Overview on Qualitative Data Collection Techniques in International Marketing Research


This informative article is supposed become a quick analysis and note of some valuable yet usually bypassed processes to gather information on worldwide markets and customers.

When considering general market trends, surveys are usually the initial technique which comes to ones mind. But surveys are a quantitative analysis and, to be able to realize consumer behavior as well as the social and social framework where our company will operate, we are going to should do some qualitative analysis as well.

Qualitative techniques are most definitely a far more proper alternative whenever looking for researching habits and attitudes in consumer behavior, understand the level associated with environment round the consumer, and understand the social characteristics then influence an individual – especially when the marketer just isn’t acquainted the nation of culture.

There are particular situations in which qualitative analysis alone can offer the marketer with ideas had a need to make decisions and take activities; during other instances quantitative analysis might-be needed as well.

We are going to visit the key qualitative methods and determine just how and in which they may be used in worldwide marketing.
Craig and Douglas (2000), mention three significant forms of qualitative information collection methods:

– observational and quasi-observational methods;

– projective methods and level interviews;

– imaginative team sessions (synectics).

1. Observational and quasi-observational methods

Observational methods include direct observation of phenomena (in our instance, customers’ behavior) inside their normal options. Observational analysis might-be in some way less reliable than quantitative analysis yet it really is much more legitimate and versatile since the marketer is able to change his approach whenever needed.

Disadvantages get because of the minimal behavioral variables as well as the proven fact that such information may not be generalizable – we could observe an individual’s behavior at a given moment and situation but we can not assume all further clients will act the exact same.

Quasi-observational methods are reported to possess increased in usage over the past years, due to the large scale use of surveillance digital cameras within stores. Such methods cost less than pure observational ones since expenses associated with movie surveillance and taping are less than a researcher’s wage; the tape can be seen and analyzed at another time, at marketer’s convenience. When carrying out videotaping of customers’ actions, they may be asked to provide commentary and ideas upon their particular ideas and activities even though the conversation itself are recorded and start to become further examined.

Pure observation: the marketer watches behavior of clients in real-life situation, either in situ or by videotaping the customers (less intrusive). Videotaping are especially suggested whenever studying habits various countries, since we could quickly compare actions taped and highlight similarities and / or variations.

Trace actions: comprise in obtaining and tracking traces of customers’ behavior. Such traces are fingerprints or rip of plans, empty plans, garbage cans evaluation and any other means a marketer can imagine (it’s all about imagination right here!). In eMarketing, trace actions come underneath the kind of recorded visits and hits – there are numerous professional programs which will help an emarketer review the behavior of site visitors on his organization’s site.

Archival actions: are just about any historical documents, public records, archives, libraries, choices of individual documents etc. Such information can prove to be of great use in analyzing behavioral trends and changes in time. Marketers may recognize social values and attitudes of a population at a given moment by studying advertising content and advertisement associated with timeframe asked.

Entrapment actions: those are indirect methods (in comparison towards previously mentioned ones) and comprise in asking the respondent to respond to a specific stimulation or situation, when the real topic of investigation is totally various. The marketer plants the real stimulation among numerous phony ones and scientific studies reactions. The strategy is very unobtrusive as well as the marketer can gather valuable, non-reactive details. When the respondent becomes aware of the genuine topic under investigation (s)he might change the behavior and compromise the study.

Protocols: are just one more observational advertising analysis technique which asks participants to believe aloud and verbally show all their ideas during the decision-making procedure. Protocols are of great value for identifying the aspects worth focusing on for a sale as well as are collected in either real shopping trips or simulated ones.

2. Projective methods

Such methods are based on the respondent’s overall performance of certain jobs written by the marketer. The reason will be have the customers (participants) present their particular involuntary opinions through projective stimuli; expressing organizations towards different signs, pictures, signs.

Cooper (1996) proposed that projective methods are effectively used to:
– indicate psychological and rational reactions;

– give verbal and non-verbal communication;

– offer permission expressing novel a few ideas;

– encourage dream, idiosyncrasy and creativity;

– lower social constraints and censorship;

– encourage team people to share and “open up”.

Projective general market trends methods takes these kinds, introduced below.

Collages – accustomed realize lifestyles and brand perceptions, participants are asked to put together a collage using pictures and signs from selected sets of stimuli or from mags and periodicals of the choice.

Image completion – certain photographs are designed to show and visualize the problem under research and participants must make organizations and / or feature words towards given photographs.

Analogies and metaphors are employed whenever a more substantial range of projection is required, with increased complexity and level of a few ideas and ideas on a given brand, item, solution, organization. The participants are asked to freely show their particular connection and analogies towards the object being studied; or they may be asked to pick from a collection of stimuli (e.g. pictures) the ones that fit the examined topic.

Psycho-drawing is an approach that enables research individuals expressing a wide range of perceptions by making drawings of what they view the brand is (or item, solution).

Personalization consists in asking the participants to take care of the brand or item like it really is an individual and begin making organizations or finding pictures of the individual. This system is particularly suggested to be able to determine what type of personality customers assign to a brand name / item / solution.

3. In-depth interviews

These methods of advertising analysis place an accent on verbal communication and are efficient especially when attempting to discover underlying attitudes and motivations towards an item or a specific marketplace / consumption situation.

Specific in-depth interviews are done on a person-to-person environment as well as the interviewer can buy really certain and accurate responses. Such interviews are normal in B2B practices of general market trends, like whenever a business conducts a study about an item among all of their existing corporate clients.

Interviews are conducted by phone or via internet-based media, from a centralized area: this can reduce expenses associated with general market trends as well as the answers are basically as precise once the face to face ones. The sole disadvantage would be the not enough non-verbal, aesthetic communication.

Focus teams are essentially conversations conducted by a specialist with a small grouping of participants that regarded as being representative for marketplace.

Such conferences are held in a friendly environment and are also moderated because of the researcher. Videotaping the sessions is typical these days, and it may include more types of evaluation at another time.

Focus teams are perhaps the perfect technique, if available in terms of costs and time, to evaluate new a few ideas and concepts towards companies and products; to study clients’ a reaction to imaginative media like adverts and packaging design or to detect trends in customers’ feature and perception. One of the important features of focus teams may be the existence of a few participants in identical time, providing a specific synergy. Disadvantages refer mainly towards costs included as well as the scarcity of good specialists to carry out the interviews and conversations.

To close out, we must keep in mind precisely how important non-survey information collection methods are in today’s general market trends. Not only they supply more level of evaluation nonetheless they can be executed in significantly less time than surveys and they are more suitable become used during the exploratory levels of worldwide advertising analysis.


Origin by Otilia Otlacan

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Preston Martelly

Preston Martelly

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