How is technology evolving in market research?
Technology played a massive role in recovering businesses in 2020, and advanced market research technology was at the forefront of this recovery. It helped organizations reduce costs, focus on the essential aspects, and direct them towards doing more with less. Market research showed rapid growth in automation tools, continuously pushing boundaries and paving the way for better, faster, and deeper actionable insights.
Businesses’ primary focus was to alter their relationship with consumers while rethinking most strategies and reinventing a few. They turned to market research techniques to gain the upper hand and stay above the competition. Advanced research technology and cutting-edge market research modeling is expanding rapidly and is helping researchers collect data from diverse sources. Let’s look at a few data collection approaches that have been enhanced due to advancements in market research technology.
- Emotive surveys: Capturing customer behavior via contactless surveys and facial recognition in 2017 would seem far off and technologically complicated to get into the real world. Fast forward to 2021, and this technology is a reality. Researchers will no longer need to interact with customers via external devices and capture sentiments directly from facial recognition and visual cues. But combine facial recognition with short POS surveys, and you’ll enter a whole new world of data that is deeper than any data captured before.
- Social listening: Social media has an increasing footprint, and even those who were not into technology before 2020 now have their presence too. Because of this increase in social media usage, it has become even more essential to listen to social media happenings to gather more profound sentiments from conversations. Social media is very emotional, and there is a broad scope to capture and understand complaints, purchase behavior, ideas, and macro and micro trends. It helps keep an eye out for short-term movements and indicators, especially while doing consumer research. Though it has to be understood that social research does not work in every setting. It has to be set up well to get fruitful results at an early stage.
- AI-assisted data collection: Market research in 2020 demanded primarily two things – convenience and personalization. Artificial intelligence-assisted advanced market research methods helped researchers collect data to a great extent. A defining success metric in market research is the speed and accuracy of data that reaches the right stakeholders. Controlling and lessening human interaction, increasing points of experience, and capturing accurate data lead to a higher success rate of data collection and ensuring this data is correct. Researchers no longer focus on data collection but on delivering insights from quality data capture.
- Natural language processing: Analyzing the open-ended text is a tedious process, but it has the potential to give you insights that can be extremely useful and crucial while decision-making. It is essentially a branch of AI, but we’re mentioning it separately solely because of the heavy lifting it is capable of. Technology can read, understand, decipher, and make sense of human languages, which is a huge advantage. Not only does it highlight the important stuff, but it can also recognize gibberish – an important step to clean data. Making sense of linguistic data and using it for sentiment analysis, aspect mining, text summarization, and topic modeling save a lot of time and effort on the researcher’s part.
- Respondents at fingertips: Survey audiences and respondents make up an essential part of the research puzzle. Researchers need quick responses from a set of targeted audiences. Survey panels have evolved and grown to help researchers reach customers with greater ease. Survey platforms like QuestionPro integrate panels to help researchers survey audiences from within the tool. Instant Answers is another revolutionary way to get in touch with respondents and get the quickest replies. All you need is to post the question on Slack, field it, and wait for the responses to come in.
What conclusion can we draw from emerging technologies?
One thing is for sure that the role of technology in market research is only set to broaden further, assisting researchers in capturing data like never before – and with more incredible speed. The demand for high-quality consumer insights has been growing steadily, and advancing market research technology can tackle this demand. Also, researchers will lean heavily towards technological assistance to gather insights and complete their research projects, searching for quality and speed of insights. Early adopters of this evolving technology will benefit the most. The introduction of technology in market research has opened up new avenues, and this trend will continue through 2021 and into 2022.
Use of research repositories towards management of market research technology
Technology brings together all that we’ve talked about earlier, and user research repositories do the perfect job of consolidating all the user insights under one roof. Information is meta-tagged and stored smartly so users can efficiently search for information. As the same information is available to all stakeholders, transparency runs high within organizations, and quick discovery of user insights boosts the speed of decision-making.