Conferences Show DIY Market Research on Everyone’s Radar

Everyone wonders about the impact of DIY (do-it-yourself) market research. However, the proliferation of easy-to-use and inexpensive tools on both the qualitative research and quantitative research sides leave little doubt that DIY research will grow.

A couple of weeks ago at the ESOMAR Congress in Athens, we noticed organizations attempting to better understand the depth and speed of DIY proliferation. This week at the AMA Marketing Research Conference in Atlanta, a session on DIY research was one of the best attended break-out sessions. In addition, when talking to end-user “client” researchers, I notice that they show a high level of interest in easy-to-use solutions that allow them to save their budget and conduct more research.

Currently, most researchers think of DIY as “fast and dirty” Zoomerang surveys or maybe a large community that they can access themselves. However, DIY will grow into many other methods as social media gets easier to access, qualitative research software becomes simpler and mobile qualitative research grows.

Everyone is anxious about this trend. Research firms worry about the amount of business they may lose. End user research teams wonder how much more work will be added to their workload, yet they also see opportunities for broader research capabilities on limited budgets.

So, a significant trend to watch is the spread of DIY research and the support it gains (or loses) among the various industry players who have skin in the game.

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