neither agree nor disagree, Agree, Strongly agree.

1935 Dr. George Gallup founded the American Institute of Public Opinion, which evolved into The Gallup Organization. George Gallup was an American pioneer of survey sampling techniques and inventor of the Gallup poll, a successful statistical method of survey sampling for measuring public opinion.

1936 In the 1930's, larger consumer companies in the US and UK were becoming more and more active in market research, in 1936 the BBC began systematic research into its own audience, establishing a Listener Research Section in the Home Intelligence Department of its Public Relations Division.

1936 Sylvia Ashby opened the first independent market research company in Australia, Ashby Research Service.

1941 Founding of Roy Morgan Research, Australia's longest established market research and public opinion survey company.

1941 In this same year, Robert K Merton, an eminent US-based sociologist, pioneered the use of the Focused Interview - and applied this to groups.

1944 Founding of The McNair Survey, currently one of the leading market research agencies in Australia.

1957 American Psychologist Charles Osgood used computer technology and factor analysis to explore how people differentiate between the meanings of words. He published The Measurement of Meaning which popularised his methods quickly.

1976 Founding of McGregor Tan Research

1986 Founding of Harrison Research

1989 Founding of Colmar Brunton Research.

1989 Founding of Robyn Kunko Market Research

1992 Founding of newfocus Pty Ltd

1992 Founding of Synovate

1993 Founding of Hudson Howells.

2002 Founding of Intuito

2004 Founding of Square Holes Pty Ltd

2007 Founding of Action Market Research

2008 Founding of Greenhill Research and Planning.

2008 Founding of Illuminate.

2011 Founding of Haymakr

2012 Closing of Synovate offices in Adelaide.

2015 Founding of Mint Research

Qualitative Research is widely used today in market research. Many of the dominant methodologies were adopted from sociology and developed during the 1940s and early 1950. It was only until the 60s and 70s before qualititative research grew in popularity. In that period there was a growing belief that qualititative research on it's own wasn't enough to find research the subconscious layers of human thought.