Fuel Cycle

Top Learnings from the Market Research Leaders of 2020

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At this year’s FC Connect Digital Insights Summit, over 40 industry leaders offered valuable insight into new market research trends, DIY research strategies, and specific methodologies to capture data and activate organizational change.

But who has over 40 hours to watch the recordings of every session? Yeah, that’s what we thought. So, we’ve summed up all the top takeaways in a new eBook that offers a complete overview of the conference’s key takeaways.

If you don’t have time to read the full thing, you can download the ebook for later and keep reading here. This article outlines the eBook’s three major themes at a high level.

Theme #1: A surge in UX research & focusing on the complete CX

The industry is currently experiencing an unprecedented surge in UX research and design as companies work hard to move their businesses online at a rapid-fire pace. While comprehensive research for excellent UX design is valuable, it’s also critical to remember that UX research doesn’t mean much when conducted in isolation.

To get helpful UX and CX market research, researchers should focus their efforts on how they capture data. In other words, researchers must abandon siloed and outdated research practices in favor of the latest methodologies and industry tools.

There are several effective ways top market researchers are capturing data today, including:

  • Inclusive precision polling 
  • Mobile optimization 
  • Measuring emotional responses 

Key takeaway: There are several ways to conduct holistic UX and CX research, but new tools and trends make it possible to capture data based on geographical location, involve customers in the creative cycle to inform mobile UX, and capture emotional responses to your brand and messaging.

Theme #2: The value of connection on three levels

Customer Connectivity 

William Gibson from Cadillac Fairview shared how the company was massively affected by Covid-19. For a brief period, it had to shut down malls in Canada. To ensure leadership teams didn’t make any catastrophic missteps, they prioritized research and customer connectivity.

Using their Fuel Cycle online community, researchers went straight to their consumers to ask business-survival questions, including how to change the mall environment to make customers feel safe, whether or not consumers wanted a mask mandate, and how the company can rethink the future.

Staying connected with customers helped the organization stay afloat and approach business decisions in ways that resonate well with its customers.

Employee Connectivity  

During the pandemic, brands and employees have also been physically isolated. According to a McKinsey survey, more than 80% of respondents say the crisis is materially affecting their daily work lives.

Thankfully, Priscilla McKinney from Little Bird Marketing offers insights into how brands and employees can stay connected, including the following ideas:

  • Activate employees by asking them to share brand messages across social platforms in their own voice.
  • Ask sales team members to move conversations from private messages about your brand to public posts where all can engage.
  • Encourage employees to share content that is meaningful to them

Stakeholder Connectivity 

Running a company is a team sport involving many players and stakeholders. During challenging times, leaders work to capture valuable customer insights, receive feedback from communities, and make quick decisions to keep the company moving forward.

Vanguard uses online communities to allow people to discuss research topics and questions and allow stakeholders to voice opinions and raise concerns. So, not only do leaders get their own unique questions answered, but they gain access to a deeper level of insights than before due to greater transparency across initiatives.

Key Takeaway: Recent crises have caused many businesses to delve deeper into market research in order to inform necessary transformations. Tools like digital customer research, social media, and online communities make it possible for people to stay connected and proactive during trying times.

Theme #3: Turning insights into action

We all know that the hardest part about market research isn’t capturing insights. Rather, the biggest challenge we all face is turning those insights into business actions.

Some of the most informative sessions were real examples of how data-driven companies activate insights to improve business. Here are some of the most impressive ways presenters from various organizations successfully turned insights into action:

The eBook dives deeper into these brand stories and also mentions other organizations who have been able turn data into actionable insights that drive social change, help them understand customer attitudes, and allow teams to build scalable DIY research programs.

Key Takeaway: Look at various companies as an example of how you can turn data into actions. The use of a centralizing platform, like Fuel Cycle’s market research cloud, has been instrumental for brands to combine cross-functional insights and circulate key findings for greater synchronicity across the organization.

Wrap Up

Overall, FC Connect 2020 was a hit. Presenters from all over the world provided intelligent insight on some of the industry’s most pressing issues, especially amid a global pandemic.

For more detailed information on how to best capture actionable data from the right customers, how to effectively connect with customers, employees, and stakeholders, and for creative examples of turning insights into action, check out the full eBook.