There has been a lot of research on conjoint analysis in the last decades. From validity to hierarchical bayes and from self explicated approaches to hybrid conjoint, the streams and topics of research are overwhelming.
But still, there are some pearls in this never ending stream of new papers. One of them is the paper on incentive-aligned conjoint by Ding, Grewal, and Liechty (2005) published in the Journal of Marketing Research.
The authors show a promising way of how to improve validity of conjoint analysis. Generally, conjoint analysis was performed in a so-called hypothetical setting, meaning that the respondents did not have an incentive to really tell their truth while answering the conjoint questionnaire. This led to rather a low predictive value and validity of the results. The approach of Ding, Grewal, and Liechty, on the other hand, is aimed at solving these issues by giving the respondents an incentive to answer truthfully. The incentive is, that there exists a possibility that the respondent would have to buy the product in question for a price that is built based on the respondents stated preferences. So, if the respondent misstates her preferences, she might end up being forced to pay too much for the product that she intended to pay.
Thus, using the incentive-aligend approach might help market researchers to improve the validity of their conjoint results. It will be interesting to see if the incentive-aligned approach gets accepted and applied by the market researchers and if it the process will be understood by the subjects of future studies.
|Author: Reto Hofstetter|