These studies allow us to obtain detailed information about the behavior, as well as opinion, perception or relation to one issue or another of very small group of individuals. This method of research is needed to develop the new products, advertising campaigns, examining the company's image or brand etc.
The main methods of qualitative research:
• Focus - groups;
• In-depth interviews;
• In-home visits;
Focus Group - a small group of people (8-9 people) gathered to discuss a particular topic / problem. During 1.5 - 2 hours a trained moderator leads a discussion in which participants can communicate freely with each other, express their feelings and emotions.
A focus group is usually held in a specially equipped room with a one-way mirror (for which the customer's representatives may observe the focus group, without revealing their presence). Everything that happens is recorded on audio and videotape. After the discussion, audio-and videotapes are being analyzed and to compile the report.
Problems solved by conducting qualitative research:
• Generation of new ideas (development of new products or services, packaging, advertisement, etc.);
• Learning the spoken vocabulary of consumers and the peculiarities of their perceptions (for drawing up the questionnaires, the text of ads);
• Evaluation of new products, advertisement, packaging, company image, etc.;
• Obtain preliminary information on a topic of interest (before the definition of specific goals of marketing research);
• Clarification of the data obtained during the quantitative research;
• Introduction to consumer needs and motives of their behavior.
Our Agency provides the following types of focus-groups:
• Standard focus groups (8-9 people)
• small focus groups (4-6 people)
• dyad / triad (2-3 people).
In-depth interview - an informal personal interview, conducted on a pre-scheduled plan and based on the use of techniques to encourage the respondent to the lengthy and detailed discussions of the issues of researcher’s interest. In-depth interview carries out by qualified specialists, a psychologist, whose main task is to understand the true attitude of the respondent to the question under discussion.
In-depth interviews last from 30 minutes to 1.5 hours, depending on the tasks of marketing research and characteristics of the respondent. The audio record takes place at an in-depth interview. Upon completion of the project, client receives the audiocassettes with recorded interview.
There are several specific circumstances in which the in-depth interview method is more adequate than a focus group:
• In the case when the subject is difficult to discuss and requires specific knowledge (interviews with experts / professionals);
• When it is necessary to conduct interviews with the competitors (they will not talk about the subject during group discussions);
• When the topic considers deeply personal, intimate experience of the respondents, which is impossible to discuss widely (for example, a survey of people with various diseases related to the choice of health institution);
• When respondents are few and geographically remote from each other (for example, in the case of surveys of public officials in different regions);
• When respondents are responsible officials, very rich and just very busy people. The topic of conversation, as a rule, is rational and related to professional activities of the respondent or his firm.
In-home visits - a home visit or interview by the place of residence. This method allows you to record the behavior of people directly in their places of residence. It is preferable if the subject of survey relates to such problems, which is more convenient to talk in an informal atmosphere, free from the influence of office or educational relationships. Fixation of the received information carries out by technical means.
The advantages of this technique:
• Direct communication of researcher with the objects of study;
• No intermediate links;
• Quick access to information.
This method encompasses many areas, such as:
• Testing of products;
• Testing of positioning concepts;
• Attitude to the goods;
• Study of the reaction to advertisement.
Observation – is the primary method of collecting marketing information about the object under study by monitoring selected groups of people and their actions in certain situations. Forms and methods of fixation in this case can be very different: the form of observation or diary, photo, television or video equipment and other technical facilities.
The advantages of this technique include:
• Relative cheapness;
• Avoidance of misrepresentation.
Methods of conducting an observation:
• Direct - involves direct observation of consumer behavior;
• Indirect – it helps to study the results of certain behaviors, not the behavior itself;
• Open –it can be warned that consumer is being observed;
• Covert – consumers monitoring carries out secretly from them;
• Structured – definition by an observer, what he would observe and register. All other kinds of behaviors are ignored:
• Unstructured – fixation of all kinds of behavior in the studied episode by an observer.
Areas of qualitative research conduct:
Research Agency ‘DAMU Research Group’ can carry all of these types of qualitative (marketing and sociological) research in all cities and settlements of the Republic of Kazakhstan (Almaty, Astana, Atyrau, Karaganda, Shymkent, etc.). In addition, ‘DAMU’ has the ability to conduct qualitative research in the territory of neighboring countries in Central Asia - Uzbekistan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Tajikistan.