A full range of communication matters, particularly in qualitative research. Accurate observations are likewise critical, oftentimes even more so than the possible correlations, intersections, or parallels that demographic charts reveal. Seemingly removed compared to in-person interviews, webcam-based qualitative research offers the same data opportunity while also boosting the interviewee’s discretion and control. That facet is good for everyone too, and not only for the sake of logistics. Bastions of preference and opinion, the locations that participants casually select are often instrumental reminders of preference and identity.
The Bare Basics: Cost, Outreach, and Speed
While very effective thanks to modern streaming technology, some researchers are leery of replacing in-person interviews with webcam alternatives. Set appropriately, however, and that potential limitation becomes a moot point. Potential benefits to overall quality far outweigh obstacles too. Webcam interviews can happen anywhere with an internet connection, and such agility cuts logistical costs like no other. Research teams can dedicate more time and effort to systematic and progressive testing, integral for finding results that go beyond general analysis. Budgets themselves, meanwhile, can downsize or redirect to less periphery concerns.
Webcam interviews also globalize potential focus groups. Such variability has never before existed, and its generality allows for some of the most cohesive, yet eclectic focus groups available. More research with better stimulus means more results, and therefore superior and far quicker initiatives. Project managers and research teams further benefit from the sheer quality available in internet-based survey panels.
Webcam Interviews Broaden Participant Outlook
Interviews at a target location are not unheard of, but most interviews and groups typically happen from within the participant’s house. Remote interviews are more convenient and comfortable for participants, yes, but if set at home they also serve as perpetual reminders of the participant’s life, brand and product preferences, and reasons for those preferences. Interviews become that much more informed and fluent because of these simple cues, which are typically absent when conducting on-location research. Just as significantly, researchers can observe participants’ interaction with their products and their sentiments. This is quite invaluable compared to the simple selection that facilities sometime require.
More informative and engaging, qualitative webcam interviews make hybrid solutions more feasible. Once quantified, these insights are particularly excellent for analyzing statistical significance, relations, and trends. With the variability and general broadness the internet offers, the conclusions can be far more conducive, targeted, and legitimate. The effort, in sum, is far more effective and affordable than in-person qualitative practices.
How do Researchers Guarantee Smooth Sailing and Top-Tier Data?
First off, make sure to acquaint yourself with the platform through demos or practice runs. A few drills offer moderators a good understanding of how any software works. Never stress learning all the particulars either, if others are helping to operate the platform. Each can focus on essential tasks like recording or cutting audio/video clips, sharing group notes, or interacting with panel or individual participants.
Also test stimuli for loading and stability. Even slight delays can muddy an interview, and are not good since researchers can cover a lot of ground very quickly. Too many interviews scheduled without a break, however, can lead to exhaustion and input overload. Make sure to accommodate breaks and other necessities to keep perception fresh. Further, accommodate time to cover technical difficulties, misunderstandings, or other interruptions that can quickly impede a good interview.
Real-Time Sight, Real-Time Sound, and Far Faster Results
Calendars are central to the budgets of research projects small, large, and ongoing. Tapping into the larger cloud simplifies scheduling, which can take months using traditional methods, while streamlining coordination and processing. Turnaround in little as 48 hours, the fastest in the industry, is just one facet of what makes Discuss.io an exceptional organization in an ever-expanding field. At first, using webcam may lack the familiarity of in-person options that old school qualitative researchers encourage. After minimum adjustment, however, most teams immediately appreciate how webcam methodologies offer greater reach, significantly larger target pools, and data with far more texture. Schedule a demo to see why!
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.