Great market research considers all sides of a business decision. It leads to tough choices and doesn’t dance around recommendations. Above all, it provides context and clarity.
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Businesses need clear direction. But the world is complex. Market research that ignores that complexity is often simplistic, superficial or wrong. We don’t cut through complexity. We deal with it. We factor it into our research. We filter and refine it.
Answers that resolve the divide between complexity and clarity. Answers that are correct. If this is interesting to you, read some stories of how and for whom Dig has worked. Or, see who’s behind Dig. Have complex questions? Need clear answers?
Dig brings market research into the real world. This requires us to integrate complexity – business questions, competitive contexts in which consumers make choices, and methodological decisions. We can do this because our senior consultants collaborate internally and with clients on every project to develop custom-designed solutions that address the business’ needs. Our methods are more labour intensive, but they deliver superior results.
We eagerly look outside of market research, and then integrate the opportunities we discover into advanced methodologies and ways of delivering data. We don’t ask people why they think or behave a certain way; we derive it. We don’t ask people what they will do; we create simulated decision environments and allow them to act. Wherever possible, the numbers we present are those that matter to the business: volume, revenue and profit.
A lot of market research lives in a parallel universe, where people know why they do what they do, where their choices are logical, where they can predict their own behaviour. It’s a place where methodologies developed years ago, that no longer reflect current thinking, are permitted to survive. This universe has its own language. A language of top two box scores and performance vs. normative databases that are filled with failed ideas. This language is divorced from the language of business.
This other universe exists because it benefits many market research vendors. It allows for simplistic, scalable methodologies managed by junior staff. But this universe does not benefit market research users. Those who enter it find that research often becomes an obstacle to change. We Dig people have all seen this universe, clocked its failings, and created a better one of our own. Have complex questions? Need clear answers?
We invest in our business and in our industry. Here are some of the things we are thinking about and working on.
We believe the marriage of big data and market research leads to deeper insights and action-oriented prescriptive analytics. This means getting a business’ behavioural, transactional, and social data out of their silos and combining it with customized primary research. To facilitate this integration, our data scientists have developed a suite of custom APIs and platforms like Dig Sandbox.
Integrating the latest in technology is one of Dig’s core values so our data scientists consistently use the latest machine learning and AI to refresh old methodologies and generate new ones.
Upsiide is a mobile app that engages the next generation in market research. It uses a swipe-left, swipe-right interface to assess ideas. The respondent task is simple, but it allows for sophisticated analytics.
We have used TURF (Total Unduplicated Reach and Frequency) to help companies make a variety of optimizations (menu, product line-up, coupon) since 2010. We now have an online tool that uses custom algorithms which allows for advanced analyses to be done quickly on a simple, self-serve interface.
We created tools to make data, particularly big data, easy to interpret. Network and correspondence maps can be created by our analysts, or by our clients, in a matter of minutes.
We are a multicultural company in a multicultural city. To further understand our world, we created the syndicated Newcomer Financial Monitor Report that helps Canadian financial institutions understand and assist newcomers.
We are delving into how perceptions on recreational marijuana are leading to legal and behavioural changes, and how legalization will cascade into adjacent industries: alcohol; quick serve restaurants, and consumer packaged goods. The Cannabis Culture Report helps us, and our clients, predict and prepare for this change.
To find out more about what Dig is thinking about and creating, please visit our blog.
We help our clients understand the market. We translate that understanding into action. We build a business case for change. And we speak in the language of business.
We have experienced strong growth since our launch in 2010. This creates opportunities for learning and career advancement. The roles we have listed here are our perspective on what we need. But we try to be open-minded. If you think you would be a great addition to the Dig team and have a different vision of what role you can play, please contact us.
We are focused on building a better market research agency. What does “better” mean? The most important thing to understand is that we have tools, approaches and a perspective on how research should be done, but we do not sell ‘canned’ methodologies. So if you want to manage an established process, Dig is not the place for you. People who succeed at Dig Insights either have a fantastic technical understanding of market research or are willing to build this understanding. Ideal team members are smart, creative and fun. They use quantitative research to work through complex questions and deliver clear answers. They question established research practices and are passionate about helping our clients to move their businesses forward. They are comfortable working in a fast moving, flat organization.
We are looking for people to fill these roles:
A: My first job in research was as a summer student with the Peel District School Board where I did such exciting tasks as manually scanning over 60,000 surveys, data entry and setting up Microsoft Access data bases (does anyone still use Access?!?!?). Regardless, it was great experience and set me on course to do a Post Graduate Diploma in Research Analysis where I learned many of the technical and analytical skills that still come in handy today.
From there I spent two years with Ipsos-Reid managing client relationships and leading research projects. I gained valuable experience across many industries and was exposed to all sorts of quantitative and qualitative methodologies from ethnographies to segmentation modelling to more complex trade-off and conjoint exercises.
I next joined Rogers as a research buyer where I spent five years learning the ‘ins and outs’ of telecommunications and also saw first-hand how insights drive decisions within a large organization. I led research for the Communications line of business for my final three years on the team, getting the chance to present results to the C-Suite and work closely with some extremely talented marketers.
And most recently I was in brand management for Fido. There I had the opportunity to be the end research user, leveraging insights to make strategic decisions on how we marketed the brand to customers. It was a great chance to see how research is used in the day-to-day running of a business.
A: I see market research as a tool; it’s one of many ways to make a more informed decision, however, it shouldn’t be viewed as the solution itself.
I’ve heard marketers say, “we need to go to research” when they aren’t exactly sure what to do. Unfortunately, this has a tendency to put research findings in isolation of other information. It could also lead to following survey results too literally and often it’s the final check point.
In my experience using research as a tool means designing a methodology in context of the business problem and the information already available. It means not treating research as a final validation and acknowledging that the consumers we speak to likely aren’t aware of all the factors that make up a business decision. It also means incorporating information like sales data or case studies to tell a more complete story.
A: There will continue to be a need for businesses to get feedback from consumers to help guide their thinking. I don’t see that changing. The methodologies will continue to evolve and take advantage of technology as it becomes available. We will find better ways to replicate consumer’s actual decision making and rely less on simplified line of questioning.
The larger change, and one that has already begun, is that insights will come from more places than ever before. We’re at a point where we have so much information it leads to confusion not clarity. What this does is put increasing pressure on marketers to understand what’s a meaningful insight, and what is just background noise. As researchers we have a massive role to play. We are often looked to in order to find linkages and explain what might seem contradictory for our clients. We need to adapt and push our approaches to account for this as well. As someone who is passionate about problem solving this is a welcomed change.
A: When I was younger I always thought I’d be a sports broadcaster. I was a massive Toronto Blue Jays fan and hearing Tom Cheek say “Touch’em all Joe” in 1993 still gives me goosebumps. I suppose that’s why I enjoy presenting so much. That, and I tell myself it’s as dramatic as the World Series.