Modern marketing research needs more creative methods than significance testing

New Ideas in MarketingEssential news for marketers, summarised by YouGov
April 23, 2019, 9:37 AM UTC

Significance testing has long been accepted as a standard of quantitative research by marketers.

Significance testing, a method that shows when a result is likely be explained by chance or sampling error, is used by researchers in communication and concept tests and has been in use for about 94 years. But the author states it is obsolete and unsuitable for the digital business culture and practises of today.

Though marketers are concerned about metrics, the core driving force has always been profit. The piece argues that in modern business culture, innovation is necessary for earning profits and that all creative output is associated with risk, which runs in contradiction to significance testing results. 

Global conglomerates like GlaxoSmithKline and Coca-Cola have adapted to the new business environment, which encourages failure to embrace innovation. Similarly, Google Ventures came up with its own in-house testing model instead of using significant testing, and has made a successful business of $2.4 billion.  

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