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Posted by Jackie Rousseau-Anderson on May 17, 2011
I have been chipping away at a unique research project for quite a few months now. This particular project has me diving into a data set comprised of respondents who have taken our Technographics® mail surveys for the past four years. My plan is to examine the technology behaviors and attitudes of these individuals over time, exploring things like how they adopt technology and how their attitudes change (or don’t change). While the exercise is challenging, and at times utterly maddening, it got me thinking about the role of trending and other traditional research approaches in the world of “new” market research (MR). Referring to trend lines created in quantitative surveys has been a staple of traditional market research, and benchmarking one year’s numbers over another is a must-have in any report. But do these traditional research activities still fit into the world of new MR? And if so, how? For instance:
I’m not passing judgment on the trending (or non-trending) issue. Instead, I’m opening the conversation about how we move from traditional research to new methods. At the end of the day this is really about more than just trending data. As we explore and incorporate new methodologies, we need to have contingency plans in place that move forward with us. This probably includes research on research as well as running different research methodologies in parallel to understand the influence of the methodology on the research outcomes.
It may not be an easy or a direct path, but once it’s laid out, it will be easier for everyone involved to be bought in. In fact, I think I’m going to work on a road map for myself right now so that on my next report, I won’t be banging my head against the wall.
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