As the year gets underway, market researchers have some exciting trends to watch. Professional researchers from a myriad of industries must focus their market research activities in eight important areas. These segments are predicted to develop in big ways.
By capitalizing on these trends early, your enterprise stands to gain when you take actionable steps to put these trends into motion.
Get to Know Market Research AI
Artificial intelligence is likely to be everywhere in the coming years, but it will take time for it to become embedded in market research. Nevertheless, AI is likely to have a more pronounced presence in the coming year as there are some significant avenues that already promote AI. Namely, text analytics, survey design, and project design.
In theory, AI will lead to more real-life analysis, which will ultimately improve market research. As investment flows into AI technologies, market researchers should be investigating which technologies can enhance their projects and developing business models for deploying these technologies at some point in the near future.
Doing your homework now will ensure that you will lead the trend when AI’s role in research and development really launches.
Emphasize the Personal in Your Market Research Results
In 2017, market researchers will be striving to combine their qualitative research with behavioral science to tap into the personal mindset, values, and beliefs of consumers. To glean the real-world behaviors of consumers, market researchers will need to rely ever more heavily on automation to gather date that tracks these behaviors and helps them convert data into more personalized information.
Data mining for this personal dimension will help marketers better create a culture of empathy and awareness that is likely to resonate with their customer base.
Savvy consumers want brands to communicate to them, not at them. Collecting and leveraging individualized data is how to make it happen.
Embrace Realism Through Behavioral Data
Technological advancements are allowing market researchers to gauge real behavioral data over and above constructed surveys or even qualitative discussions. Realism in the form of collected biomarkers offers market researchers a superior degree of accuracy.
As a market researcher, you or your firm may wish to tap social media analytics, for example, to help you detect thematic markers or sentiment.
Advanced market researchers will also be targeting facial and emotional markers in order to get realistic snapshots of consumer sentiments in the moment – a far more accurate metric than self-reported responses given after the fact.
Tap into Consumer’s Mobile Experience
As personalization drives market research this year, there will be an even greater emphasis on employing mobile-generated data garner essential consumer information. This information is already being used to retain customers and steer marketing campaigns. If your firm is in search of an area to invest more time and resources, the mobile arena is a strong candidate for improved research.
The fact is, mobile took off in a big way among market researchers a few years ago, but the most innovative tools today are moving beyond surveys.
Market researchers can expect to see more research and development in the area of mobile to track motive feedback in real time, and make adjustments on the fly to glean even deeper insight.
Actionable Insights Bring Market Research to Life
Market researchers are excellent at finding insights, but that’s only half the battle. Businesses need insights that can be channeled into action.
For this, market researchers will need to ensure that they are asking the ideal questions at the beginning for their research and then employing an approach for turning insights into action.
Market research firms should look to adopt new applications this year that can streamline this process of transforming insight into clear-cut actions that businesses can take.
Market Research and the Bottom Line
It all comes down to money, and it appears that this year will see many businesses contracting with market researchers in order to get a better read on their bottom line.
Customer surveys, store traffic, and other forms of research will have to be translated into a business result that basically distills to money. Businesses need real financial performance data that can help them make decisions in their increasingly competitive industries.
Market researchers will need to focus their insights on customer attitudes, for example, and how they relate to fiscal concerns that are affecting a business’s bottom line.
Don’t just stop with “here’s the data.” Instead, interpret that data into action items for businesses to implement.
Concise Feedback, Streamlined Market Research
It’s becoming apparent that market researchers can expect to see requests in the coming year to deliver more streamlined information. While this might sound like a “less is more” scenario, it’s more like a call for specificity.
Just as many businesses will be looking for marketing research that specifically impacts bottom line, others may simply want to know key information like the “why” in a specific paradigm.
Moreover, senior researchers will expect their teams to provide more concise information that simplifies and consolidates. This is particularly important for more long-term research.
For example, market researchers will need to become skilled at consolidating a year’s worth of data into a short presentation—short and actionable. Businesses will be looking for this, too, from the marketing research firms that contract with.
When in Doubt—Take Your Time. Accuracy Rules
Businesses with limited resources have little choice but to turn to market researchers for help reducing their financial risks. Therefore, they’re counting on these firms for accuracy. There are lots of automated solutions available to market researchers and businesses alike that seem to promise fast answers, but these innovative tools aren’t the only solution—and they’re often wrong when they are not accompanied by marketing research that is grounded in social and behavioral science.
Businesses will need to go beyond those inexpensive software solutions to get the accurate results they need to make the best decisions for their company.
To drive your marketing research forward, be sure to incorporate these trends into your strategic plan this year, or, at least focus on a few that can specifically enhance the work you’re doing now.
If you’re in the market for a private market research firm for your company, ensure that your final pick is prepared for business in 2017.