Strategic Market Research (Chapter 5): Reading the Hidden Communications of Research Respondents

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What determines whether market research makes a difference for an organization? The difference is the approach. Strategic market research is an approach that makes a large impact on the companies that use it. In Strategic Market Research, author Anne Beall shares her unique approach for conducting market research. In addition to talking about qualitative as well as quantitative research, Strategic Market Research provides real-life examples of how these concepts have been applied in businesses and non-profit organizations. Implementing the strategic approach from the beginning to the end of a project provides information that inspires and changes organizations.

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Strategic Market Research (Chapter 5): Reading the Hidden Communications of Research Respondents

  1. 1. Strategic Market Research by Dr. Anne E. Beall Prepared by Matthew A. Gilbert, MBA Chapter 5: Reading the Hidden Communications of Research Respondents
  2. 2. Nonverbal Communication <ul><li>Sometimes what is important in research is not what respondents say, but what they don’t say. </li></ul><ul><li>Body language (nonverbal communication) is a rich source of insight about what people think and feel about the topic you are researching. </li></ul><ul><li>You can choose not to speak but you can never be silent nonverbally. </li></ul><ul><li>You can use the P.E.R.C.E.I.V.E. method of reading nonverbal communication. </li></ul>
  3. 3. P.E.R.C.E.I.V.E. <ul><li>P = Proximity </li></ul><ul><li>E = Expressions </li></ul><ul><li>R = Relative Orientation </li></ul><ul><li>C = Contact (Physical Touching) </li></ul><ul><li>E = Eyes </li></ul><ul><li>I = Individual Gestures </li></ul><ul><li>V = Voice </li></ul><ul><li>E = Existence of Adaptors (Fidgety Behaviors) </li></ul>
  4. 4. P = Proximity <ul><li>Proximity refers to the amount of distance people place between themselves and others. </li></ul><ul><li>People generally sit or stand close to those they like and/or have something in common with (tribalism). </li></ul><ul><li>People generally sit or stand away from those they do not like and/or have something in common with. </li></ul><ul><li>When people are interested in something they tend to lean forward (their proximity increases ). </li></ul><ul><li>When people are disinterested in something they tend to lean away (their proximity decreases ). </li></ul>
  5. 5. E = Expressions <ul><li>Facial expressions that people make regularly. </li></ul><ul><li>Six basic emotional expressions: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Happiness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sadness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Anger </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fear </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Surprise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Disgust </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. E = Expressions <ul><li>In general people do not show exaggerated facial expressions. </li></ul><ul><li>When we feel emotion we express something called a “microexpression.” It lasts 1/5 of a second and is not typically seen by others. </li></ul><ul><li>We are hard wired to express certain emotions, but when we feel something internally which triggers the muscles in our face, we suppress a full expression before it occurs, the result is a microexpression. </li></ul>
  7. 7. E = Expressions <ul><li>Microexpressions are useful in research because they reveal immediate reactions respondents have to products, services, brands, people, and specific parts of a discussion. </li></ul><ul><li>Don’t call attention to them, but make note of them. </li></ul><ul><li>Expert in the field is Paul Ekman: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>http://face.paulekman.com/aboutmett2.aspx </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>http:// face.paulekman.com/about.aspx </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. R = Relative Orientation <ul><li>Relative orientation refers to the degree of orientation that people have towards others. </li></ul><ul><li>The more interested we are in people, the more directly we will orient ourselves towards them. </li></ul><ul><li>When interaction is beginning, people will orient their bodies so they face each other directly. </li></ul><ul><li>When interaction is ending, one or both of the people will turn their bodies away from the other. </li></ul>
  9. 9. R = Relative Orientation
  10. 10. C = Contact <ul><li>Contact refers to the physical contact (touching) between two people. </li></ul><ul><li>Physical touching indicates liking, comfort and familiarity with another person: we tend to touch those we like, most familiar with, and comfortable enough to touch. </li></ul><ul><li>Couples Contact in Research Sessions </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Couples in distress will sit far apart and not touch. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Happy couples sit closely and occasionally touch. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. E = Eyes <ul><li>Our eyes reveal who we like and what captures our attention. </li></ul><ul><li>We look more frequently at the people and things we like and find interesting – and for a long duration. </li></ul><ul><li>Research: People who dislike African Americans looked at them for less time than people who are not prejudiced against them (Dovidio, et al, 1997). </li></ul><ul><li>People look at people they consider leaders for guidance or permission to do or say something. </li></ul>
  12. 12. E = Eyes <ul><li>Cognitive Complexity: When people access a memory or figure out an answer they look away. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>During research if someone answers what should be a complex question very quickly and without looking away, it is possible they might not be telling the truth. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Emotion: People tend to look away when they talk about something that they are ashamed of or is embarrassing to them – or if it is difficult to discuss or is emotionally evocative. </li></ul>
  13. 13. E = Eyes
  14. 14. I = Individual Gestures <ul><li>Two basic types: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Emblems: Gestures that have a direct translation to a word or a phrase (“Ok,” “Be Quiet,” “Shame on You,” He’s Crazy.”) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Illustrators: Gesture which does not have a clear verbal translation and seems somewhat random at first glance, but it can convey a great deal of meaning. They often reveal an image in someone’s mind and his/her perceptions of the world. </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. I = Individual Gestures <ul><li>Things communicated by Illustrators: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How things are grouped (e.g. brands, companies, types of products or services). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How far apart things are (e.g. how closely aligned groups, people. Ideas, brands are in someone’s mind). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Where things are located in a physical space (e.g. how far away something is, where something is located in reference to something else). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The shapes of objects. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How large or small things or ideas are for a person. </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. I = Individual Gestures <ul><li>Things communicated by Illustrators </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How we use something (e.g. an appliance). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>The order of things or the steps that are taken to achieve an outcome. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>To whom we are referring. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ideas or beliefs that are important to us. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Research respondents will gesture when responding and physically demonstrate their true feelings with their gestures. </li></ul>
  17. 17. I = Individual Gestures
  18. 18. I = Individual Gestures
  19. 19. I = Individual Gestures
  20. 20. I = Individual Gestures
  21. 21. I = Individual Gestures
  22. 22. I = Individual Gestures <ul><li>Gestures reveal how people use products. </li></ul><ul><li>Respondents also reveal the people they are thinking about or the beliefts they hold most deeply through gestures (via pointing to someone who they feel represents an example of something). </li></ul><ul><li>Respondents motion or point towards themselves when talking about something that is very important to them or that is a deeply held belief. </li></ul><ul><li>People gesture when saying words or phrases they are emphasizing. </li></ul>
  23. 23. V = Voice <ul><li>Voice reveals many things, especially emotion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pitch: Lower pitch when sad, higher when stressed. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Volume: Louder when excited, softer when sad. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Speed: Slower when sad, faster when happy. </li></ul></ul>
  24. 24. V = Voice <ul><li>Easier States to Recognize </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Anger </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Happiness </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Boredom </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Interest </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contempt </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sadness </li></ul></ul>
  25. 25. V = Voice <ul><li>Harder States to Recognize </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Disgust </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shame </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Identifiers in Our Voices </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Age </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Gender </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Class </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Extrovert or Introvert </li></ul></ul>
  26. 26. V = Voice <ul><li>Reasons for Pauses </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Accessing a memory or figuring out an answer (serves the same function as eyes looking away when we think about something or remember details). </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Remembering something not at the top of your our mind. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Having difficulty talking about something that is emotionally evocative for them. </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. E = Existence of Adaptors <ul><li>Adaptors are small, fidgety behaviors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Twirling a pen </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rotating a ring </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Twisting one’s hair </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Biting one’s lip </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Biting one’s nails </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Adaptors help us deal with boredom or stress. </li></ul><ul><li>We share the need for adaptors with other primates. </li></ul><ul><li>Useful in focus groups by indicating dissatisfaction. </li></ul>
  28. 28. E = Existence of Adaptors
  29. 29. Summarizing Thoughts <ul><li>Rules for observing people in research situations: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Watch an individual for variations from his baseline. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Watch for variations from the normal situation. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Watch for variations expressed towards different people. </li></ul></ul>

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