Six tips for achieving your 2024 goals with consumer insights

Feb 20, 2024
Insights Thought Leadership

This is Part 1 of a two-part blog series from the Insights Council.

Does this sound like you when you’re making your 2024 plans?

"How can I leverage category trends and consumer research to successfully launch an innovative product?” – Canada business lead of a global consumer products company

How can we optimize our marketing channels, including new ones we haven’t used before, to be more impactful?” – North America marketing lead for a non-profit fundraising organization

Typically, data and analytics have successfully delivered insights to marketers through consumer research, business analysis, machine learning algorithms and AI. Many of these rely on historical information or at least a predictable future.

2024 will be a year that is much less predictable – if it’s predictable at all. With a global economic downturn, COVID-19 turning from a pandemic to an endemic illness, and instability around the world, consumers are behaving very differently now than in the last few years. Technological innovations are continually bringing new products that disrupt traditional categories. Marketers cannot rely on prior experience about what works and what doesn't.

The CMA’s Insights Council has compiled six practical tips for marketers on how to best leverage industry trends, consumer research and business analysis to achieve their 2024 business goals:
1.   Don’t rely on generic insights

When you average everything, things start to seem the same. General published insights are generic by nature. Marketers need customized insights for their business. Customized insights drive more value in the form of more opportunities to cross-sell, increased stickiness of the brand, and more.

2.   Think small data

As insight professionals, we always have a tendency to try to find all the answers in data. We also have a general dislike of anecdotal data. The truth is we don’t always need large samples. Journalistic and qualitative research can often provide net new thinking. Technology has enabled better qualitative work to uncover new nuggets more easily.

3.   Leverage consumer feedback

Advanced analytical tools, including AI-driven text analysis and emotion recognition software, can delve into the layers of customer feedback, extracting not just the explicit messages but also the underlying sentiments and contextual nuances. Such analysis allows marketers to mine insights from channels like customer service and social media at scale. The intersection of first-party engagement, transactional data, customer service interactions, social media data and market research can provide rich insights to help marketers adapt their strategies.

4.   Be fluid in audience and messaging

Buying power has been diminished by inflation and economic uncertainty. What used to be a staple is now a luxury. But consumers will always have the urge to splurge. Marketers need to understand the moment and market differently – consider different positioning or perhaps even a different audience. New positioning and audiences will require fast action and testing in real markets. Marketers must budget for appropriate resources for these faster, smaller go-to-market executions.

5.   Strive for better communication between insights and marketing teams

Marketers are busy. They are constantly bombarded with information. (And yes, sometimes the third decimal place does make a difference!) They want simple answers. And with AI algorithms sometimes working as a black box, marketers may not always trust the results or know what to do with them. Data professionals need to present insights in a useful manner for marketers to action on.

6.   Balance short-term gains with long-term investments

With the difficult macroeconomic situation, it’s tempting for organizations to squeeze their marketing budget. It is easy to prioritize tactics that generate immediate return. But in order to quickly understand changes in consumer behaviour and pivot accordingly, brands need to get access to information faster and be more efficient. Quicker access and efficiency requires investment in resources and technology that may not seem immediately relevant.

We hope these tips for leveraging insights will help you achieve more success in 2024.

Stay tuned for Part 2, which will uncover how analytics and insights can help marketers make better decisions in 2024.

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Margaret Ngai

Head of Analytics and Technology RI





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