Monday, 10 May 2010

Saying, thinking, doing and feeling

This blog post from Sue Unerman of MediaCom is well worth a look.

Referencing split-brain experiments of the 1960s, it's about the tendency of human beings to (post) rationalise verbally their feelings and behaviour, when asked by a third party.

In a telephone interview, for example, or in a group discussion with eight strangers. Now, working from home much of the time, I am frequently beset by telephone interviews. And it has often struck me that this must be just about the worst possible interview method for trying to get to anything that links back to the visual mode of perception - such as ad tracking.

So often we fall back on research methods that are quick, relative cheap and simple to administer, such as the telephone interview. When instead, we should be making far more use of ethnological methods and observation of actual rather than reported behaviour - and less direct questioning.

And when it comes to quantitative research and brand communications tracking, technology has opened the door to real-time research methods, such as those employed by Mesh Planning.
Hopefully, some time in the near future, the telephone interview will be as good as resigned to the market research dustbin along with punch cards.

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