Qualitative studies are used mainly when we are more interested in understanding and deepening our knowledge in a particular area than in quantifying the frequency and scope of a given occurrence.


The main techniques of qualitative studies


Below you will find the main techniques used in qualitative research. In practice, we can combine various techniques and apply some modifications (e.g. dyads).


FGI – Focus Group Interviews


Group interviews are conducted by a professional moderator in a special focus studio. There are usually 6 to 8 persons taking part in the discussion, who are recruited with the use of a special recruitment scheme (a latin square design). The focus studio is equipped with a one way mirror which allows real time observation of the meeting by both researchers and clients. The discussion is recorded with a video camera so that the researcher can later analyze all the comments and reactions of the participants.


IDI – In-depth Interviews


Individual in-depth interviews are usually conducted face to face by a specially trained interviewer or a moderator. They are often used in expert interviews, usually when there is a need for in-depth knowledge in a particular area. Sometimes they are used as exploratory studies before creating the design for a questionnaire for a quantitative study. IDIs are also applied after gathering quantitative data as a technique used for understanding previous results.


Bulletin Board


This is a type of qualitative study that is conducted over the Internet. It involves communication by the moderator with some of the participants of the study (or the study participants among themselves) via an internet platform that is similar to a typical online forum. The study participants share their experiences and insights on a specific topic. For example, they can first watch certain television programs and then express their opinions on these programs using the platform. The moderator can ask questions and stimulate the sharing of respondents' views.


Ethnographic studies


This approach is used when there is a need for broader insight into the phenomenon being studied. Ethnographic research can be exploratory, explanatory or descriptive. The idea behind this type of research is that consumers (or for example employees) will not always be able to or want to articulate their opinions, attitudes and needs; and on the other hand, researchers, when approaching a study, are not always able to ask all the important questions. Therefore, the researcher goes to the natural environment that interests him or her, in order to make observations. Depending on the issue, it may be only a relatively short observation, let's say a two-hour visit in the respondent's home, for observation of all activities related to cooking dinner. But it may also be a few days' stay at the respondent's home and making observations of all activities performed during this time and all the interactions between the household members. Ethnographic research can also be conducted in the workplace, for example, for observation of relationships and communication channels.


Some examples of applications of qualitative research:

  • launching a new product on the market (modifying and customizing physical characteristics and uses of an input product, packaging, name, image, product),
  • product positioning (discovering the most effective way to provide information about the product or service to potential customers),
  • studying habits associated with the use of the product (recognition of practices related to the use of products or services, the reasons for the use of a particular group of products or brands, and learning the needs of this group of products),
  • a survey of attitudes (knowledge of the opinions, feelings and associations evoked by the test product or concept),
  • examination of the advertising,
  • generating ideas (the creation of new ideas - creative groups),
  • supporting quantitative research (establishing guidelines for quantitative research or deepening the understanding of the results of quantitative research).


Moderators of in-depth interviews and focus group discussions


CEM moderators are highly qualified professionals, with many years of experience in conducting focus groups, including untypical groups of respondents, such as children, representatives of public life, the elderly, doctors and businessmen.


What do we offer?

  • professional guides for discussion,
  • appropriate selection criteria in the recruitment of respondents,
  • adequate recruitment of participants,
  • professional moderators,
  • well-trained recruiters of participants for focus groups,
  • skilful interpretation of research results,
  • high-quality reports.