A mobile decentralized and democratized ResTech space

“I do not believe you can do today’s job with yesterday’s methods and expect to be in business tomorrow.”


— Horatio Nelson Jackson —


In this famous quote by Horatio, an American physician and automobile pioneer, the first to drive an automobile across the United States, we can summarise what needed to be done, over the last decade, in the Market Research space. Technology has been a core part of our lives for quite a long time, however, in the Market Research space it has always been a constant battle to educate key stakeholders to incorporate and use new technologies and approaches to gather consumer insights.

Digital evolution and transformation were in the making in the industry for years at a very slow pace, but it accelerated rapidly, especially over the COVID era. In a volatile market, with constant changes, the need to gather consumer insights fast was never more important. Things we know today can be old news by tomorrow and decisions need to be made fast. New technologies and practices that appeared in the space enabled this option and the industry is moving faster towards new agile solutions.


Fromm AdTech to ResTech

Advertising technology, also known as AdTech, was a major shift in the Advertising space to incorporate technologies and tools to automate, optimize and streamline the way digital advertising is bought, managed and measured. Agencies have adopted this new shift over the years, to survive and evolve. A similar approach has been happening over the last decade, in the Market Research landscape.

Automation and new technologies have already started replacing old-fashioned methods of gathering consumer insights, aiming to provide attractive and cost-efficient solutions to clients.

“The way that research is conducted today, how surveys are programmed and how the audience is found has dramatically changed.“

A footprint of the current Market Research landscape can be found in the great initiative of Lucid’s team of what is called the new ResTech space. The usage of DIY tools and platforms has seen significant growth and that eased the creation of surveys in-house for researchers and non-researchers. In the meantime, the introduction of marketplaces and programmatic exchangers democratized the way insights are collected on a global scale and expanded the consumers’ reach dramatically.

The incorporation of new technologies and products in Market Research and the shift to in-house solutions, just replicated what happened in the Advertising space a few years ago.

“New tech-savvy managers started using within their departments new technologies and platforms, finding more efficient ways to gather insights on-time and make the right data-driven decisions

Since digital spending and consumer insights started being done in-house, the lines between AdTech and ResTech came closer than ever. Consumer insights today can be correlated directly to digital spend and strategic decisions of agencies and this started to reveal an overlap in clientele, leaning towards the merge of those two worlds.

Tracking consumer behavior real-time (the future)

In the past, a consumer behavior report used to stay accurate for more than a year, and surveys could afford to take longer in the field to get that data.

“Today, consumer behaviour can shift with a news alert!”

To stay relevant in this fast-paced changing world, things needed to be done differently. Easy-to-use in-house tools along with a wide reach over scalable audiences proved to be the only way for businesses to move forward and stay relevant. The need for adapting and incorporating new technologies brought in, several tech platforms in the industry.

Newly introduced tools that could be used by anyone, allowed easy programming and distribution of surveys. Market Research and consumer insights were not a privilege of a closed group anymore. Through this evolution, new solutions providing automation and agility started getting incorporated as internal tools within companies not only in consumer insights departments but also in product and marketing ones, eliminating costly and time-consuming use of external service providers.

To empower this evolution, on the supply side, survey inventory started getting exposed in a programmatic way to sample providers, similar to AdTech, finding the best respondent real-time. While panels were the only way to go in the past, new approaches revealed different and scalable ways to reach consumers in any part of the world.

The evolution of supply – From Ad Monetization to MR Monetization

With users spending most of their time on mobile devices every day, the industry started shifting to accommodate this. Evolving the traditional web panels, companies started creating dedicated mobile apps to provide access to samples even on mobile devices to fulfill the needs of their clientele. This approach enabled access to consumers on mobile but companies remained locked into a single approach of gathering data, getting trapped to what’s called the panel fatigue focusing only on traditional panelists and introducing some sort of bias in the process.

Programmatic access to survey sampling (still through panels though) has been introduced in the space over the years, providing more options to researchers. That evolution led to what we call today the marketplaces and survey exchangers. Finding supply samples in a decentralized way was only the beginning. Connecting different panels through marketplaces democratized the reach to sample, however, it remained constrained to panels with what that brings with it.

Accessing users on mobile for advertising purposes has been achieved in the AdTech space for years with the use of programmatic and mediation stacks allowing display opportunities in mobile apps and games to participate in auctions for the right ad. This AdTech approach is what the MR survey sampling is evolving to, today!

Market Research has been introduced as a new monetization approach for mobile apps and games, bridging the lines of AdTech and ResTech, on the supply side too.

“Consumers participate in Rewarded Surveys within mobile apps in exchange for virtual rewards or other incentives relevant to the context of the app”

You can find today’s users responding to surveys in mobile apps and games for different reasons such as for removing ads, earning coins, saving a life and others.



Expansion of survey sampling to mobile apps and games helped remove the panel fatigue, move away from professional panelists and reach consumers on the go in a non-controlled environment through organic sampling. This new methodology called RDE (Random Device Engagement) introduced a scalable and cost-efficient way to gather insights, removing any regional barriers and showing what the future of Market Research should look like soon.


Over the last few years, more and more research has been conducted with new methodologies, providing fast data-driven decisions in this constantly changing world that we live in. New technologies and platforms empowered companies to perform research in-house and make decisions based on real-time data. The ResTech industry and the AdTech industry already started overlapping, not only on the demand but also on the supply side. This is only the beginning of the digital revolution in the Market Research space.

In-house Market Research performed by professionals or not, leveraging technology platforms while consumers are reached on the go on their smartphones through mobile apps, is the future happening today!