70th anniversary of ESOMAR

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As every year it has been obligatory to Norstat to attend the biggest congress within the market research world which took place in Amsterdam this time. And we would like to share our impressions with you.

1st Day

It has been a rainy day in Amsterdam, but since we spent all of it in the stunning “Beurs van Berlage” exhibition center (the old stock exchange building) right in the heart of Amsterdam, this is just a side note. However, let us tell you how the day started.

It was a fairly sportive early morning with a very exotic warm up, as 1200+ visitors did a “Haka” as a morning workout. This ritual Maori dance from New Zeeland (also often performed by the national rugby team) was supposed to strengthen the focus and enable hidden power in each an everyone of us, as well as in the market research industry as a whole!

Of course we attended some remarkable (and semi-remarkable) presentations/public discussions. On the first day we would like to highlight “The Investors View” moderated by John Kearon including Bjorn Erik Reinseth (Chairman of the Board, Norstat) and a very impressive presentation by Alexandra Chirilov (Joint Head of the Global GfK Preference Modelling Hub): “Virtual Reality Enhanced Interview”. The combination of VR + CAPI as very insightful combination has been a truly inspiring contribution on the future deployment of new technologies combined with classic methods.

After a long day we went to the evening party taking place at the “Heineken Experience” roof top.

2nd Day

Not all presentations the we attended have been top notch, however, Denise Brien, Analytics & Research AOL(US) and Dave Carruthers Voxpopme (GB) did a great job. They talked about storytelling based on open ends from tracking data in combination with video interviews.

A bit later Junichi Ichiba, Coca-Cola Company (JP) along with Yuki Tanaka, INTAKE (JP) gave us in the audience many new and fascinating insights from the beverage market in Japan, using intuitive methods and virtual experience technology to explore and research a consumers “total coffee experience”.

Fun fact, out of 250 different variants of chilled drinks in an average supermarket 2/3 will be out of the market within 90days, this makes marketing and market research a bit of a challenge.

This evening after a fairly long day we joined all delegates for ESOMAR’s 70th Birthday Party and Awards Show. After the awards of the best presentations (1st place: “Virtual Reality Enhanced Interview” by GFK) the crowd fought its way to fries and burgers delivered by food trucks. Afterwards a band + DJ entertained and finally made a good share of the 1100 visitors dance until late evening.

3rd Day

Sessions and presentation started a little later this morning. It wasn’t too many people left on the congress as people from all over the world had to take their return trips soon.

We nevertheless would like to mention the sessions on “The Past, Present and Future of Polling”. Here Kantar stated for instance that in general the forecast validity of polls is not as bad as people like to currently think, at least from a historical point of view. As the governmental elections in Norway took place on September 11th and Norstat Norway was also involved in polling research and the federal elections in Germany are very soon to come, presentations of this session surely attracted a lot of attention not only by us.

It has been really great to meet so many clients, partners and friends during our days in Amsterdam. Next year the congress takes place in Berlin and Norstat will surely be there again!