The Market Research Event conference (TMRE) kicked off today in Boca Raton, Florida, at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. This annual conference has been called the “best” of all market research conferences by many attendees and I actually chatted with a few who stated that in years past, the TMRE has been far better than any Marketing Research Association (MRA) or comparable conference. Celebrating our 10th year, Research & Marketing Strategies (RMS) is making its first appearance at the conference and I’m proud to represent RMS among the attendees. The list of companies both attending and presenting here at TMRE is staggering and includes names like Coca-Cola, Target, MasterCard, TiVo, Texas Instruments, NBC Universal, Johnson & Johnson, ABC, Gerber, Facebook, Toyota, and Autotrader.com (and that’s just in the first day of presentations). This is my day one recap of the three-day conference.
- TMRE Takeaway 1 – Market Research Trend: Big Data. Attendees and introductory sessions touched on this emerging trend in the market research industry. Basically, what big data means is an extraordinarily large amount of data that is collected by a business, which is so large and growing continuously, that it is difficult to analyze and interpret. Think in terms of large national retailers taking in sales data from stores, online and other means continuously across the globe. Because of the time and impossibility of managing and interpreting real-time data on that large of a scale, many large market research suppliers are looking to create technologies and systems to help analyze and interpret the information for its clients.
- TMRE Takeaway 2 – Enchanting Your Clients. The highlight of the day was the keynote kickoff with Guy Kawasaki, former Chief Evangelist of Apple and author of many books including his latest, Enchantment. Here are some of the notes I took during the meeting that were most ‘blog-worthy:’
- His three recommendations to improve client relationships by influencing people’s hearts, minds and actions were: (1) likeability, (2) trustworthiness and (3) great quality. He said if you can succeed as a business on those three points, your company will grow leaps and bounds.
- He enforced the skill of storytelling with clients (also a focus of one of my breakout sessions I will be attending at TMRE). Market research can be a very numbers-oriented end result. Using stories helps provide connections and lifelike qualities to the data.
- He touched on the growing trend of animating data in market research presentations (see gapminder.org as a market leader in this effort).
- Another point he touched upon was something I read in Slide:ology, written by Nancy Duarte in which she recommends the 10-20-30 rule when giving presentations. This is a maximum of 10 slides, in 20 minutes, using 30 point font. Another unique tip Kawasaki provided was estimating the oldest member in your audience and dividing their age by two as a means to select which font size to use (e.g., if the oldest member of your audience is 50, you should use size 25 font or higher).
- Kawasaki reinforced the need to spend time with social media and it’s not a choice anymore for companies. He spoke about the need for companies to use/react to social media fast, flat and frequent. Fast, meaning companies must quickly announce or publicize information on social media and react to positive and negative comments. Flat, meaning everyone in social media counts, companies should take the time to react to tweets posted by someone who has 100,000 followers the same as they should for someone with 10. His final point of frequent, meaning companies shouldn’t pick and choose when they have time to use social media, it should be a repetitive task.
- The last part of his presentation I would like to recap was his statements about recruiting and keeping the best employees (taken from author Daniel Pink). In addition to fair compensation, he said human resources efforts should be focused on three items: (1) mastery, (2) autonomy and (3) purpose. Great companies can promise and deliver to their employees that they will master their skills in a certain area. Secondly, great companies can promise autonomy without the threat of the higher-ups breathing down their neck everyday. Companies should empower their employees. And thirdly, great companies provide employees purpose. The purpose is simply stated and it is communicated to all employees.
I am looking forward to another insightful day at The Market Research Event tomorrow. If you would like more information about Research & Marketing Strategies (RMS) please contact our Business Development Director, Sandy Baker, at SandyB@RMSresults.com or by calling 315-635-9802.