Non-US growth out-paced US growth for the first time in four years with US growth numbers slowing to 2.9% (increasing to 255,000 groups) compared with a reported total research spending growth rate of 6%. FocusVision attributes this to moderate shifts to other qual methodologies such as online bulletin boards and ethnographic studies. US growth also experienced flat to declining qual market research spending from the pharma and financial sectors.
Non-US growth activity at 4.1% is in line with a reported 4% overall increase in 2007 research spend. FocusVision also noted high growth numbers reported from facilities in the Latin America and Asia-Pacific regions. Another trend is the movement of face-to-face interviewing migrating from in-home to focus facility venues in developing countries. For the first time, the index included performance feedback from focus facility managers and owners, and the firm said that this has allowed it to gain deeper insight into trends.