By: Amanda Ciccatelli, Content Marketing & Social Media Strategist, Informa
Insights have become a vehicle for influencing marketing and ultimately, the world. That’s why we asked Adam Coleman, Director, Consumer and Market Research, Microsoft, for his advice to traditional researchers on staying relevant in the changing market research and consumer insights space.
Here is his advice:
1. Experiment. Experiment with new approaches to solving problems – use the 70/20/10 model to look at your budgets and spend at least 10% of dollars (if you can) on trialing side by side tests.
2. Use Multiple Data Sources. Ensure you are using (or assessing) multiple data sources which may require you to ‘up’ your collaboration skills with teams you may not previously have thought you’d need to work with. Particularly as Social Intelligence and Behavioral data come to the fore.
3. Get Experience. Get experience to get comfortable with these new types of data sources so you have at least an educated understanding of them and their limitations/advantages - don’t get left behind.
4. Pay Attention to Innovation. Don’t jump to use the first new shiny approach you see! There is so much innovation going on that a new firm, or one of the bigger firms with Innovation at the center, may have a better solution. Increase your networking with industry peers, or meet with other non-competitive firms who you can share new thinking with.
5. Don’t Forget the Core Principles of Research. Don’t get away from what are core principles of research, whatever the data or information formats – Continue to ask yourself these types of questions: Do we have research learning or are there secondary sources that can already answer the question? Is it representative of the audience, market, or other requirement? What level of confidence do we need to answer the question – hence, can we assess the significance to the level we need? Does it truly answer the business question at hand?
“The world of product development and marketing has simply sped up in almost all industries,” Coleman explained. “There are more choices for customers every day, and more and more smaller competitors coming into markets they were not in before. Keeping ahead of the competitive threats and responding quickly requires even more agility without losing the appropriate research quality needed to help guide decisions.”