Professional market researchers rarely perform the same way twice. That’s because they understand that the complexities of individual companies’ business objectives render a “one size fits all” data collection approach sloppy at best and completely inappropriate at worst. Indeed, the pros that really “get” market research are the ones that resist using a prescribed formula in every situation. In this sense, their “market research method” is less about a specific “systematic plan” (such as “survey,” “focus group,” “interview,” etc.) and more a matter of “habitual practice” (think “disciplined application of thought”). Take a look at the market research methods that today’s most talented market researchers use:
Instead of collecting data, the best market researchers mine it. It’s a small change of words that indicates dramatic shifts in both research philosophy and practice. Whereas, data collection depends on deductive reasoning (using questions to gather information), data mining takes data and infers meaning. In essence, data mining is data analysis, and when applied as a market research method, it allows researchers to make more informed decisions in less time using the stores of big data that are so readily available in today’s world.
Market research pros also don’t just trust people to give them valid data; they actively go out and look for it. They observe and experiment. By not relying on respondents to self-report their probable actions, the best market researchers make space and time to actually witness them. Such observation makes any conclusions drawn from a study much more reliable and much more accurate.
And finally, because market research is a dynamic field that changes dramatically as new technologies emerge, good market researchers pick the proper platform to administer their work. Twenty years ago, the Internet was only just becoming the behemoth it is today. Most of us were still dialing up for web services and few of us were using a mobile phone. While it’s true that market research methods (and in this instance, we do mean specific “methodologies”) have essentially remained the same over the years, the ways in which they are applied have been drastically altered. True research pros understand that they have to change along with the times in order to garner the most valuable feedback available. Thus, really innovative professionals trade traditional pen and paper for smartphones, tablets and neuroscience/biometric technologies so that they are able to more quickly and thoroughly interface with respondents.
Want to Learn More about the CFR Advantage?
Market research methods have been established for decades, but notable researchers are using them in new and compelling ways. To learn how you can harness the power of today’s technologies, innovation and potential, contact our team at Communications for Research (CFR). We are skilled in modern market research methods (in every sense of those words!) and can help you harness insight that increases your productivity, as well as your ROI.
Please feel free to also download our complimentary eBook, “6 Keys to Accelerate Growth with the Right Field Data Collection Partner.” In it, you will find tips for choosing a research partner who has the proper knowledge and skills to satisfy your market research needs.