WHAT ARE THEY REALLY THINKING?
Trained moderators often incorporate projective techniques into their qualitative research to uncover hidden thoughts of their participants. These techniques originate in the field of psychology, along the lines of Rorschach ink blot and Thematic Apperception tests. Qualitative researchers adapted these approaches for use in the market research field.
Projectives are questions or exercises designed to uncover people’s deeper feelings on a topic. They are purposely set up to ask key questions in an indirect way. They are not meant to replace top of mind responses to direct questions, but can provide insight not gleaned from traditional questioning. Projective techniques are used to obtain deep understanding of emotional needs, barriers and motivators.
Typically when a set of products, concepts or even advertisements are shown to research participants they are assigned labels. This is done to help remove bias and make it easier to discuss the various stimuli. Picking labels to identify your product is not always as “easy as ABC.” Choosing labels for stimulus testing can be tricky.
Wondering why you should use focus groups? Focus groups are a traditional form of qualitative market research that still has a lot of value today. This methodology digs into the ‘why’ behind behaviors such as exercising or purchasing certain items. We also can learn about attitudes, motivations, and gather insight into the target demographic.