Market research 'vital for industry growth'
Manama, October 6, 2010
Market research can play a vital role in regional financial markets if players are prepared to look at the benefits of this highly-important management and marketing tool.
That is the view of Insight Discovery chief executive officer Nigel Sillitoe, who chaired the morning session of the Fund Forum Middle East 2010 at the Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel, Residence and Spa yesterday.
A seasoned Middle East banker, Sillitoe, moved into market research after leaving Bahrain to work in Dubai because he saw the potential for the industry in driving the financial sector forward across the region.
'Companies in the GCC tend to be a bit wary of market research because historically they tend to keep things private but they are now waking up to the fact that this is an important management tool that can teach them a lot about their two most important assets which are their clients and their employees.
'Market research can create knowledge and understanding of these key assets and there is a clear connection between employee satisfaction and the satisfaction of customers,' he told our sister newspaper Gulf Daily News (GDN).
'Market research can provide guidance to management on both strategy and reputation, has potential public relations benefits both internally and externally and is regarded as management best practice in most developed countries,' he said.
Sillitoe said there is a lack of reliable data available within the Middle East and market research can provide this in a way that is money well spent.
'Globally expenditure on market research in about $30 billion and the development of interactive Internet research backed by focus group research has made this exercise even more efficient,' he said.
'The market is dominated by US and UK research companies and here in the Middle East and Africa market share is less than two per cent. So there is plenty of upside for an industry that can help drive financial businesses,' Sillitoe said.-TradeArabia News Service