OPINION6 August 2018

Martech can be a friend to researchers

Data analytics Media Opinion Technology

Martech tools helps marketers to collect data, but they need researchers to help them understand the insights from that data. Robert Jones outlines how researchers can build martech into their approach.

Marketing technology UX_crop

Earlier this year I had the privilege to speak at B2B Expo in London, where I talked about using martech for insight to improve digital experiences and the different tools I’ve used for collecting customer insight, conducting user research, conducting persona research and improve website user experience (UX). 

I’m both a B2B marketer and B2C market researcher – I have seen how marketers view research and vice versa. Marketers are overwhelmed by the insight tools out there, while researchers may be reluctant to use martech for data collection. Martech can be used to reduce costs, reach consumers faster and – above all – researchers are not out of jobs as they are still needed to interpret those insights.

My view is simple: marketers are embracing martech and they need help from researchers to get insights out of martech tools – so researchers need to own their place with martech.

Here, I outline some of the tools I recommend for collecting insight, how to use them and suggest some tips on creating a strategy for using martech to collect insights. 


Hotjar can help with collecting feedback, understanding customer journeys and recruiting users for usability tests and other research types.

It is an intercept tool, which opens a small pop-up asking users to rate the website and any other questions researchers want to ask. Net Promoter Score is a typical question asked on Hotjar use across the web, open end questions can be used, all data is stored in the Hotjar platform and can be exported for further analysis. Hotjar can be used to screen users for research projects and can be used to collect feedback on pages users are on. It can be used to collect feedback their experience so far.

Feedback from Hotjar allows marketers and researchers to understand how satisfied (or not) customers are, improvements to website, services and products that are needed, and users can be booked on to further research, a massive benefit to Hotjar and a similar offering to Ethnio,  an intercept tool that allows screening of users and management of research participants.


Intercom is a messaging application which also appears as a website intercept. Marketers tend to use it to target new website visitor, users who have returned to the site, or who have visited specific pages. Intercom can also be used to ask questions (open ended answers only) or have a live conversation with researchers. If a site has a lot of traffic, researchers can sit for a day or two and have a conversation with users, asking questions related to the study aims.

It’s a novel approach, perhaps, but great for understanding user satisfaction, user experience and can be adapted for use in other research types. It’s also pretty low cost, low effort and can offer huge advantages to researchers. I’m excited to see how researchers use this tool in future, as there are many opportunities, but very few are taking advantage of them at the moment.

Martech can increase conversions if used properly

Marketers are focused on conversions, and we may not realise it, but researchers are too. Researchers inform marketing, who make changes to increase sales, revenues and conversions. We are all aiming for the same end goal, we’re all working towards the same thing. Insight and data collected from martech can help to increase conversions by helping marketing teams make the changes to products, services, checkout pages etc, and insight professionals can assist marketers in making the right decisions as well as interpreting the feedback to make such changes.

Create a strategy

Doing anything without a strategy is not wise, but especially when you’re planning to collect customer feedback. Once the responses are collected, it’s too late to re-work and re-word questions, so planning the best and most relevant questions in advance as well as what types of customer feedback is needed (this influences which page the intercepts are placed on) is essential.

Martech connects marketing and insight

Remember martech tools and researchers can be friends –  there are so many insight tools and martech tools out there that can be used to collect insight. This allows researchers and marketers to work together to help get the most out of the insight, feedback and data collected.

Robert Jones is senior operations executive at Blue Yonder Research