Market Research and Artificial Intelligence
In a recent article entitled, The Morality of Market Research in the Age of Artificial Intelligence the author Andrew Konya looked at the advancements in AI, and it’s influence it has had on market research, as well as the future influence and impact it will make. After working on artificial intelligence and computational physics for the past ten years Konya made the switch to market research. What he found was that the industry was full of inefficiencies that could be solved through existing technology. Konya began using his understanding of artificial intelligence and set out to “break down the primary functions of market research and plot the trajectory that artificial intelligence (AI) fueled disruption was likely to take.” This trajectory led him to conclude that there will be three main paths that market research could take.
Konya states that natural language processing (NLP) and machine learning models will and have already begun to automate data analysis. Combine this with the fact that automation of data collection will occur through conversation with humans. Machine learning will also lead to automation of data collection and analysis, which will then be turned, into reports.
Konya predicts that AI will “begin to generate and understand the landscape of possible actions to take.” The data will provide information necessary for AI to map out the possible outcomes a human is likely to take. Then AI will be able to look at the possible courses of action a human will take and compare that with the desired outcome or goal that a company has and then figure out what will be needed to persuade that individual to choose the required outcome. Konya points out that as AI is growing so is its ability to achieve goals. This ability to process information and calculate likelihoods of individuals to take certain actions and then be able to guess what will move them to take the desired course of action leads to questions of morality.
For market researchers three possible options stand out. The first is to use data to better understand what the customer wants so that a product or service can be tailored completely to that need or want. The second is to better understand how to communicate the product to customers so that they can understand how it meets their need. The third writes Konya “is to understand the psychology of consumers so that they may be manipulated into buying products that they do not necessarily need.” The first two goals produce less waste and evolve with the customer. Companies using these two goals profit by servicing customers needs. The more efficiently they can service those needs, the greater the profit and the less waste both in materials, time and money.
The third goal as Konya puts it gives us “a world where people’s core beliefs about themselves and the world they inhabit are systematically distorted in order to maximize the amount of products they buy (or who they vote for).” This third model focuses on how to convince people to buy things that they don’t need.
As market researchers it is imperative that we work towards the first two goals. Helping companies understand their customers so that they can create and communicate products that truly are needed and wanted. The benefit will come in producing products that have as little environmental consequence as possible and create a world that we will be a better place for our children and grandchildren.
At Insightrix Communities we believe that our Online Community Software provide the ability to connect with customers in order to hear their needs and wants so that you can provide better products and services while cutting down on waste and loss. We believe like Konya that the difficulties and inefficiencies that marketing departments face can be solved through existing technologies, one of which is Market Research Online Communities. If you would like to hear how our software can help you, please feel free to contact us.