Keeping things in proportion

The research by the Marketing Society reported in Marketing Week (October 16) illustrates just why marketing sometimes has a bad reputation.

The report says: “49 per cent feel their role is going to become less important in the future.” Sounds like 51 per cent think it will be more important! It also says: “48 per cent believe that the status of marketing has decreased.” Would that be 52 per cent the other way, then?

So the report is expressing a bias in presentation, which is no good for reputation. And do they really believe that 49 per cent is significantly different to 51 per cent? The sample would have to be very large for that to be so (just ask a statistician).

Bryan Smith



London SE3


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