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Advertising Points The Way For The Future Of MR

By Navin Williams, CEO of MobileMeasure

The MR industry follows trends in advertising. For growth markets, we often look at MR as a percentage of the advertising industry and then look at more established mature markets to see what the future holds. For instance while the global MR market is approximately 30 billion US Dollars, the next big thing expected is China which currently is at a relatively modest 1 billion dollars, ranking 6th globally. If we look at the global advertising market, China is already ranked second globally at 57 billion US Dollars. If we take 5 key mature markets (USA, UK, Germany, France & Japan), their average MR market as a % of Advertising is 9.5%, while in China it’s a mere 1.6%. [Source : Global MR 2010 Esomar Industry Report]. As the market matures two things are expected to happen: share and rank of China’s MR market globally will grow to mirror that of its advertising market, which has already grown to be ranked as No. 2 globally behind the US. Of course this will open enough opportunities for digital MR solutions including mobile.

With this background I would like to share an article I read about the current state and future of advertising, as MR will surely mirror it in the very very near future. While reading the article please replace the names of the top agencies and group mentioned with MR’s own giants: Nielsen, TNS, GfK, Ipsos, Synovate, etc. The other boutiques and specialist agencies can be replaced by MobileMeasure, BrainJuicer, Brandscape, Brandscan360 and others that you may be familiar with in your own sphere / area of operation. And the people being quoted within the article can be substituted with people you know. I tried this exercise and managed to find a personality and agency for every single reference in the article.


Unlike advertising which is pretty multi-dimensional, market research has been very focused. While it’s easier for advertising to integrate with gaming (Adgaming) or look to integrate with the Social Media revolution from traditional models, we still have heavy resistance from established market stalwarts. Market research has a much taller task and not only will we need to integrate the new digital world but will also need to use marketing, crowd sourcing, gaming and other areas out there which we don’t even consider remotely related to market research.

How are we going to do this? Who is going to do this? Market research and researchers by nature are conservative and often consider themselves the “insurance of marketing”. Given this scenario no one wants to rock the boat too far. If that’s the case are we destined to not change the core offers out there and continue experimenting on the fringes. I believe change is near and upon us. The stars of this change, direction and speed is hard to see at the moment. But as a meteor heading your way, it will be hard to stop and harder to run far from once it breaks through the atmosphere.

If you have any new radical ideas, I would like to hear about them. You can write to me at [email protected]

The future isn’t coming, it is here!

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