Industry Leader 2010

Industry Leader Forum 2010

Discovering Consumer Insights

Industry Leader Forum Key Takeaways

Todd Powers, Chief Research Officer of the ARF, shares some nuggets from the day:

  • Our industry is at a “strategic inflection point.”
  • Technology drives possibilities.
  • It’s all about the delivery of information and entertainment.
  • We need to infuse insights with passion.
  • We have to balance the two perspectives: objectivity vs. advocacy.
  • It’s not about which gumball is best; it is whether we should be selling gumballs.
  • The margin for error is gone.
  • We need more synthesis … and we need to show that with storytelling.
  • There are builders and evaluators. Researchers should build.
  • Having a strong voice is the #1 thing.
  • That nugget is the understanding behind the behavior – the “why.”
  • Integrating the information – that makes it actionable.
  • We should present for 10 minutes, and discuss for 2 hours.
  • Bring an analogy.
  • We need to move away from pure ROI.
  • Historically, our journey is: hindsight à insight à foresight.
  • RFPs need to focus on business needs, not research objectives.
  • We are FAST: Fast, actionable, strategic, technological.
  • Real-time tools are a thing of beauty.
  • Bring the “good enough” solution.
  • Projects are, by their very nature, reactive.
  • We should talk extensively about what success looks like.
  • If you can measure it, it’s too late.
  • Don’t try to reduce risk, try to enhance opportunity.
  • If you are being asked for the ROI of research, you are already in trouble.
  • If my research staff complains that, “They didn’t listen to me,” then that just means they didn’t do their job.
  • You have to fail faster.
  • We need to instill courage.
  • We don’t need more insights, we need more insightful people.
  • We know what gets people to engage with an ad; why can’t we apply that to our presentations?
  • We are hiring trained consultants.
  • We try to hire researchers who can walk and chew gum at the same time.
  • We segment our customers – some are ready for insights, some are not.
  • Your job is to solve the problem.
  • There are two tribes – qualitative & quantitative – you need to figure out which one you are, and
    spend your career trying to be the other one.
  • We ask recruits to give us three typical uses for a brick … and five non-obvious ones.
  • We can’t use the past to predict the future any more.
  • Ability vs. Desire = Skill vs. Will.
  • Culture eats strategy for lunch.
  • Transformation is a metamorphosis – the caterpillar into the butterfly.
  • You can’t just change processes – you have to change people.
  • Gossip trumps information.
  • People don’t connect with high-potential others, they connect with trouble-makers.
  • The journey is: Insights, Consulting, Transforming.
  • If research has no effective communication, does it make a sound when it falls in the forest?
  • Can you tell me what brand of laundry detergent comes to your mind?

A One-Day Workshop

This one-day industry leader forum will have those shaping the future of our profession share their visions, successes and plans to address:

  • The transformation of our profession; a past, present, and future perspective
  • How do we get insights to affect the marketing organization? How do we go from the “what” to the “now what”?
  • What does an insights-led organization look like? What are the new metrics of success?
  • What are the new tools that insights-led organizations need to succeed?
  • What are the future skills that research and insights professionals need to make a difference?
  • How will research agencies be chosen in the future? What new skills, tools, and account management approaches will buyers be looking for?

Leading buyers and service providers will change your thinking about the wonderful opportunity before us to have an impact and how you can become a leader in this insights-led marketing future.


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