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The quality of qualitative research

As we enter another busy phase of qualitative research here at Research by Design, it’s really encouraging to see how much emphasis our clients are putting in the strength of insight delivered by qualitative research.

Quantitative and qualitative research are a powerful combination, each able to bring different levels of insights from different types of audiences. 

FlexMR point out that, “rather than asking, 'What have consumers been doing?' we should instead ask, 'What drives consumers to these actions?' If we can understand the core psychological and behavioural traits that form the basis of actions, then we will be able to reliably predict what innovations will become integral to consumers.” Full article

We couldn’t agree more. If this has piqued your interest, then here are some of the reasons why qualitative research can be so insightful.

Qualitative blog imageMany of the membership organisations we work with recognise the importance of undertaking qualitative research before designing a full membership survey. The insights gleaned from taking the time to speak to members face-to-face first is invaluable for shaping the design of any subsequent research.

It doesn’t have to end there though – we are constantly adapting to project needs and are flexible to exploring any interesting themes that present themselves. This can be at any point during the project life cycle. If something unexpected is uncovered in an online survey, then qualitative research can again come into its own, enabling us to reach out to members for a post survey discussion (either on a one to one basis or a full focus groups), and this can really help our clients get to the heart of what’s important to their members. 

It’s important to remember that there is no ‘right or wrong’ way to use qualitative research as part of a wider study design, the important thing to be clear on is why you want to do it and what the data will help inform. Research by Design can then work with you to design the best approach to answer your objectives. 

By Lindsey Nadin, Senior Research Manager

This entry was posted in Membership, Qualitative, Market research, tagged Focus Group, Respondents and posted on February 4, 2016


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