The advantage of a qualitative research consists in its own capacity of going beyond the rational motivations, criteria and opinions, exploring the personal and emotional factors that underlie all consumers choices and preferences.
Projective Techniques are used reveal unconscious or hidden aspects that determine consumer’s choice:
- Decode automatic actions and taken for granted behaviours
- Communication by focusing on non-verbal ways of thinking
- Unlocking consumer’s creativity and imagination
Main qualitative methods
- In depth interviews – one to one personal interviews adapted to sensitive topics. Also used when recruitment is difficult and when a deeper insight is needed; also used when the target is hard to reach/sensitive/high status.
- Paired interviews – with 2, 3 respondents: mainly used to generate discussion based on a conflict of opinions
- Mini groups – with 4-6 respondents: mainly recommended when respondents are professionals or when dealing with children; sometimes used from similar reasons as in-depth interviews
- Focus group discussions – traditional or reconvened 7 to 10 respondents
Special qualitative methods
- Observation/ethnography – passive or active e.g. accompanied shopping, cooking, washing sessions. There are two types of ethnography:
- social – when observing a community
- marketing – when observing an individual or a family in a consumption process
- Extended creativity groups – lengthy discussions (3-4 hours each) combining various projective techniques