From the desk of Natanya Rubin
With 2017 nearly over, the team at DRA has been taking stock of the past year in qualitative research. The start of a new year is a perfect time to dream about our hopes, examine our successes, and learn from the things that challenged us. In 2018, we resolve to:
…OBSERVE consumers, as they talk about the products and services that make a difference in their lives. In the new year we’ll watch consumers sample new food products and puzzle their way through drafts of marketing materials. We’ll draw them out–in focus group rooms, in homes, and in stores–and engage with their passions, understand their needs, and encourage them to express their ideas.
…EXPLORE new trends in qualitative research. This year, advances in mobile research have opened doors to us in exciting ways. Hearing what consumers have to say outside of the confines of a formal research set-up can be of tremendous benefit, and our tools for connecting have never been more sophisticated. This year, respondents shared struggles and discoveries with us in real time through streaming mobile interviews, which resulted in learning that ultimately guided product development. We’ve been dreaming of these in-the-moment tools for years, but now we can put those dreams into action!
…CONNECT our tools in new ways. This year has also seen us exploring ways to join the statistical breadth of quantitative data with the rich depth of qualitative interviews, using online tools to marry the two methodologies. It’s a great replacement for the kind of research that used to be accomplished in person with dial-pads and a lot of logistical heavy lifting. Now, thanks to our ability to link various online tools together, we can expand the possibilities of a hybrid approach that provides quantitative input and qualitative insights.
It’s an exciting time to be qualitative researchers, and we can’t wait to see what the new year has in store for us, for our clients, and for market research itself. Wishing you a very Happy New Year, and happy research in 2018!