Ipsos Update - October 2016

Welcome to the October 2016 edition of Ipsos Update, our monthly selection of research and thinking from Ipsos teams around the world.

We start with our new What Worries the World study – a monthly monitor tracking public concerns across 25 countries. The prevailing mood in most countries is that things are “on the wrong track”. Unemployment is the number one concern around the world, with corruption and inequality occupying second and third positions. At the other end of the spectrum are threats against the environment and climate change – languishing in 14th and 15th place.

How best to communicate with the world’s 7.5 billion consumers? In the era of big data, there is so much that can now be done to “micro-target” different groups. On the other hand, maybe we should we just target everyone. What is the right balance for a particular brand or product? Frustrating as it may be, the answer is: it depends.

The more we can build a detailed understanding of the needs and motivations of different groups, the better placed we will be to make the right decisions. Two studies provide new insights here. Our She Speaks survey provides a comprehensive briefing on women as consumers across the Middle East and North Africa. Meanwhile, our latest China Pulse report gives a detailed overview of mothers in China, covering a range of topics from housing to mobile commerce.

What to do when you potentially have a breakthrough innovation on your hands? Lee Markowitz reminds us that the research and marketing underpinning the launch is different from a traditional product. He takes us on a tour of the whole process, from engaging with the consumer through to forecasting potential success.

Whatever the sector, and whoever is being targeted, the perennial question is: just what needs to be in place in order to make a brand successful? Our new Ipsos Views White Paper sets out the building blocks, starting with the need for your brand to be salient to the consumer – so it comes readily to mind at the moments that matter. 

Major events like the Olympics or World Cup are moments which matter to many of us, and we take a look at marketing partnerships. It’s a big business, with brands spending nearly $60 billion on sponsorship each year. How can their potential be maximised? We take a look at how brand association can be amplified in such a way that it delivers real business results.

Meanwhile, we have a new language to get to grips with. Step forward the emoticon: some six billion of them are now sent every day. The rise of this “visual language” brings with it amazing possibilities. But they need to be used in the right way and via the right platform. We look at the evidence so far – including the balancing act involved in remaining consistent and authentic across platforms.

Much of what we cover here assumes that the necessary infrastructure for “a good life” is in place: access to the internet, good housing, clean water supply, defence from flooding. Our new global infrastructure survey looks at public perceptions across 26 countries: people in Brazil, Hungary and Argentina are the least satisfied with their national infrastructure.

Which brings us back to What Worries the World. On the eve of the US election, we find 64% of Americans saying their country is going in the wrong direction. In France, which votes next year, it’s as high as 88%. Our new briefing on the political scene in these two countries explores the dynamics of voter anxieties and looks ahead to what to expect in the aftermath of polling day.