Five video market research fails (and how to avoid them!)

Using video market research is a fantastic way for companies to get to the bottom of what their customers are really thinking. Video is the single most powerful way to deliver human feedback and see how customers feel about your brand, products, and services – and thanks to today’s technology, video feedback can be captured quickly, at scale, in any location, straight from consumers’ digital devices. This agile approach to video market research means customers can express themselves in their own words, allowing you to see the people behind your data, reveal the true stories behind your statistics and drive real change right across your businesses.

However, despite the new found ease of video, there’s still a lot to think about when it comes to using video in research. As with any other study, it requires sufficient planning, defined research objectives, consideration of the available capture tools and even production of the right questions. So, it’s important to be aware of any potential pitfalls before your study begins to ensure you run a seamless video research project and obtain the insight you need. So without further ado, we give you our list of the five most common video market research fails (and what you can do to avoid them!)

1. Not choosing the right tools

When it comes to efficient, effective video market research, it all starts with the right tools. Knowing the video capture solutions available to you is the all-important first step in equipping your research toolkit with versatile video solutions. Today’s technology has evolved video into something of a quant/qual hybrid and there’s a range of different tools you can use to collect video content in a way that matches your own specific needs:

  • Embed – Add video open-ends to any new or existing survey to capture feedback from any consumer device.
  • On-demand Communities – Some video insight vendors will have mobile app communities available for quick-turn feedback, enabling you to capture hundreds of videos from your target audience in less than an hour.
  • Upload – Whether you have short video open-ends or lengthy focus groups and IDIs, you can often upload content to platforms like Voxpopme to use automated analytics on your existing video files.
  • Offline Apps – Offline app solutions will allow seamless collection of video without the internet or heavy-duty camera equipment. Once you’ve captured content offline, all you’ll need is an internet connection to sync your videos back your video insight platform.
  • Diary Apps – Tools like Voxpopme’s Moments app give you an agile video diary tool so you can pre-set video tasks across days or even weeks. This enables you to capture moment-in-time experiences, run pre-group homework tasks, see in-home product experiences and more.

2. Not introducing video research clearly

When conducting video market research, you need to present the video feedback element to your respondents in a clear, concise manner. It’s important to be upfront and honest about what is expected of them from the beginning and communicate what the video will be used for, who will see it, and why. This is particularly important if you’re embedding video questions into a quant survey. Our research suggests that the highest percentage of usable videos tend to be captured when participants are told about the use of video in both the email invitation and the survey welcome page too. At the same time, you should also make sure you big up the technology, fun, and ease of video market research too. Respondents are far more likely to engage with video if they can see that it’s quicker, easier and allows them to be more expressive than traditional feedback methods. The moral of the story? Providing advance notice and sharing clear instructions upfront encourages higher video response rates, but try to keep your messaging fun and concise to avoid overwhelming participants.


3. Not offering the right incentive

Finding the appropriate incentive levels can be a challenge for any research study – and when it comes to video market research, it’s no different. It’s a delicate balance: incentives are a great way to show your respondents that you are grateful for their time and reassure them that their opinion matters, but it’s also important to make sure you don’t under or over-compensate for their feedback. Having said that, video is a fun and engaging feedback style so you shouldn’t be daunted by the process of finding the right incentive. Here are some pointers to ensure you hit the right incentive levels for each project:

Firstly, you need to know your audience. If you have a highly engaged community, you might not need to incentivize at all, or you could be dealing with an entirely new group of respondents that are also new to video – in which case an incentive could be a good way to help them get comfortable with video. Be sure to consider your incidence rate too. If your desired respondents are a very niche audience within a broader segment, consider increasing incentives to attract the right people and increase the probability of project completion.

You’ll need to assess the difficulty of your video feedback. Asking someone to record multiple diary-style videos, across several days is inevitably going to require a more substantial incentive than a one-off response to a single open-ended question.

Finally, you need to make sure that your incentive reimburses respondents for any costs they’ll incur. For example, if you’ve asked them to go out to a shop and purchase your product, then you’ll need to cover their costs in addition to paying them a token to thank them for their time.

4. Not asking the right questions

Next up, you need to determine the questions you want to ask and in what format. When drafting your questions for potential video responses, you should make sure they are open-ended and easy to understand so your consumers can deliver valuable, visual insight. And don’t forget, if you need your respondents to complete a task, review a concept, or watch an ad in advance of providing their feedback, you’ll also need to make sure you provide them with clear, simple instructions of any preliminary work they need to complete too. You’re effectively the director in this relationship so give respondents all the pointers they need express themselves fully.

Clear instructions, paired with open questions will help you get closer to the truth by revealing the all-important “why” behind your consumers’ perceptions, motivations, and decisions. And even though consumer-recorded videos are captured without the aid of a moderator, questions that are sufficiently challenging and give people the opportunity to speak their mind will encourage them to provide the most thoughtful answers. Typically, the most insightful responses come from respondents who are challenged, so it’s less yes or no and more what, when, who, how and why. Check out this blog for some great ideas on open questions.

5. Not being realistic about time frames

End-to-end video insight platforms have transformed the speed at which video projects can be captured, analyzed and shared – delivering full video projects in hours and days, not weeks and months. But it’s still important to be conscious of how long your latest project will take because there isn’t a one-size-fits-all timeline for agile video research. Projects can vary depending on a number of factors, from your chosen audience to the volume of video required and even the type of video study.

However, some general timeline considerations to think about, in addition to the time it takes to conduct your research, are how long it will take for transcription and time-coding to take place post-recording. In platforms like Voxpopme, quick-turn, human transcription is applied to videos in minutes to ensure you get fast, highly accurate transcriptions – providing a solid foundation for all the following automated analytics.

For a non-English video project, allow additional time for any video translations you require (approximately 24 hours after collection) and make sure you plan the turnaround time for any additional reporting or custom showreels. Don’t worry though, if you are sticking to a tight schedule there are some things you can do to speed things up. Automated sentiment analysis and theme coding of your content can help you find insights faster and DIY editing tools within your video insight platform help you to generate showreels in just a matter of clicks.

Done right, using video in research can give you access to unbeatable insights so you can start to tell your customers’ stories and drive real change across your entire organization.

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