As I’ve said before, talking to the “human” in marketing research is simply good for business. It’s within the human that we find the key drivers for motivation and brand connections…feelings of belonging, empathy, power, helplessness, control and — of course — love are human emotions not consumer opinions.
Before we can make big, human connections with people as brands we have to talk with the human part of them when doing qualitative research. Since we live in a world of lists, here’s my list of some things we need to stop and start doing when seeking consumer insights:
1. Stop asking someone’s opinion and Start asking them to tell stories about their life.
2. Stop listening to what people are saying and Start listening to what they’re really talking about.
3. Stop testing respondents with benefit statements and Start understanding their lives first.
4. Stop making research feel like an assignment and Start making it feel… well, not like research.
5. Stop asking respondents to recall something and Start asking or observing or having them report in real time.
6. Stop reacting to what you hear strictly as a marketer or researcher and Start listening first as a human being.
7. Stop thinking about changing people and Start figuring out how a brand fits what is already happening in someone’s life.
Do yourself a favor that is going to make you and your brand more successful… talk to the human when you do qualitative. Somewhere within their story you’ll find your brand story. Enjoy!
Jim Chastain, Founding Partner