Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Rational and Emotional: Methods for understanding consumers

Using Qualititative and Quantitative Methods to Understand Consumers

A Panel discussion featuring JP Gownder of Forrester; Meredith Lind of Momentum Market Intelligence; and Robin Beers of Wells Fargo.

Research Methods:
  • Important to match the type of research to the organization's culture [numbers versus stories].
  • Qualitative [focus groups; interviews] Quantitative [surveys]; and Ethnographic [observation in context].
  • [Market researchers need help in information design...especially in ppt :) ]
  • Ethnography: all about the context of the participant's life [akin to usability testing in situ]
  • Methodologies work best when mixed [focus groups alone are a dangerous way to proceed unless you are looking for confirmation of your biases]
Recommended sequence of study:
  • Ethnography-->Focus Groups--> Survey 
  • [it does beg the question of online ethnography: studying the conversation online may be it's own outcome. Likewise, participating in the conversation as a marketer may not require formal research to generate ideas, especially if the participants are generating the ideas]
  • Broadening the scope of research to include contexts that span household and work.
"Ethnography privledges the native's point of view" [...applied to marketing this would be privledging the customer's point of view...from software it's user-centered design.]

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