Veteran Qualitative Researchers Announce Shift Away From Focus Group Facility Work
August 22, 2017, Atlanta, Georgia / Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Jonathan Schneider and Liz Moore, partners at The Candor Company, a boutique qualitative research firm, announced plans to phase out focus group facility work at their practice. Instead, The Candor Company will focus on meeting research participants where they live, work, and play via the use of methodologies such as ethnography, in-home dinner parties, and mobile diaries.
“We built our careers by doing focus groups in facilities. However, today’s client wants a more candid look at its customers than can be had by viewing them through a one-way mirror,” says Schneider.
“Over the last few years, we’ve realized our most insightful work occurs when we meet people where they live, work, and play. People don’t want to be “researched” anymore – they want to engage in conversations that make a difference. We can do that much more easily when not in a formal and sterile focus group environment.”
“Getting outside of the facility allows us to see the entire person, not just the one who shows up for the focus group. In real life, buying decisions are not nearly as straightforward as they seem during a focus group,” says Schneider. “In a person’s own environment, we can see behavior and the context of that behavior.”
Technology also plays a critical role in the new business focus. Whether it is allowing clients to participate remotely or using a variety of online tools such as mobile diaries and chats, technology can drastically reduce the barriers of time and space.
“We know that some clients will still want to conduct traditional style focus groups and that is fine. However, our goal is to show them that everything we can do in a facility, we can do better outside of it,” says Schneider.
About The Candor Company
The Candor Company is a boutique marketing research firm with offices in Atlanta, Georgia and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. The firm focuses on qualitative research that occurs outside of traditional focus group facilities. Core methods include ethnography, in-home interviews, shop alongs, online focus groups, and mobile diaries. In addition, the company routinely develops new methods of engaging participants including dinner parties and even screenings of user created films about various topics. Clients include a variety of major corporations such as AutoNation, Jack-in-the-Box, Boston Scientific, and Royal Caribbean.
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