How One CPG Team Conducted In-home Ethnographies Without Leaving Their Offices
The client, a multinational CPG company, was interested in conducting in-home ethnographies that their whole team could observe, while avoiding spending the time or resources necessary for their large team to travel and observe in person. Additionally, they were concerned about the disruptive effect of introducing strangers in participants’ homes. By streaming the sessions through Discuss.io’s online live video platform, the team was able to retain the benefit of observing and interacting with the participants in
real-time, as if they had been there, at a significantly lower cost and without the disruptive impact of strangers in interview space.
A multinational CPG company was looking to understand mothers’ relationships with their babies as they encouraged development of autonomy. They wanted to conduct in-home ethnographies with mothers and their babies in the UK, and many people from their team were hoping to sit in on the sessions. However, allowing a large group of observers into the participants’ homes was not an option. Not only would having many observers come to the house most likely disturb the babies, it could also be an intrusion for the mothers, likely to provoke unnatural behaviour. Having a group of observers crowded around could also prevent an open and honest dialogue around a topic as sensitive as the role that emotions play in mothers’ decisions surrounding their child’s development. Through traditional methods, they would have had to send a moderator to record the sessions in-person, and then those recordings would have been sent to the brand team retroactively, thus preventing them from observing the session in real-time. With Discuss.io, they were able to find a happy medium in which they could still observe the sessions as they were happening live without being disruptive or incurring the costs of an in-home immersion.
By live streaming the in-home ethnographies through Discuss.io’s consumer engagement platform, the team was able to be unintrusive while still observing the sessions in real-time over live video. Over the course of thirty in-home ethnographies (of which eight were attended by observers), the moderator began each session by first interviewing the mother. Following their conversation, the moderator would then turn the webcam toward the baby for the observers to be able to watch how the mother interacted in the baby’s natural play styles. Streaming the sessions from the home of the participants allowed the team to observe the babies playing, uninterrupted, in their natural environments. Furthermore, by streaming the sessions online, the whole team was able to observe, from their desktops, regardless of their geographic location, incurring no added travel costs or time.
By attending the sessions online, the team was able to silently observe without disturbing the babies or their mothers. Despite not being physically present during the sessions, the observers were still able to give their input and submit questions for the moderator to ask through Discuss.io’s Backroom chat feature in real-time, which the moderator then incorporated into their conversations as they happened. As such, the team received the benefits of observing and interacting with the sessions in real-time without hindering their success or integrity, resulting in a more intimate understanding of the role of mothers’ emotions on babies’ growing independence. By streaming the sessions online, the team was able to significantly reduce the time and resources that they spent on this project. They were able to have a large group of people attend the sessions without anyone from the team having to travel or even leave their office. Instead, they simply opened a link on their computers and observed the sessions asthey were happening live.
The team received the benefits of observing and interacting with the sessions in real-time without hindering their success or integrity, resulting in a more intimate understanding of the role of mothers’ emotions on babies’ growing independence.
Discuss.io enables brands to make better business decisions by engaging directly with consumers through real-time conversations. Using live video, brands are able to connect face-to-face, online, in order to achieve a rapid and deep-seated understanding of consumer perspectives and behaviors. This “agile empathy” encourages brands to make better real-time decisions, leading to reduced time to-market, successful products, and more effective marketing. The Discuss.io proprietary platform erases geographic barriers, expanding brands’ global reach and equipping them with a cultural and contextual understanding of the consumer populations that they target. Today, Discuss.io is powering consumer connection and empathy programs at many of the world’s leading brands. The company is headquartered in Seattle, WA, USA. Please visit www.discuss.io for more details.
Zach Simmons is the Founder and president of Discuss.io. Zach has 20 years of experience building software. Prior to founding Discuss.io, he was the Technical Product Manager for Amazon Web Services (S3) where he ran the team that built the infrastructure that now powers a significant percentage of the modern Internet. Zach holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.
An entrepreneurial leader, Zach is passionate about building disruptive and agile SaaS based market research startups as an alternative to traditional market research. Seeing a need for change within the Industry, Zach launched Discuss.io, bringing Market Research to the digital age.