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  • Disclosure
    Nobody pays me to write any of the copy on my blog, and should I ever have the good fortune that they do, I will declare it. My main employment is as the owner and principal of The Future Place consultancy. The Future Place provides two key services 1) training and services to industry and academic bodies and 2) consultancy services to companies. The details of the companies I work with are a private matter, but if I blog about any company who has paid The Future Place more than expenses recently (approx. two years) I will mention that they are a client. I hold equity in Virtual Surveys and provide consulting services to them from time to time. I am paid to run courses for a number of trade bodies and over the last few years clients have included ESOMAR, AMSRS, MRS, and MRIA.

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Already the proportion of survey research in our overall billings is lower than in the past. What’s growing is the analysis of data from non-survey sources -- mostly transactional and archival databases. Yes, data integration skills are increasingly important. Also growing is the amount of professional time for interpretation and application. The remaining survey work is the data source for building the frameworks that guide the overall analysis. In that regard the surveys are generally more thoughtful and higher quality than average. If our survey work in five years is down to 25% as you suggest – and I think that might be a reasonable prediction – I’d like to think it will be better work than the current average.


This article is quite accurate in my opinion. My career path can be described as marketing analytics. It started in marketing research, but frankly I do not really identify with market research nor do many of my analytics peers. If you look at marketing analytics, it spans predictive modeling (marketing-mix), web analytics, risk analytics, and CRM analytics. Very few folks in these areas identify with marketing research. In my opinion, marketing research has held fast to the survey/focus group only mindset and has seen much of the data analytics areas move on and divorce themselves from marketing research. This is unfortunate, but true.

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