Easter has passed, but chocolate continues to be a popular purchase at the checkout counter. Chocolate comes in many forms and many brands. There are many chocolate makers such as Hershey, Wonka, and Nestle. According to NBC News, America’s favorite candy bar is Snickers being that it is the most purchased candy bar in the United States. Believing this, a survey was created consisting on nine questions and was distributed to 12 people via social media to test the theory that Snickers is the favorite bar.
Five different question forms were used as target questions to confirm or deny the statement made by NBC. The first question of the survey is, “What are your top three favorite candy bars? ” It is a free response question asking participators to list three of their favorite candy bars. The scale of answers varies between 15 candy bar names, including Snickers, KitKat, and Twix bars. With a free response question, the top three candy bars are Snickers, Heath bars, and tied for third are KitKat bars and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, Snickers being the top choice of participators.
Although the answers consist of only candy, items other than candy bars were listed, including Reese’s Pieces and Peanut M&Ms, and therefore only partially meet the standards by being useful but not essential. According to this type of rating, the question passes the four criterion-related validity qualities; relevance, freedom from bias, reliability, and availability. The question is reliable in that the respondents did answer with candy, but it is not valid respondents gave answers other than candy bars.
The second and third questions were multiple choice, single answer question.
Question two of the survey is, “Which ONE of the following candy bars did you enjoy recently? ” The third question of the survey is, “Which ONE of the following candy bars do you have most often? ” Both questions offered the following answers: A) Snickers, B) Twix, C) Heath, D) KitKat Bar, E) 3 Musketeers. Although this type of question produces a balanced controlled scale, the participators may have a different type of candy bar they enjoy often and more recently than the candy bars listed. Therefore, the conclusion consists of bias, but does in fact list Snickers being the respondent’s favorite candy bar.
The fourth and fifth questions use one form of a rating grid, asking respondents to rate both a Snickers bar and a KitKat bar on a scale from one to 10; one being the worst candy bar they have ever had and 10 being the best candy bar they have ever had. The scale is interval data and is considered more reliable. The scale is balanced, but the responses are unbalanced. Snickers rate steady evenly between seven and 10. KitKat bars rate strongly with 10’s, but has a few respondents that rate the candy at a seven or eight.
According to this scale, KitKat performs better that Snickers. Question six of the survey is another form of a rating scale. It asks the respondents to indicate how important different candy bar characteristics such as milk chocolate, white chocolate, dark chocolate, peanuts, and caramel is on a scale from one to five, one being not important and five being very important. This question really had nothing to do with how respondents rank a Snickers bar, but is more for attempting to locate the reason people may prefer a Snickers bar over other candy bars.
Respondents prefer milk chocolate and caramel ingredients, and they would rather stay away from dark chocolate. Because the question is not relevant to the theory question of what is the favorite candy bar of most people, it is not reliable and therefore not valid. Question seven and eight are dichotomous questions asking for yes or no answers to each. Question seven is, “Have you ever bought a KitKat bar because the commercial was stuck in your head? ” This question also poses no relevance and is therefore not reliable or valid.
Question eight is, “Do you wish you had a candy bar right now? ” Although this question seems like it would not relevant, it is a buffer question for the respondent to answering question number nine. Question nine is a paired comparison, asking respondents what their next candy bar will be; KitKat or Snickers? The majority of the participators said their next candy bar will be a Snickers bar. Using a multiple-choice, single-response scale produces nominal data. This was a fun essay to partake in.
Although the theory of the Snickers bar being America’s favorite candy bar was tested and proven correctly, other information was also learned from this. Individuals who preferred milk chocolate rated dark chocolate really low. Individuals that preferred dark chocolate rated white chocolate really low. Peanuts within a candy bar were either really liked or had a neutral appreciation from participators. Finally, even though question eight ended up not being reliable or valid for the proposed theory, it did show that many individuals purchase a KitKat bar because of the marketing aspects of the catchy commercial tune.
All in all, this survey shows that when given free responses, individuals still prefer Snickers over other leading candy bars. When paired with other types of candy bars, Snickers still won individual preference. After the conclusion of this survey, the survey displays errors and should be retested with refined questions. The survey as a whole does not propose any type of reliability and therefore is not a valid survey. Refined questions will provide the participators motivation to complete the survey and awaken the interest of the respondents, and will allow for a more valid conclusion.
For now, it does appear that NBC News has the correct information. Snickers’ does appear to be the leading favorite of candy bars among the chocolate eating population. It now is apparent why this leading candy bar can be found in abundance every holiday.
References McIntyre, D. A. (2012, April 5). 24/7 Wall St. 247 Wall St RSS. Retrieved May 5, 2013, from http://247wallst. com/2012/04/05/americas-favorite-chocolate-brands/print/ Cooper, D. R. , & Schindler, P. S. (2011). Business research methods (11th ed. ). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill/Irwin.
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