Qualitative market research represents a smaller part of our total activity than our quantitative work, but at Latimer Appleby, we recognise the value of both forms of primary research. Many clients see the synergistic benefit of using qualitative and quantitative methods together.
Qualitative market research, in short, seeks to explore the ‘Whys?’ that typically are manifested in the various behaviours we can measure through quantitative market research approaches.
When to use Qualitative market research?
The types of marketing problems that may require more of a qualitative focus include the following:
- Creative development work, for example, strategy definition, executional guidelines
- NPD research, for example, gap analysis, concept exploration, packaging development
- Market exploration studies, for example, consumer perceptions, segmentation hypotheses/ generating hypotheses, understanding target market needs
- Tactical studies, for example, packaging, general strategic exploration, pre-quantification, image analysis
Within the broader methodology of Qualitative market research, we are able to manage Focus Groups and Depth Interviews. Each has its own strengths and again our role at Latimer Appleby is to determine just which is the best type to use in any given situation.
How do I know what sort of research I need for my business?
Much depends on what you are trying to find out from market research. We work with our clients first to develop a brief and from this, we determine the best way to proceed. That could be qualitative research or quantitative research or a combination of both.
How quickly can you set up a focus group?
Much of the time needed to organise a focus group is in the preparation. The planning out of why you are even holding the discussion group. This is about considering the person specification, that is who you want in the group, creating a screener questionnaire, finding a venue, writing the discussion guide. Once you have that done, which all takes time, the actual recruitment can probably be done over a few days in the week prior to the group itself taking place.
How many focus groups do I need for a typical research project?
There are no firm rules for the number of focus groups required for any given project. It may be that the available budget will only cover a single group. We would normally, however, recommend a pairing approach to focus groups, that means holding at least two groups. Since focus groups involve such a small number of people risks arise from making decisions from a single group. By pairing our groups, we can at least see whether similar opinions or attitudes are arising in both groups. Where we do get opposing views, we may need to undertake further investigation to ascertain the reasons for these differences.
Why would you use a depth interview rather than a focus group?
Depth interviews, like focus groups, are a type of qualitative research. These are largely designed to delve deeper into particular issues or to explore topics in greater depth. Sometimes we see qualitative as being about understanding some of the ‘whys’ that lie behind the behaviours we may measure in quantitative research. Depth interviews usually involve more of a scripted approach, perhaps with a structured questionnaire designed to collect answers to more open-ended questions. Depth interviews may also be more appropriate where we are examining more sensitive topics or where personal information or attitudes may be shared or where responses need to be kept confidential from any other parties
We asked Latimer Appleby to provide us with market research on 3 of our stores. The service and support we received was excellent from start to finish. Many of the findings we have been able to action instantly with positive results. We are looking forward to working with Latimer Appleby at all our stores later in the year.
David Wagg, Director | Parkfield RetailRead our case studies