With technology creeping further and further into our lives, we find ourselves becoming more reliant on their capabilities. In many ways, this makes us more flexible and more efficient in our day-to-day tasks, while in other ways, we can find ourselves being bogged down by technology’s infiltration.

One of the ways in which it has proven exceptionally helpful, however, is in the field of market research. Certain improvements have made the researcher’s job infinitely easier, and in turn, has helped marketers better understand their potential customers.

1. Technology Allows for Feedback in Real-Time

Ever since Mark Zuckerburg took the reins off of Facebook in 2006, opening the door for everyone over the age of thirteen to enjoy, Facebook has enjoyed nearly unprecedented success in gaining and measuring feedback from real customers in real-time. Now, if someone isn’t happy with a certain product or brand, all they have to do is log on and tell the company about it directly. Or, as is most often the case, they tell their friends.

Brands monitor this type of behavior and use the feedback as a barometer for their own success/failure. Moreover, companies are now using their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts as virtual focus groups whenever new products are launched or even conceptualized. The more brands learn to harness the aggregating power of social media, the more they will learn about their customers and the more adaptive their products will be.

2. Technology Has Created Better Ways to Collect Data

While Facebook is known for being a customer information hub – since nearly 2 billion people have voluntarily given them loads of socio-economic data – there are other software platforms on the market today that help collect the data from users.

The defining characteristic of this new form of information collection lies not in the quantity of data that is received, but the quality. Now, market researchers are able to siphon through tons of data in an effort to measure only those things that are pertinent to their company. Everything is more streamlined and customized to the team’s needs, which makes for a more efficient strategy.

3. Technology Is Helping Researchers Understand Data Better

Of all the data that is received by various market researchers, the hardest part is defining what’s important and what’s not. The ability to define the company’s key performance indicators (KPI’s) is pivotal to crafting a brand message that speaks to their consumers.

For that reason, many research teams have created brand-new roles to help understand this data even more. People are now tasked not only with analyzing this data, but interpreting it to make broader decisions for the company as a whole, such as an Analytical CPO. And lest these people are given open access to do what they want, software programs like 360 Feedback allow their supervisors to give instant criticism or commendation based on their performance.

4. Technology Gives Researchers More to Work With

At its core, market research craves big data. They want to know everything about their consumer base in order to make a more informed decision as to their needs and wants. The only way this is possible is by extracting a lot of information as quickly and efficiently as possible, but these field studies and paper surveys that used to be utilized for this purpose are now being replaced by digital studies and online surveys.

As mentioned before, the key with all of this data is to be able to interpret it correctly, but software has the marketers covered there as well. As the data comes in, software is then engaged to sort through the various keywords and triggers to funnel the information down into a neat format, allowing for better interpretation. From top to bottom, technology plays a big role not only in finding more ways to gain customer information but also in disseminating and interpreting the data as well.

 

by: Vincent Stokes