Co-Founder & CEO
Colin is a specialist in quantitative applications in behavioral sciences, more specifically, consumer psychology and cognitive response to visual stimuli. For over 20 years, his area of expertise has centered on the science of consumer behavior and the integration of multivariate techniques for management decision making.
Before co-founding Informed Decisions Group, Inc., Colin was a Senior Researcher with Moen Incorporated and following that, part of the Marketing Sciences Group for one of the largest research firms in the U.S. Colin has also been a Consumer Scientist for The Calphalon Corporation, a division of Newell-Rubbermaid, and a Research Analyst for Cox Ohio Media. Academically, Colin has served as an Adjunct Professor for undergraduate Industrial/Organization Psychology and graduate courses including the Advanced Consumer Research Seminar and Field Research Methodologies at Cleveland State University’s Consumer-Industrial Research program.
His journal publications and conference presentations have spanned across the psychology and communications fields including Quirk’s Marketing Research Review, Journal of International Consumer Marketing, Technovation, Internet Research as well as presentations to the AMA, ICA and AEJMC. Colin received his B.A. in Psychology from Mount Union College and his M.A. in Consumer Psychology from Cleveland State University’s Consumer Industrial Research Program. Colin is a member of the American Marketing Association, Association for Consumer Research and Society for Consumer Psychology.
GM/SVP, Business Development
Susan joined Informed Decisions Group, Inc. in 2008 as a Client Engagement Manager and has held progressive positions as IDG’s Director of Client Relations and VP of Business Development. With a B.A. in Marketing Communications from Cleveland State University, Susan has led the aggressive growth of IDG’s clients focusing on shopper insights via proprietary behavioral methodologies.
She has been responsible for leading IDG’s initiative to develop our proprietary mobile eye-tracking system and has an extraordinary understanding of translating client goals into visual science research programs to understand shopper behavior and optimize shopper marketing strategies.
With over 20 years of experience, Susan has held progressive positions in the media and communications industries in account relations, field management and marketing with organizations including TV Max and Allstate Insurance.
Leading the engagement and relationships with IDG’s clients, she is dedicated to understanding needs and developing customized solutions for strategic improvements rather than forcing them into a “black box” offering.
EVP, Product & Insights
Josh joined IDG as a seasoned research and insights expert. He has extensive experience with business strategy and advanced research methods to address today’s marketing and product management needs. With over 23 years of experience, his client roster includes retail, manufacturing, consumer packaged goods, insurance, and automotive.
Most recently he has spent the last 6 years working for leading automotive performance part manufacturers including Derive Systems and MSD Performance. Additionally, he has also worked for the largest wholesale distributor of tools/equipment to the professional technician (Integrated Supply Network).
With 13 years of experience on the vendor-side of market research and 10 years on the client-side, Josh can help clients to operationally define their insight gaps for creative and realistic solutions.
Josh earned his B.A. in computer engineering at Wright State University and has mentored under professors of statistics, behavioral psychology, and market research from Kent State, Case Western, Cleveland State, and Xavier
Senior Qualitative Leader
Helen has over 35 years of experience and innovation in all forms of qualitative research. She specializes in Advanced Qualitative Research Techniques, including: “Stealth” Shop-Alongs (without store permission), Ethnography, Laddering, Focus Groups, and IDI’s across a broad range of industries. Her strong background concentrates in bathing and showering behavior, as well as concept and advertising evaluation, in-home and in-store ethnography, and brand development.
She received her B.A. in Psychology from Cleveland State University and was among the first in Northeast Ohio to offer and regularly conduct ethnographic research in all applicable contexts (in-home, in-store, in-office). Some of her awards and accomplishments include:
- 2006 co-presenter at AMA Market Research Conference: “Viewing Ethnography From the Inside Out“
- 2005 winner of Gold IDEA (International Design Excellence Award) in the Research Category
- Personally trained in the technique of Laddering and Means-End Chain Theory by its co-developer, Dr. Jonathan Gutman
- IRB Certified by the federal government to conduct sensitive topics research
- Conducted focus groups inside the Arctic Circle, in winter, and lived to tell about it
Senior Qualitative Leader
John has over 35 years of experience in all facets of qualitative and quantitative research driving product development and brand growth. His undergraduate studies focused on assessing and understanding animal and human behavior, resulting in a B.A. in the Social Sciences from Cleveland State University. John has held progressive positions as SVP & Director of Research & Brand Planning at regional advertising agencies, SVP Marketing/VP Customer Insights at KeyBank, Marketing Director, Construction Services Division at Owens Corning and a Contract Shopper Insights Executive at Sam’s Club.
John helps businesses to identify and remove barriers along the path to purchase, understand how people really use products and services and how to recognize unmet needs/opportunities in order to leapfrog the competition. His areas of specialization for B2B and B2C Qualitative Research include Ethnography, Shopper Insights, IDIs, Mobile Eye-Tracking, Laddering and User Experience Research.
Quantitatively, John’s expertise focuses on Brand Positioning, Pre/Post Tracking, Segmentation, Conjoint/Trade-Off Studies, CRM Assessments and Concept/New Product Tests. As a Strategic Marketing Consultant, he assists B2B and B2C businesses with Product & Service Development, Cross Selling, Retail Environment Enhancements and ROI Tracking.
J. Clark “JC” Houghton
Director of Virtual Technologies
JC formally joined Informed Decisions Group, Inc. in 2017 after a long client/provider relationship that helped facilitate some of IDG’s advanced shopper and virtual methodologies.
He has an extensive technical background; that rages from design and installation of ultra-high resolution visual display systems through service and support of R&D/ Quality Control equipment. He came with a unique expertise in providing large scale visualization services to the market research industry.
The adaptability and resourcefulness that were required as a project manager in the tech sector have been incredibly beneficial when designing and executing new and unique research strategies. Furthermore, these skills have been invaluable when adapting strategies to international markets.
He is enthusiastic about new technologies and the opportunities they have to provide clients with insights that may have been cost prohibitive in the past, if available at all.
Director Client Relations
Ben has deep experience in both brand identity and brand strategy as well as a 21-year career in primary market research. His experience spans CPG, technology, and restaurant work focusing on new product innovation, package testing and shopper insights. His background in brand identity and brand strategy gives extra perspective to the visual design research he conducts on behalf of clients.
Ben started his career consulting with clients developing brand names and identities in the CPG and technology categories at Brand Institute where he was Managing Director of multiple offices. From there he embarked on a career in market research with companies such as MarketTools, MAi Research and Directions Research holding progressive client building and management positions. Throughout his career he has had a deep understanding of how new innovations in research and analytics can help a client answer pressing business questions.
At IDG Ben builds and helps lead client relationships working out of the San Francisco Bay Area. Ben holds a B.S. in Marketing from DePaul University.
Field Research Manager
Jennifer became a part of IDG’s team in 2015 as a field manager and quickly grew into key personnel with her project management and analytical skills. As a crucial member to our field group and visual sciences team, her expertise in shopper and eye-tracking research has grown leading to increased efficiencies and quicker turnarounds for our clients.
Her background in behavioral sciences with a B.A. and M.A. in Psychology from Duquesne University has widened IDG’s diverse team with her emphasis on existential phenomenology and how this ontological view impacts consumer behavior theories. Jennifer’s training helps her challenge the modern tendency to interpret behavior through a narrow technological lens. Her existential approach helps to deepen our clients’ understanding of how their consumers behave in everyday circumstances and the psychological meanings of consumers’ experiences and actions.
She continues to help advance our understanding of human behavior and in-turn provides new dimensions of insights for our clients. Additionally, she is part of the leadership on merging biometric applications to visual sciences for improved shopper, user experience and advertising research.
Team Leader Visual Coding & Analysis
Jennifer joined IDG in 2012 and leads the visual data processing and coding group. After expressing protocols to improve the delivery time and accuracy for eye-tracking projects, she was moved to the coding & analysis team for mobile eye-tracking projects. Her insights have lead to faster turn-arounds internally for project managers, shorter timelines and lower costs for our clients. As a result of her work leading the coding & analysis team, mobile eye-tracking projects have become much more feasible for our clients by fitting into tighter timelines and smaller budgets.
She received her B.A. in Business Administration/Marketing at The Ohio State University and previous to IDG, has focused her efforts on marketing initiatives with non-profit organizations. She continues to help innovate our eye-tracking protocols and implementing additional methodologies such as neuro-measurement, multi-level coding, visual response segmentation approaches and shopper path mapping.
Team Leader Visual Coding & Analysis
Jennifer has 15 years of experience previously working with corporate investigative firms, conducting pre-employment screenings for over 100 corporate clients, which include Nestle, Baker & Hostetler, Disney, Alliance Bernstein and Coca-Cola, among others. Her role in developing and cultivating those relationships through research and problem solving translated to an invaluable asset to IDG’s analytical team.
Previously, as a Senior Investigator she has been responsible for training new employees and creating training materials for divisions as well as for clients. As a research analyst at IDG, Jennifer is involved with data processing and analytics for survey research and mobile eye-tracking. She also manages field teams for in-store shopper research and is a lead team member ensuring client relations and analytic teams work with perfect synergy.
Jennifer has a BA in Psychology from Kent State University as well as additional coursework at the graduate level focusing on counseling psychology.