Transformation of Market Research by Jeffrey Henning #NetGain8 #MRX

Live blogging from MRIA’s #NetGain8 conference in Toronto. Any errors or stupid jokes are my own.

Netgain8The Transformation of Market Research: Where to next? by Jeffrey Henning, President, Researchscape International, Boston

  • Innovation in 1994 – a bike lane on Davenport
  • 1923 – it was a railway
  • 1904 – it was horses and buggies, beginning of electrification
  • Previously, the road was a first nations pathway and that is why it doesn’t follow traditional street ways – it used to be the shoreline!  [Cool!  I live here and didn’t know that!]
  • profession of building canoes probably lasted thousands of years, building buggies was probably hundreds of years before they went obsolete
  • So will market research become obsolete? [and here, Jeffrey yells it out 🙂 ]
  • Only methods become obsolete, not professions.
  • Currency will always exist but it will look and work differently
  • Market research is eternal, or nearly
  • Pressure points on survey research – victim of its own success – overloading inboxes, bad questionnaire design, long surveys, complex designs
  • Drivers of survey research – mobile surveys. micro surveys, DIY, Enterprise Feedback Management, Voice Of Consumer systems, emotion capture, feature wars, automation, very crowded space
  • In 1987 – questionnaire design was in wordperfect, surveys were by phone mail or face to face, results analyzed in spss and lotus, results presented in wordperfect — the human provided most of the value
  • In 1997 – finally a product to help with survey design (surveysolutions or EZSurvey) and fielding and analysis, results were now presented in powerpoint – more automation now but still a lot of human work
  • In 2013 – survey templates and question libraries, automated fielding, partially automated analysis, partially automated presentations
  • More companies are doing proprietary analytics with traditional questions and choosing pictures to represent feelings
  • Weighting used to be cone using statistical systems under direction of an analyst, open ends were rarely analyzed, and crosstabs showed everything not just the meaningful differences
  • Google applies automatic weighting to its analysis though it’s not perfect, they guess who you are based on your browser data
  • WYWIWYG – what you want is what you get – the system knows exactly which statistic should be applied – you just say what variables you want to test, you don’t need to understand how to use SPSS or SAS or R – StatWing
  • Automation to come – crowd shaped surveys, better weighting, text analytics, proprietary analytics
  • 2018 – human designs the questionnaire and not much else of the process – self driving car… self driving survey research not so far fetched – maybe we should become qualitative researchers 🙂
  • We need to develop proprietary indices, pioneer new techniques, invent unique interfaces, build proprietary panels, custom programming, more qual, benchmark databases, text analytics, be creative, good infographics, internalize research
  • “The best way to predict the future is to invent it” – Theodore Hook
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