Emma Macdonald, Research Director, Cranfield Customer Management Forum, UK

Who is more fickle than consumers? Fads come and go. Tastes change. As a result, marketers spend billions to keep their fingers on the pulse of consumer sentiment. Research. Analysis. Insights. And the holy grail of consumer insight is real-time analysis. How can I learn – at exactly the right moment – what the customer wants so I can offer exactly the right product? Dr. Emma Macdonald is a Senior Lecturer in Marketing at Cranfield School of Management – one of the oldest, most prestigious business schools in the UK. She is also Research Director of the Cranfield Customer Management Forum, that brings together pioneering thinkers from academia and industry to share best practice. She has devised new ways to understand customer thought and behavior, as close to the point of purchase as possible. If successful, it could change not just the way we buy, but the way we’re sold to. (Originally broadcast 10-27-12 on The John Batchelor Show)