2016 Report on Life Sciences Market Research Industry

Study Points to Embrace of Big Data Analytics and New Technologies,
Yet Three Significant Barriers to Success Underscore the Challenges of a New Era

BOSTON, MA August 4, 2016—At a time when technology is driving profound change in market research practices across all industries, the life science market research community is embracing a tech-savvy focus and seeking even more technology innovation, according to new survey by InCrowd, a provider of real-time market intelligence to life sciences and healthcare firms.

The 2016 Life Science Market Research—State of the Market Report takes the pulse of over 100 pharmaceutical and life science market research executives on their attitudes toward emerging research approaches, investments, desired innovations, and challenges. The report spotlights where organizations are investing today, and major barriers to success in using market research to help meet heightened competition and cope with time-strapped primary research respondents.

“The sector has always been somewhat slow to adopt new market research technology, until now,” said Janet Kosloff, CEO and co-founder of InCrowd, who has over 20 years of expertise in life science market research. “The report is a critical first sign that this community agrees that new market research approaches can deliver faster, data-driven business decisions, and they’re investing accordingly.”

The report shows that:

  • More respondents characterize their approach to market research as “tech savvy” and “resourceful,” with nearly 50% of life science market research executives surveyed saying they agreed or strongly agreed with this statement. They outnumbered the approximately one-third who agreed or strongly agreed that “traditional” best described their approach. Perhaps reflecting the nascent technology embrace, an equal percent of respondents (31% for each) described their approach as “nimble” as well as “conservative.”
  • Big data analytics topped the list of technologies in which respondents’ organizations had currently invested. Their investments are diversified and testing new innovations seems to be commonplace in the industry including social media analysis, shorter and more focused microsurveys and wearable-based research. On the opposite end, mobile ethnography and facial analysis represented lowest areas of investment.
  • Even with today’s big data analytics investments, respondents wanted more. Big data analytics still lead the lineup of new research approaches in which the respondents wished they could invest, with predictive markets and behavior economic models falling in second and third respectively.
  • Reaching the right respondents was the top barrier to success in respondents’ achieving their market research goals, followed by getting information fast enough, and funding projects.
  • Life science market researchers are highly educated and older. Seventy-one percent of respondents had a graduate degree or above, with almost 40% holding PhDs.
  • Ninety-two percent were older than age 36, and 71% of respondents had 15 or more years of experience in their field.
  • Over 70% of respondents looked to their peers for information on market research challenges they face, with less than 2% seeking insight from Twitter.

Download the Report