Services AvailableQualCore.com offers a wide range of qualitative research services. A list of these services follows, along with a brief description of each service. Most of these services can be executed by either traditional or Internet-based methodologies. For more details, contact us.
Customer Needs Identification
Products and services that truly meet the needs of customers are bound to be more successful. Therefore, understanding what the market wants and needs is critical. Qualitative research is often employed as an early step in the product development process to uncover these needs.
Also called ethnography. Derived from anthropological research. Often used to identify needs or new product/service opportunities. Customers are observed (either unobtrusively or through participant observation) in their natural environment - wherever the product/service is typically used. Frequently, unmet needs emerge that would not surface in an interview or focus group conducted away from the natural environment.
Once unmet needs have been identified, the marketer would like to understand all options available to meet the need. The trick is to identify all of those options. Through creative problem solving (also called brainstorming or idea generation), more options are brought to light.
A marketer may identify many attractive new product/service ideas, but (s)he typically has limited resources and cannot pursue all of them. Qualitative research is often used to reduce a large set of ideas to a smaller set and therefore help the organization focus its efforts on the most viable ideas.
Eventually, the new product or service will move from an idea on paper to more concrete form. Research is important to provide a directional assessment regarding the extent to which the product or service truly meets consumer needs and expectations, uncover any unexpected benefits, and identify flaws in the design of the product or service.
Sometimes an issue emerges which marketers feel should be dealt with by "experts" within the company. Each expert, however, has his/her own point of view. Delphi groups can be used to help experts in an organization reach consensus on a marketing issue. These groups feature what may be called a "secret ballot" system of information sharing and decision-making where votes (and reasons for each vote) are made anonymously until an acceptable level of agreement is reached.
In a dynamic marketplace, marketers need to be constantly attuned to where they "fit" in their customers' minds (as well as in their competitions' customers' minds). Qualitative research may be used to identify emerging issues in the marketplace.
Marketers often rely on customer feedback to monitor their performance in the marketplace. In setting up a new monitoring system, qualitative research is frequently used to be sure that the variables on which the market is monitored include all of those that are relevant to the consumer.
Package and Copy Testing
Prior to rollout of a new package design or new ad, several options are typically considered. Qualitative research can be used to test packages and ads for understandability, appeal, credibility, etc. In this way, the risks of introducing a "faulty" package or an ad that fails to communicate the intended message are minimized.
Pre-Testing Quantitative Surveys
Important decisions are often made from quantitative surveys. Thus, it's critical that the survey instrument captures what is intended to be captured. A relatively modest investment in qualitative research can help identify trouble spots in the instrument, allowing revisions to be made prior to study execution and thereby increasing the reliability and validity of the survey tool.
Post-Survey Issues Clarification
As complete as a quantitative survey is intended to be, issues frequently arise in the analysis phase. Qualitative research conducted after the quantitative analysis can provide insights on important issues, providing a more complete analysis for the marketer and marketing researcher.
Post-Segmentation Focus Groups
At the end of a segmentation study, the marketplace is divided into distinct segments, usually based on a combination of attitudinal, demographic, and behavioral characteristics. The resulting profiles of each segment are invaluable, but the marketer's team can benefit from meeting representatives of each segment. Qualitative research can be used to bring these segments to life for the marketer, punctuating the learnings from the quantitative study.
Supervision and Analysis of International Qualitative Research
Businesses that market their products multi-nationally understand that what works in one country may not work in others. For this reason, international marketers frequently conduct research internationally. QualCore.com has experience working with moderators globally, assuring consistency around the globe and a unified analysis plan across all markets.
Background of the Principle