Understanding people is one of the most exciting and complex tasks facing humanity. This is because, unlike the natural and exact sciences where subjects outside our own are studied, we are dealing with subjects studying subjects. In other words, in the sciences that study the human being, it is difficult to completely put aside empathy and rejection for what we see reflected of ourselves in others.
Within Marketing, researchers face the same complexity. Since we must also face individual and collective perceptions of what surrounds us. People perceive their reality through the traditional senses: taste, smell, touch, hearing and sight; and through the imaginaries imposed by the values and prejudices of the world that the groups in which they operate throughout their lives have.
That is why we can distinguish two scales of studies in marketing. Reality would be the objective, tangible and universal part of the world that is common to all people. For example, the colors, the areas, the volumes, the temperature, the chemistry of the substances and more characteristics of our environment that are usually the same everywhere all the time since they are governed exclusively by general principles and laws.
However, that reality when perceived by human beings undergoes alterations and appropriations that result in endless truths. Each witness of reality will assume the world in a specific way. There are studies that tell us that different cultures lack words for certain colors, measure time based on different reference scales than usual, and count things only if they are present or not. These cases are not usually common in the big cities of our era.
In conventional research conducted in spaces that have been assimilated by globalization, people often share truths alienated by the media. In part, the imaginary of the West dominate the imaginary of many territories: canons of beauty, the ideal of perfect family life, the desire to accumulate many things, the struggle for minorities, and so on.
Despite this homogenizing process, regional and personal community truths survive. Therefore, it is not yet possible to establish generalizations about the values and ideas that most people share. As if that were not enough, what is believed and is essential today will not be tomorrow. Not in vain, each generation shares an ideology that is not common to those who precede and succeed them. This complexity outlined in a general way in this paragraph helps us to measure the complexity of understanding people.
To understand people’s truths, market research uses qualitative methods in general terms. With them, it is possible to inquire more effectively about the truths of consumers. Expert analysts in qualitative techniques have the necessary preparation and experience to delve into those topics that people live, reproduce and socialize, but that they manage to verbalize or expose explicitly and clearly. Some of the most used qualitative techniques are in-depth interviews, focus groups and ethnographies.
We know that conducting qualitative studies involves facing a number of challenges. The main one is the difference in resources required to carry them out successfully. At Acertiva, we have experts and connoisseurs of the complexity of understanding and analyzing the ideas that consumers have and that cannot be deepened with quantitative techniques. Send us a message today to request a quote. We are waiting to tell you how together we can write your next success story.