Top 5 Tech Trends for Market Researchers in 2021
Tech is leading market research in new ways and how 5 innovative tech trends will change the insights industry.
With the new decade well underway bringing with it much uncertainty researchers, other industry leaders, and consumers are still wondering about the exciting technologies that 2020 will bring.
2020 is behind and COVID-19 while still a present threat is generally under control and we hope to be moving to a our lives in the “new normal”. New Normal seems only appropriate, especially in light of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic and how it changes how we work and live and think about our relationship with the products and services we consume.
Since around 2019 with its accelerated development of technologies like voice search and Artificial Intelligence service — is a good indicator of what’s to come, then the new time period might mark the start of a new technological revolution.
So, don’t let these sweeping changes catch you unprepared. Instead, keep an eye on these 5 technology trends to take on 2021 atop the tidal wave of innovation while everybody else gets swept away.
How will the 5G wireless tech trend impact market research
In 2021 we see a proliferation of 5G networks as more manufacturers and telecommunication companies adapt their designs and networks to keep pace with the consumers’ demands. The increasing availability of reliable wireless connections at broadband speeds will transcend the city limits and benefit country-dwellers as well. However, the most radical changes will come in the fields of automation and the Internet of Things (IoT), since the high data speeds of 5G networks will facilitate the use of drones, driverless cars, and the development of smart, futuristic cities.
For market researchers, this means more mobile surveys for sure. But more importantly, there are many opportunities for market research panels to integrate the data collection experience with participant’s everyday devices: automobiles, home appliances, home systems, and business. Each of these station points can play a part as a data entry portal for behavioral information and/or provide alerts or triggers to spawn interactive research activities.
Data collection incorporating the use of video, already a growing segment has grown exponentially due to COVID-19 for conducting qualitative research once done principally face-to-face. Reaching respondents on their mobile devices with 5G speed and reliability is crucial to success for these programs.
Artificial Intelligence as a Service (AIaaS) will expand insights
For a long time, artificial intelligence (AI) has existed only in the realm of research institutions, corporations, and governments. However, the rapid progress done on technologies like machine learning, relational databases, deep learning, and neural networks mean that AI is already a reality. The business world has played a big role in this technological leap and now — thanks to the combination of AI with the Software as a Service (SaaS) business model — artificial intelligence might soon reach the masses at an accessible price. However, while most companies have started to explore the uses of AIaaS — particularly for customer service — the high costs of designing and deploying AI systems means that most companies will depend on big platforms like Amazon and Google to provide them with AI services in the foreseeable future.
Research organizations hiring data scientists can today access a large catalog of commercially available software for building models based on Populations, Weather, Map Data of U.S City Supply Chain, and just about every conceivable database you will ever need (over 250,000) at Data.Gov. By combining and modeling with your customer transactional/behavioral/demographic data you can now build very powerful insights.
Blockchain technology will improve trust in market research processes
The importance of blockchain continues to rise in 2021 to keep pace with its increased application in fields as diverse as healthcare and asset management, where secure communications and verifiability are a requirement. The continued investment that big companies like MasterCard and IBM put in the blockchain technology is a solid proof of the technology’s viability and could quickly lead to its use proliferating in the coming years.
Blockchain is about more than Crypto-Currency, it is sustaining tech trend about building a global verifiable trust network that breaks down institutional barriers and inefficiencies by creating more transactional transparency.
The market research industry stands to gain significantly by improving continuing to strengthen the relationship between research participants and how their data matriculates to a final report or reporting systems in return for their compensation. Watch for companies like Veriglif who have assembled a consortium of consumer data suppliers with over 100 million first-party opted-in relationships with consumers to be a leading trust-based solution provider. Partnering with organizations that are building solutions that are not only blockchain-based but solving the validation and data-privacy concerns of the industry is paramount for the health of our mutual interests.
Automation will continue to expand opportunities and reduce cost/risk
Whether it’s in banking, manufacturing, or retail, automation is allowing companies to maximize profits and increase the quality of their services while also diminishing human effort. In the following years, automation will increase its importance as experts predict that 50% of jobs around the world have the potential to be automatized. Furthermore, recent declarations made by Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk alluded to the possibility that a truly driverless car and commercial trucks will be a possibility in 2021.
Market research will continue to see more automation as ad-tech becomes more sophisticated and automated sampling and survey building expert systems advance in the advertising tracking and brand tracking industry.
Text analytics algorithms will continue to advance and become better at understand sentiment and context. Andrew Konya, CEO of Remesh, explains this technology trend best in The Advantage of Artificial Intelligence in Market Research.
Analytics tech will continue to drive more business decisions and actions
While, until now, analytics has been mostly used to analyze the past or make predictions on future events, the increasing power of machine learning and AI means that in the future companies will have a clearer picture of their options that will help them make better decisions. Such machine-assisted decision processes are already a feature of many industries, including the oil and gas industry as well as the medical field. However, 2021 might see the popularization of prescriptive analytics as more organizations partner with big AI platforms like Google and Microsoft, to help them identify issues, make sense of the data, and predict where the market is heading.
Without a doubt, this is an interesting time. However, with technological development moving so fast, it’s almost impossible to keep track of every innovation. What we do know is that as the market research industry evolves technology will continue to drive innovation in how we think about methodology and work.
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