Data Gurus


SampleCon – Future Proofing the Industry Part 2 | Ep. 142

Welcome to another informative episode of the Data Gurus podcast!

Today, Sima shares the second part of the two-part series related to her recent opening session at SampleCon. The session was titled Future-Proofing Our Industry and covered a range of different topics.

For this episode, the focus is on the implications of the capital coming into the industry, user engagement, proving the process of user engagement, and some key lessons learned by the esteemed members of the panel, both personally and professionally, related to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The panel includes Patrick Comer, the CEO and Founder of Lucid, Bob Fawson, EVP of Business Strategy for Dynata, Mario Carrasco, the Co-Founder and Principal of ThinkNow, and Rebecca Brooks, the Founder, and CEO of Alter Agents.

The industry 
Over the last several years and even more over the last twenty months, the amount of capital coming into the market has increased. Mergers and acquisitions have also increased, and the ecosystem appears to have expanded. New digital players are enabling more insights, and there are new buying audiences within corporations.

The opportunities available for people today

Mario feels that we are sitting on some incredible data which has been overlooked by marketers for a long time. He does not think that the digital add-in industry has come to grips with how that will impact the world. He feels that the sample industry is poised to fill many of the data gaps that will occur in a post-cookie world.

Bob does not know how anyone in the future can be successful as a sales, brand, or operations manager without also being a bit of a data scientist. He feels that we have just seen the beginning of it because data is becoming harder to get, and more people are figuring out what data scientists do, and seeing the value of it.

Patrick feels that the industry is sitting on a gold mine because, as a collective group, we have first-party data and permission to ask questions every day. What got built over the years through data insights and surveys has suddenly become interesting to many other players.
Rebecca thinks that new money, new investors, and new ideas coming into the space is excellent for the industry. She is excited about having the opportunity to do something different, build differently, and think about things differently. Something else that came out of the pandemic for her was that many systems and traditional ways of doing things got exposed to be either flawed or broken.

Bob feels that we have moved into a space where there is more urgency. There is money coming into the research space. There is the opportunity, so we need to start treating the people who fuel our industry like human beings.

Staying nimble
Rebecca feels that companies holding onto the way things were or who try to put things back into the box will fail. Business leaders need to be nimble, open, and adaptive.

Machine learning
Bob thinks that we, as an industry, need to move towards machine learning. He feels that the new capital coming into the industry will facilitate that.

Res tech
Patrick feels that res tech plays beautifully into the direction in which things are moving. It all comes down to us holding our own in an environment where we are up against mar tech and ad tech. We need to attract talent and capital to the industry.

The value of res tech
The value of res tech is allowing people who do not understand our industry to feel like they do.

Supply is a hot topic right now because there appears to be a shortage of it. Investments scaled back when the pandemic started, and everyone resorted to purchasing on the various exchanges out there.

Rebecca’s approach to the supply problem is to come at it from the angle of looking for ways to help people.

At Alter Agents, they are candid with their clients when talking about the issues they are having. They look for ways to create checks and systems to help their providers and then share that information to help them clean things up.

Overcoming the supply problem
A lot more transparency is required in the industry to overcome the problem of supply. Today, it is hard to find consumers who do not mind the process as it used to be before, so we need to expand the aperture and improve the surveys.

A good product
As a research agency, you need to have a good product and a good user experience to get samples and meet your revenue targets.
What the panel members learned from Covid-19, professionally or personally, to create long-lasting change in their lives

Rebecca learned to question everything that she and her company are doing. She no longer assumes that the way things get done is the right way.

As a leader, Mario has changed how he interacts with his staff. He learned the importance of getting to know them and asking how they and their families are doing.

Bob feels as if he has had a year-and-a-half of forced meditation. It is a gift he feels lucky to have had. He learned a lot and enjoyed having the opportunity to live a richer life, reach out to his colleagues, and empathize with them.

Patrick learned that as a leader, he cannot always hold everything together. He discovered how to be more human and vulnerable. He also learned to trust and rely on his colleagues more.

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