We write for Greenbook on balancing innovation and fundamentals

The AI craze has firmly hit the insights industry, with companies scrambling to implement new technology, whether it is truly beneficial or not, in some cases. Our head of marketing Michael Howard recently wrote for Greenbook, saying "While exploring new technologies and their potential benefits is part of future-proofing the industry, it’s equally important to ensure that these innovations can confidently deliver valuable insights.

In his article, called Embracing the Future of Market Research without Losing Sight of the Fundamentals, Michael acknowledges that in today's rapidly evolving landscape, embracing technological advancements is imperative. However, market researchers must not lose sight of the fundamentals that underpin their work. As new innovations like generative AI reshape the industry, it's crucial to strike a balance between embracing the future and preserving established research principles.

He writes that "The evolutionary changes that are already hitting the industry are at such a scale that they will certainly make the ‘old ways of working’ feel like they were relevant a millennia ago." Unlike a couple of decades ago, market research is no longer hesitant to adopt new technologies. The surge in AI adoption is just one example, driven by the need to address challenges such as data quality, survey fraud, respondent engagement, and speed to insights. AI holds the potential to tackle these issues effectively, yet it should be approached with care to ensure that any implementations are actually going to help deliver the best results. 

This requires a balance between historic ways of doing things and new innovations that market researchers have traditionally been hesitant to adopt. In fact, Michael writes that many resist change due to their familiarity with existing, tried-and-true methods. And while shifting mindsets and adopting new technology can be challenging, it's essential to break old habits and embrace technology that enhances productivity. 

Alongside this necessity, "market researchers must not lose sight of the core methodologies and principles that drive meaningful insights." The enduring fundamentals of the insights field have not changed, as we are all seeking to deepen human understanding across the board. As AI and other technologies evolve, the industry must work together to ensure they serve as powerful tools while upholding ethical considerations and still delivering actionable, rich research findings. 

Michael concludes, “By embracing both the future and the enduring fundamentals, market research can thrive in an era of technological possibilities, providing even greater value to businesses and society as a whole.”

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