This is where members of the general public, most predominantly the products target audience; express their opinions and views about a product, whether this is in terms of an advertising campaign for the product or a review of the final product itself. Qualitative research take form in many different ways to allow the public to express themselves such as reviews on blogs, websites and newspapers, responses to news coverage, discussions about a product and fanzine websites for dedicated fans of a product who are at the core of keeping a product going throughout the years. This type of research allows companies to take on board any concerns the target audience may have with a product and correct them in the current product, or their next product, allowing the company to make a more likely successful product. In addition, this also makes the target audience feel as if they are respected by the companies whilst also having their views recognised.
This is where data, such as numbers, is used by companies to discover how popular their product is based on factors such as programme ratings, hits on websites, such as Youtube and Vimeo, box office figures, if the product is a movie, and cd and dvd sales when the product is released. This can be extremely helpful to companies, if they are making a new product, as they can use information from similar products to their own to decide on factors such as what target audience would the product be best suited for, how they could engage a new target audience and how the product should be advertised based on similar products which have, or not have been successful. Furthermore, a company can used figures from their own product to determine how successful their product has been, which in addition, would lead the company to use qualitative research to see how the figures has been stacked up, based on the opinions of their target audience.
This is where companies go about acquiring data and information, which has not already been discovered, from their target audience based on the type of product that the company is trying to promote and sell. This can take form in many ways such as surveys, questionnaires, focus groups and observations. This way of researching is very effective as it allows the company to understand what their target audience want from the product whilst also understanding how it would be best to promote their product to their target audience to ensure that the product becomes a success.
This is where companies use data which has already been collected or generated from a different group or company. This can take many forms including books, newspapers, journals, photographs and statistics. This is also very effective as this allows the company to gain valuable information which can also help them decide on a number of factors such as how the product should be promoted to their specific target audience and what time of year would it be suitable to release their product.