2 Qualitative Research...Is any research conducted using an observational technique or unstructured questioning.Often viewed as a “Soft-approach.” Conducted:when structured research is not possible,when true response may not be available [embarrassing “touchy questions”]to explain quantitative research results.Should not be viewed as conclusive research.Qualitative and quantitative research are complementary to each other.
5 Qualitative research = Observation technique Classification of ObservationDirect vs indirect:Direct>> observing behavior as it occursIndirect >> observing the effects of behaviorDisguised vs nondisguisedNondisguised>>DirectDisguised >> IndirectStructured vs unstructuredStructured>>predetermine what to observeUnstructured>>monitor all behaviorHuman vs MechanicalHuman>>observation done by human beingsMechanical>>observation by machine
6 Observation I Appropriate Conditions The event must occur in a short time interval,avoid lag affectMust occur in a setting where the researcher can observe the behaviorPraying, cooking are not suitable things to observeNecessary under situations of faulty recallFaulty recall>>remembering things such as how many times one looked at his wristwatch.
7 Observation: Advantages and Limitations Greater data accuracy than direct questioning, in natural settings people behave naturally,Problems of refusal, not at home, false response, non-cooperation etc. are absent,No recall error,In some situations, only wayNumber of customers visiting a storeStudying children’s behaviorLimitationsTime consuming, -- too many things to observe,may not be representative,difficulty in determining root cause of the behavior.
8 Focus Group IAn interview conducted by a trained moderator in a non-structured and natural manner with a small group of respondents.Group sizeGroup composition Homogenous, respondents prescreenedPhysical setting Relaxed, informal settingTime duration hoursRecording Use of audio and video cassettesModerator Observational, interpersonal, good communication skills needed.
9 Focus Groups II Objectives: Generate new product or service ideas Understand consumer vocabularyUseful for ad campaignsReveal consumer needs, motives, perceptions and attitudes,Generating future research objectivesFacilitate understanding of the quantitative studies
10 Focus Group ProcedureDetermine the objectives of the Marketing Research Project and define the problemSpecify the objective of qualitative researchState the objectives/questions to be answered by the focus groupWrite a screening questionnaireDevelop a moderator’s outlineConduct the focus group interviewReview tapes and analyze dataSummarize the findings and plan follow-up research
11 The Focus Group Moderator The person who conducts the focus group session.Success of focus groups depend on him/her,He/she must strive for generating a stimulating natural discussion without losing sight of the focus,Must take initiative, but should not dominate the discussion unduly,Should have feeling of urgency,Should participate in the research from the beginning,Must add value beyond just conducting the session.
13 Focus Group: Advantages and Disadvantages Major Advantages:Synergism, Snowballing, Stimulation, Security, Spontaneity, Speed and Cost savings.Major Disadvantages:Lack of representativeness, Misuse, Misjudge, Moderation problem, and Difficulty of analysisA very promising technique.
17 Other Qualitative Techniques Depth Interview: An unstructured interview that seeks opinions of respondents on a one-to-one basis. Useful for sensitive issues, politics etc.Protocol Analysis: Involves placing a person in a decision making situation and asking him/her to state everything he/she considers in making a decision. Useful in 1. Purchasing involving a long time frame (car, house) and 2. Where the decision process is too short (greeting card).Projective technique: Involve situations in which participants are placed in simulated activities hoping that they will divulge information about themselves that are unlikely to be revealed under direct questing.
18 Projective Techniques These are indirect interviewing methods which enable sampled respondents to project their views, beliefs and feelings onto a third-party or into some task situation.The researcher sets up a situation for the respondents asking them to express their own views, or to complete/ interpret some ambiguous stimulus presented to them.Various types. More common ones are:Free Word AssociationSentence CompletionUnfinished scenario/story completionCartoon completion test
19 However, analyzing and interpreting test results are rather difficult. FREE WORD ASSOCIATIONIn this technique, a list of carefully selected stimulus words or phrases related to the topic of research are read out, one at a time, to a respondent. The respondent is asked to respond with the first word or phrase that comes to his/her mind. The list of words should contain a mixture of test words and neutral words.In the example shown here, the researchers seems to be interested in studying high-tech banking (words with *).However, analyzing and interpreting test results are rather difficult.
20 SENTENCE COMPLETIONThis technique is an extension of the free-word association test. In this technique, the respondent is presented with some sentences containing incomplete stimuli and is asked to complete them. Like the free-word association method, interpreting and analysing data obtained from this technique is also difficult.
21 UNFINISHED SCENARIO COMPLETION This technique is similar to the sentence completion test. However, in this technique, the respondent is presented with a specific scenario containing incomplete stimuli [see example below] and is asked to complete the scenario. Interpreting and analysing data obtained from this technique is also difficult.
22 CARTOON COMPLETION TEST In the cartoon technique, the respondent is shown a comic-strip like cartoon with two characters in a conversation. While the speech of one character is shown in his/her balloon,the other balloon is empty.The respondent is asked to assume the role of the other person and fill the empty baloon with a speech.
23 Suitability in Asia-Pacific Region Theoretically, qualitative research techniques should be suitable in the Asia-Pacific countries. However, in reality conducting qualitative research in Asia does not seem to be easy.In most Asian countries techniques such as focus group research constitutes about 10% of all research works carried out by companies mainly due to cultural reasons.People feel more confident with numbers than with mere opinions.In some Asian societies, people hesitate to express opinion on sensitive issues.Groups in Singapore are less willingly to talk than those in Hong Kong.While expressing views, Hong Kongers are more impatient, while Thais and Filipinos have an in-built “courtesy bias”.