Lightspeed Blog

Frank Kelly

Senior Vice President, Global Marketing & Strategy
Within his role as Senior Vice President, Frank is responsible for directing the global marketing portfolio through strategic planning and branding initiatives. He oversees marketing, communications, advertising, client materials and online media platforms.

Previously, Frank served as Senior Vice President, Global Panels, in which he oversaw client and panel operations throughout the Americas region. He was instrumental in the integration of the TNS 6th dimension and the Lightspeed online panel businesses, which began with a merger announced in mid-2009.

Frank is a veteran of more than 20 years in the market research industry. Over the past decade, he has worked to build and operate the industry’s leading global panels across Europe, the Americas and Asia Pacific. He previously held senior management positions with TNS, Greenfield Online and The Nielsen Company after beginning his research career with Colgate Palmolive Company and Sherwin Williams.

Frank is a graduate of Northeastern University, where he earned an M.B.A. degree, and Babson College, from which he holds a B.S. degree in Business Administration.

Recent Posts


Posted by Frank Kelly on Dec 12, 2016

Video is gaining as a way to communicate and consume media and now, we will see increased usage of video in research. The qualitative and quantitative worlds are coming much closer together, within five years the differentiation will no longer be meaningful. New tools to manage video content will enable video processing much like other data types; open ended questions will gain importance as a way to glean insights from respondents. 

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Topics: Marketing Research, Video, qualitative research, quant vs. qual

The Future of Panels

Posted by Frank Kelly on Jan 20, 2016
This blog post was originally published on

Are the best days of online research panels behind us?

Research fieldwork methodologies come and go. Postal panels, central location interviewing and CATI all had their moments, but are now outmoded. By all indications, the peak of online panel research was more than five years ago when we had large, responsive, deeply profiled panels. Today, panels are less responsive; respondents do not remain in panels as long and two key benefits of panels, sample selection and panel profiling processes, have largely been replaced by lower quality dynamic pre-screening and respondent allocation algorithms.

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Topics: Communities, Marketing Research, Panels, Online access panels

Speak Up for Voice Research

Posted by Frank Kelly on Sep 25, 2015

Will voice technology have a major impact on the collection of data in marketing research?

Surveys are changing. Even with PCs and tablets available, respondents are choosing to complete surveys on their mobile devices. Open-ended questions are often reduced or eliminated as a way to shorten surveys for mobile compatibility; voice technology may enhance the survey experience on a mobile device by having the surveys read to you and enabling you to respond using your voice rather than typing on these small screen devices. Voice technology is quickly replacing both reading and typing on small screen mobile devices. 

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Topics: Mobile, Voice Technology, Marketing Research

An Open Discussion on the Impact of Respondent Sourcing

Posted by Frank Kelly on Jul 8, 2015

Research clients should learn how the source of their respondents affects research data. At Lightspeed GMI, we have been observing some very significant differences depending on the source of the data. The way a respondent enters a study will impact the overall data quality obtained from that respondent. It is not a story of good and bad, but rather just a case of significant differences; ignoring these differences could result in poor quality research.

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Topics: Dynamic Sourcing, Research Quality

Should you leave your sample to chance?

Posted by Frank Kelly on Mar 11, 2015

As online research has transitioned over the past 15 years from random digit dialing or door-to-door methods to online, a shift from probability to non-probability sampling has occurred. To assuage the concerns of researchers, rigorous sampling methods were developed to ensure representative samples. Despite this, however, there has been a rapid change in sampling practices as respondent efficiency became the focus of fieldwork companies and respondent routing replaced traditional sampling for much of the market research industry.

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Topics: Research Quality, Online Sampling

Giving Voice to Research: Mobile Devices and Data Collection

Posted by Frank Kelly on Mar 6, 2015

The rapid shift in survey data collection to mobile devices has caused researchers to scramble to ensure that surveys are compatible with these collection modes and that trends are not impacted. The focus of attention has been to find ways to simplify and shorten surveys so that they work reasonably well on a mobile device. What has been lost in this transition is that mobile devices offer new ways for us to provide input that may be more suitable than reading questions and typing answers.

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Topics: Mobile, Voice Technology

The Transformation of Marketing Research

Posted by Frank Kelly on Oct 1, 2014

A dozen years ago, while working for Nielsen, I had the good fortune to work on the development of a service with YAHOO! Inc. that helped improve ad targeting on its main website. This was a very successful early Big Data research service that used purchase panel data in conjunction with YAHOO! surfing behavior. The surfing activity of a group defined from Nielsen’s purchase data was then scored against all YAHOO! visitors to improve ad placement on the site. Additionally, Nielsen offered a test and control approach to assess the ROI of the campaign. This was an innovative research service that provided inputs that made marketing activities more efficient.

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Topics: Market Research

An Appetite for Bite-Sized Chunks

Posted by Frank Kelly on Mar 13, 2013

With mobile-cellular penetration approaching 90 percent of the world’s population, market researchers must adapt to reach the mobile respondent – quickly. This is both an opportunity and a threat. The door is open for the industry to leverage a broad based, quick and affordable data collection platform with many additional advantages of computer-based data collection, but we must adapt our interviewing methods to the medium. Many in Marketing Research want to embrace the opportunities afforded by mobile but few are willing to challenge the need for a long interview. Many have noted that in the transition from the telephone to online, practices were maintained that did not fit the new collection methodology and slowed the adoption. “This time we will do it right,” we all say, but change this time requires a revolution in survey design.

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Topics: Blog Post

Where Do Survey Respondents Come From?

Posted by Frank Kelly on Sep 14, 2012

A version of this post appeared on on August 31, 2012

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Topics: Blog Post

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