What is Target Group Observation?
A qualitative research method in which the subject is
observed and analysed in their natural and real-world setting.
– Definition based on Channelplay
Forms of observation
- Covert observations
Researchers do not reveal themselves as researchers and either mix
in with the subjects undetectedly or observe from a distance.
- Overt observations
Researchers reveal themselves as researchers and the subjects
Are aware of their presence.
．Detect behavioral patterns
．Detect orientation patterns
．Gain knowledge about people’s preferences
．Find out which factors influence people’s behavior
． Learn about their choice of words
．See how people actually use a product
The first thing to do, as always, set your research goal, define overall goal and determine your research questions. The third step is you create an observation guide.
An observation guide is a template for collecting the data in a structured way. On the left side, you can see variables of behavior or appearance the researcher would analyze.
The next step is define your research setting to decide what’s the place at what time you want to go. Collect all your data, then prepare it, structure it, categorize it, analyze it.
The final is to present results to team and everybody else who benefits from these insights.
Imagine asked to write copy for a voice based assistant in automotive manufacturing. Target user is working on the assembly line. When they assemble cars, they need to use a little computer to get certain information about a particular car.
The voice assistant for this computer enable the expert working on the assembly line like ask their computer “Hey, show me this and that”. And the computer then displays this certain information.
Research would observe the experts working on the assembly line and check out what are the natural language patterns and what kind of information do the experts meet? As a researcher, it is better to accompany the experts for some time and watch them listen to them.
Working with observation methods, especially covert observation, will help to see and hear things that target audience won’t explicitly tell you about simply because they’re not aware of them. If you pay close attention, you will even hear your target audience talk, they may give us a little clue about which vocabulary your audience uses.
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