How can you get to the heart of what your audience wants from you? Asking them is no good, because we are conditioned to serve up responses that are influenced by the opinions of our peers, the interviewer and what we deem should be our response. Observation in simulated conditions is a bit better, but even experimentation based on activity can come up short in telling us exactly the way our audience thinks. A science of the mind developed from the way it works every day is the only surefire path to creating the right kinds of things for the right kinds of audiences.
Welcome to the Study of Genomics: Here Are Your Tools
In the last blog post, we introduced you to our new science, Mind Genomics, which quantifies the way people think about certain topics and the index of ideas they generate based on experimentation. Our working assumption is that we could put number on these ideas, based upon the results of experiments using certain simple tools. These include:
- The raw materials of the topic (silos or topic area, elements or specifics).
- Experiment design to create test stimuli.
- Rating questions, which allow respondents, the tested people, to communicate their reactions to the test stimuli.
- The test people whose ‘minds’ are to be understand through the science.
- Technology, i.e., computers, to present the test stimuli, acquire the results, do the statistics
We worked out the methods, creating a workhorse technology (Ideamap®) which allowed us to explore any topic area using the strategy of presenting ideas in mixtures, getting reactions to the mixtures, and deconstructing the reaction to the contribution of the components.
The internal engine of Ideamap, the product we developed as the precursor to Mind Genomics, was simple:
- Deconstruct any top area into six silos or categories, each having six elements.
- Then mix and match these elements into vignettes (test concepts), using experimental design, so that each person would end up testing 48 vignettes comprising 3-4 elements, one or no element from each of the six silos.
- Make sure that each element appeared 5x times in the 48 vignettes, statistically independent of every other element, and that each respondent tested a unique set of 48 vignettes.
Finish it off by analysis of ordinary least-squares regression at the level of the individual respondent, and we were on our way.
Mind Genomics Produced Real Results About Ideas and Thoughts That Drive Interest
When all was said and down, Mind Genomics produced some wonderful results. These include:
- A database for each topic area showing what ‘elements’ or ideas drive interest, are valued highly, or affect one’s emotions (we call that the micro-science”).
- Mind-set segment segments (viewpoints) for the topic area, based upon what elements are important.
- Viewpoint identifying tool, to determine the segment membership of an individual.
- The ability to sequence a person’s mind on a large array of topic areas, using an array of viewpoint identifiers.
This simple research strategy, which we compared to a Roman phalanx that can attack many areas at once, has allowed us to explore the human reaction to topics as varied as foods, lifestyles, movies, education, government, aesthetics, the law, the medical experience, horticulture, emotions, economics, and so forth.
More to the point, our efforts in this newly emerging effort of Mind Genomics, have been developed into books and PDFs that we publish ourselves through Amazon’s Create Space. Mind Genomics has been given a standing offer by several major publishers, but we feel it’s too important as a legacy to be limited by the prices that today’s publishers must charge. And so we’re offering these books at low prices, as our gift to the generations to come. We will present links to various materials on Mind Genomics through this blog as we explore the nuances of this exciting new science in the weeks to come.