In the US, ad and media research specialist Sequent and the Center of Media Design at Ball State University (BSU) have partnered to launch a new media research company that will use ‘state-of-the-art’ methodologies to track consumer media behaviour.

The university is already working with Sequent on a number of research projects, including the Nielsen funded ‘shadow-the-consumer’ initiative, where participants are followed by researchers making notes about when and how they watch, listen, surf, read, play video games, download text and talk on the phone.

During a presentation given at yesterday’s Advertising Research Foundation’s audience measurement conference in New York, the Center’s Director of Insight and Research Mike Bloxham explained that the institute’s goal is to understand how people use media and how it affects their behaviour.

He said that while the partners would be using the observational method, this would be employed alongside a wide variety of other methodologies.

The Institute has already licensed the TouchPoints methodology from the UK- based IPA (Institute of Practitioners in Advertising), and Sequent Co-Founder Jim Spaeth told DRNO that both organizations would be meeting with the IPA in July to provide its members with an overview of ‘shadow the consumer’.

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