In Vietnam, face-to-face is the dominant form of market research. This is surprising given that almost everyone in Vietnam – from those in their teens to those in their forties – owns a smartphone, and this is the case regardless of where they live. Vietnamese consumers spend hours of their time online – on Facebook, YouTube, messaging apps, for online shopping and for online deliveries. What’s more, as in other developing markets across Asia, the network connection in Vietnam is good and Wi-Fi is free at almost every café and restaurant.
This represents real potential for online research in Vietnam – an area that we’ve tapped into here at Kadence. We are one of the pioneers of online market research in Vietnam. We initiated our online market research service with our own panels and platform in 2015 and now, we have the biggest direct panel in Vietnam – with 500,000 consumers.
We conduct over 100 online market research studies annually but not every organization has embraced this approach. In Vietnam, many marketers have tended to favour traditional, face-to-face methods. But why is this? And is the situation changing?
One factor is the cost competitiveness of traditional approaches. Unlike Europe, the US or Japan, the labor cost in Vietnam is very affordable, meaning that online hasn’t offered a substantial enough pricing advantage to drive rapid adoption. Another factor at play in an assumption that online panels can only reach certain audiences. This couldn’t be further from the truth for us at Kadence. By providing dynamic incentives and recruiting respondents using both online and offline methods, we’ve built a panel of over half a million consumers, with wide coverage of age, areas and social incomes.
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But whilst marketers in Vietnam have tended to be quite conservative when it comes to their approach to market research, we are seeing a wind of change. Marketers are realizing the benefits online research has for providing market understanding quickly and efficiently, and that it can be used as a complement to, rather than a replacement of traditional research. COVID-19 has also played a role. Whilst, the impact of the virus in Vietnam has been less disruptive than in other countries, the demand for online market research shot up while offline research was restricted. As a result of this, many marketers have experienced first-hand the benefits online research can bring in terms of speed, cost, quality and flexible real-time analysis of data.
Consumers are ready. The infrastructure is ready. Now with ever more local marketers starting to embrace online methods, the door is well and truly open for online market research in Vietnam.
How to conduct online market research in Asia: The Go-To Guide
Interested in understanding how to approach online research across other Asian countries? Download the guide here