Emojiresearch and analysis is a thing in the world we now live in.  Backin the olden days of the 90s, mobile phones were just starting to become thenorm. Monophonic Nokia phones with single-coloured LED backlights flooded thestreets. Consumption was simple, communication to consumers were fairlymainstream. Market research was almost exclusively pen and paper and involvednow-trivial topics like xxx.

 However,20 years later, the world is hardly like its younger self. Economies stretched,ballooned and burst. The rise of the internet has created a chaos of change butwith that comes opportunity as well. Brands now play in a much much morecompetitive landscape in this day and age where disruptive niche players cansuddenly take a bite out of the lion’s share (think Uber, think aggregators,think Spotify, think BitCoin). Constant innovation and being a true disruptorin this crazy changing world play big roles in keeping consumers engaged andbuying. And with the boom of social media, the playing field has evolved intoso much more intricate and unknown, and competition is growing exponentially. It has given birth to a whole new world of marketingthat can help any industry engage and interact with their target audiences.

Ithas also evolved the everyday endorsers to become “influencers”. A blog, a youtubeaccount, a Facebook page is now more than just a platform to showcasecreativity and authentic content. They have become an effective avenue forbrands to tap on their popularity and appeal to market their products.  Thedigital age that we live in makes it so much easier to tag everything to anumber. Likes. Shares. Comments. Referral links.

Page views. Marketers nowdepend on every indicator they can get their hands on to win the game. Socialmedia engagement figures now determine their next bonuses, . Brands keep a close eye to the shifts in numbers of brand liftnumbers, the reach and relevance scores of their campaigns. They obsess overthe minute changes in their equity scores and ensure ads, campaigns and eveninnovations pass their robust benchmarks before being launched.

Influencers arepaid based on the sheer number of followers they own, Facebook, Google and allthe big players base their decisions and marketing through a quantifiedalgorithm. This world is indeed fixated with numbers.  Consumersare also not like before. The internet and smart devices have changed thefundamental ways consumers are purchasing. Like how consumers have nowdeveloped a “taste” for the single-malts of the world, they have become muchmore discerning of the choices they make, the carbon footprint they leave andthe quality of goods they consume. Conspicuous branding has now taken a backseat, with modern consumers choosing the understated and subtle products ratherthan the extremely recognizable pieces.

Consumption is now very much about theexperience, and how much social currency they can get out of their consumption..  How do we then start to understand suchintricate consumers?  Intoday’s day and age, numbers mean everything, but not everything.

They give us an indication of the whos, whats, wheres,when, and how. But, can we really tell what they are looking for and how theymake the decisions they do? Like how consumers try to portray their best partsof life on instagram, we’re just scratching the surface when it comes tounderstanding the psychic behind what today’s consumers are like.  Everysingle day on average, we collect about 2.

5 million quintillion bytes of data(according to DOMO), across credit card payments, videos wewatch on youtube, even GPS signals and your “smart” home appliances. Anythingdigital nowadays create data that can be mined and used. It is ever soimportant to collect data in this day and age. But we should not forget thatconsumers are fundamentally human beings with different needs and feelings. Sohow close to truth are we capturing through this Big data? How much truth arethey portraying on their social media accounts? How much should we take to bethe ultimate truth when we read into the consumer data we collect?  Facebookdata for brands skews towards the negative due to the nature of the platformfor brands – people tend to put their grievances onto brand facebook pages.

Onthe contrary, Instagram tends to always show the best side of life and not thewhat goes on behind each photo (18 YO reveals truth behindher photos)     Hard,lifeless data can be contrived, rational, and not altogether the truth. Tofully understand data collectively is to include the emotions, the story andthe nuances which consumers may not readily share. Greatest insight is alwayscaptured spontaneously and unsolicited. According to Kahneman, a lot of ourdecision making is based on System 1 thinking which is fundamentallyinstinctive and emotional.

NEED TO BEEF THIS SECTIONUP Toquite a large extent, the truth indeed is quite largely based on hard numbers,data has become even more relevant and even more important today. But do onlynumbers count?   RETHINK CONCLUSION 

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