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Smart insights: Technology

If you want to attract today's connected consumers, it's essential to embrace technology and to understand consumers' use of technology.

It is impossible to identify opportunities or design superior consumer experiences that secure loyal, returning customers unless you have accurate understanding of your customers' current experiences, unmet needs, evolving choices and future expectations.

Our technology market research experts give you this information.

We deliver market and consumer insights that help you create engaging and relevant concept designs, product positioning, advertising and customer experiences. And our key performance indicators for brand, proposition development and user experience keep you focused on the actions that will deliver the strongest business results.

Whatever specialist technology sector you operate in, we provide insights on market performance, consumer research and trends at both global and local level: IT and IT B2B, consumer electronics (CE), photo, office equipment, home appliances (MDA), telecommunications hardware and telecoms service providers.

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    • 09/14/17
    • Home Appliances
    • Retail
    • Technology
    • Point of Sales Tracking
    • Global
    • English

    Global smart MDA market almost triples in size in 12 months

    Chinese consumers are driving global adoption of smart major domestic appliances. Discover more.
    • 09/06/17
    • Technology
    • Trends and Forecasting
    • Global
    • English

    #Decade: What ten years of hashtags tells us about consumers today

    On August 23, the hashtag turned 10 years old.  Before achieving internet fame, it was previously known by most as the pound sign, a symbol used primarily to complete requests on customer service phone calls.  But a decade ago, everything changed thanks to an entrepreneur named Chris Messina who was looking for a way to organize conversations among different groups on Twitter. Even if you’re not that active on social media, it’s likely that hashtags are a part of your life – they’ve worked their way into everything from news articles to our daily slang to, as of 2014, our dictionary.  It’s estimated that around 125 million hashtags are shared each day on Twitter alone, with other social networks like Instagram and Facebook adopting them en masse as well. Hashtags clearly aren’t going anywhere.  What can the rise, and continued cultural dominance, of this symbol tell us about where consumers, and brands, are headed?
    • Simplify the experience. At its core, the hashtag is a method of organization – an easy way to filter through endless social media posts to find the content most relevant to you.  Our GfK Consumer Life findings consistently show that consumers want more streamlined experiences in every aspect of their lives.  The personal value of simplicity (keeping your life and mind as uncluttered as possible) has risen four ranks in importance since 2011, and nearly one in three (32%) Americans today are willing to pay more for products that make their lives easier.  As this trend continues to dominate, brands that offer more efficient solutions will thrive.
    • Support the search for like-minded peers. The advent of social media has made it easier than ever to find a group, or multiple groups, where we can feel that we belong.  According to recent research from GfK Consumer Life, nearly three in ten (27%) Americans go so far to say that belonging to groups that share their interests or beliefs is essential to their well-being – almost as many (25%) feel that the groups they belong to say a lot about them.  Hashtags have made it easier than ever to “find your tribe” and communicate with them easily – no simple feat given the pace at which our social media feeds are multiplying.  Whether you’re catching up on “Game of Thrones” reactions or mobilizing for social change, hashtags connect you to the right people.
    • Let consumer input drive the future of your brand. Perhaps one of the most interesting details about the hashtag’s origin story is that the idea came from a user of Twitter, not from its executives or developers.  In fact, many other features that are now core Twitter elements originated outside of the company’s four walls, including the word “tweet” and the brand’s signature bird icon.  Enabled by social media and other innovations, the past ten years have seen consumers get far more involved in shaping a brand’s offerings, communications, and so much more.  As GfK Consumer Life data demonstrates, most (82%) Americans tend to trust one brand over another when the company listens and responds to customer needs, complaints, and feedback; another 68 percent say that brands who prioritize customer needs over profits are more likely to earn their trust.  It’s reasonable to anticipate that these brand expectations will continue to dominate consumer mindsets as time goes on.
    • Carefully develop your brand’s voice. Having a social media presence allows brands to communicate directly with consumers and many other audiences.  It also gives them a real-time channel for timely announcements, responses to current events, and updates associated with ongoing campaigns.  But as they join the online conversation with hashtags and the like, brands must be cautious – or they’ll immediately face social media backlash.  Whether they find themselves unintentionally soliciting negative feedback, or appearing unconcerned with larger social issues, the damage can be instant – and dramatic.
    Not only do hashtags tell us a lot about the brands, news, trends, and pop culture that people care about, the mere usage of this symbol online gives us a deeper picture of evolving consumer priorities and behaviors.  As social media continues to grow and play an even larger role in our lives, it’s likely that the next ten years of the hashtag will be as important as the first ten. Rachel Bonsignore is a Senior Consultant on the Consumer Life team at GfK. She can be reached at rachel.bonsignore@gfk.com. hbspt.cta.load(2405078, '4698ab70-024a-406a-a71a-d250e9b06488', {});
    • 09/06/17
    • Fashion and Lifestyle
    • Home Appliances
    • Financial Services
    • Media and Entertainment
    • Retail
    • Technology
    • Travel and Hospitality
    • Automotive
    • Consumer Goods
    • FMCG
    • Home and Living
    • Market Opportunities and Innovation
    • Global
    • English

    The mood of the world today – what are people thinking?

    In this free on-demand webinar, our experts dive into current consumer confidence and other key indicators of the consumer mindset and what it means for individual markets and brands.
    • 09/05/17
    • Technology
    • Global
    • English

    Smarter living with 5G, but what about the data?

    For years, we’ve been hearing about the Internet of Things (IoT). Up till now, it has always been some distant reality featuring self-driving cars, drone-delivery, Smart TVs, AI-powered personal assistants and a fridge that stocks itself when the milk runs out. Not anymore. With 5G networks on the horizon, it’s only a matter of time before the IoT becomes a part of our everyday lives. Why is that so? Unlike today’s 4G networks, the next-generation 5G mobile networks are expected to be up and running by 2020, will have high bandwidth, low latency, and are virtually lag-free. This means that the networks will be able to seamlessly support the flood of affordable, simple devices that will be brought online.

    5G in Asia

    Asia might have adopted both 3G and 4G far later than the West, but with 5G, the third time just might be the charm. According to an Ericsson Mobility Report, Asia Pacific (along with North America) is poised to lead 5G adoption, making smart homes an imminent reality. In fact, The Visionaire, a 632-unit executive condominium in Singapore was marketed earlier this year as one of the first smart homes in the city-state. Global management consulting firm A.T. Kearney reports that Asia’s smart home market is expected to reach US$115 million in 2030, with growth driven by China and Japan and with highly-connected economies such as Singapore, South Korea and Taiwan also playing a key role.

    New growth opportunities with 5G

    3G gave us video streaming, while 4G perfected the sharing economy. As with every generation of network upgrades, new growth opportunities will present themselves. IoT devices will generate huge amounts of data, driving tremendous opportunities for data analytics across industries. From a commercial standpoint, with access to IoT data, brands can enjoy greater understanding of how consumers leverage technology, enabling them to provide consumers with exactly what they want, thus maximising profits and heightening brand loyalty. Brands are also equipped to make business decisions to narrow gaps in the market and improve customer experiences. We believe that data mining will be the new gold in the era of IoT – and telcos stand to benefit the most. By tapping into vast swathes of data generated by IoT, telcos will gain access to invaluable customer insights, which often make up the basis of lucrative partnerships with other businesses. Constant connectivity offers the chance for telcos to boost their revenue streams through machine-to-machine communications, easy payment systems and networking for the IoT. As such, it will enable them to extend their customer base to include utilities, industrial supply chains, smart homes and smart cities, among many others.

    Benefits for Retail

    Retailers also stand to benefit as they can use the information to develop new service-oriented business models that will better serve both consumers and businesses alike. Currently, customers are already able to receive highly specific mobile offers based on both their location and consumption habits. With the IoT transforming even more objects into customer touch points, the possibilities are endless – such as by solving supply chain constraints and improving inventory management. In a landscape saturated with information, brands require data analytics to make sense of customer data and answer questions like – how and why do customers consume apps, how is the total data market growing, and what are the opportunities for innovation with 5G.

    Understanding each consumer

    Today, some brands are already working in tandem with market research agencies to evaluate consumer data accurately in order to identify and build a roadmap of innovative possibilities to deliver value to consumers. As we step into the world of 5G and IoT, we are bound to be exposed to data overload, which makes data analysis a more critical aspect for brands now than before. From usage patterns, behaviours, preferences to experience, through advanced matching and modelling techniques, every data point can be thoroughly analysed, enabling brands to understand each consumer completely. By leveraging these extensive data insights based on research intelligence, brands can make informed business decisions, benefiting their core audiences. Undeniably, the IoT can revolutionize the way we live, work and play while making businesses more efficient and convenient. It’s high time now for businesses to embrace the potential of IoT or risk being left behind. hbspt.cta.load(2405078, '5edd9348-7303-4cd3-95c8-5eeca29dadf1', {});
  • Brand and Customer Experience (BaCE)

    Brand and Customer Experience (BaCE)

    Brands are under pressure to develop emotional connections and relationships with consumers and business decision makers.  Brands need to respond in-the-moment, to enrich the customer experience – and develop strategies that influence ”moments of truth” throughout individual brand journeys.  

  • Digital Market Intelligence (DMI)

    Digital Market Intelligence (DMI)

    When consumers shop, search, communicate, gather information and engage with companies or brands online, they behave differently depending on which device or screen they are using. They expect a consistent experience regardless of the channel or device they are using.

  • Point of Sales Tracking

    Point of Sales Tracking

    Retailers and manufacturers are under pressure to develop products and services that maximize sales and profit and to keep customers coming back.

    Success relies on having the most up-to-date sales data, combined with robust analysis to understand which products and services are performing well in the market – and which are not. With this information, clients can set clear strategies for commercial growth and increase return on investment.

  • User Experience (UX)

    User Experience (UX)

    Our user experience (UX) research and design experts help our clients create and improve customer experiences for existing or new products and services

    Today’s consumer is bombarded with promises for compelling experiences. They are sophisticated and demanding.  To be successful, a new product or service needs to be intuitive, usable, engaging and desirable. The user experience needs to be emotional in order to be memorable.

  • Market Opportunities and Innovation (MOI)

    Market Opportunities and Innovation (MOI)

    Brands are under constant pressure to maintain relevance in an increasingly crowded market. Identifying when, where and how to deliver compelling experiences that deliver new value for both consumers and brands is critical.

  • Trends & Forecasting

    Trends & Forecasting

    ​Today’s steady stream of new offerings and shortening product lifecycles place a unique pressure on businesses to stay ahead. Consumer purchasing behavior shifts more rapidly than ever.

  • Geomarketing


    Our geomarketing solutions and consultancy provide our clients with smart insights into location-specific factors that impact the success of business sites, shops, sales territories, target groups, as well as chain store and distribution networks.

  • Mystery Shopping

    Mystery Shopping

    Consumers face a complex array of brand touch points every day of their lives. To deliver a consistent brand experience, marketers need to know how consumers are actually experiencing their brand. Our mystery shoppers give you all the help you need to understand these experiences, and respond to them to maximize the return for your business.

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