A deep interview is nothing more than an informal conversation that takes place according to a certain plan. This interview is based on the use of various methods capable of inducing the respondent to thorough, as well as to deep reasoning on the range of issues of interest to the researcher.
In-depth interviews suggest receiving from respondents not filling out a formal questionnaire, and immediate answers are not questions. Typically, such interviews are conducted by experienced psychologists. Their main task is to understand how the respondent actually relates to the issue under discussion.
An in-depth interview is conducted in a special room in person. At the same time, there are no outsiders, the phones are disconnected, there are no external stimuli. In principle, all these conditions can be changed. Sometimes a deep interview is conducted by phone, but experts say that a telephone conversation is not very effective. What is the reason? First of all, it is almost impossible to induce a person to an absolutely frank conversation on the phone.
The time that the in-depth interview lasts varies. It can last thirty minutes, and three hours. Everything depends on the individual characteristics of the respondent, as well as on the tasks of the marketing research.
In some cases, a deep interview is recorded on a tape recorder or video camera. The record can later be processed in such a way that it is more convenient to examine it (pauses and all unnecessary are deleted). The processed record is called a transcript. It is based on an analytical report based on the results of the marketing research. It is worth noting that video recording is used only when there is a need to study the nonverbal response of respondents.
Methods of in-depth interviews are different. Use them to achieve the following tasks:
- study of how consumers actually belong to a particular product, manufacturer, brand, and so on;
- drawing up a portrait of potential buyers and consumers;
- Testing and checking the effectiveness of various kinds of promotional materials;
- search for free niches, as well as the development of new products;
- Evaluation of the popularity of already existing products.
The same tasks are included in the list of tasks for studying focus groups. However, an in-depth interview will be more effective than a focus group in the following circumstances:
- the topic of discussion is complex, and only people with specific, unique professional knowledge and skills can reveal it;
- Deep interview is very effective then. When there is a need for a survey of competitors (competitors will not express their true attitude to this or that problem during a routine interview);
- this interview is very convenient when any personal topics, intimate experiences and everything else that people are not accustomed to discuss with strangers are touched upon;
- it is also convenient when respondents are geographically separated from each other or small. An example is the survey of officials from different regions;
- it is effective even when you need to interview busy or influential people. The bottom line is that a psychologist who conducts an in-depth interview will be able to beat everything in such a way that even a long conversation will seem easy, interesting and quite unobtrusive.
Note that today such interviews are used quite often. Professionals who know how to conduct them correctly are very much in demand.