research and analysis is a thing in the world we now live in.


in the olden days of the 90s, mobile phones were just starting to become the
norm. Monophonic Nokia phones with single-coloured LED backlights flooded the
streets. Consumption was simple, communication to consumers were fairly
mainstream. Market research was almost exclusively pen and paper and involved
now-trivial topics like xxx.

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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 but
with that comes opportunity as well. Brands now play in a much much more
competitive landscape in this day and age where disruptive niche players can
suddenly take a bite out of the lion’s share (think Uber, think aggregators,
think Spotify, think BitCoin). Constant innovation and being a true disruptor
in this crazy changing world play big roles in keeping consumers engaged and
buying. And with the boom of social media, the playing field has evolved into
so much more intricate and unknown, and competition is growing exponentially.
It has given birth to a whole new world of marketing
that can help any industry engage and interact with their target audiences. It
has also evolved the everyday endorsers to become “influencers”. A blog, a youtube
account, a Facebook page is now more than just a platform to showcase
creativity and authentic content. They have become an effective avenue for
brands to tap on their popularity and appeal to market their products.


digital age that we live in makes it so much easier to tag everything to a
number. Likes. Shares. Comments. Referral links. Page views. Marketers now
depend on every indicator they can get their hands on to win the game. Social
media engagement figures now determine their next bonuses, . Brands keep a close eye to the shifts in numbers of brand lift
numbers, the reach and relevance scores of their campaigns. They obsess over
the minute changes in their equity scores and ensure ads, campaigns and even
innovations pass their robust benchmarks before being launched. Influencers are
paid based on the sheer number of followers they own, Facebook, Google and all
the big players base their decisions and marketing through a quantified
algorithm. This world is indeed fixated with numbers.


are also not like before. The internet and smart devices have changed the
fundamental ways consumers are purchasing. Like how consumers have now
developed a “taste” for the single-malts of the world, they have become much
more discerning of the choices they make, the carbon footprint they leave and
the quality of goods they consume. Conspicuous branding has now taken a back
seat, with modern consumers choosing the understated and subtle products rather
than the extremely recognizable pieces. Consumption is now very much about the
experience, and how much social currency they can get out of their consumption.


How do we then start to understand such
intricate consumers?


today’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 they
make the decisions they do? Like how consumers try to portray their best parts
of life on instagram, we’re just scratching the surface when it comes to
understanding the psychic behind what today’s consumers are like.


single day on average, we collect about 2.5 million quintillion bytes of data
(according to DOMO), across credit card payments, videos we
watch on youtube, even GPS signals and your “smart” home appliances. Anything
digital nowadays create data that can be mined and used. It is ever so
important to collect data in this day and age. But we should not forget that
consumers are fundamentally human beings with different needs and feelings. So
how close to truth are we capturing through this Big data? How much truth are
they portraying on their social media accounts? How much should we take to be
the ultimate truth when we read into the consumer data we collect?


data for brands skews towards the negative due to the nature of the platform
for brands – people tend to put their grievances onto brand facebook pages. On
the contrary, Instagram tends to always show the best side of life and not the
what goes on behind each photo (18 YO reveals truth behind
her photos)   


lifeless data can be contrived, rational, and not altogether the truth. To
fully understand data collectively is to include the emotions, the story and
the nuances which consumers may not readily share. Greatest insight is always
captured spontaneously and unsolicited. According to Kahneman, a lot of our
decision making is based on System 1 thinking which is fundamentally
instinctive and emotional. NEED TO BEEF THIS SECTION


quite 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 only
numbers count?  




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