Lead up to the QRCA Symposium: Keynoter Sees Growth Opportunities for Qualitative Researchers Who Can Tap Into the “Renaissance Generation”
Lead up to QRCA Symposium: QRCA Symposium keynote speaker Patricia Martin sees growth opportunities for qualitative researchers who can tap into the “Renaissance Generation.” Who are these “cultural consumers” and why should marketers care about them?
Patricia Martin, author of Renaissance Generation: The Rise of the Cultural Consumer and What it Means for Your Business, predicts great opportunities for pioneering qualitative researchers who are able to create new approaches for extracting insights from the powerful new segment she has dubbed “cultural consumers.”
Who are these “cultural consumers” and why should marketers care about them? In a recent interview, Martin told me:
“Years into the knowledge economy, we no longer live our daily lives in a twilight zone of change. Who we are and what we care about are taking clear shape. There is a powerful player at the center of this transformation — the cultural consumer. These are thinking, expressive individuals with an emerging set of imperatives that will set a new agenda for society.
This ‘Renaissance Generation’ (RenGen) is changing the society and the workplace in the following ways:
- They expect to have a voice — brands that have made themselves platforms for consumer self-expression are performing better.
- They are driven to explore rather than consume — doing things is more important than owning things.
- They aim to create good – the top workplace motivator is to feel a sense of personal and collective progress.
Why do cultural consumers have power? Because they are wired, socially networked, and creating original work for which they assiduously build audiences, cultural consumers have influence—especially the Millennials among the cohort. They can seed change or speed adoption. Or they can kill a brand—which is usually death by a thousand Tweets.”
Martin views the 21st century as “a time of fusion,” in contrast to the 20th century as “a time of fission,” with today’s consumers resisting categorization as they fuse interests and belief systems. Old approaches to market segmentation, Martin says, are leading brands down blind allies. Forward thinking marketers are targeting consumers based on “need states” and “emotion cycles” rather than demographics.
“Some of what’s beneath the shifts in consumer behavior is primal. And marketers at the forefront need ways to identify, connect and track these primal needs which can be more elusive, more nuanced. This points up a growth opportunity for qualitative researchers who understand how to surface these insights and interpret the implications.”
Author, speaker and entrepreneur, Martin will deliver the keynote address at the QRCA (Qualitative Research Consultants Association) Symposium on Excellence in Qualitative Research on May 12th in Chicago, where she promises to share examples of cutting edge research and ignite a lively exchange of ideas with attendees. For more information, go to: http://www.qrca.org/displaycommon.cfm?an=1&subarticlenbr=357