Infographic: 6 Creative Qualitative Research Methods

Insight experts everywhere think they understand the power and capabilities of qualitative research. With the use and need of qualitative insights rising and insight teams fighting to deliver, we are indeed learning a lot about how to run impactful focus groups, diary studies and online qualitative insight communities; but there is an element of creativity that is missing from market research today.

Six Creative Qual Research Methods

With qualitative research only just measuring up to the popularity and impact of quantitative research across industries, logic and efficiency have dominated innovation efforts. We are slowly building up the level of creativity used in research design and insight generation, and understanding the need to think outside of the box to build creativity in it’s purest sense into market research. So here are six creative qualitative research methods to spark your imagination.

Creativity Knows No Bounds

When it comes to unleashing creativity during research design and insight generation, insight teams shouldn’t be afraid to think outside the box. Of course, there will probably be a couple of constraints, feasibility and resources being the main two that determine how creative insight experts can be in this case, but factoring those in will help insight teams create the best, creative research methods that suit the research and business objectives.

This infographic explains six creative ways insight teams can use qualitative tools to increase participant engagement and take their research to new heights. With access to new technologies for some methods and looking at old tools through a new creative light, there are a number of research methods we can use to deliver creative research experiences.

Creativity knows no bounds and opens up many opportunities in the insights industry — whether it’s finding new uses for traditional tools or creating new methods altogether.

Some of the traditional tools we still use on a daily basis include focus groups (the qualitative equivalent to surveys in terms of notoriety) and diary studies. Both very useful tools to gain in-depth qualitative insights through a direct connection to research participants, but have been used so much that they don’t excite participants as much nowadays. However, taking a creative spin on these tools can help draw engagement back to the research project and brand that uses them.

Taking fun aspects of modern viewing experiences such as the virtual ‘Watch Parties’ that became popular during the pandemic, and the recorded ‘day in the life’ video experiences that have been intriguing audiences through social media, we can creatively revamp these research experiences to increase participant engagement and gather deep, real insights that stakeholders can use instantly.

New technologies are bringing a new research experience to the market. With the commercialised augmented and virtual reality technology, insight teams are able to let customers and consumers play about with new products and services before they spend the money to build it, and through this we can see exactly how this new product will fit in the customers’ daily lives, how they use it and what else they might want from it, all of which can go into the development process to produce a product that customers actually need.

With technology and creativity expanding the role of qualitative research in all projects, qualitative methods are even appearing into quantitative research staples such as surveys. Our SurveyMR tool has the ability to collect video responses from participants in an answer to questions, bringing qualitative and quantitative research together to generate supercharged data and insights.

Creativity is the way forward for qualitative research. Using creativity in research design can drive more participant engagement and generate truly actionable insights.

Inserting creativity into this technology isn’t hard, with stakeholders able to ask participants for anything, from simple recorded answers from their laptop to more detailed ‘point of view’ recordings where customers can take stakeholders around a shop with them or through their daily lives to get a sense of how their customers interact with them in the wild.

With everything discussed here in this infographic and on the wider web, it isn’t hard to see that creativity in the purest sense is the way forward for qualitative and market research — the more creative the research experience is, the more engaged participants will likely be during the research project, and the more stakeholders stand to gain in terms of truly actionable insights and customer connections.

This blog was originally published on the FlexMR Insights Blog and can be accessed here.

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FlexMR is The Insights Empowerment Company. We help brands to act decisively, stay close to customers and embed agile insight at the heart of every decision.