Colin Wong is GreenBook’s Asia Pacific region Editor and Regional Representative. In this role, Colin builds on his 15 years of insights experience in panel management, SaaS product development, customer experience management, digital qualitative research, and growth strategies development. As the APAC regional editor and representative, Colin will manage and curate APAC specific market research content for the Expert Channel, Disruptive Insights. In doing this, he will introduce the APAC Greenbook community to GreenBook’s award-winning marketing services. These are expressly designed to help the growth of APAC insights companies. In addition, Colin will produce the IIEX APAC conference, and other new approaches and content regional insights conferences, and so build on his previous experience running other similar conferences during the last decade.
What is the most valuable lesson you have learned from market research?
The basic fundamental of research is the same and it is unlikely to change regardless of how advanced the technology is getting. The human element will always play a role in ensuring the analysis is correct and it stacks up to the data collected. I think predictive analysis will play a part in marketing and growth until a new proven methodology is discovered. Often we ensure the right questions are asked from the beginning however it would be great to know what the ROI would be at a certain time or money invested.
What do you think the key characteristics or qualities of a leader are? How does this play into MRX?
I think high emotional IQ and clear communication skills are two basic qualities leaders must have. On top, trustworthiness, honesty, and openness are also important. Great leaders are always direct and straight to the point when they communicate to their peers and teams especially on goals and strategies. Leaders must be able to encourage collaboration and create inspiration and confidence to enable creativity and innovations. Having said that, favouritism often sees disharmony in the team environment. I had seen a few examples and how damaging this can be in destroying the dynamics of teamwork and the trust of the wider team members.
What challenges do you see facing newer MRX professionals as technology advances?
With technology keep advancing itself I see qualitative research will most likely undergo changes. We had already seen new trends in the last five years with many digital qual methodologies are emerging. I think this will greatly affect the current ways of collecting data whether passive and declared. The focus is how do we process the unforeseen amount of digital data? New researchers will need to learn more and work out the best ways to get insights from these data and apply the new info to help their clients to move their business forward.
Where do you see the future of insights heading in the next 10 years?
There are a few areas we are destined to see changes. Automation on every level will play a big role in data collection to save time and cost. This would enable researchers to concentrate on the key part of their roles, analysis, and recommendations. Researchers should embrace a human-centric design-thinking approach to allow brands to integrate a culture and infrastructure where customer insights are an integral part of a business. Why can’t we put the customers in the driver’s seat to co-create and champion solutions for the brands? I hope to see the integration of UX, CX, and data science. Often these areas operate outside of our industry, and I think if we could somehow pull it all under one roof then I am certain with multiple methods everyone will benefit regardless of which side of the business you’re from.
Outside of insights, what are your passions and interests?
Besides spending time with my family, I love going crabbing, scuba diving, playing tennis, and radio control models. Pre-COVID I used to travel to at least 1-2 new countries each year to learn about its cultures and foods. I am deeply involved with community and church works and often volunteer at various Christian or local community events. I love to share the message of the Gospel and speak up on salvation from Jesus Christ.
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