How can we fix the client-agency disconnect in market research?

It’s time to use the technology that has been developed specifically for market research to create real value in client-agency relationships.

To gain momentum as an industry, all players need to be aligned. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case right now - and the disconnect seems to be growing, according to our EVP - Client Development, John Bird. In his latest article for Greenbook, The growing disconnect inside market research, he writes about how agencies and clients must start to “connect the dots” when it comes to market research processes.

He starts by outlining the multi-step process that clients traditionally take to get more insights out of their data. It is slow, cumbersome and inefficient - even with all the technology solutions our industry now has available. These processes are not bolstering the value of market research data and consumer insights, but hindering it.

John maintains that there is a better way that starts by letting the “needs of the clients drive our deliverables.” This could be anything from faster access to insights, all the way to opportunities to further investigate the data for even more nuanced insights as needed to answer business questions. Proving ROI has never been more important, and agencies need to work with clients to make this possible. 

In fact, many large brands are already implementing new, technology-driven ways to do things like: provide wider access to data; continually update this data in a cloud-based system; collaborate on research projects; and share insights easily with all stakeholders. These capabilities don’t eliminate the need for a client-agency relationship, they simply create “a trusted long-term partnership” that proves the value of the work, over and over. 

John concludes: “Recent events have exacerbated the need for fast insights as brands struggle to understand a consumer that is in constant flux. This need shows no sign of slowing down or disappearing, and clients are going to continue to feel frustrated by slow turnaround times when they need insights immediately.” It’s time to use the technology that has been developed specifically for market research to create real value.

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