Marketing research is a global industry with billions of dollars investments, ESOMAR Global Market Research for 2020 has declared a major report for the industry, here you will find some of those announcements.


1- The Middle East shows a combined growth rate of +1.8%, which remains all but flat after factoring in inflation, at +0.01%. One of the main drivers behind this stability is the GCC, a group of countries that encompasses Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates, and that displays negative inflation (from Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates), that way mathematically raising turnover.

On the other side sits the handful of countries that push the estimated growth towards the negative. Such is the case of Egypt, which shows a satisfactory growth rate of +8.0%, even though it turns to -5.2% after adjusting for the increase

Middle East - Market research turnover
2015 - 2019
Middle East – Market research turnover
2015 – 2019 (US$ millions)

2- The global insights for the marketing research industry on Covid-19  may be heading for a very substantial shock; a one-year decline of up to -25.3%, shedding in the process almost US$ 20 billion in turnover – very much in line with ESOMAR’s predictions of -22%.

If it weren’t for the crisis unleashed by the pandemic, the world could have seen a positive growth of up to +3.9%, translated into a gain in turnover of almost US$ 3 billion. The ripple effect will not be equally felt through the world’s regions, though.

Africa expects the lightest decline in its regional industry, a mere -5.4% which countries expect to regain, for the most part, in the early months of 2021. This headwind would offset what could have been a +5.0% growth for 2020.

3- The estimated global share of reporting activities is estimated at around 21%. The remaining 79% is then divided between 64% quantitative research, 13% qualitative research, and 3% for other uncategorized methods.

The observation presented in the 2019 Global Market Research report remains. Namely, that qualitative research continues to gain a relative share concerning its quantitative counterpart. This is seen by the fact that while the share of turnover dedicated to quantitative research remains at a level of 78% (adjusted), qualitative research creeps one percentage point and comes to represent 15% of global research. Next year, however, comparisons will be made assuming the more representative levels of 64% of global turnover dedicated to quantitative research, 13% to qualitative, 3% to other uncategorized, and 21% to reporting.

quantitative / qualitative research
quantitative / qualitative research

Reference: ESOMAR Global Market Research 2020

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