The poll results are in: We’re better at robodialing than the robots are.
In November, CNBC.com reported on a company that’s disrupting the world of robodialing. Instead of those annoying outbound spam calls that disrupt family dinnertime, Reconnect Research works with technology that accepts inbound calls and turns them into research and polling opportunities.
One problem with traditional polling is it depends on respondents answering calls from unknown numbers and using landlines. With cellphones and caller ID, most people won’t answer their phone if a random person or unknown number is calling. People hardly pick up landlines at all.
However, people still have to call important numbers like banks, insurance or credit card companies. When people call those numbers and misdial, Reconnect can send that call to a researcher.
That’s what makes inbound dialing different: It gives a much more accurate representative sample of Americans.
In an update to the original story, Reconnect Research has been continuing to prove out its thesis. One example of this — the results of the Florida primary.
Reconnect’s polling was the most accurate in measuring Democrat Hillary Clinton‘s performance. She received 64.4 percent of the vote, and Reconnect’s poll (known as America’s Real Opinion) had her at 65 percent. It beat the results of polls from CBS News/YouGov and Quinnipiac. Of seven polls compared, Reconnect was tops. That’s impressive given there was not any post-survey weighting that happened. These were just the raw numbers.
Similarly for John Kasich’s number. Reconnect’s poll was number one out of 10 polls analyzed. Kasich got 6.8 percent in Florida, and Reconnect projected him at 7.7 percent, which was the lowest spread. Again, beating polls from other major outlets that have been in the business for years.
Here’s what Reconnect’s basic polling approach got, compared to actual results.
While the results aren’t perfect, they are a step in the right direction. And given the current state of polling, the traditional polls haven’t been that great anyway. The benefit of this approach is it’s much cheaper than trying to reach people individually. And it allows pollsters to access cellphones automatically, because the survey respondents are the ones who made the initial call.
Of course this can go beyond just polling. The technique can be used for broader corporate research on consumer product preferences.
Read the full story at CNBC “The Big Crunch” Election Edition: http://www.cnbc.com/2016/04/12/reconnect-robodialing-is-helping-presidential-polls.html