Mining Virtual Worlds for Market Research

Sulake, creator of teen social-networking site Habbo, is drawing on its members across the globe to spot real-world trends

Imagine asking 42,000 tech-savvy tweens and teenagers around the globe about their buying and spending habits, as well as their brand preferences. How long would it take to conduct such market research? If you wanted to zero in on kids who regularly played online games or engaged in networked communities in Web-based virtual worlds, how would your market-research team target them and then verify their activity in these online parallel universes?

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