A Few Trends we Expect to see in 2022

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2021 was a bounce-back year for not only the market research industry but almost every industry.  While COVID has not gone away as we had all hoped, we have better tools and resources that are allowing us to more effectively live with the pandemic.

Here are a few trends we expect to see this year.

M&A Train Continues to Roll

Over the last few years, the market research industry has seen a lot of consolidation activity – and we expect that trend to continue in 2022. We expect to see the big fish continue to gobble up the smaller firms to enhance their offerings. We also expect to see at least one or 2 larger mergers or acquisitions, on the scale of a Cint/Lucid acquisition.

Brands Reimagine Their Tracker

We think 2022 is going to be a big year for tracking studies and the organizations that depend on them. While COVID disrupted a lot of market research, tracking studies were some of the most impacted due to the swift and extreme changes in consumer behavior that occurred. As the pandemic continued throughout 2021, many brands and other firms started to rethink their tracking studies, but there were not a lot of options. We believe 2022 will bring new options.

Finally See Federal Data Privacy Legislation?

The title of this prediction is probably misleading, especially since we do not think we will see a federal version of data privacy legislation in 2022. Instead, we continue to see states enact their own versions of data privacy legislation, continuing to cause the market research industry heartburn as we try to stay on top of the different requirements of each. 

Inflation Hits the Sample Industry

Inflation is currently a big topic in the news. Everything from cars and homes to bacon and shampoo have seen their prices increase, some more than others. We think that 2022 can be the year where we see inflation impact the sample industry, which will lead sample providers to increase their prices to cover their rising costs. We aren’t sure how much they will increase, but a 10-15% increase would make sense, although if some increase more, we wouldn’t be surprised.

Remote Working is Here to Stay

This one probably isn’t much of a shock, but we believe that remote work in the market research industry is now here to stay. During the height of the pandemic, we saw nearly every organization move to remote work, and while some have now gone back to the office full-time, many have not. Some organizations moved to a hybrid model, while others made the decision to move to 100% remote. 

We believe the hybrid and the fully remote work models are now here to stay as employees are enjoying the improved work-life balance these models provide. Organizations are also benefiting by removing the geographical restrictions office-based work presents, opening a larger talent pool to pick from for open positions.

Overall, the market research industry will continue its evolution in 2022, being pushed to innovate and address the demands of our clients and the changing consumer landscape.

Here’s to a successful and exciting 2022!