Archive for the ‘Consumer Research’ Category
Better late than never! It’s come to our attention that we never shared our autumn 2012 newsletter with our blog readers, so we thought it was time to rectify the situation!
This latest version of Insight includes an interview on branding and market research with PPG Industries’ VP of Corporate Marketing, assesses the role emotions play in driving the choice of supplier, and takes a much more in-depth look at the WD-40 brand. And, of course, there are all the usual snippets of news from within B2B International, such as employee profiles, the launch of our consumer division Deep See, and the results of last year’s VOC survey.
More and more clients are coming to us at an early stage in the creation of a research brief to get our thoughts not only on how we can help research the problem but also to get our help and backing to get buy-in to the project from inside and help fight the internal bureaucracy. If you try and battle the red tape you will get nowhere. Instead, follow these 4 simple rules to get your research project off the ground and you will stand a greater chance of business success:
• Go against the path of least resistance. Find out who is bought in to your way of thinking and then get them onside.
• Use the resources that are close to hand. Don’t go to many lengths to get a large budget straight away. Instead, use people you know, desk research and other resources/budget that you have to help you get the wheels in motion and any evidence you may need to move to the next level.
• Secure only the commitment you need for the short term. Don’t try to get the board’s buy-in from the get-go. Instead make sure that everyone is clear to what you are trying to achieve and then get the least amount of commitment you need to take your project to the next stage.
• Move quickly. Most good ideas stall because they don’t have the necessary momentum. Put your all behind the project or it will die and atrophy.
To find out how B2B International can help your organisation, contact one of our international offices http://www.b2binternational.com/contact-b2b/ or find out about what is important when putting a research brief together http://www.b2binternational.com/publications/articles/market-research-brief/
Following the launch of Google Consumer Surveys, Simi Dhawan offers her thoughts on this new way of gauging consumer opinion
Every month, here at B2B International, we hold a working Lunch & Learn meeting for all executives. This serves as a sort of groupthink discussion into ways of advancing the business, whilst raising collective awareness of hot topics (think ‘Big Data’ or ‘Mobile Research’).
Last month, having just launched our B2C arm ‘Deep See’, it was not surprising that the recent commence of Google’s Consumer Surveys tool cropped up. Similar to ads, a business pays Google in order to construct a self-designed short survey that reaches consumer audiences by being embedded within publisher sites (e.g. Adweek) with access to select consumers/readers, who can be targeted accordingly. Whilst readers browse articles, a short survey question will pop up and readers are then introduced with the trade-off between answering the question (taking a few seconds of their time) in return for gaining access to the premium content they are seeking. Publishers then receive a percentage of what Google charges the business who is commissioning the research – a ‘win-win’ money-making model.
Figure 1: Google Consumer Surveys Homepage – www.google.com/insights/consumersurveys
Whilst one reader, in response to James Verrinder’s article about the tool within Research Live magazine, exclaimed:
‘I think everyone in the industry just peed their pants,’
this is not entirely true. Whilst any new (and mass) means of data collection does of course stir up a gossip frenzy, it does not mean that we are cashing in our chips or drawing up a panic-ridden contingency career plan just yet.
In truth, I admire Google for recognising this opportunity, which looks as though it could potentially provide a more cost-efficient alternative for smaller businesses with limited resources from which to commission what might otherwise be a full-scale and detailed research programme. However, whilst it is well suited to short, quantitative surveys (more comparable to a ‘dip your toe in the water’ polling survey), this type of research is not without limitations…..and more specifically, it is of little current value for the B2B researcher (as its name implies).
Whilst Consumer Surveys is able to target respondents based on basic demographics i.e. age, gender and census region, it can go no further than this. Moreover, if the total survey length is 3 short questions, then another limitation of the tool is that each question is actually answered by a different person, rather than allowing a single individual to complete all of the questions (which places the validity of any cross-analysis into question). More than this, there are time restrictions. Should you need the survey completing within a certain timeframe then this option may need careful consideration as it is directly related to many factors and, as such, difficult to predict (e.g. from the sensitivity of questions and the screening criteria to publisher site content and competing surveys in existence at the time).
However, whilst understanding these limitations might push our noses back into joint and release us from any emotional whiplash incurred from the initial revelation of Google’s move into the market research industry, one point worth noting is that this will not be the only application Google launches in this space – and the likelihood is that this will cause a ripple in terms of sparking others to think of new, innovative measures to harness insight from ‘Big Data’.
Deep See is the new global consumer market research and intelligence company from the stable of business-to-business specialist B2B International.
The official launch of Deep See is being celebrated in style, with the release of special balloons at each of the Deep See offices in London, New York and Beijing, plus the unveiling of the Deep See droid, with a competition to use research skills to unlock his name running at www.deepseeresearch.com/launch.
As the new company name suggests, Deep See promises to go to great depths to get to the bottom of what customers really think. It will specialise in international research and deliver insight and consultancy that drives change and action for clients.
B2B International, as a leading specialist business-to-business market research consultancy, has launched Deep See to establish a foothold in the wider consumer arena and to meet increasing client demand to research the whole b2b2c value chain. By using B2B International’s established global network of offices, plus researchers and fieldworkers who converse in every language imaginable, Deep See sets out to reach anyone anywhere.
London-based Deep See is headed up by Matt Powell. Powell is confident there is room in the marketplace for Deep See and relishes working on projects which will test products, seek opinions, probe customer satisfaction, assess markets and develop pricing strategies.
It is the international scope, combined with the ability and knowledge to conduct research with all aspects of a company (from internal stakeholders, through to distributors, through to consumers), that Deep See believes will differentiate it from other research agencies.
Deep See’s offering is based around three key needs: brand, customers and products. Some of the services that Deep See offers include customer experience research, social media research, web site benchmarking, and customer segmentation. The former identifies each interaction that the customer encounters along each stage of the journey from cradle to grave; whilst Deep See’s social media monitoring tool keeps a detailed track on what is being said and written about a brand or campaign. Deep See believes these tools are most effective when applied together as part of a wide research campaign.
Powell joined B2B International in 2004 and has worked with high profile companies such as Autoglym, BAA, Balfour Beatty, BOC, Co-operative Bank, Gillette, Intel, Molson Coors, Microsoft and Travis Perkins. He says: “through Deep See’s international research and intelligent insight capabilities, we offer an added dimension. Thanks to the backing and resources of the world’s leading b2b market research consultancy, we already have a deep understanding of the whole supply chain and the issues that affect every area of a company, allowing us to analyse findings in ways that other research agencies wouldn’t think of and offer a fresh perspective to a client’s business.”
B2B International director and founder, Nick Hague, says: “Deep See is another example of the diversification of B2B International, following 2011’s launch of our specialist creative marketing communications and brand agency B2B Marcomms.”
Another strong year of growth for international business-to-business market research and market intelligence specialists
B2B International reported another excellent year in 2011, with revenue breaking the £4m (US$6.3m) barrier and profit increasing by 21% from £580,000 to £700,000 EBITDA*. Since its formation in 1998, the company continues its record of growing its revenue and making a profit for 14 consecutive years.
CEO Matthew Harrison attributes the company’s success to a number of factors:
“Despite the difficult economic environment in UK and Europe in 2011, B2B International’s growth in this region was its best ever at 33%. North America also had an excellent year, equalling the record year of 2010. Another reason for our success over the past few years is the increased diversity of our customer base. The financial sector is now our third biggest sector, complementing the two traditionally strongest markets of engineering and manufacturing, and chemicals and gases; and business services continue to grow. Finally we have moved towards the ‘productisation’ of much of our offering, developing a number of metrics that are pre-defined before a project, add value to the customer and allow comparison with aggregated data, all of which clarify our outputs in the minds of our clients.”
B2B International’s growth plans have not abated for 2012. An office in Chicago was opened a month ago, and an ambitious foray into the consumer arena is promised, with a new consumer subsidiary Deep See Research (www.deepseeresearch.com) set to launch in April.