Margins of Error
As discussed in Paul Gobron's Family Feud entry, statistics are a source of entertainment and basic decision-making in all manner of government policy and business, and even entertainment.
We use statistics in our business too. A common question I get asked about Brockmann & Company reports is 'Are our results statisitcally significant?'
The short answer is YES.
The longer, and more accurate answer is that given our typical sample size of at least 100 respondents, the margin of error, 95% of the time, and a population of 25,000 panel members, our results generate a confidence interval of + or – 9.8%.
A larger sample size of 200 respondents generates a smaller margin of error being + or – 6.9%.
Going as far as 500 respondents generates an even tighter margin of error being + / – 4.34%.
To calculate your own margins of error, check out this nifty online calculator.
But what does this mean?
A +/- 9.8% margin of error means that the true representation of the population given the sample can lie as much as 9.8% higher or lower than the reported statistic.
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