I recently had the absolute JOY of participating in my first in-depth interview (IDI) with one of my favorite skincare brands. While I have conducted countless IDIs, this was my first time being the participant instead of the moderator.
So I was left wondering, why don't all brands value my opinion? Truth be told, brands care about everyone's opinions and old rules like excluding market researchers need to be broken. Us market researchers are in fact, real people.
Learn more about why brands should no longer disqualify market researchers from participating in studies!
It's time to be more inclusive with market research!
Why are market researchers excluded from studies?
It is common practice to exclude market research professionals from market research. Reasoning typically includes believing our knowledge of market research will skew results. For example, since we work in the market research industry, we may have skewed views of brands, the market research process, and more.
However, as a market researcher I would argue this rarely comes to fruition and should be discussed on a case by case basis. For example, if a study is looking for feedback from customers who purchase a specific brand of face wash, should it exclude me from giving feedback just because I work in the market research industry?
Market researchers buy products and services similar to general consumers which makes their feedback to brands just as valuable as a customer who works in a different industry.
What are the pros of allowing market researchers to participate in studies?
A key pro of allowing market researchers to participate in studies is their knowledge of the process. Our understanding of the market research process can be viewed positively rather than a hindrance.
Market researchers participate in surveys, focus groups, and IDIs similarly to everyone else. Researchers may even answer questions more thoughtfully than others since they understand the market research process and how data will be used.
One of the fears when conducting an IDI or focus group is having a participant that is not talkative, or talks too much and does not fully answer the question. Knowing market researchers share this fear, they will likely take extra time to fully explain their reasoning, thoughts, opinions, and attitudes to ensure the moderator gathers what they are looking for.
Who should be excluded from market research studies?
Instead of banning everyone who works in or has a family member in their household that works in market research, consider other types of people who may view the market research results.
For example, if a skincare brand want to conduct market research with general consumers it may want to exclude those who work in the skincare industry or those who have participated in skincare research within the past 6 months. These are audiences who may have knowledge unlike the majority of consumers which could skew market research results.
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