Yesterday I was the closing keynote at the MRSS Asia Research Conference in Singapore, and I think it was probably the best one day event I have been to this year. The programme was strong all the way through and the people were great.
Amongst the standout elements were:
- Dave McCaughan sharing a lot of information and thoughts about how mobile phones are re-shaping the world, looking at it in a much wider context than just market research.
- Melissa Gil from SingTel and Vijay Raj from Unilever giving the client’s perspective, with Melissa sharing some great insights into how SingTel are blending their big data (they are a telco) with their Vision Critical Insight Communities, and Vijay describing what is wrong with ‘business as usual’ and setting out an agenda for change.
- Ben Smithee from the USA shared a vision of the future that was articulate and inspiring, and set out his thoughts on why market research is such a great profession – a performance which won him the best presentation award.
- Pravin Shekar from India stormed the room with his Jugaad presentation, full of innovation and inspiration. If you get a chance to see his new mini-book take it, a fantastic bit of marketing and thinking. We understand that Pravin will be standing for election to be the next President of ESOMAR and the delegates in Singapore certainly think he would be a fantastic option.
I made two contributions to the event, on the Wednesday I ran a Social Media workshop, with a focus on the challenges in APAC, and at the conference I shared my perspective on how market research has changed and how market researchers need to change, in order to stay relevant.
We also had great presentations from Stephen Jenke, Rob Vasler, Nancy Jaffee, Manisha Dikshit, Arno Hummerston, and John Smurthwaite. The event was in a great location (The Fairmont in Singapore), the MRSS people were fantastic, there was a speakers’ dinner the night before the conference (which is a great way of helping develop thematic conference content and flow), the networking and food were good, and OnDevice took several of us for a drink afterwards – it doesn’t get much better!