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Tying Market Research to the Whipping Post

tie market research to whipping post

So many articles have been written lately about the limitations of market research. I just read another on Forbes.com.

Market Research? Not perfect? Noooo….

This is an all-too-common ploy to gain readers—by trying to make something that isn’t at all new or controversial sound as if it is.

Of course market research isn’t perfect.
Of course predicting consumer behavior is complex.
Of course sample sources can cause serious headaches.
Of course qualitative research isn’t conclusive.
Of course new technology-infused market research methods are emerging that will augment or replace traditional methods.

Did anyone ever think otherwise?

Given a choice between having a disciplined approach to discovering and measuring customer attitudes and behaviors versus taking wild-ass guesses? I’ll take a market research approach 95% of the time.

Besides (and this may be a bit self-serving), with a little training, many market research risks can be mitigated, new methods applied, and sources of frustration avoided.

And as an aside: I am wary of any consultancies with black box approaches. All I can say is, buyer beware.

Now sing it with me, “Tied…to the whipping post….Tied…to the whipping post…”

[I welcome any and all comments! Every 2 weeks I randomly select a commenter to win a Rockstar Mug: PIC. Next drawing is 10/23.  This week’s winner is Joy Levin—Congrats Joy!!]
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Kathryn Korostoff

Kathryn Korostoff is founder and lead instructor at Research Rockstar. Over the past 25 years, she has personally directed more than 600 primary market research projects and published over 100 bylined articles in magazines. She is also a professor at Boston University, where she teaches grad students how to analyze and report quantitative data.

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3 thoughts on “Tying Market Research to the Whipping Post”

  1. Totally agree…I’ve been preaching the same…and while not the Allman’s, perhaps “Hit Me With Your Best Shot” works too! (I’ve got to get me one of those mugs…hint, hint, wink) – nice site

  2. Thanks for the comment, Mark. Always nice to meet a kindred spirit. Keep ’em coming–who knows, maybe you’ll win the next mug drawing!

  3. Market Research is an Art and a Science; those who combine both into their methodology tend to be more successful in predicting behavior. Modern technology enhances traditional MR methods, they should not replace them. Keep rockin’ it Kathryn.

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