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In a competitive and global business environment, pharmaceutical companies are starting to become wiser when it comes to using market research to explore, test and refine their market strategies. AI creates opportunities for companies to gain real-time insights that can quickly be translated into smarter marketing opportunities. Combined with big data, pharma market researchers can quickly gain insights into patient behaviour, practitioner prescribing habits and treatment effectiveness.
With the rise in technology and patients demanding more details and information, it is imperative for pharmaceutical companies and researchers to be mobile-friendly. Some companies are therefore, using mobile research to gather detailed information at the point of prescription, for example, through the use of on-screen questionnaires and then making the findings available in real-time.
Having access to more data and being able to provide real-time analysis through AI allows market researchers to identify more patterns. But they will also need to be more cautious about the why behind the data and that requires more than simply the ability to analyse the data.
The use of AI in market research removes the human bias element inevitable with person-to-person interviews. At the same time, AI tends to enhance the role of market researcher – not replace it – by providing insights which otherwise would not have been possible and allowing the researchers to focus on understanding patient emotions, attitudes and values. Experienced professionals understand that decision making is based on human cognitive biases and emotions and AI, at this point, is not equipped to understand that human behaviour. Also, in such complex areas such as life sciences, market researchers need in-depth knowledge of the industry to interpret the data.
In future, the human element in market research will still remain front and centre, but pharmaceutical companies must adapt to the new paradigm of machine learning, AI and big data when it comes to gathering and analysing market data. More broadly, most experts believe that the future for market research lies in bringing together AI, big data and technology preferences such as mobile with primary market research and the expertise of knowledgeable pharmaceutical market researchers.
Chief Light Bulb, Lymbyc
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