By Patrick Comer, Lucid, Founder and CEO

In my last blog, I introduced the concept of Research Technology, which we now affectionately know as ResTech. Like any innovative technology, research has evolved to become a tool that is vital to nearly every industry.

But any new concept needs a clear definition that we can rally behind, so here goes:

ResTech (short for research technology) is the umbrella term for the software and tools that help platforms, agencies, and brands target, deliver, and analyze their insights initiatives. …


We All Need Research Technology (ResTech)

These days, technology and innovation are an integral part of our lives. From our prolific use of apps, streaming devices, smart homes, and more, we’ve come to expect immediate results with technology. And the research industry is keeping pace. The time has come for research to own its technology-focused, disruptive future — because this change has been in the works, and now it’s accelerating.

The impact of COVID-19 has moved companies to adopt a digital approach at a faster rate in the last six months than the past six years. In addition, the need…


( An ode to the ISS Class of 1994 )

BAMF — That’s the call sign, the tag, of pranks at Indian Springs School (Culver Creek Academy).

It took me 10 years to read the ending of Looking for Alaska. At first, I loved the nostalgia and exact references in the book to people, places, and events. You see I was a boarder at Indian Springs, I lived in that dorm circle, I called home on those payphones, and I sucked the marrow out of life in those woods.

Looking for Alaska isn’t fiction for me and my classmates. It’s history. But more than that, it’s grief and mourning still. For me, Alaska isn’t a character, she’s my first love. You know that teenage love that burns…


Photo by Brett Duke | 2014 The Times-Picayune

by Patrick Comer and Erynn Wood

When I started Lucid in 2010 my goal was to create the sample marketplace, but that’s only half the story.

7 years ago, Lucid was a one-man band: I was the accounting, technology, and marketing functions all rolled into one. I needed help, and so Lucid invested in two recent Tulane MBA grads. At first, they only worked part time but we made sure every hour we spent together counted. Not in hours but in the quality of our time together. …


A lot has changed since the early days of online market research and sampling. As with any industry, technology and user behavior have been the driving force. In this post, we take a look back at the evolution of online sampling and what we have learned as we move into a new era of programmatic.

In the beginning, there was panel, and it was good

(2000–2005)


Recently, someone asked for approval for a $1,000 annual software license that obviously everyone needed. Later I asked the team why they didn’t know how to get an approval and whom to ask, which sparked a whole discussion around expenses, decision-making, and approvals. Here’s my attempt to share my philosophy on decision-making at Lucid.

Ultimately, a company’s value is just the sum of the decisions it makes and executes. — Harvard Business Review

One of our biggest assets culturally is fearless decision making. In our younger days, we would make decisions, big and small, quickly. Not all of these choices…


Improvisation or ‘Improv’ was one of the most important classes that I ever took. It’s profoundly impacted how I relate to people and new situations. Pete Smith, Professor of Theatre Arts at Sewanee, told us on day one that we would have to learn to juggle. To be honest, I’m still not sure of the connection between acting and juggling. I do, however, recognize a different, more applicable connection: juggling translates almost directly to how you should run a successful business.

Learn how to toss one ball

In order to juggle, you have to learn how to toss one ball. Somewhat counter-intuitive, I always tried to…


Sample Never Sleeps

I used to say that “Sample never sleeps” because I never did. Given the 24/7 nature of the business, there was always another bid, another project, or another quota cell that wasn’t closing out fast enough. I had to wait up for a project manager in another time zone or get up early to call a supplier another country. “Hurry up and wait” became the norm as someone I needed was always sleeping in some other time zone.

Now “Sample never sleeps” because automated buying and selling of sample has made the process so seamless. Launching a project with 30…


Finally, we are a real boy.

No longer are we the little startup company in New Orleans in an obscure niche industry that few people truly understand. No longer are we the “what if this works’ business model of programmatic sampling built upon an open exchange platform. We have arrived and we are very, very real.

“Figaro, you know what I wished? I wished that my little Pinocchio might be a real boy! Wouldn’t that be nice? Just think, a real boy.”

When we started Federated Sample, we knew we had landed on something special. We built a common platform for sampling, Fulcrum, that fundamentally changed…


Reality: Mobile Surveys Will Beat Traditional in 2016

If the current trend continues, then mobile interviews will exceed PC conversion in 2016 further disrupting survey platforms and research designs that aren’t mobile friendly. Ink has been spilt over the onslaught of mobile respondents and the total lack of preparation or even care that research agencies and survey designers have for the user experience. I remember a CASRO Tech in NYC when a researcher suggested that we should ‘keep mobile respondents’ out of surveys lest they mangle norms. All of this reminds me of the challenges political researchers face as the…

Patrick Comer

CEO, Lucid. #nolatech & Krewe de Nieux. Lucid is a software company delivering the power of human answers on a massive scale.

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