Back to normal? Not for research.
Market research budgets were declining before COVID. Since then they’ve declined even faster. This decline saw some bounce back as lockdowns were eased in 2020, but the return of national lockdowns in many markets, and a general downward trend in budgets, means researchers will continue to have to find value and efficiency for the foreseeable future.
And with the cost of more traditional approaches growing, and practical implications remaining (for example travel) the future of research looks to belong more to digitally connected methods than ever before.
There’s a few key reasons why these approaches were becoming more popular before COVID, and why they will continue to be popular after it (hopefully) recedes:
- Traditional research can only ever be with a limited sample. Even if you believe everything that has been said, it’s still only coming from a few respondents, whereas with digitally connected research you can work with thousands at once
- Body language and interactions can be misleading. Seeing is not actually believing, and in-person, respondents often react the way they think others want them to react. And this is heightened in small groups with a clear leader. So you can’t be sure it’s 100% genuine
- Plus, research should be democratic. When you cast your vote, you don’t shout it into a crowded room. You do it privately, by yourself. Research should be conducted in the same way if you really want to understand what consumers THINK, FEEL, DO and WANT
- It takes an incredible amount of time to arrange traditional research. Then more time to conduct it. Then more time to analyse it. And considering what you get, this time could be better spent elsewhere
- All of this also means that in-person research is more expensive than digitally connected research
If you would like to know more about how you can keep getting the benefits of digitally-connected research, click below to learn more.