Lights, Camera, Action! Using Video to Improve Survey Research

Using video in research

Using video in research

Lights, Camera, Action! Using Video to Improve Survey Research

You’ve heard that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” But now, according to Dr. James McQuivey of Forrester Research, one minute’s worth of video is worth 1.8 million words (or 3,600 typical web pages.)

So it’s no wonder, with our ready access to technology, we’ve become a video-inundated society. The average Internet user views 32.3 videos per month. Because videos can communicate information faster and more easily they are also being used more frequently in surveys. Videos embedded in online surveys can:

  • Create interest and improve respondent engagement in the research.
  • Better and more realistically represent products to the respondent (who might not carefully read a concept statement.)
  • Demonstrate more clearly how a product or service works, especially if it is complicated.

How to Use Video in Surveys

Additionally, videos can be used in nearly any part of a survey, depending on what you want to accomplish:

  • In the email invitation, a personalized video invite can connect respondents with the organization sponsoring the research.
  • In the brief survey introduction, a video can explain the reason for the research, and its importance to the organization.
  • In the survey, video is frequently used as stimuli, to demonstrate product usage, provide a new product or service description, or to present advertising or marketing communications more realistically than with still photography or drawings.
  • Finally, video can even be used as survey answers, as respondents prepare short videos with their responses to open-end questions and post them back to the survey.

Tip & Tricks

As with anything, videos can be too much of a good thing. Remember, the best surveys are those that are short and focused. Videos should only be used if they improve the survey, without adding length. So keep these tips in mind when thinking about adding videos to your survey:

  • Limit the number of videos. Use only one or two carefully chosen videos for specific purposes. Do not use videos just because you can, make sure they improve the research project.
  • Keep it short. The optimal video length is, of course, related to what you have to say. But if your survey has an average completion length of 10 minutes, how much of that do you want respondents to spend watching videos? Calibrate your video length to how long it takes to complete the survey.
  • Remember mobile. Today 40% of all surveys are completed on mobile devices. You need to be sure your video works in those environments. So test, test, and test again to make sure your survey works with smartphones and tablets on both the iPhone and Android operating systems.
  • Video quality counts. A low-quality video will not give you the research impact you are looking for, so use only videos that look professional.
  • Use video analytics. Many online survey packages come with timer metrics for video, so be sure to use them in your analysis. The length of time the respondent spends watching your video and the number of times the respondent views it can give you important insight into their responses.

Video is a great tool for improving marketing research, as long as it is handled well. Put video in your marketing research tool box and think how you might use it in your next survey.

Register with Clear Seas today to learn more about using video in your marketing research!

One Comment on “Lights, Camera, Action! Using Video to Improve Survey Research”

  1. This is very helpful. Can you give some advice on using videos and photos in conducting market research?

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