Sneha Girap (Editor)

Flint McGlaughlin

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Alma mater  University of London
Name  Flint McGlaughlin
Education  University of London

Flint McGlaughlin wwwtransformingbusinessnetimagesdrflintmcgla
Occupation  Director of Enterprise Research for Transforming Business at the University of Cambridge (UK) Managing Director & CEO MECLABS
Website  Flint McGlaughlin Official Website
Residence  Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, United States
Known for  Conversion rate optimization

Flint mcglaughlin dr flint mcglaughlin meclabs

Flint McGlaughlin (born 1965) is an American academic and business leader. He is the founder and Managing Director of MECLABS, the largest independent research institution on value proposition optimization. He is also the Director of Enterprise Research at the Transforming Business Center at Cambridge University. His work has led to advancements in understanding the philosophy of human choice, experimential design, and the cognitive psychology of conversion. He has won multiple awards for his work including a President's Public Service Award and a Medal of Excellence. He is considered an expert in his field and has been cited by his peers in articles and research journals as such.


McGlaughlin is an author and public speaker, and has written or edited more than 250 articles and texts. He has written lectures as well as philosophy and theology papers which he has presented all over the world. He is also a screenwriter credited with numerous screenplays and short stories that have aired on Fox, NBC, CBS, and ABC. His writing has also won him numerous awards including an Emmy Award and TV Guide Editors Choice Award.

Dr flint mcglaughlin interview how to fix the most expensive money draining mistake

Early life and education

McGlaughlin bypassed the traditional undergraduate route and advanced directly in the Masters program at the Specialist Jesuit College Heythrop at the University of London. He graduated from the university receiving congratulatory distinction for having the highest scores in the entire college. Based on his research at Heythrop and MECLABS, he was invited to enter Oxford University to obtain his PhD. He passed on the invitation and instead elected to accept an academic position as the Director of Enterprise Research for the University of Cambridge's Transforming Business Institute where he still holds the position.

Transforming business

McGlaughlin is the current Director of Enterprise Research for Transforming Business at the University of Cambridge (UK). Transforming Business is a multi-disciplinary research and development project coordinated by other academic leaders (Peter Heslam, Flint McGlaughlin, and John Kay). The project analyzes and catalyzes the contribution of faith and entrepreneurship to human and environmental well-being. Its focus is on enterprise solutions to poverty. The project aims to examine and disseminate the role of faith and enterprise in the alleviation of poverty; the factors that stimulate 'the spirit of enterprise'; the contribution of faith-based social capital to transformative business; ethical frameworks that promote successful business; and case studies and practical models that inform, motivate and multiply poverty-reducing enterprise.


McGlaughlin is also the Managing Director for the Research Institution, MECLABS. The organization has been involved in direct research partnerships with companies throughout Europe and North America since 2001. MECLABS is a research institution focused on offer-response optimization particularly in the field of “value-exchange.”

MECLABS houses two wholly owned primary research facilities that currently conduct over 1,300 major experiments each year. In all, they have conducted tests with over 10,000 landing pages across 1 billion email sends and 5 million telephone calls. They have also developed the largest library of test protocols in its field. As a means of field-testing its discoveries, the organization has created micro-research laboratories/projects within major companies around the world. McGlaughlin regularly publishes the findings of his research at MECLABS in publications and briefings through MECLABS subsidiaries MarketingExperiments and MarketingSherpa.

As part of his work with MECLABS, McGlaughlin developed a patent pending platform with nine new conversion-related distribution formulas and a new research methodology for single-factorial testing and multifactorial testing in a digital environment.

Speaking and writing

McGlaughlin is a frequent key-note speaker at business and academic events around the world. He has spoken at The Harvard Club of New York City, New York University (NYU), Columbia University, Ridley-Hall Cambridge, Cisco’s Partner Velocity Event, Microsoft Corporation, and Google Inc. His work is widely quoted in publications such as the Washington Post. He has also written and/or produced numerous screenplays, scripts, and short stories that have been featured on Fox, NBC, CBS, and ABC affiliates. His work in fiction is said to be an attempt to express certain of his deeper philosophical insights in a more suitable form.

Concepts and philosophy

McGlaughlin’s work challenges the traditional funnel analogy used by most marketing institutions in two ways. 1) That the funnel should be the primary analogy for all marketing rather than one out of many. The funnel implies that all marketing should influence a decision. McGlaughlin maintains that any marketing effort that does not influence a decision is a waste. 2) That the funnel should be inverted to better illustrate the natural forces of the market working against the marketer rather than for him or her. More people are falling out than are falling in.

McGlaughlin frequently teaches that the value proposition is the answer to the customer-posed question, “If I am the ideal customer, why should I purchase from you rather than any of your competitors?” He also argues that there is a spectrum of value propositions that are derived from a company’s primary value proposition. These derivative value propositions are associated with prospect type, product type, and process stage. His micro-yes theory states that a series of micro-yeses must be achieved in the customer’s mind during the purchase process. The macro-yes, or ultimate yes, is the culminating decision a company would like a given customer to make. Examples of micro-yeses in an online environment might be clicking a PPC ad, reading further after a headline, filling out a form field, etc.

McGlaughlin challenges the current persuasion tactics in marketing and argues for a more transparent tone and honesty in marketing copy. “The Post Modern Consumer just doesn’t believe us anymore.” He is quoted as saying in the Washington Post, “They have endured too many empty promises, too many exaggerated benefits, and too many artful disclaimers.” His article on Transparent Marketing in response to this problem has since gone viral and has been translated into multiple languages. One of McGlaughlin’s most quoted phrases is "clarity trumps persuasion" and illustrates his emphasis on clarity over persuasion. He argues that using quantitative language will outperform using qualitative language. Essentially, specificity converts.

McGlaughlin argues that conversion optimization does not occur on a web page, but in the mind of the prospect. He has been quoted, “People don't want to be ‘marketed TO’; they want to be ‘communicated WITH’”. He maintains that in spite of the potential for an online test to generate a financial gain, the goal of a test is to gain customer wisdom that can be applied for an ultimate gain. McGlaughlin also maintains that the marketer has approximately 4 inches and seven seconds on an average web page to answer three questions in a customer’s mind: 1) Where am I? 2) What can I do here? 3) Why should I do it? If the marketer cannot clearly communicate the answers to these questions in the time and space suggested, the customer will often hit the “back” button on their browser to achieve clarity.

Key Heuristics

In his work, McGlaughlin has combined the use of analogy and heuristics to create a patented (patent number 8,155,995), repeatable methodology for offer-response optimization. Included in McGlaughlin’s patent is a Test Protocol system that attempts to bring discipline to the behavioral testing process. The Test Protocol system integrates a Design of Experiments with data tracking and validation calculations in the experiment.

  • C = 4m + 3v + 2(i - f) - 2a
  • eme = rv [of + i] – [f + a]
  • u = 2q + t + m + 2v + iI
  • Nf = pVf - pCf
  • Criticism

    McGlaughlin’s testing approach has been criticized in the book Landing Page Optimization by Tim Ash for "reporting the conversion rate improvement based on the ratio of the means." While there is some rationale for it, Ash maintains, "this should not be used as a reason to abandon the use of error bars or confidence intervals."

    Awards and recognition

    McGlaughlin has been the recipient of numerous awards throughout his career. His first came in 1995 when he was given the Best of Gannett Broadcasting Award for Stab. He was honored a year later with the Telly Award as the executive producer of the television special SPYCOM. He received two additional awards in 1997. The first was an Emmy for his television program Survive an Attack which was awarded to WTLV12 and the other was a President's Public Service Award. He won a second Telly Award in 1999 for the short film Lovely Feet for which he was the director.

    McGlaughlin's recognitions continued in 2000 when he received the TV Guide Editor's Choice Award as co-executive producer for the Danny Glover television series Extreme Courage. He also received the Best of the Web Award for his work from the director of, the Best in America Award for the most effective research project execution, the Medal of Excellence for MECLABS, and the Mountainland Award for Short Fiction for his story His Winter Came in Spring.

    McGlaughlin was also given an honorary Doctorate from Emmanuel Seminary.

    Personal life

    McGlaughlin resides in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida with his wife and three children.


    Flint McGlaughlin Wikipedia