Although the terms research “panels” and “communities” are often used interchangeably, especially by those new to the market research field, these two tools do differ in important ways and one is often more appropriate than the other depending on specific research objectives.
An exploratory study is typically carried out when there is no clearly-defined problem or hypothesis. When properly conducted, good exploratory research can facilitate the discovery of new ideas and concepts. Often taken as a preliminary step within a wider research process, adopting an exploratory frame of mind can help deepen the findings of any qualitative research. Brands that are looking to conduct research that is exploratory in nature however, should be wary of three common pitfalls.
At one point in our lives, it is likely that we have all been asked to participate in a survey- be it online, face-to-face or over the phone. At one point in our lives, it is even likelier that we have rejected this request to participate in a survey. In light of this tendency for respondents to step away from requests to participate in research, GRIT recently undertook a comprehensive study to better understand the reasons behind this (and what could be done about it).
Brands have recently been experimenting with the distribution of market research surveys within display ads. At first glance, this would appear to be an innovative way for brands to ask questions in an online setting where the consumer is already engaged. However, upon closer look, the distribution of market research surveys within ads poses certain limitations.
Return on Investment (ROI) has long since served as one of the primary metrics to calculate business success. Whilst there is no denying the value of the KPI, recent innovations from the neurosciences to social media have expanded the definition of profitability to encompass more than just sales figures or profit margins. It is in this context that firms looking to create sustainable customer relationships must increasingly consider developments in the field of psychology and focus on the emotional needs of consumers.
In recent years, market research has come to embrace new and innovative forms of data collection techniques, in particular via online or digital platforms. This is reflective of a global trend whereby consumers are spending more and more time online, voluntarily sharing large chunks of information across different social media platforms.
As the end of the year approaches, it is not uncommon for individuals to reflect on the previous year as well as make predictions for the next one. Part of our role as researchers lays in leveraging data to predict future trends. By taking a retrospective look at some of the developments in 2017, the following presents a speculative look at what 2018 has in store for qualitative research.