Research can be conducted for a number of reasons, one of which is to shape policy. Advocacy research’s main purpose is to influence formal and informal policies created by policymakers. Therefore, it is important to gather solid data so that your research clearly shows the needs or problems you want addressed. In February 2013 the federal government of Saskatchewan hired Insightrix Research to investigate the need for a provincial anti-bullying strategy, the Saskatchewan Government challenged Insightrix to develop and deliver the most effective public consultation process using both in-person interview sessions as well as using Insightrix Communities software for online engagement. The needs for researching bullying and coming up with a solid anti-bullying strategy within the province is great. Bullying is a serious issue in schools, work, and the community. The effects of bullying can pose long-term issues and complications. For the study Insightrix conducted in-person interviews coupled concurrently with Insightrix Community software. 16 in-person consultations were run throughout the province, which drew a total of 400 participants to these consultations. At the same time that these in-person consultations were running, Insightrix created an online community which both the government and Insightrix promoted. This online community led to 600 Saskatchewan residents joining the online community. Both the in-person sessions and the online community had moderator presenting questions which allowed the government and Insightrix to listen to residents and gather new insights regarding the topic. Based on the discussions both in-person and online Insightrix was able to compile a report detailing people’s thoughts and experiences regarding anti-bullying initiatives and strategies. The report showed that the online consultation was well-received by residents, and the dialogues conducted within the community were deep, and thoughtful providing insights that were unable to be gathered during the in-person sessions. The online community also allowed members from all over the province to participate creating a broader audience. The online community software allowed access to every single comment made, and allowed the government access to read, and monitor comments at any time. The online community stayed open two weeks past the in-person consultations allowing the findings of the in-person sessions to be tested with the online community.  By using geo-IP data the Insightrix Communities platform was able to show participation and input from all across the province. From the in-person sessions as well as the online community discussions Insightrix was able to come up with key findings about the type of bullying that goes on within Saskatchewan and help the government create policies to reduce bullying in schools, and the community and provide the support and education needed to combat it. By conducting the research online, as well as in-person the government was able to ensure inclusion for all geographic regions in the province. This was a great example of using research to guide policy making so that each community member could feel fairly represented. If you would like to find out more about how our online community software can be used to help you create policy please feel free to contact us. Want to read the full blog? Click Here Interested in more case studies? Check out others like it: CASE STUDY – Online Voting with 26,000+ Members https://insightrix.com/saskcanola-online-voting-case-study/ CASE STUDY – The Real Estate Institute of Western Australia Advertising Concept Testing https://insightrix.com/reiwa-advertising-testing-using-facial-expression-analysis/ CASE STUDY – City of Saskatoon Youth Engagement Strategy  https://insightrix.com/city-of-saskatoon-youth-engagement-strategy/...

With the large amounts of data that market researchers deal with, finding ways to present data in a creative, interesting way can be a challenge. Here's a list of the six best ways to present your research data. #1: Interactive Dashboards Interactive dashboards let you communicate important information to your audience. A dashboard is a visual display of the most significant information from a project. The information appears on a single screen, offering a quick and simple way to monitor and evaluate a study’s progress. Dashboards are a highly effective way to present data to executives who don’t have a lot of time and need to be able to check data at any point in a project. #2. Infographics Infographics illustrate data and combine text, images, and design to tell the story of a study. They are becoming increasingly popular and since infographics present data in an engaging and easy-to-understand manner, they are frequently shared on social media, boosting the viral capabilities of your information. Infographics can drive increased traffic to your website and highlight key elements of your data. #3. Prezi Prezi is a new way to present information that engages audiences, visually demonstrates how ideas relate to one another, and allows collaboration in virtual space. Prezi is cloud-based, so you can present from your browser, desktop, or iPad and you will always have the most recent version available. Prezi offers visually engaging features such as zooming in and out of images and barrel rolls. Prezi is engaging and memorable, helping you make great presentations. #4. Videos/Vox Pops Videos let you put a face to the research, making study results more relatable and memorable. Vox pops are another effective way to bring research to life: vox pops (or streeters) are interviews with members of the public where people speak on camera and tell the viewer what they think and how they feel about a particular subject. Videos and vox pops can supplement both qualitative and quantitative research and is compelling way to involve the viewer in the research. #5. Motion Graphics Motion graphics are graphics that use video footage or animation technology to create the appearance of movement. They are often combined with audio and used in multimedia projects. Motion graphics are a captivating way to present your data and they help create a story for your data. The graphics help people understand concepts more clearly and make your project more appealing. #6. Web & Mobile Apps The increase in the number of smartphone users has led to the development of new ways of presenting data. In the increasingly fast-moving world, people need to be able to check reports and research data at any time, and apps are the perfect solution. Web apps let users check research data on their mobile devices, and the interactive nature of the apps lets the user control the research data they want to access and present. Apps are intuitive, easy to use, and an engaging way to view data and results. Related post: 4 Chart Tips to Turnaround Your Report Quickly ...

We’ve all been there - your client needs the report by noon tomorrow, and though you may have the meat and potatoes, you scratch your head at the prospect of presenting all that data in a visual way. In anticipation that you will communicate your study’s results in a way that is attractive and straight to the point (but in a time restraint), time management can be problematic. Don’t fret, a few simple chart tips can save some of that precious time. Many researchers cling to the standard bar graphs, and when creating a report with a fast turnaround, disregard data visualisation in lieu of time management. When under pressure, these few, simple practices can help you create a quick and clean visual that your client can truly understand. #1. Plan ahead – When inserting a graph or chart in your report, it is important to decide what information you wish to display. If you’re skipping lunch to finish said document, then chances are you do not have extra time to fiddle with changes in the display of data for each chart. Each time you re-make a format decision, you could run into time management issues. Simply formulating a plan allows you to save time in the long run. Choosing a simple chart will allow for more time to control the quality before the report lands in your client’s hands – and often simpler is better anyway. #2. Consider your target audience– Even with a formulated plan, it’s important to think about the purpose of charting to begin with. A great chart must achieve its purpose – it must be meaningful to the beholder. As well, keep in mind as to who is all looking at the report. Different levels in the organization require different levels of detail. Often a chart geared toward an executive needs less detail than a manager responsible for that particular product line. #3. A graph isn’t always the answer– I know, contradiction much? Not everyone reads charts every day. At times, using a chart can cloud the result instead of giving it clarity. By simply contrasting white space within your report, tables or textboxes can be just as visually impactful as charts. Highlighting differences with colour, especially when dealing with qualitative or open-ended responses, can also help to effectively convey a message without using a chart. #4. Perform a clarity test – Sometimes when working too close to a document, one needs a fresh set of eyes to graze over the information. Before pushing the report out, have a co-worker or peer review the visual data information without any context. If they can read the data without needing extensive background information, then you have succeeded in representing the data in a way it can stand alone. Studies with a smorgasbord of charts can prove puzzling, and may be curtly disregarded by a client short on time. Your clients expect that the report findings will provide clear answers to their objectives, and most importantly, illustrate the story behind the data. And at the end of the day the researcher is the illustrator, whereas the data remains the ink to craft the story. Have a plan, know your audience, provide clarity and generalize data in a way it can be read across the board. Related post: 6 Creative Ways to Present Your Market Research Data...

Cell phones: they can be used as video cameras, for shopping lists, as gaming platforms, to keep up with friends, as a news source, in place of a weather station…and…Oh right, they can also be used as telephones. Mobile devices are already ubiquitous. Many of us sleep with them beside us and the phantom notification of a text message is a hallucination nearly all of us have at one time experienced. Mobile devices have changed the way we live in a major way. More importantly for the market research industry, they are often the device used to complete our research surveys. At Insightrix, we’ve kept an eye how many respondents complete our surveys on a mobile device, and that number has been steadily increasing over the last few years. The change in how respondents are participating in research is especially important for the younger demographic where smartphone penetration is high and participation in surveys tend to be lower. Making surveys more mobile-friendly has become an imperative to make sure that we get participation from these key demographic groups. Size Matters Screen sizes vary considerably between mobile devices. For a survey researcher, this means that careful consideration must be given to making sure that the question and answer options display correctly for the respondent. The best practice is to detect the screen size and adjust the way the question displays accordingly. It is generally preferred to have the scrolling vertical-only while avoiding the horizontal scroll. This means that scale questions may have to be altered to become drop-downs, vertical sliders, or an open-ended response text box. And let’s face it, we’ve all probably had the misfortune of having to scroll and zoom into a non-mobile-optimized web page in order to click the link we wanted – resulting in significant frustration, and more often than not, an uncompleted survey. Similarly, usability is important for surveys as well. Give thought to how respondents will answer the survey questions. Most devices have a touch screen, so it’s best practice to make sure that the selections are finger-sized or otherwise easy to select. If they need to type a text answer, if possible, ensure that the question remains visible as they type. Size may also be an issue with regards to bandwidth. Although nearly all devices today support videos and pictures, it may take time for the media to download which can be a pain-point for the respondent. Also, including videos in a survey can cause the respondent to use a significant portion of their data plan. Be choosy. If including multimedia questions, warn participants before they get into the survey that there are large data requirements to participate. This could alter the decision in which mobile device the respondent may use. Streamline the Survey More often than not, respondents are reluctant to complete a long survey on a mobile device, which can result in a high drop-off rate and difficulty getting the participation needed. To make your survey more mobile-friendly, be prepared to take a serious look at what issues are most important to include on the survey – and which can be cut. There are many important components to making sure that respondents have a positive survey experience. Because it’s difficult to type lengthy answers using a mobile device, keep the number of open-ends to a minimum. Tighten up the wording as much as possible for both the questions and answer options. Consider the question style. See if there is anything you can do to simplify it. For example, it may be enough to ask a respondent to choose one item from a short pick list, rather than rate each item on a scale. At times it may be better to allow the respondent to provide the answer in text format, rather than choose from a drop-down list. Endeavor to modernize the look of the survey as well as the questions themselves – extra nice-to-haves like unnecessary introductory sentences, logos, or footers should be eliminated for an improved respondent experience. If your research absolutely requires a long survey, consider the option of a split sample approach. You can use an abridged list of questions for those completing on a mobile device while sending those on desktops through the longer survey or send all respondents through one of two optimized versions. Take advantage of the methodology Researchers may need to give up on some things, like certain question styles, multimedia elements and lengthy or comprehensive questions to make sure that the survey experience is mobile friendly. But that doesn’t mean that catering to respondents completing surveys on their mobile device is necessarily a net-negative for the depth or breadth of data quality. In fact, the methodology also has a lot of positives that can be advantageous to market researchers. Because mobile devices are often with us out-of-home, it provides the opportunity for researchers to get top-of-mind insights, wherever the respondent happens to be. This can be especially fruitful when using SMS survey invitations. Nearly all mobile devices are equipped with a camera and microphone, which means that using video recording, audio recording and picture capabilities can be used to gain insight that would be difficult or impossible using other methodologies. Integrating survey research into the respondents’ lives by allowing them to use the device that’s most natural for them makes for a positive experience. We hope that this will lead to increased participation in market research in the long run – whether that participation takes place on the telephone, desktop computer, mobile device, or whatever new technology the future will bring.   hbspt.forms.create({ portalId: '374811', formId: '05fef899-65c7-408e-9c1d-d9e972faf0c7' }); [/fullwidth]...

With the ubiquity of mobile devices and smartphones, many researchers are asking how mobiles and smartphones can be successfully incorporated in a research setting. Whether your aim is to improve existing research projects or you’re looking to try completely new research methodologies, these devices can augment other research methods and are also important research tools in their own right. #1. Add Impact with Video and Picture Libraries Most smartphones have camera and video capabilities, which can both greatly enhance a research program. Respondents have the ability to film themselves completing a research task, such as describing the products they purchased at a store or how they interact with a new product. It’s a great way to communicate the results too: a montage of the pictures or videos can help make the research findings more impactful. #2. Quick Data Collection via Pulse SMS Surveys A one- or two-question survey via text message is a viable way to collect data very quickly (usually within minutes). Younger age groups use email less frequently, making an SMS survey a more effective way to reach this demographic. #3. Feedback via User-initiated SMS Surveys A short code can be used to allow potential respondents to initiate a survey using a key word (e.g., Text JAVA to 78789 to start the survey). User-initiated SMS surveys are a useful way to gain feedback on a transactional basis. Using a variety of start words allows you to track where or when a respondent learned about the survey. #4. Make Reminders More Effective Text messages are an easy way to remind respondents to complete an online survey or to attend a focus group. Since most people carry their cell phones, the reminders are often more effective than by telephone or email. Many will have internet capabilities on their phones and may opt to complete the survey right then and there. #5. Support Your Mystery Shoppers Mystery shopping often requires the shopper to notice many different things during the task, such as the time spent in line or the number of people in the store when they enter. Smartphones provide an easy way for mystery shoppers to record the key points in a discrete manner so that they don’t have to rely on memory. Using technology in this way provides a more accurate result for the client and means the mystery shopping task is less onerous for respondents. #6. Aid Auto-ethnography Ethnographic research can provide holistic, qualitative insight into consumers’ lives, but having a researcher in-home is expensive and has the potential to introduce bias into the results. Fortunately, technology can partially automate this involved research process and allow participants to compile much of the information themselves. Rather than have a researcher observe the subject’s behaviour, the participant can fill in a diary about his or her daily activities at specific times. Auto-ethnography relies on the participants to remember to record their activities at specific times, and since many of us have our phone with us at all times, sending a timed prompt to record the necessary information works well. A smartphone can even be used to record the necessary information. #7. Run Co-research Programs & Spotter Diaries Empowering research participants as co-researchers can provide a viable way to understand complex cultural factors that researchers may not be able to identify on their own, and these methods are nicely augmented by the use of smartphones. Co-researchers can take pictures or record their thoughts surrounding a common topic as they go about their day. These reflections can be used to uncover market gaps and to design new products. Additionally, since marketing campaigns usually encompass executions across various media, it is difficult for marketers to understand the overlap of the various channels. Having respondents record each time they come across an advertisement for a certain brand (creating a spotter diary) can provide a better picture of the whole campaign’s reach. #8. Collect Location-Based Data Using GPS functionality, researchers can better understand location based information as it relates to consumers: how far they travel to a store or other location or their travel patterns within a venue such as a mall or leisure facility. This data can demonstrate issues with congestion, help to optimize within-venue placement, and provide a reference point for advertising metrics. #9. Use Gamification Methods Although gamification in research is relatively unexplored, an ideal venue for research games may be on a smartphone. Canadians are already playing games on their smartphones: sixty percent of Canadians do so, according to the 2012 Rogers Innovation Report. If a game is well-designed, analyzing how users play the game could allow researchers to gain insights into consumer behaviour that could not be measured by a survey. #10. Get Beneath the Surface with Passive Data Using the functionality of participants’ smartphones, passively tracking data can be used to gain insight that might be impossible using a survey methodology. A user can opt-in to provide information about websites visited, health statistics captured via GPS, communications, or any number of other types of data from their smartphone. This data could even be linked to survey responses in order to compare or to augment the dataset....

#1. Understanding online community research methodologies: Community research can be quite different from ad hoc research. Research goals may range from answering only one question over a few days to pursuing many questions and topics. The key here is to understand the goals of the research in order to moderate properly for the study objectives. Understanding the methodology allows those moderating the community to know how much detail to provide, how to phrase questions, and when to probe and follow-up. #2. Engage early and consistently: Prior to the launch of any online community, a plan should be in place to determine how to engage members as soon as they join. This plan should be ready to be executed as soon as the community is launched and drive initial participation. Throughout the life of the panel, constant feedback and follow-up engagement should also be implemented. Examples involve sharing articles or incorporating news feeds relevant to the community members and providing quick follow-up feedback regarding member participation in community research. #3. Pinning the main questions: To make discussions easier to follow and participate in, key questions the moderator asks should be pinned somewhere (preferably at the top) of the discussion group. The names of each discussion group can be the research question, which will help community members readily understand the topic being discussed. #4. Pop-up announcements are your friend: Utilizing pop-up features in a community software platform will help with engagement, moderation, and management. Rather than having the moderator post details over and over again, create a pop-up announcement to inform community members of details that do not fit directly into a discussion group. #5. Keep it simple: Depending on the audience, it is generally best practice to stay away from language that is too technical, trendy, or ambiguous. Community members want to provide straightforward insights, which will come from being asked clear questions. #6. Be creative: There are ways to “spice up” a relatively boring topic. Think of all the long and un-engaging surveys you may have completed and turn questions into punchy, insight-focused statements. This may include developing a research game for members to participate in. Prizes help too! Check out this article on 6 Creative Ways to Present Your Market Research Data for more ideas. #7. Last but not least, have fun: This is definitely a huge benefit of moderating an online community. If you interact with community members and show that you enjoy conducting research with them, odds are members will feel more comfortable opening up and sharing their insights....