DGA | Global Market Research Provider

Who We Are

D. Gustafson & Associates

DGA was founded in March 2006 by Dave Gustafson, who was interested in leveraging his industry experience and business acumen to create a high-end boutique market research firm focused on qualitative pharmaceutical market research. At its inception, Dave was cognizant of the need for DGA to focus on a niche - namely, domestic and global qualitative research. Over time, as the firm grew and Dave hired young innovative thinkers, the firm expanded to include consumer research and online communities. Dave and Ben Smithee, a DGA Senior Consultant at the time, recognized the opportunity and potential of utilizing young and talented professional moderators to tap into the Gen Y and Millennial market segments, so they created a strategic business unit of DGA called Spych.  In 2009, Spych became an independent entity with Ben as its CEO and has flourished in making a name for itself by providing an unmatched portal to the psyche of youth consumers and is recognized as an industry leader in the digital media space. Since then, Dave and Ben have both transitioned away from Spych. This transition has made way for Dave to launch Lytix, a strategic business unit of DGA, in 2015. Lytix is a market research provider that is dedicated to evolving the way in which Millennial consumers and brands interact. Lytix focuses on collecting insights and intelligence through empathic methodologies to obtain a better understanding of how brands can leverage their relationships with digital-age consumers.

With the continued development of our research team and our virtual network, DGA is in a strong position to offer its clients the services of a research firm that can handle complex research requests, fully leveraging the range of available data collection methodologies.

About Our Clients

DGA works directly with pharmaceutical manufacturers, consulting firms in the healthcare arena, and advertising agencies. Our relationships with pharmaceutical manufacturers have been cultivated based on Dave's pharmaceutical/healthcare industry experience over the last 25 years. We also have more than two dozen collaborative partner relationships which are leveraged when other market research clients have capacity/bandwidth constraints.  

Healthcare- and consumer-based ad agencies have relied on DGA to assist them with concept and visual aid testing research, preparations for pitches to existing/prospective clients, and with idea generation for insights communities and internal market reserach.  Through these relationships, DGA has worked with a dozen leading healthcare and consumer brands.

Our Team

C. David Gustafson | Principal

Dave Gustafson has over 26 years of experience in healthcare marketing research, including 25 years in the pharmaceutical industry.  Prior to starting D. Gustafson & Associates, LLC (DGA), a boutique global marketing research firm, in March of 2006, Dave ran the research division for PharmaStrat, a managed markets firm, and he was a leading performer at V2 (now part of GfK), where he honed his moderation skills.

Dave is known and highly regarded for his insightful probing and his ability to quickly establish rapport with respondents, as well as his creative ways of presenting data and use of "mother slides" in his reports.  Clients value partnering with Dave for his ability to cull strategic insights from research and provide creative solutions.

As a qualitative moderator for the last 14 years, Dave has personally moderated almost 375 qualitative research studies in more than 100 therapeutic categories.   [Read more about Dave here]


Sue McMillan | Principal

Sue McMillan has over 25 years of experience as a marketing researcher and business analyst. Prior to joining DGA in May of 2016, she has worked both independently and as a Senior Researcher with a pharmaceutical market research agency in Philadelphia, PA.  Her area of expertise is in qualitative research, most recently targeting health care professionals, patients and business stakeholders. 

Her areas of specialization include depth interviews and focus groups with physicians (generalists as well as specialists), RNs, patients, caregivers and key business decision-makers. She is well-known for her comfortable style and ability to establish rapport with patients and other respondents. She has industry expertise in pharmaceuticals, health care, employee benefits, insurance, and consumer packaged goods.  [Read more about Sue here]

Debbie Gustafson | Co-Founder and Partner

Debbie Gustafson co-founded DGA with Dave and has been a key contributor and strategic partner to DGA from the firm's inception, working closely with Dave to position DGA as a sought-after marketing research firm. Debbie has been a career HR professional for more than 25 years and has served in a variety of roles and functions in the HR consulting field while at various companies including PWC and Mercer.  She also served as the Executive Director for a start-up, non-profit organization that received national recognition.  At DGA and new digital division, Lytix, Debbie is responsible for HR-related functions including benefits administration, compensation programs, employee relations and payroll administration.  [Read more about Debbie here]


Terri Schwabenland | Senior Consultant

Terri has been a consultant with DGA for more than 5 years and has qualitative experience in dozens of therapeutic categories.  In addition to moderating qualitative research, she enjoys report writing and project management, including essential "behind the scenes" organizational work.  She appreciates delving into the emotional aspects of the research, which compliments Dave's analytical expertise and style.

Previously, Terri spent more than 25 years in the medical underwriting insurance industry, as a Senior Individual Life Insurance Underwriter for Prudential Insurance Company.  In the course of her tenure there, she garnered extensive experience in medical assessments and pharmacologic agents in addition to training and supervising responsibilities.

Terri graduated Summa Cum Laude with a BS degree in Business Administration from Gwynedd-Mercy College, and she has completed post-graduate work at Chestnut Hill College. 

Reid Glaze | Creative Technology Specialist

Reid focuses on the creative design and digital development of DGA and our Millennial based digital division, Lytix. In May 2014, he was hired as an intern for DGA’s sister company, Spych, where he acquired in-depth knowledge in the field of digital marketing and social media insights. After leading a social intelligence project for Spych's largest client for over a year, Reid was hired as an Insights Consultant for DGA in July 2015. In addition to working on consumer-based projects centered around Gen Y research – including social listening, digital brand audits, and insight communities – Reid has been undergoing intensive mentoring with Dave to prepare him for the world of moderation and pharmaceutical market research techniques. In September 2016, Reid took on the role of Creative Technology Specialist for both DGA and Lytix, spearheading all creative and digital design efforts.

He has over two years of social intelligence experience with knowledge in a variety of digital talents, including web development, graphic design, digital marketing, and social media analytics. He has also conducted report writing/analysis, consulting, and presentation development. 

Carly Gustafson | Marketing Research Intern

Carly has interned with DGA during the Summers of 2013, 2014, and 2015.  Carly has provided note taking and data entry assistance on several DGA and collaborative partner projects.  She has also recruited her peers for an exploratory  focus group for our emerging online community to profile and better understand the college decision process. Carly is currently pursuing her undergraduate degree at Gettysburg College where she is majoring in Psychology with  a double minor in Business and German.