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How Behavioural Recruitment can inspire more authentic youth research

An overview of how to do more authentic market research with young people (16-24 year old, 'Generation Z'). Outlines how Feeling Mutual used Liveminds' behavioural recruitment' to do more authentic youth research and some of the psychology of young people that inspired us.

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How Behavioural Recruitment can inspire more authentic youth research

  1. 1. 1 How Behavioural Recruitment can inspire more authentic youth research Tom Woodnutt – Founder, Feeling Mutual Hugh Carling – Founder, Liveminds
  2. 2. 2 Too much youth research is artificial There’s one recurring theme in the context of understanding young people, and that is the importance of authenticity. Authenticity is the life blood of the research industry. Without it, our findings and the recommendations which follow, will be artificial and therefore meaningless. All too often in the context of youth research, authenticity gets compromised. ● Firstly, because researchers are often too distant from the youth audiences they seek to understand ● Secondly, because traditional, artificial research settings (like viewing facilities) put participants on edge ● Thirdly, because it's relatively harder to find young people that accurately meet the recruitment criteria because there are less of them on panels and in recruiter databases
  3. 3. 3 How do young people consume music video? In the context of these challenges, The Box Plus Network - the UK’s biggest broadcaster of music video (running channels like 4Music, Kerrang and the BeBox online platform) challenged Feeling Mutual to go the extra mile and understand ‘real youth’. ● The purpose was to understand how and why, young people love music video (across platforms, devices, audiences and contexts) ● The findings would inform decisions across the business, from scheduling and content to marketing and advertiser partnerships It was clear that we needed to go beyond traditional methods of recruitment and research. How, who, when and why? - To inspire scheduling, content and marketing - To inform advertiser and label conversations
  4. 4. 4 We went beyond claimed behaviour Feeling Mutual dove deep into the needs that drive music video consumption, and measured them across contexts, devices and audiences. We: ● Commissioned a music psychologist to challenge our assumptions about why young people love music video ● Ran stakeholder interviews and a workshop to clarify the business decisions that would be made after the research ● Used online and mobile qual to develop our hypotheses - allowing us to get into their natural environments. Participants: ○ completed mobile diaries of MV occasions ○ conducted mobile deprivation exercises ○ took part in a ‘Simon Cowell record label manager’ game ● Used Behavioural Recruitment to find a sample of 1000 16-24s for a quant study measuring their behaviour and needs in order to validate our model ● Ran a debrief to brainstorm implications for the business Quantitative Validation Stakeholder Workshop02 Psychology review01 Online & Mobile Qualitative03 04 Quantitative Validation04
  5. 5. 5 Finding fresh, authentic fans Feeling Mutual set Liveminds - The Behavioural Recruitment company - the challenge of finding authentic, Generation Z music lovers who were: ● Actively viewing music videos regularly ● Real fans of particular genres of pop music ● Fresh to research, rather than people who were regularly taking surveys and doing group discussions In addition, some participants had to be actively engaged in the Box Plus Network’s niche channels (including 4music, Kerrang and Kiss).
  6. 6. 6 Engaging young people It was thought that traditional qual and quant recruitment approaches might have struggled to deliver the representative sample required, because: ● There is an under-representation of youth in traditional panels and qual databases ● Some of the sample the client required had a very low incidence rate ● This younger demographic can also be less reliable for qualitative research
  7. 7. 7 Participant quality is the biggest challenge These kinds of challenges are increasingly common for all age groups. The new GRIT report which came out just last week stated that ‘without doubt, access to quality and representative sample is the single biggest challenge’ facing researchers today. When you are dealing with a hard to reach audience like Kids and Youth, these wider problems become particularly acute. “ Accessing a quality and representative sample is the single biggest challenge ”
  8. 8. 8 What is Behavioural Recruitment? Liveminds technology allows us to recruit fresh participants, on-demand, using Facebook’s unparalleled dataset on the daily activities of more than 2 billion people, in 190 countries. 1. We place our hyper-targeted adverts into the News Feed of any user whose demographics, interests and behaviours closely match each project’s criteria. 2. Interested people click through to a page in our Facebook app, which gives them more detailed information about us, the project and the reward on offer. 3. If they want to take part they take a detailed screener inside the Liveminds app. Or if it’s a quant study they take the survey there and then. 4. For the qual phase we contact all the people who’ve passed the screener, to further qualify them with a comprehension, creative and technical test and then we choose the best.
  9. 9. 9 Key advantages of Behavioural Recruitment For The Box Plus Network, the method was used for online qual in the UK, but it can just as easily be applied to other research methods and markets. Liveminds has used Behavioural Recruitment in more than 70 countries, for everything from face-to-face focus groups to placing automated cameras around family breakfast tables. In all those contexts, the benefits of utilising social network data are the same: 1. The vast reach gives you access to more than 200X the number of people in even the world’s biggest panels. 2. You’re recruiting based on real behaviour, not just what people claim in a screener. 3. You get fresh participants for every project, not the same conditioned repeat respondents. Reach Freshness Accuracy BehaviouralTraditional 10 million Claimed Behaviour Repeat Respondents 2 billion Real Behaviour Fresh Participants
  10. 10. 10 Behavioural Recruitment solved the challenges Behavioural Recruitment worked really well for The Box Plus Network because it: ● Gave us access to a huge youth audience ● Allowed us to find people who we could be sure were genuinely into The Box Plus Network’s channels, based on their past online behaviour ● Allowed us to find high quality, fresh and motivated participants
  11. 11. 11 Access to a huge youth audience To put this in context, Facebook has 7-8 million monthly active users aged between 18-24 in the UK. It is true that this is dipping slightly, some reports say by 3% last year, but the number of active users remains absolutely huge.
  12. 12. 12 Based on actual behaviour Through the hyper targeting of Facebook’s advertising system, Liveminds was able to narrow that huge audience down to those people: ● whose online behaviour on both Facebook, and 10 million other connected websites, had clearly demonstrated that they regularly watched music videos, and ● a proportion of music video lovers who were also fans of the relevant music genres and actively engaged with niche The Box Plus Network channels like Kerrang.
  13. 13. 13 Better quality participants To make confident decisions The Box Plus Network needed to talk to people who were engaged and reliable. The participants Liveminds found on-demand were fresh to research, so were naturally curious, enthusiastic, and keen to discuss a subject we knew they were genuinely interested in. In fact, a recent study of Liveminds qualitative research platform, analysing more than 35 million English words, found that Behavioural Recruitment participants give 47% more data in research projects than those recruited through traditional methods. There is less chance of participants ‘gaming recruitment’ because there’s no human interface between them and the screener. And they’ve only been invited to screen, based on hugely in-depth data about them.
  14. 14. 14 A more natural conversation Behavioural Recruitment is fully integrated with the Liveminds mobile qual platform, which meant the conversations with this audience could take place in their natural environments and participants could engage at their own convenience. This minimised the research effects of talking in an artificial viewing facility, focus group setting.
  15. 15. 15 (Some) of what we discovered Through the psychology review Feeling Mutual identified and ranked a number of needs that music video addresses in young people. These were then refined through the online and mobile qualitative research. The findings were finally validated using a survey with the 1000 16-24 year olds before being workshopped with the client team. All of this was recruited via Behavioural Recruitment. The psychology review gave us a big headstart when it came to designing and interpreting the study. PRIMARYSECONDARYTERTIARY
  16. 16. 16 ‘Teen Narcissistic Vulnerability’ Young people are becoming more preoccupied with their own image. Campbell (2009) found that each generation is more interested in their own image than their predecessor. Gentile (2012) tied this to the rise of social media. Narcissism and the ability to style identity online in order to generate attention across networks is a hugely useful skill in today’s hyper connected world. One theory takes an evolutionary psychology perspective, suggesting that adolescents are hardwired to prepare to leave their families to mate with someone from a different community, to maintain genetic diversity. Therefore it’s adaptive to be able to develop an identity different from our parents’. These insights helped Feeling Mutual focus on the role music plays in developing and maintaining identity.
  17. 17. 17 ‘Self-Socialisation’ Self-socialisation was another big theme in the study. Lemming (1987) found that in order to learn about taboo, adult themes (like sex, drugs and violence), Teens will often turn to music and their peers more than authority figures like parents and teachers. Even back in 1985, a study by Baxter found that 75% of MV contains suggestive material. This helped us interrogate the role of music video in the context of cultural learning.
  18. 18. 18 ‘Picture Superiority Effect’ One of the biggest themes the psychology review revealed was how music video can be particularly emotionally impactful, even more so than audio alone. Its emotional significance, is one of its biggest strengths. This can be understood by the ‘picture superiority effect’. This was measured by Hutchinson (2015) who found that music with video has a deeper emotional impact than music alone. This can be explained by a study by Hinokosa (2000) that showed how images go into the subconscious faster via system 1 compared to words alone.
  19. 19. 19 Video takes people closer to the artist “Artists can feel very distant. The music video helps you understand what they feel. So you connect more with the song, and it feels more emotional than the audio alone.” (Joe, West Sussex, 17) The qual allowed Feeling Mutual to go deeper into the audience’s experience of video - in the moment. By talking in private one-on-ones online and asking participants to feedback while they view music video at home - we got closer to their actual experience. As demonstrated by the verbatim above. ‘Nothing left to lose’ – Heaven’s Basement
  20. 20. 20 Music helps people manage their moods “This song never fails to cheer me up. The video makes me want to join Taylor and dance, not caring what anyone else thinks; It’s that carefree attitude you need in life” (Emma-Louise, Belfast, 17) We also found that music video plays a vital role in managing emotion. The importance of mood regulation was shown in a study by Zilan (2002) which found that in bad moods, people elect to listen to uplifting music for longer than when in good moods. In this example, the participant explained how Taylor Swift picks them up and gets them dancing. Not just making them happy but also giving them a confidence boost. The music video diaries consistently highlighted just how important music video is to mood management.
  21. 21. 21 Many who watch to lift their mood, dance One thing we found, that was not present in the psychology literature, was the high number of young people who watch music video and dance to it. Most people who watch music video to escape from the here and now will dance along.
  22. 22. 22 This validated investment in dancing content The research helped validate a stream of content already in production which teach the audience dance moves. For example, this show called ‘Show me the moves’. The research was able to validate investment in this direction.
  23. 23. 23 Emotional benefits become rituals “Usually I watch in the morning after my shower as I dry my hair! I would say it is now part of my wake up routine!” (Emma, Dundee) The qual uncovered a number of rituals involving music video. For example, watching music video has become embedded in people’s going out and getting up routines. When a significant number follow a certain ritual, it suggests there’s potential to inspire others to follow it.
  24. 24. 24 The needs behind rituals can inform scheduling The quant then allowed Feeling Mutual to measure the emotional needs behind rituals and the context in which they’re active, which in turn can inform scheduling. For example, we found that people tend to watch music video for confidence in the mornings, for motivation in the afternoon and for nostalgia in the evenings. This could have implications for scheduling particular types of music video playlists at particular times of the day. “You mentioned that often watch music videos for the following reasons. What time do you usually do it?” | Base: Respondents who ‘Always’ or ‘Often’ watch music videos for each reason (n=158-864)
  25. 25. 25 Appetite for content can inform production People into ‘live performances’ are 12% more likely to be motivated by ‘discovery’. They’re also 34% more likely to want ‘behind the scenes’ content. The quant also revealed a number of content drivers which tend to cluster together and determine engagement, which can be used in marketing and content development. For example, we found that people particularly into live performances, are also motivated by the desire to discover new music and behind the scenes content. One of the main reasons for winning the project was the innovative recruitment. Behavioural Recruitment wasn’t just a means to an end. It was also part of the story of the research to advertisers and music labels. It showed that The Box Plus Network had gone even further to find authentic fans rather than professional participants.
  26. 26. 26 Quality of participants is #1 challenge As outlined previously, recent GRIT reports have revealed that quality of sample is a huge issue in the industry. Clients and suppliers are reporting a… “…general decline in the quality of sample with falling participation rates... with accessing niche audiences...another concern.” Liveminds wanted to know what qualitative researchers in the UK felt about the recruitment they depend on. This led us to commision Sketchbook Consulting to do some Research on Recruitment. Our survey with 100 qualitative researchers found that they overwhelmingly consider ‘quality of participants’ to be the biggest challenge facing the industry. Q: Which, if any, of these do you consider to be challenges facing the qualitative research industry in your market today? Base: All participants - 100
  27. 27. 27 Need for more representative participants Research on Recruitment 2018 found that researchers consider ‘accurate fit between sample and recruitment criteria’ to be THE most important factor in effective recruitment. But often researchers aren’t experiencing this, as the available databases are too small and too many repeat respondents are gaming the system. This is particularly relevant to youth research because there are fewer of them and therefore more pressure for repetition. Furthermore, given their need for income and a greater propensity to take risks, the chance of inaccurate participants is particularly high in youth research.
  28. 28. 28 Professional participants are a problem Most researchers in the survey think that professional respondents are a problem in qualitative research. More than half of researchers said they had recognised the same people in different projects within the last 12 months. Q: Overall, do you think “professional participants” are a problem in qualitative research? Base: All participants - 100 Base: All participants - 100 Agree Neither agree or disagree Disagree Q: I recognise the same participants taking part in my qualitative research projects 51 19 30
  29. 29. 29 Professional participants reduce authenticity The problem is that by doing focus groups so regularly, people become too familiar with the process and less representative. Also, professional participants can become adept at playing the system: most researchers consider them to be more likely to lie when recruited and to lie in the research. ToofamiliarwithresearchMorelikelytoliewhenrecruitedMorelikelytolieintheresearch Insufficientlymotivated Quickerandeasiertofind Understandresearchwell Morereliable Moremotivated 76 73 64 17 64 59 21 16 Q: Which, if any, of these statements do you think apply to "professional participants”? Base: All participants - 100
  30. 30. 30 Need for greater authenticity Base: All participants - 100 Agree Neither agree or disagree Disagree 52 24 24 But this is not just an issue with ‘professional participants’. Research on Recruitment found: More than half of researchers in the study believe too many participants lie to get recruited. More than half of researchers surveyed believe some recruiters encourage participants to lie. 52 24 24 Q: I believe too many participants lie in order to get recruited Q: Some recruiters encourage participants to lie in order to get recruited Click here to download the full Research on Recruitment 2018 report.
  31. 31. 31 Behavioural Recruitment solved the challenges Behavioural Recruitment, powered by real time, social media data, solves recruitment challenges and provides truly representative, fresh participants. Given the challenge of finding good young participants, its value to youth research is even higher. In addition to The Box Plus Network project, using social media data has enabled Liveminds to find: ● Students in Malaysia looking to study business in the UK ● Snapchat users and their mums on the East Coast of the United States ● Young expats who have recently moved to London, and ● Many others…
  32. 32. 32 Tom Woodnutt Hugh Carling Please get in touch for further information: