3 ways blockchain will revolutionize market research

3 ways blockchain will revolutionize market research

By Sofiane Boukhalfa

The use of blockchain technology outside cryptocurrency is expected to rise by over 60% according to a report published by Reuters. Potential applications range from identity management to online shopping. The marketing industry can also benefit tremendously from this technology, potentially changing the way market research is done. Soon, marketers may be able to better capitalize on their leads, thanks to the significantly higher quality information that this emerging technology provides.

1. Improved data authenticity

First thing’s first: why does this matter? Well, according to a recent survey conducted by Forbes, 58% of companies actively generate value from data. In addition, almost 60% of all the respondents said that analytics and data are crucial to their day-to-day operations. Of course, the whole thing only works if the data is authentic and accurate in the first place. Otherwise, no real value could be generated.

So, let’s say a banker gets a new potential customer looking to earn rewards for traveling, and is able to sign them up for one of the bank’s travel rewards credit cards. Traditionally, the bank would conduct some due diligence and market research to find out whether the applicant is qualified or not. The downside to this approach is that there’s no real way to know with 100% certainty that the data that was collected and used for this analysis is authentic.  As such, the bank may end up issuing a card to someone who’s unqualified. Since blockchain is designed for maximum data authenticity, using a blockchain-based data-authentication tool would decrease the risk for banks.

With blockchain, all the pieces of data that go in are not only accurate, but also virtually 100% tamper-resistant. And, if anyone is somehow able to alter anything, not only will the entire chain be affected, but all the relevant parties on the network will be alerted as well. Considering how the technology works, however, even finding the specific data to modify would be practically impossible to do unless you are authorized.

2. Better access to related data

In the same way search engines use structured data to better make sense of websites, market researchers would also be able to give more meaning to specific pieces of data if they came with more related data as well. Using the same credit card application example, let’s say the bank pulls up one of the applicants’ transaction records. Obviously, this won’t be enough to determine whether or not they’re qualified. Other relevant information like the number and types of properties they own and overall spending habits will be necessary to make an informed decision about the applicant. Blockchain technology can enable this data linking together so that individuals and organizations no longer have to reach out to several different sources to compile and analyze the data; steps which all take more time and money from the bank.

3. Ability to bypass ad platforms by using smart contracts

A smart contract is simply a blockchain-powered collection of rules that automatically get enforced once specific conditions are met. It is typically used for financial transactions like insurance claims processing and online commerce. Interestingly, it also has a huge potential to revolutionize the way the world does marketing because it allows marketers, for instance, to buy data directly from customers, instead of accessing this data through an ad platform (like Google’s or Facebook’s), and automatically compensate them based on the quality and amount that they provide. This not only gives consumers power over what they share with marketers—which promotes trust—but also provides them with an actual incentive to do so. Needless to say, this ultimately ensures that marketers only get quality leads for every penny they spend. Additionally, by giving power over their data access to the consumers themselves, personal privacy is respected.

The blockchain tech may be promising, but it’s still too young:

If blockchain is so good, then why hasn’t it taken over the business world yet? Well, the technology is still in its infancy. As of the moment, for instance, it can only process a maximum of eight transactions a second while existing systems can process up to ~80,000. Moreover, blockchain adoption requires many users actively using it in order to be effective. Setting up the relevant frameworks to enable such a novel technology will take time, but the rewards, to both businesses and consumers, will be immense.


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