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Dr. Leo J. Shapiro, founder of 8Sages, dies at 94

January 19th, 2016


Dr. Leo J. Shapiro

Leo Shapiro died peacefully at his home on November 10th, 2015.  We have been honored to work with Leo all these years. He has inspired us through his work, stories, sage advice, curiosity, deep caring and his fascinating, brilliant mind.

It will surprise no one who knew Leo to hear that he was active in thought and research until the very end, writing a post for this blog and editing a national poll just days before he left us. Leo was happy when he was asking questions of himself and of others, in an ongoing pursuit to better understand and improve the world around us.

Crain’s Chicago Business shares more in their article, “Leo Shapiro, market research pioneer, dies at 94“.


McDonald’s Future Growth Found in Lessons from Its Past

September 1st, 2015

McDonald’s has been in the news quite a bit of late. Its stock has been slumping, and customer visits to the restaurant have been on the decrease. But with a new CEO and a new strategy for the company, the megalith is hoping it can reinvigorate its brand.


The historical success of McDonald’s can be directly attributed to Ray Kroc taking advantage of a tremendous shift in the American social structure that occurred after World War II. This article will lay out that shift and Kroc’s timely acumen.


But the real question facing McDonald’s is can the company do it again? Findings from our August national survey point toward several interesting trends, including burgeoning consumer awareness of how food can be detrimental to health (and the converse, how nutritious foods can greatly increase well-being). This means that McDonald’s has the opportunity (and the challenge) to tap into a new cultural shift for its future growth. If it is clever enough.

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Crain’s Discovers Challenges, Opportunities for McDonald’s in Exclusive 8Sages Survey

September 1st, 2015

Data from an exclusive 8Sages survey was used by Peter Frost in his article for Crain’s Chicago Business  “How Americans really feel about McDonald’s.” Frost discusses the challenges that McDonald’s faces, along with the opportunities presented in discovering solutions to its current woes, and details some of our findings – including that consumers are enjoying McDonald’s less than its competitors. Quoting Dr. Leo Shapiro, lead investigator, in the article: “Competitors have leaped ahead not just in food healthfulness, quality and tastiness, but also in the overall experience of ordering and dining…Is McDonald’s fixable? Yes. Is the fix in? It doesn’t look that way yet.”

Mr. Frost’s piece was additionally picked up by Ad Age: “Love on the Rocks: Survey Reveals Problems, Opportunities for McDonald’s.”


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Copyright August 2015 by Leo J. Shapiro – All Rights Reserved.

Americans Feel More Stable about Their Personal Financial Situation and the Economy

August 29th, 2015

Our national surveys conducted in early August 2014 and during the week of August 3, 2015 found Americans feeling more secure and more optimistic about their financial situation than they had felt a year ago.

Household Financials

In 2014, 31% of Americans believed they were worse off than in 2013, and only 28% believed they were doing better. Now in August 2015, a year later, more report feeling that their finances are better (33%) than worse (27%) than they had been a year ago. Further, looking ahead from 2015 to 2016, more Americans expect to be in better shape financially next year (46%) than those in 2014 looking ahead to 2015 (42%).

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