Almost every company today recognizes the need to be more insight-driven. Executives know that they need to deeply understand their customers in order to make better decisions. But, oddly enough, even if leaders recognize the value of customer insight, market research teams don’t always get the credit they deserve.
In some companies, for instance, market research teams are seen as merely service providers and cost centers. That’s a missed opportunity both for research teams and the companies they work at. If insight isn’t seen as a strategic priority, that means the company isn’t taking full advantage of customer insight.
Anyone looking to enhance the reputation of research should look at Southern Cross Austereo (SCA), a leading radio and TV distributor that connects with up to 95% of Australians each week. The company’s research team has contributed $35 million to revenue in 8 years—and as a a result, it has earned both credibility and trust in the organization.
John Musgrove, SCA’s head of research, and Jasmine Beech, the company’s national sales research manager, recently spoke at the 2018 Customer Intelligence Summit to share how they have elevated the role of insight within the organization. Here are some key takeaways from their session.
1. Be an internal champion
If you want customer-led decision-making to take center stage in your organization, you need to champion it. People are currently drowning in data, so you have to wow them with insight that offers real value. Make sure you share your successes regularly and take every opportunity to demonstrate the value of your insight on the organization.
For SCA, it was important to level set and define what constitutes insight to begin with. Insight, after all, isn’t merely data, assumptions and observations. Rather, according to John and Jasmine, insight is evidence-based, new and unique thinking that captures a previously unrecognized fundamental human truth. Real insight causes people to go “wow” and creates an ongoing narrative.
That said, a shared definition is not enough. Change is not going to happen overnight. For SCA, the process of championing the impact of their insight was a gradual process that took place over an eight-year period. John and Jasmine recommended working proactively and diligently to ensure that insight takes center stage at the heart of your organization over time.
2. Make your insight accessible
You know that the insight your team generates is key to your organization’s success, so how can you communicate that to other people? It’s vital that you find a way to make your insight accessible so that it can be employed across the organization. SCA’s team works with 12 different internal departments. To communicate effectively with all of their stakeholders, SCA’s research team put together regular insight bulletins alongside regional research scoreboards to quickly and effectively communicate insights to everyone at the same time.
3. Link research with the bottom line
At the end of the day, your team’s contribution to revenue is what gets people's attention. SCA’s team has been able to monetize research, which means that they know exactly how much revenue they are bringing to the table. Over the past eight years, the insight team has saved $24 million in research costs and contributed more than $35 million in business revenue. By drawing ties between insight and revenue, the research team has been able to showcase their value and build confidence among stakeholders.
Elevating market research means elevating the company
By working proactively to promote the power of their research, as well as share their findings with stakeholders across the organization, SCA haven’t just elevated the role of insight within their organization, they’ve elevated the entire company.
It’s an example of how customer-led insight can be a real strategic driver within a company, and the substantial benefit of elevating the role of research within an organization. Watch or read our customer story to learn more about SCA’s impressive use of customer insight.