The Research Hype Cycle

Gartner recently released its Emerging Technology Hype Cycle for 2014.  The cycle phases themselves are as interesting as the technologies depicted.

  • Hype Cycle

Gartner’s research shows that there is an “Innovation Trigger” followed by the following four stages

  1. Peaks of Inflated Expectations
  2. Trough of Disillusionment
  3. Slope of Enlightenment
  4. Plateau of Productivity

Read More…

New Technology brings Emotion Research Online

Emotional understanding has always been the “holy grail” for qualitative research.  Focus groups, IDIs, ethnography and other methods have long been favored techniques to understand the emotional underpinnings of consumer decision-making.  Qualitative experts consider body language as a significant, and often more reliable, indicator of true feelings than the words people use.  Just how significant is hard to pin down.  In his paper “Silent Messages,” Albert Mehrabian contends that 55% of communication is through “facial liking.”  Whether this percentage is correct is debatable.  However, most agree that non-verbal interpretation plays a significant role in understanding emotional reactions to stimuli. Read More…

Facebook, Inc. Ethical Dilemma

What happens when a research study has 689,003 participants?

Recently Facebook and Cornell University partnered to study the spread of emotions in social media.  They conducted typical A/B testing with one control group and another group where the news feeds were altered and to see how positive and negative emotions were altered based on Facebook’s changes in the news feed.  They found that users who saw more positive posts tended to post more positive messages; those who saw more negative posts tended to post more negative messages. Read More…

ESOMAR Global Pricing Study Out

ESOMAR recently released its Global Pricing Study.  Its mostly remarkable for the pricing stability that the global industry has seen over the past few years.  Even so, there were some nuggets to highlight.

  1. The US remains the most expensive market overall by a significant margin.  On the overall quant/qual mix the US is 20-30% more expensive than the major economies in western Europe.
  2. Developing countries are the least expensive, generally 15-50% of prices in the US and Europe.
  3. On the qualitative side, pricing appears to be pretty stable except that prices in developing countries are rising quickly.  The price for 4 focus groups in “Key Markets” consisting of the US, UK, France, Germany and Japan have risen less than the rate of inflation since 2010.  However, the rest of the world has experienced a 20% price increase.
  4. Online qualitative is now mainstream.  It is significant that ESOMAR included online qualitative in the Global Pricing Study for the first time in 2014.
  5. Online qualitative was less expensive than the “equivalent” face-to-face focus groups.  In those countries that reported pricing for both online and face-to-face, online averaged 82% of the cost of face-to-face.

Thanks to ESOMAR for conducting this study.  If you want to see the details or if you are interested in the quantitative research results in this study, go to the ESOMAR Publications Store for more data.

 

Qualitative Facial Expression Recognition Technology: How to use it

20|20 is very proud to be selected as the preferred partner for Affectiva’s new technology for qualitative research, Affdex Discovery.  Why is this important to qualitative researchers?  Put simply, it provides the first vivid, easy to use behavioral analysis tool that can be used in qualitative research in real time.  The technology actually informs the interviewer in during an interview allowing the interviewer to probe thoughts and emotions behind the reactions. Read More…

Simple Stimulating Statements: AQR/QRCA Conference in Tweets

Sometimes, the best reading is simple reading that makes you think.

Last week, I attended the AQR/QRCA World Qualitative Conference in Budapest, Hungary (a fabulous city by the way).  The Twitter feed (#aqr/qrca)was very active.  Here is a collection of tweets.  Maybe one or more will stimulate a thought that will change your day.

Relish Research ‏@relishresearch  May 2

Interesting to use the word respondent. We only say participant now to see them more as an involved part of the process. #aqrqrca

Jim Bryson ‏@JimBrysonTN  May 2

Peter Totman “you owe it to your client to focus on the respondents” not the back room #aqrqrca #mrx Read More…

Introducing Mobile GeoStories, On-Location Interviewing

Last week, researchers came a little closer to the holy grail of qualitative research:  standing with consumers as they make the purchase decision.

20|20 and Doyle Research announced GeoStories, a new service utilizing geo-location technology to identify consumers at the point of purchase and interview them.  The research service combines a mobile geo-location panel with 20|20’s proprietary screening technology and mobile interviewing software into a single seamless research service.  GeoStories is an integrated, three-step process:

  1. Through geo-location, 20|20 identifies consumers at specific places, such as a store.
  2. Respondents opt-in and complete a short screener.
  3. Qualified respondents are immediately contacted by a researcher for an on-the-spot qualitative interview.

The entire process requires just a few minutes so multiple interviews can be conducted in a single day.  The total time f Read More…

The Qualitative Explosion

The following excerpts are from an article that appeared in RW Connect on March 12.

Welcome to the most exciting and challenging era in the history of qualitative research!

Qualitative research has experienced more change in the past 10 years than in the previous 50.  And there is no sign that the pace of change will let up any time soon.  For qualitative research professionals, the ride is exciting, but it is fraught with challenges and pitfalls.

Anecdotal evidence indicates that online qualitative research may have hit a tipping point in 2013.  The tenor and tone of our conversations with clients has changed.  At 20|20, we have passed from creating awareness of online qualitative to expanding the knowledge and applications for researchers already aware of — and interested in — the methods.  Only 2-3 years ago, much of our user training centered on the introduction of digital qualitative methods to researchers with little awareness that these methods even existed.  Today, virtually all researchers are aware of the basic digital methods and many are eager to learn how to use and apply the methods’ various strengths and weaknesses.  It appears that online qualitative research as a research category became mainstream in 2013. Read More…

The Looming Smartphone Research Crisis: Meeting the Challenge

Mobile.  Mobile.  Mobile.  Everyone wants mobile research.  Mobile access can put research in context like never before.  It’s the ultimate in meeting the consumer where they are rather than bringing the customer to where we are.

For years, researchers have begged for more mobile.   We researchers see the promise and we love the idea of just-in-time feedback.  There is a beautiful synergy between researchers and respondents since both groups want to utilize mobile devices more.  Even so, mobile research is growing but it has never boomed.  Why not? Read More…

“7 Deadly Sins” Key to Brand Building

I had the opportunity to go to the ESOMAR Qualitative Conference in Valencia Spain this week.  They put on a good conference.  Kudos to ESOMAR and the Conference Committee for an excellent conference.  I also discovered a wonderful city in Valencia.  If you ever get a chance to visit, do it.

One of my favorite presentations was, “The Power of the Dark Side” by Shobha Prosad.  Congratulations to Shobha as she was awarded “Best Paper” for the conference.  

Essentially her premise was that the seven deadly sins are the key to brand building.  Since branding is essentially emotional and personal, these emotional characteristics are central to the brand.  Indeed, a central theme running throughout the conference was the need to capture emotional as well as rational content when conducting qualitative research.

The seven sins can be divided into two categories:

  1. Psychological:  Pride, Greed and Envy
  2. Physical:  Lust, Gluttony, Anger and Sloth

She believes that these are the 7 “sins” that drive brand building.  However, she also stated, “For every behavior there is an equal and opposite expiratory behavior.”  Therefore, she identifies opposite motivators or needs.   She distinguishes the two types by the descriptors “Devil” and “Angel.”

Devil
Angel
Pride
Humility
Envy
Compassion
Greed
Generosity
Lust
Chastity
Gluttony
Abstinence
Anger
Peace
Sloth
Alacrity/Diligence

 

 

 

 

 

Shobha states that successful brands stand strongly in one or more spaces.  In fact, in each of her examples, brands occupied at least two spaces a “Devil” space and an “Angel” space.  This is consistent with the notion that brands often have a core driver that is most often self-serving to consumers (Devil motivator) and a secondary driver (Angel motivator) that is often used to rationalize purchase.

Though there was nothing ground-breaking in her overview of the “7 Deadly Sins” and their corresponding “Angel” motivators, the clarity of the concepts and admonition to keep these in mind during our brand research was a strong and needed reminder.

In summary, the presentation encouraged me in several ways:

  1. Remember to consider emotional and behavioral feedback at least as strongly as rational results in qualitative research.
  2. When confronted with an altruistic or “Angel” motivator behind a brand or action, look a little deeper for one of the more self-serving “Devil” motivations that might be the actual driver while the “Angel” is the outward rationalization.
  3. How are the various brands that I am responsible for represented here?  Time for a little self-analysis.
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