Tag Archives: #socialmedia

Extinction or Revolution? How Market Research Can Excel in this New World

The Research Insighter caught up with David Boyle, the BBC’s EVP of Insights at our last TMRE event, you can watch the video here. Their lively discussion addressed the seemingly insurmountable difficulties the market research industry is facing right now, and offered some pretty concrete solutions.

The Research Insighter: “At TMRE 2015 there were some pretty big words thrown around, revolution, extinction… what do you make of all this with regard to the state of the market research industry today?”

The market research industry is certainly dealing with some scary stuff right now.

 
David Boyle: “Some big scary words… I think there are some serious challenges (for market researchers) from a number of different directions: New data sources resulting from digital engagement competing for business leaders’ attention, and people are doing research themselves with new tools such as: Survey Monkey, Google forms, social media analytics and data. The core work you’ve been doing for years is being competed against with all these new supposedly insightful data sources.
Everyone’s talking about big data or data science, it’s the topic of investment and where the future lies. So that’s what’s getting managers’ attention. There are very real risks for market researchers and the market research community.”
 
The Research Insighter: “How is this manifesting itself in your world at the
BBC? Obviously media is the probably first and hardest hit by all of the disruptive technologies to date.”

Step one to “overcoming the peril”? Ask the business question you are trying to solve for.

 
David Boyle: “I think the 1st step is to ask what the business question is that you are trying to solve for? This is key to overcoming the peril. Let’s get really clear. If you trying to monetize TV consumption, sure the Nielsen ratings are ‘the currency’. If you are trying to understand the reach of a brand in broader terms, it is not the data you should be using, it’s only part of the puzzle. You have to define what you mean by ‘brand engagement’ and therefore which are the data sets you want. If you’re trying to understand interest in the show that is not monetized ‘ who’s interested in the show but not watching it.
We see piracy for example, in some countries, it’s a pretty clear signal of interest in the show. We don’t see that interest reflected in TV ratings. We have to find an alternate business model by which we get the show to those people in a monetized way. That demand is by definition not in the ratings. It depends on what business question you are trying to ask. Starting from a business question and saying ‘what data is available to help me answer that question’? ‘What’s the best data I should use’? not ‘what data do I have handy’? and then solving the business problem carefully.
 
The Research Insighter: “How has this surplus of information affected how you operate as a market researcher?”
 
David Boyle: “You need people with skills and time to pull together multiple data sources and tell a story across that data source. Piracy, research, social media engagement and TV ratings for example. In the old world, market researchers would have a product they worked on, maybe the brand tracker, that was their expertise. They’d report the brand tracker results with great pride and then they’d run the next brand tracker. It’s no longer the world we live in.

That person now has to also take into account consumption, unmonetized consumption, social media engagement. That person has to tell a rounded story about what’s going on with that brand. Telling a story data source by data source is no longer useful to us as a business. That’s a slightly different skill set. The question for market researchers is: do people who run brand trackers have the skills, permission, encouragement and time to do rounded storytelling instead of being product focused. My opinion is yes, but they’re not always given the permission or time.”

 
Key things for the market researcher to be successful: Time and Permission

The Research Insighter: “Has your department adjusted to this change with relative ease or has it been painful?”
 
David Boyle: “I don’t think it’s been easy for anybody to adapt to, least of all me. The instinct is to pull out a relevant data source to answer a question but you’re only giving part of the answer, you probably don’t have all the data sources you need at your fingertips.
If I am doing research I need to reach out to the measurement person and coordinate delivery of the right data, the financial person to tell if the revenues match, the social media analytics person to see what’s going on in that world…

Suddenly I need five or six people in the room before I can answer the question, and I probably need to have a discussion or debate to tease out the different stories coming from the different data sets. The coordination and teasing out the answer is really tough but it can be done, it must be done.
Therein lies for me a big part of the reason why this jeopardy, this peril that market researchers face can be overcome. Market researchers by nature have the skills. Given permission, time and the confidence to say ‘I am not going to answer this with the brand tracker, I am going to gather the right people, and pull the right data together and tell you a more rounded story’. Market research can excel and excite people even in this new world.” 

 
We’re excited to say that David Boyle will be speaking at the 2016 The Market Research event, his talk is entitled: The Client Vendor Tug of War: How to Handle the Balance.
 
If you’re interested in hearing more from Boyle and other technological innovators in the market research industry, don’t miss the world’s leading market research event TMRE happening in beautiful Boca Raton, Florida October 17-20. Got any comments on this blog? Make yourself heard – Tweet to us at @TMRE!

Day Two: OmniShopper threads and nuggets…

- Aaron Keller and Kitty Hart, Capsule

Future Hunters warmed up the Tuesday (slightly hungover) crowd rather nicely. It isn’t an easy task to deliver on the role of opening act, entertainer and experts in trend. The team of Erica and Jared did it again and certainly with a more cantankerous crowd than Monday as many cocktails were likely consumed just six hours earlier. Thank you for the caffeine for our brains to get us going.
The man, the Nobel prize winning author and the icon in behavioral economics was on the stage next. Daniel Kahneman, the author of Thinking, Fast and Slow sat for a discussion with Anthony Gell, author of The Book of Leadership. To start, let’s all acknowledge Mr. Gell’s exceptional job of interviewing such a brilliant mind without being tongue-tied. Now, to a hero of ours, Daniel gave us pages from his book but in his voice and while he didn’t translate for shopper marketing it was worth every word. Just listening to how Daniel’s mind works was insightful. If you need more on his models, the book is your best resource. It should be a required read for any research, finance or marketing department in any corporation. 
The next group on the stage was a panel of Sumaiya Balbale from Jet.com, John R. Whitaker from Lowe’s and Emily Shannon from Mall of America. Emily was a returning face to the big stage and she continued to deliver unique nuggets beyond her content from yesterday (also not easy). Sumaiya gave us a quantity of nuggets from the frugal next generation of shoppers who default to digital. John Whitaker balanced physical and digital with how relevant Lowe’s is within Pinterest while still being a retailer with designed moments in a physical space. 
The subject was the future of retail, which is facing some tremendous challenges with Alibaba, Amazon and others moving so much of buying online. And, with some countries in the world going from open markets to digital markets and skipping “the mall” economic phase entirely. Based on what we heard, retail has a vibrant future when it is properly blended between physical and digital. For some of you this is confirming, but for others it may be helpful to know retail has been around, will be around and the ability to understand what happens in the moment when people and brands intersect will always be important. 
Our sleepy session, Kirk Olson from Horizon Media surprised the crowd with so many morsels of intriguing content it formed a moment of people asking for his presentation. While it didn’t look interesting on face (printed) value, Kirk delivered a full meal deal (sorry, McDonalds) for this audience of curious minds. While we gathered some of the items in a Twitter feed under #OmniShopperEvent your best bet is downloading the pages of his presentation and carving it up yourself. It is well worth the space on your hard drive. 
Now, a bit on the conversations in-between. With some breaks, a lunch and other hallway conversations we discovered some of the larger threads of yarn from the morning. Here they are: 1. Cognitive Biases and how do we see beyond these to understand true human behavior; 2. The future of retail is bright and the design of moments is a big part of it; 3. The trends coming from wearables, getting back to authentic stories and vintage high-touch experiences. The morning had plenty of fuel for some empty brain tanks.
The afternoon slid a bit as the crowd may not have been into the conversations or perhaps we heard the term millennials just a few too many times. Whatever the case, the afternoon speakers had a larger uphill climb to get us back. Celeste Ireland spoke on telling stories with data and gave us a peak inside the culture of Maple Leaf Foods. From here we got a taste (actually no samples provided) of what Hershey is doing to break through some hard shell congestive biases in retail. While the lack of samples left this writer sorely disappointed, Kindle Partica delivered a concise and content rich speech with brain science, chocolate studies and a great case study with results. The lack of chocolate was overcome with great content. BTW, Welch’s provided samples in their presentation. Just saying…
Last, the bonus from the day came from the number of times our favorite behavioral economist and Nobel winner mentioned the word design. Daniel Kahneman is a big fan of the design world and repeatedly spoke to the importance of design with purpose. We haven’t met many economists and certainly few who talk about the importance of design. The birds sang and the words painted rainbows in our heads each time Daniel spoke (unprompted) on the subject of design. 
Hello world, we are a design firm and we’re here to help, reach out when you would like to talk. We’d love to hear more challenging problems to solve. It’s the stuff that keeps us energized. 
Now, let’s get some rest (in the form of a cold glass -or five- of Pinot Grigio) and we will see you back here tomorrow for day three. 
Aaron Keller, Principal
I am an author, strategist, researcher, cyclist, reader 
and consummate entrepreneur. When an interesting 
idea crosses my path, I find any way we can bring it 
to life. Earning an MBA from the Carlson School and 
numerous valuable credits at the school of hard knocks, 
I’ll sit at a boardroom conversation with anyone. 
Want to talk business strategy, consumer behavior 
and design? Oh, it’s on.
 

Kitty Hart, Director
@HartofCapsule
I am the HartofCapsule, caring for our clients, friends, 

colleagues and partners. When I’m not deep in strategy
and design thought, I dream of belting out Diana Krall 
tunes in the blue haze of a nightclub. Until that dream 
is realized, I help Capsule’s clients understand and rise 
above business challenges through designed conversations.

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Day One: OmniShopper threads from the sessions…

- Aaron Keller and Kitty Hart, Capsule

The Future Hunter’s Erica Orange and Jared Weiner got us started with some opening remarks. The warm up was worthy and got us all pressing forward into a day of data, mobile, shopping experiences, authenticity and granule insights on human behaviors. 
Jessica from Saatchi & Saatchi X forced us into a conversation about emotion and the contrast with the big “asterisk” data conversation. She made a case for a complement with the rational data we use in the form of “gut” check and the importance of emotion. Jessica’s story of CoverGirl was certainly a good example, putting emotion on a pallet and selling it in Walmart. Yes, emotion on a pallet. 
Our next discussion was led by Todd Henry, the author of Louder Than Words. His story of asking people to walk along a plank of wood on the floor vs a plank 100 ft in the air and how the risk / reward equation changes helped clarify the risks we ask people to take when taking on new opportunities. But, Todd’s best story which came out of his more recent book, Die Empty, used a tree metaphor. The idea was presented by a DJ he met who talked about going out on a branch and Todd asking the snarky question, “what happens if you go too far out on the branch and it gives way?” The DJ had a brilliant response. The branch falls and starts to grow a new tree (fan base, participants and revenue are the tree). This is a natural metaphor for how innovation happens, by going far enough away from the tree trunk out on a branch. Nature is so beautiful. 
From here we digitally walked into one of the North America’s largest shopping centers, the Mall of America. Emily Shannon walked us through all the trials and tribulations of managing the digital strategy for a gargantuan mall. She had some amazing points and insights, but the threads pulled into the next discussions included the text response team (which we tested and tweeted the results), her perspective on beacon technology, augmented reality and the power of digital media blended with physical spaces for a “phygital” experience. Her example of the “Twizzard” was a brilliant example of a snowstorm of tweets inside the Mall of America. A blizzard without frostbite, but plenty of digital content to enjoy, finally chocolate has some competition for our attention. 
The next sessions were breakouts and the conversations in between. The ConAgra Foods conversation was around wearables and food brands. With a mere big toe dip into the possible data coming from mobile, Thatcher Schulte had the crowd looking on with open mouths and wide eyes. The term “big data” needs a rebrand to “huge effin gargantuan data” once you add in mobile and human data from all the human / technology interaction data points. Could someone get on that rebrand? Soon. 
The Red Bull presentation with InfoScout was a waterfall dive into what Red Bull knows and (strangely enough) doesn’t know about the crazy people who buy their drinks. It surprised us how much was unknown for such a dynamic brand like Red Bull. Yet, we shouldn’t be, the shopper insights world needs to be scaled to match the number of unique places you can shop. Red Bull is certainly bought in a large variety of venues and consumed in an even larger contrast of spaces and places. The point seemed to be, even with all the resources Red Bull has, it is still a constant and deliberate hunt to find more knowledge on the human being consuming your brand. 
Now to the conversations in between. We were pleasantly surprised by the number of tweets, instagram photos and updates in social media on the conference. We were equally pleased by how much attention our book, The Physics of Brand, is getting with this analytical crowd. The world of research is just as hungry for new thinking and content as our typical design world.
We are looking for research partners interested in participating in client engagements with our team around this new articulation of brand-thought in the book. Please reach out if you’d like to discuss this in more detail. 
Aaron Keller, Principal
I am an author, strategist, researcher, cyclist, reader 
and consummate entrepreneur. When an interesting 
idea crosses my path, I find any way we can bring it 
to life. Earning an MBA from the Carlson School and 
numerous valuable credits at the school of hard knocks, 
I’ll sit at a boardroom conversation with anyone. 
Want to talk business strategy, consumer behavior 
and design? Oh, it’s on.
 

Kitty Hart, Director
@HartofCapsule

I am the HartofCapsule, caring for our clients, friends, 
colleagues and partners. When I’m not deep in strategy
and design thought, I dream of belting out Diana Krall 
tunes in the blue haze of a nightclub. Until that dream 
is realized, I help Capsule’s clients understand and rise 
above business challenges through designed conversations.

Social Media Market Research of YOU!

I have a question for you: Have you Googled yourself lately?
Do you know exactly what shows up? Not really?
Well you should, because your prospect clients do.
Before you are hired, your prospect clients or prospect partners,
even prospect guest posters will want to check you out. And they should! It
makes sense they want to know who they will be giving money to, doing business
with, or aligning their name with.
Googling your name is social media market research of another
kind. The kind you need to make sure has been done (keywords, websites linked, profiles consistent), is in place (visibility on multiple platforms), and
practices are set (social media marketing)
to keep you showing up as the expert you are in your niche.
I know what a Google search of my name will show. I know this
because I have carefully crafted my personal brand across my website, my social
media platforms, my posts, and through the events I attend and talk about. I
declare my expert status in my niche and I check to make sure this shows up by
Googling my own name regularly and watching how my brand grows.
What are YOUR goals? They should show up in a Google search loud
and clear.
Do you want to write a book? We should see your blog on page one.
Do you want to be hired? A link to your LinkedIn profile should
stand there on page one polished and professional and ready to shine.
Do you have an event coming up? Promote and share and find out
how much social media oomph your event has by noting where it falls in your
Google search.
Are you growing your email list? Make sure a link to sign up is
in every social media bio section.
Brand yourself an expert and firmly plant yourself in your niche
and you will be well rewarded. Here are a few simple steps to take to place you
on that path to success.
Step One: Make sure
your LinkedIn headline uses strong keywords of your business, a call for
clients and clearly states who you are and why you are here. If I had to guess
your LinkedIn profile shows up as number 2 on page one when you Google your
name.  It’s for this very reason you must
focus energy and attention on this platform, you will get a lot of bang for
your buck.
  

Take a look, here I am on
Google: 

Step Two: Are you on
Twitter, Instagram or Facebook? Make sure all of your profiles on each of these
platforms clearly state who you are and what you do. Be consistent! A quote is
nice, but it sure doesn’t get the point across as you are trying to brand
yourself as the expert you know you are.
My Twitter link/profile
shows up third link down on a Google search:
See how my bio here very
nearly matches my LinkedIn Headline above? Clear, consistent, branded.
Step Three: Add a call
to action in each of your social media profiles. I have a bit.ly link leading
to an opt-in page in every single one of my platform bio’s. Use the space
people look first and use it wisely. Capture their attention – you only have a
few seconds to do so- with a well worded call for them to act and tell them
what they get! Do this and you and your business brand will stick in their head
when it’s decision making time.
Step Four: Link to
your blog posts on Google+. Two of my blog posts that I repurposed and posted
on Google+ show up on page one of my Google search.  This gives prospect clients and partners a
chance to really see exactly what I have to say and how I say it. One stop
shop, click that link and go. Play nice with Google, Google plays nice with
you.
Step Five: Choose
events to attend, blogs to guest post on, and podcasts to be interviewed for.
There is no lack of any of these three things if you take the time to do a bit
of searching. On my Google search my bio for a large event I attended shows up
on page one – branding myself once again by the event itself and what I chose
to say in my bio. A podcast I was interviewed for shows up as well. Choose
these expert ‘partners’ carefully, make sure they have social media ‘pull’ and
watch as your social media market research of YOU starts to look better and
better.
Social media market research works in both directions. You know
what you ‘see’ when you research others, and you darn well better know what
they ‘see’ when they research YOU.
You can do this, with the above steps start building your
personal brand of YOU one step at a time. 
Karen Yankovich is a social media brand strategist, business consultant and speaker, and the CEO of Uplevel Media.  Having ‘been there and done that’ in the arena of losing (and then re-finding) a focused approach to business and life, Yankovich now offers coaching and consulting for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Her unique specialty blends her ‘get it done’ attitude with a passion for authentic connection in her personal services and online workshops. Social media and LinkedIn Evangelist, Yankovich guides entrepreneurs to creating wealth by combining smart business practices with simple proven systems that develop and maintain strong customer relationships. She offers results oriented and expert conversational marketing strategies that position her clients to bring in instant results. Yankovich’s background includes over 30 years in the fields of information technology, marketing and customer relationships, making social media her ideal niche.  www.karenyankovich.com