Qualitative marketing research methods are used to reveal the deep motivating factors that stimulate customers to follow a certain behavioral patter or use certain goods and services.
Qualitative research permits analyzing the studies phenomenon in-detail. However, they do not present the results as exact figures, shares and percentage correlation.
The method of focus groups represents a simultaneous in-depth interviewing of a group of respondents belonging to the target audience. This interviewing is being held in the form of an open discussion carried out by experienced moderators.
While organizing focus groups Magenta Consulting studies the knowledge and experience of the participants who represent a target segment, including their subjective opinion regarding certain studied problems.
This qualitative research method permits obtaining detailed information concerning the behavior and motivation of the studies consumers. We also use this technics for:
- Strategic planning – testing of ideas and decisions before implementing them;
- Revealing of the needs and expectations of a certain target group of customers;
- Survey planning – to test a questionnaire developed for a quantitative survey;
- Obtaining fast and effective feedback from managers, experts and other people whose opinion matters;
- Confirming results and interpretation of data collected during quantitative studies;
- Testing the concepts of new product, package, design, slogans or advertising campaign before their launch to the market;
- Studying the company (or product/ service) positioning;
- Evaluating of advertising campaign effectiveness.
An important condition is to do several focus groups with representatives of several target segments in order to understand the difference in perception of the studied problem among different audience.
It often happens that the specifics of a research does not to permit a deep understanding of a studied problem by applying quantitative research methods. In this case, the best solution is to do in-depth interviews, which represent a non-structured or semi-structured discussion with a respondent.
This interview is held without using a pre-defined questionnaire and the interviewer has to be capable to keep the main studied questions in his mind and has to be able to quickly adjust his questions during the discussion and forwarding it into a desired direction.
This research method is complicated because the interviews must possess highly professional communication skills, vast experience, and must be well aware of the researched subject, which implies a very detail preliminary preparation and study of the researched project.
The univocal advantage of the in-depth interviews, compared to all other research methods, is the possibility to reveal those hidden factors of the research subject that could not be envisaged in advance neither by the contractor nor by the executor of the study.
Magenta Consulting experts often use the in-depth interview method in order to develop buyer profiles.
This type of research is relevant when we need to get a professional opinion and consultancy from the respondents that belong to certain professional areas (medicine, engineering, and other areas) or top managers or owners of companies, in case of business-to-business studies.
Expert interviews can be part of both quantitative (based on the questionnaire with closed questions) or qualitative research methods. However, our experience shows that the questioned experts very often see the studied problem much broader than the research contractor or executor. In this case, it makes sense to use a questionnaire with a big number of open questions, or to completely abandon a questionnaire and to do in-depth interviews. Therefore, we are more inclined to consider expert interviews as qualitative research method.