From the desk of Alice Morgan
I have a challenge for you. How do you define these terms?
At a conference I recently attended, these results-related words were used indiscriminately. Bandied about, willy-nilly. They have become “buzzwords,” so diluted and blended over time that they lost their meaning.
How “Insights” differs from “Implications” is not a small thing. How we communicate, what we communicate, and the words we use to identify and explain our research results impact the validity and integrity of the market research profession. How are Findings, Insights, Implications and Recommendations distinct from one another? Which are fact-based – and which are not? Are we all on the same page here? In my humble opinion, absolutely not.
Insights, in fact, are so important that people in the biz are now in “Consumer Insights” instead of “Market Research.” So I think it is safe to say that Insights are a pretty big deal.
Here, without further ado, is Doyle’s stake in the ground, our point of view on results communication.
Findings are derived from observation and investigation. Findings are facts.
Sample Finding: When consumers shop online for cars, they avoid dealership websites.
Insights are discoveries derived from findings. Insights explain the emotional drivers of human behavior.
Sample Insight: Consumers don’t trust dealership websites because they think they are biased and hard to navigate. Today’s consumers turn to independent sites containing user-generated content.
Implications explain why Findings and Insights are important to our clients’ businesses. They tell our clients what it all means. Implications link Insights to Recommendations.
Sample Implication: Dealerships need to create websites consumers trust. As the initial touchpoint to the path to purchase, dealerships are squandering a critical engagement opportunity.
Recommendations are the actions clients should take to make smarter business decisions given the prior Findings, Insights, and Implications.
Sample Recommendation: Car dealerships need to optimize their websites by offering greater usability, transparent pricing, real-time vehicle inventory information, and unfiltered user reviews.
So – back to my challenge. What do you think of these definitions? Do you have a different take? An enhancement? I’d love to hear from you. When market researchers consistently and precisely communicate research results, everybody wins. Our clients understand the big picture. They know what they need to do going forward. And after all, isn’t that why they hired us to begin with?