By now you’ve probably heard that Domino’s Pizza has “fixed” its recipe.

Through “research” done in focus groups it was revealed that people didn’t like Domino’s pizza. (I put research in quotations since I have heard CPB – the agency who did the ad – has a great disdain for focus groups.  Plus, I don’t think Domino’s would have taken the handful of opinions from focus groups alone to convince them to trash their recipe, but I digress.)

While “research” has been used in advertising in the past (remember Ford’s Swap Your Ride campaign?), I personally think this is on a different level.  Will respondents take focus groups less seriously, use stronger comments to get attention, or just not want to bother with participating if they think they’ll receive unwanted attention (granted, all the people in the commercial surely signed releases)?

More than likely, this one ad, or even ad campaign, will have little lasting effect on focus groups. And it does show companies acting on customers’ feedback.  But it’s important for researchers and end users to be aware of these pop culture uses and possible shifts in opinions towards research among participants, especially if we see more of this type of ad in the future.

What do you think?