Rock n’ Scroll: A peek into radio research

Co-Founder and Insights Director

The market research industry has discovered through recent studies, that people are turning off participating in research because of boring surveys and low engagement with the process. Which of course, then affects the quality of the results.

Making Research Entertaining

In radio, we’ve long wrestled with delivering actionable feedback, while engaging listeners who need to be entertained like other touch-points.

Here are thoughts on how we can continue to make insights-gathering less like a visit to the dentist, with all the drilling & probing (actual   research terms!).

Round the Campfire

We help content producers cut-through ever-decreasing attention-spans, satisfy instant gratification, and build audience.

When everyone is now their own channel, sharing news, feelings and opinions around the social media campfire. And often using Facebook as first stop for news-of-the-day.

Talking to people for feedback means ensuring they’re relaxed and engaged, ready to give their honest, direct viewpoint.

“What” Is Not Enough

There can be plenty of data available about the “What” of an issue, especially in radio with regular survey results and reams of analysis.

But product & marketing teams really need the “Why”, to focus their activities. Understanding the emotional-drivers of the consumers’ fragmented daily media choices.

Research has to match the pace of a listener’s life online, so decisions can be made on the run.

Speed Dating

We’re finding with our online focus groups, that responses to our short, sharp topics, are far from shallow, just because they’re fast.

Social media conditioning means word economy, without losing the emotion. It’s breathtaking, to watch a real-time chat deliver actionable insights in just a few minutes. Like speed-dating!

Overheard at a Dinner Party

As John Musgrove, National Research Director Southern Cross Austereo says “It’s about starting a conversation with a topic you might throw out at a dinner party like ‘So what do you think about radio these days?’. You’re among trusted friends in that environment where conversation is expected, and they’ll take it in all sorts of interesting places. That will be the art of research in the future, to listen in and be able to analyse the themes, key points and context.”

Spruiking Recruitment

We’re finding new ways to bring our fans in for a chat, because an invitation from a faceless researcher is less effective. People want to give their feedback directly to decision-makers, and influence the brand. And to rise above the static, we now also use high-profile personalities as spruikers for projects.

Talk to the Boss

As a way of reducing reluctance to criticise that personality, we can use the Content Director as host, to mandate honest opinions. In a relaxed setting people are comfortable with being direct, understanding that their input is valued by the boss. And they’re happy to come back for more, so panellist retention becomes more of a relationship.

The Human Face of Research

It boils down to giving market research a human face, a real person inviting feedback.

In an increasingly automated, impersonal world, we get a strong sense of people wanting to go back to a friendly group chat, guided by someone they trust, not a robot.

Who can you tap into as a trusted influencer, to boost your engagement and retention?

It’s A Matter of Trust

Final word from John “Look at recent global political polls and how people are now just not game to say what they really think, even anonymously. We’re going to have to make the places we ask people for their opinions less like court rooms and more like dinner parties with friends and family.”

“Trust always takes time, so having communities that you build up and have conversations over a long time will see that trust continue to improve over time, and produce more accurate outcomes.”

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