Seeking certainty in uncertain times


It doesn’t take a genius to realise that the way to engage with consumers has changed significantly over the past decade or two.

Attention spans are shorter, media consumption habits are evolving and notice paid to traditional advertising is waning.

The marketing industry has two choices in this situation of receding attention spans. It can dream up shrewd and devious new ways to grab attention and convert them into paying customers. Or, it can look deeper into what is happening and pander to modern consumer tastes.

This presents marketers with more challenges than ever before. Marketing is an expensive exercise and no one can be cavalier with their budget simply to try something to see what happens.

Which means that marketers have to be pretty darn certain of the facts before committing budgets.

Which reinforces my strongly-held faith in the power of market research not only as a tool to improve understanding of consumer behaviour, but also as a measurement tool.

Armed with this knowledge about how consumers think, marketers are better able to reach potential customers. This is especially important at a time that mass media is less effective as media habits have changed. No demographic demonstrates these changes better than the youth segment of populations across the world.

Only by have a deep understanding of their audiences can marketers hope to be effective.