Market Research Predictions for 2017

It’s the time of year when professionals across a wide range of industries propose their predictions for market research practices for the upcoming year. At weseethrough, we’ve surveyed the predictions for market research in 2017 and summarised them in an easily-digestible format below.

Content-enabled B2B market research will increase

The Marketing Insider Group suggest that 94% of B2B marketers are currently using, or planning to use content as an integral component of their market research strategy. However, a staggering 40% of those surveyed believe they don’t have the appropriate resource to create enough content.

Content is far too important to produce arbitrarily, and market researchers are likely to focus on gaining better scalability with their current resources.

Matt Heinz at Heinz Marketing explained, “Good content marries what the prospect needs to know what the marketer can help them solve. It needs to address the customer’s interest points, engage with them, and align them with something the marketer can enable to keep them listening.

Marketers that are using content-enabled campaigns are reporting open rate increases of at least 20% during those campaigns. This demonstrates that content-enabled campaigns are proving significantly effective.
In 2017, B2B marketers will be reviewing how they can get more out of the content that they already produce.

Growth of automation and artificial intelligence

Ray Poynter, the founder of NewMR, believe that 2017 will bring the growth of automation and artificial intelligence within market research processes. Mr Poynter states, “The big trend for 2017 is going to be automation. Things are going to get faster, cheaper, and more standardised – with a side order of AI chasing it”.

The areas to expect AI to have an impact include: survey design, data analysis, product design and text analytics.

The early majority adoption phase of behavioural science based research techniques

Behavioural science-based research techniques have been discussed in market research circles since 2010/11, but the adoption of this from traditional based market research has not be felt as quickly as first predicted.

Behavioural science is the process of understanding the true drivers of behaviour to complement traditional market research which excels at describing what people have done. Behavioural science uses principles from sociology, neuroscience, psychology anthropology and behavioural economics. It reveals specific methods for influencer customer behaviour and is therefore in theory very effective for research purposes.

Behavioural science gains insight through observation, as researchers are using indirect measures to understand the drivers of behaviour. The “big data” movement has paved the way for an analysis of relationships between variables in different data streams, text analysis and social media sentiment.

Ray Poynter predicts in his predictions for market research trends in 2017 that “more and more research [will be] re-badged as implicit, including ethnography, passive data collection, conjoint analysis, semiotics, biometrics, and of course the neuro-based techniques.
In 2017, due to a maturing state of “big data”, we could finally be at the stage to gain a true understanding of the “why.” The analysis of the non-conscious measurement space could be about to explode due to the new data collection methods which will accelerate in 2017.

Increasing need for research amidst global uncertainty

Joe Newsum, the founder of Kentley Insights, suggests that in 2017 there will be an increasing requirement for global research due to uncertainty across political, monetary and economic spectrums across the globe.
Mr Newsum believes, “2017 will be a boom year for market research, given the level of macro, political, monetary, and economic uncertainty across the globe. Companies are going to see tremendous and often unforeseen shifts in their business. Leaders will engage strong primary and secondary research firms to objectively understand the drivers of their evolving customer, competitive, supply chain, and macro dynamics.”

A greater focus on turning insight into action

There is an expectation that in 2017 organisations will have a greater focus on ensuring that the insights gathered are turned into action. That begins by asking the right business and research questions at the outset.

Ray Poynter states that organisations will invest a greater amount of time and money in creating processes for turning insights into actions. There are likely to be several new applications developed to help implement findings from research.
Finding a story in the data through conducting good research is only half of the solution. In 2017, businesses will need to marry that with action to benefit on the bottom line.

Let us know your predictions
We’re interested to hear about your predictions for market research in 2017, so please leave us a comment below.

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