What made an impact at Impact?

By Jack Curry, Research Executive

What feels like a lifetime ago, team Tapestry attended Impact 2020. Onstage there were a large variety of different topics, from the environment, to writing successfully, even to the difficulties of predicting the future. Below are five of our highlights:

  1. The perils of prediction

Ipsos Mori’s CEO Ben Page discussed how most predictions are wrong, and only once you realise this can you begin to become more comfortable when something does happen. Only weather forecasters and political pollsters able to predict with any accuracy, and even that comes with caveats.

So what can you do? We can measure, and we can track, and from those we are able to identify trends that may continue into the future. Whether its great shifts in public opinion, or small changes in behaviour, if you know what to measure you may just be see things before they happen.

  • Keep it short.

To write well you need to be specific, simple, short, good looking and not annoying… (hopefully that sentence was a good example) (although maybe that addition wasn’t).

A good example of this type of writing is when Volkswagen were specific and clear about which vehicles were affected by the emissions scandal. This specificity in turn began to rebuild trust after a damaging event.

You can see bad examples everywhere you go. One of them is Virgin trains with the out of place (and annoying) talking toilets.

Ernest Hemingway was ahead of his time: brief is best!

  • Step outside your comfort zone

On the topic of writing, Bernadine Evaristo—winner of the 2019 Booker Prize for her novel Girl, Woman, Other—discussed the importance of writing stories that defy the stereotypes, and the importance of going outside your comfort zone to tell stories that haven’t been told before.

The Market Research industry should take note, by covering areas largely left untouched by other authors, Evaristo has not only critical, but commercial success.

  • Lead the way on climate change

Paddy Loughman, Strategy Director for Extinction Rebellion made the case for the market research industry being at the forefront of changing behaviours in the response to climate change. We are in a unique position as an industry to listen to the expectations and opinions of consumers and help guide clients to make decisions which will ultimately benefit themselves and the planet.

  • Think outside the box

Finally, streaming is only going to become a bigger part of people’s lives in the next few months. It is vital to know what consumers are looking for. Thinkbox discussed the “need states” for those who use streaming services.

Needs will inevitably change over the next few months as the make-up of people’s lives change. Where once people wanted to escape after a long commute and a hard day of work, will they now be looking for a quick program to watch at lunch, catching up with highlights from the 1966 World Cup, or streaming from National Theatre Live?