Susan Bell talks to Stable Research about online research methods and trends
Stable Research recently caught up with market research professional Susan Bell to ask her a bit about her company, Susan Bell Research and also her experiences using online research methods. Susan’s company, which was established in 1994, services a wide variety of clients of all sizes across the areas of the arts, business, food, financial services as well as Government and heath sectors.
There is no denying that technological change is impacting most industry sectors and the market research industry is no different. Bell believes that ‘as people change we have to change’. She said that the most notable differences related to qual research is people using mobiles and tablets to engage with surveys. A recent example that she highlighted related to moderating an online bulletin based group mostly from her mobile.
In discussing client preferences Bell notes that ‘there was a time when there was a purist idea that you only used one form of research at a time’, but now so much is a blend. For example online and telephone surveying produce quant results, while web conferencing, phone and face to face yield qual. She recently worked with Stable Research on a project that blended online qual and online quant.
While the benefits of online can be recognised Bell also believes that some projects require both online and face to face because body language and human interaction also play a crucial role.
Rather than noticing any particular trend in online research to date Bell notes that that one of the challenges for the industry relates to the proliferation of online surveys and the industry’s need to make sure that clients see the value of engaging professional services. She also notes that at this stage there is plethora of online qual platforms and the industry is yet to fully analyse differences or similarities between them.