Utilising the Power of Non-Verbal Cues (NVC). Second-by-second tracking of emotions.
We can test literally anything - from market communications, TV advertising to websites and video games.
Any video footage
There is a huge amount of video produced these days, coming from multiple sources. As long as we know what the person is looking at, or talking about, we can code the footage.
Adding non-verbal data increases the power of qualitative research.
The words which respondents utter are only part of what they are telling us. Below lies the rich collection of non-verbal responses generated by the automatic brain. Facial expressions and body language reveal the hidden emotions which can be combined with verbal information to produce a fuller picture.
Microexpressions, those fleeting emotions, often on the face for less than a second, are involuntary and cannot be controlled. This is quite different to ‘socially directed’ expressions, which are slower and designed to communicate an emotion to others. The face and body reveal emotions which the respondent might wish to conceal. In some cases these are emotions which the respondent might be unaware of, or ones she finds uncomfortable.
The fleeting involuntary emotional responses shown in our facial expressions and body language are not influenced by the research setting, or by other respondents. These are exactly the same responses which will be activated out in the supermarket or any other location where choices are being made. Tapping into their automatic brain is arguably more reliable than gaining a considered verbal response only.
John began his career in creative qualitative research at Cooper Research and Marketing (CRAM), later holding senior management positions at TNS. His PhD thesis at Imperial College, London was based on intensive interviews with unemployed professional and managers exploring and measuring the psychological consequences of unemployment. He has continued to pursue his interest in the study of emotions during his market research career, capturing on video, analysing and labelling non-verbal signs of emotion.