The doomsayers about DIY (do-it-yourself) research are missing the point.
Typically resistance to DIY research comes from traditionalists who feel that internal corporate marketers and researchers are not able to administer and analyze research projects on their own without the steady guiding hand of a market research consultant.
By the way, last year I wrote a post criticizing the use of the term “DIY Research” as perjorative, but since I haven’t heard a better term yet I’ll continue to use it here.
The reality is that there are many projects which corporate researchers are well equipped to run on their own. The key is, as the saying goes, to know what you know and know what you don’t know – market research consultants are best suited to come in and help with advanced methodologies and analysis. Speed and cost dictate that simpler projects be done internally.
Why does this disconnect about DIY research exist?
It’s because traditionalists are missing the point. They do not understand, or they do not acknowledge, the extent to which the needs of corporate researchers have changed in the internet age.
And after all, it’s all about meeting corporate researchers’ needs, isn’t it?
One such researcher, Jason Anderson of Blizzard Entertainment, gave us a taste of the corporate researcher’s perspective his recent talk at the Market Research in the Mobile World conference. He mentioned that his first priority is to answer any questions that can be answered using internal data resources, including data resources he has built himself. Only then does he look externally.
Gone are the days when researchers outsourced everything, when working with a client meant a steady stream of large projects, all of which included study design, data collection and analysis. That world does not exist anymore.
Stop missing the point. If you get the new paradigm and you are a supplier-side researcher, you will specialize in filling in the gaps that corporate researchers cannot fill on their own.