What have ten years of webinars taught us about Market Research and Insights?

NewMR 2010 and 2020Posted by Ray Poynter 13 February 2020

In 2010, NewMR held its first Festival of #NewMR (the first, all online, market research conference), check out the 2010 programme here. Next month we will be holding the 2020 Festival of #NewMR, check out the 2020 programme here.

What’s changed in since 2010?

Much less than you might have thought, as is evidenced by the first three presentations from 2010:

  • How can we turn online discussions into insight?
    Ray Poynter, The Future Place
  • Will NewMR become OldMR? The Challenge of Turning Radical Methods into Sustainable Businesses
    Alastair Gordon, Gordon & McCallum
  • “Serious Games” has a place in future MR-it will ensure respondent engagement, focus and therefore validity, and help with panelist retention. It will also increase participation from the elusive 18-24 year olds!
    Brian Fine, Australia Online Research

Forward thinking and unresolved questions

Some of the presentations in 2010 raised important questions that have still not been adequately addressed, for example:

  • Oi! You Took That Without Asking! Ethics for New MR
    Agnes Nairn, EM-Lyon Business School
  • “Sexy Questions, Dangerous Results?” – Navigating The Digital Divide in Survey Research
    Bernie Malinoff, element54
  • Why are market researchers so !x!?ing bad at communicating research and insights? John Clay, Research4
  • What Quant researchers can learn from Qual researchers
    Sue York, The Future Place

When will these topics be answered?

New Faces

One of the great things about NewMR Webinars is that they give new faces a chance to breakthrough. People who were either relatively new or brand new in 2010 were:

  • Navin Williams, Mobile Measure, Asia and the Developing World – Smart Enough for Mobile MR
  • Tom Ewing, Kantar Operations, Game On: How game mechanics are changing the consumer world, and how researchers can play
  • Jon Puleston, GMI Interactive, How to stimulate creative thinking in online respondents
  • Betty Adamou, Nebu, “I’ll Facebook u yeah?” Modern Communication and Evolving with the Times.
  • Annie Pettit, Conversition Strategies, Mr Survey Flirts with Ms Social Media Research

If you want to be the next Betty Adamou, Annie Pettit, Tom Ewing, or Jon Puleston, then webinars are a great way to get your name and thinking better known.

Great Insights

As well as some of the presentations mentioned above, other presentations that really spoke to the future included:

  • The Changing Landscape of Online Qualitative Research: Using new technologies to engage, listen and get meaningful feedback from respondents
    Jim Longo, Itracks
  • Don’t Forget…The Respondent Experience Trumps All
    Leslie Townsend, Kinesis Survey Technologies
  • Embracing the 3rd Screen: Mobilising online qualitative research via smartphones
    Ian Ralph, GfK NOP & Steve August, Revelation
  • Sampling the Twitter Stream
    Christine Walker, Alliance Strategic Research

What about the missed predictions?

Frankly, most of the missed predictions do not matter. When dealing with the future the important thing is to identify a range of scenarios and for those scenarios to highlight indicators. We do not expect all of the scenarios to happen, but we try to make sure that an unexpected and unplanned for scenario does not happen.

Key Themes in the 2020 Festival

This year’s Festival builds on earlier years and has identified some key themes, these include:

  • HX, CX, and UX – experience is key to brands and customers and this is reflected in the growth of interest in CX and UX and the recent interest in HX – Human Experience. On Monday 16 March we have five presentations on this topic.
  • Analytics – the key issue in analytics at the moment is how to blend techniques, how to decide when to ask and when to observe, and how to understand the biases implied by different approaches. On 17 March we have five presentations on analytics, all tackling aspects of this issue.
  • The Campaign For Real Qual – with the growth of DIY and data democratisation there has also been a dilution in the focus on high quality qualitative research. In 2019 we started to see a fightback from the qual community and 19 March we bring together some of the leaders in ‘Real Qual’.
  • Asia Pacific – NewMR have been believers in the power and future of the APAC region for many years and on 18 March we bring together five great presenters from the region to explore what is happening. One of the presenters, Navin Williams, also presented in 2010. In 2010 he was showing how mobile-enabled market research was key to Asia and the Developing World – this year he is looking at 5G.
  • The Future and Technology – we will be hosting three panel discussions with major names such as Lenny Murphy, Kristin Luck, Peter Harris, and Eileen Campbell. Check out Technology in Action, Futuring Friday – Asia Pacific, and Futuring Friday – Atlantic.

The changes for us, running the Festival?

Some things remain the same, we are still using a webinar platform, some of the same sponsors and friends are still supporting us (Confirmit our Platinum sponsor, MRII at the University of Georgia), AMSRS, GreenBook. Some of the same speakers will be contributing, for example Navin Williams, Sue York, and myself – and many others from 2010 present regularly at NewMR events.

One big change for us is that in 2010 we charged $50 to attend the Festival, and most people listened live. Today, the broadcasts are free and most people tend to listen via our Play Again page. This shift has been made possible by our sponsors and our Patreons.

The Full Cast from 2010

Sue York, Greg Coops, Alastair Gordon, Brian Fine, Shobha Prasad, Christine Walker, Steve Cierpicki, Navin Williams, Duncan Stuart, Tom De Ruyck, Finn Raben, John Kearon, Tom Ewing, Graeme Lawrence, Annelies Verhaeghe, Rijn Vogelaar, Rich Shaw, Agnes Nairn, Betty Adamou, Henrik Hall, Bernie Malinoff, Ian Ralph, Brian Jacobs, Pravin Shekar, Jon Puleston, Dan Foreman, Steve August, Andrew Jeavons, Jeffrey Henning, Zoe Dowling, Mark Earls, John Clay, Spencer Murrell, Adriana Rocha, Diane Hessan, Leslie Townsend, John Dick, Susan Sweet, Tamara Barber, Jim Longo, Erica Ruyle, Jen Drolet, Annie Pettit and me (Ray Poynter).