Trends Affecting Marketing Research: Are You Feeling like the Roman God of Beginnings & Transitions Yet?

Trends Affecting Marketing Research | Telescope Image by Idea go

Tis the season for looking back and looking forward, makes you feel a bit like Janus, the Roman deity of beginnings and transitions. Thinking back over the course of the year one phrase seemed to capture lion’s share of the headlines…“Big Data.” All things mobile were in the public eye as well. What does it mean for marketing research? Let’s take a look in the crystal ball.

Big data is the latest phrase referring to the volume and streams of information that the Internet-age is generating. It used to be enough to review and make decisions based upon survey and focus group data. Then in the late 1990s the thought of ‘Data Mining’ came into view. Now we had a second river of data based upon company transactional records. Combined with survey data these two rivers produce very actionable insights. As we progressed into the new century a third river was found in web traffic and social media data, which has helped create the text analytics craze we are currently seeing. There is no lack of data to be analyzed; in fact it is information overload that appears to be a more looming issue.

How we collect data has changed dramatically over the last few years. Online survey tools have empowered a league of DIY researchers for good and for ill. Now mobile has burst onto the scene driven by the domination of the smart phone. This allows researchers to reach respondents at the moment of truth, for example right after a retail purchase. Mobile survey applications have engendered a different view on survey design, one I believe is for the better. Recognizing that attention spans have shortened as information overload has increased, we are now given a tool that by design forces us to keep our surveys short and to the point. This helps foster engagement with our respondents (a win for everyone!)

In the coming year I believe both of these trends will continue and that researchers will have ample opportunities to skill up in these areas. The integration of respondents via online panel and survey development tool will also continue (see Leonard Murphy’s article for more on this trend). If projections from the McKinsey and the Bureau of Labor Statistics are correct it is a good time to be in the research and data analysis business.
blog comments powered by Disqus
Crimes in Design Webinar
Subscribe to our Monthly Newsletter