Automation: Making consumer research possible in hours, not weeks

Companies are increasingly using automated research technologies to speed up the collection of consumer data while improving the accuracy of the results—all while saving money. It makes ad testing more agile, allowing for testing at more points throughout the product and creative development process. This gives researchers more time to produce the consumer insights marketers need to make important decisions.

Automated market research platforms like Methodify and Zappi, for example, help brands work through the entire research process by automating survey design, data collection, data analysis and reporting. When used correctly, these can help marketers make better business decisions by bringing the consumer into decision-making more frequently and faster than ever. This is contrary to what’s happening in many organizations today, where research may only be used for high-profile campaigns or during instances that allow for long-lead windows or larger budgets.

Iconic Canadian whisky brand J.P. Wiser’s recently used automated research in the development of their notable ‘Hold it High’ campaign. Initially, the brand tested creative concepts to decide on the best direction the campaign should move forward on, and then followed this with further research to determine the best tactics to achieve their goals. They used real-time testing to monitor, evaluate and adjust the campaign as needed to continue capturing consumer engagement. Instead of hindering or slowing the creative process, these automation tools accelerated it, resulting in a campaign that was well-received by whisky lovers in Canada.

Reckitt Benckiser (RB) is another great example of a company that’s reaping the rewards of automation in research. As reported by Marketing Week, RB previously limited testing to only TV spots, but the company now uses automated research to test all video formats -- Facebook, point-of-sale and online video – thereby increasing the data available to make informed decisions on audience responses. This shift to being able to test more content, using less time and budget, has resulted in a 14% increase in market effectiveness for RB.

Bottom line: Research automation, when used properly, allows for a more agile creative development process.

Save time on repeatable tasks by automating them.

With research automation, brands can conduct research more often throughout the marketing process and stay better informed about their consumer base. As such, automation is often a must for those looking to make headway in their respective -- and likely saturated -- markets.

When done regularly, research automation empowers brands to better inform and respond to audiences. Implementing tools to automate the research process creates several efficiencies. By providing more accurate results in a matter of hours, research automation will cut costs and shorten timelines for most organizations.  

Capitalizing on emerging research technologies.

Research automation is booming. From using video to source deeper insights, to supplementing traditional focus group moderators with AI and machine learning-powered one-to-one chat based interviews that can now be done at scale, we finally have solutions that match the scale of the challenges marketers face trying to effectively engage with consumers.

Now marketers need to take action. This starts with ensuring they’re working with professional and informed partners who understand their business and how technology can best support their teams to enhance creativity, improve efficiency and gain deeper consumer insights.

Roy Gonsalves is the SVP of Client Development at Delvinia and a member of the CMA Insights Council.


By Roy Gonsalves

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