Panel Management Market Research2

Building a research panel

Transform your insight generation process

Use our in-depth online survey guide to create an actionable feedback collection survey process.

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Research serves as an important input of data in the decision making processes of multiple organization. Given this integral role of research and data collection , building dedicated research panels becomes absolutely necessary for any organization looking to gather comprehensive market data to find answers to their research questions.

 Not everyone has the aptitude and knowledge base to answer peculiar research questions. With advanced automation and a plethora of research tools to choose from , it has become an easy task for any organisation to look for individuals with the capacity to provide them with accurate information that will fuel informed decisions.

What is a Research Panel ?

Research Panel is a group of well suited people who aptly meet the criteria of eligibility to become a respondent for a particular research topic . The task of building such a panel of individuals is basically comprised of separating targeted respondents from the rest of the market and use them as research participants for a nuanced market research .

The focus here is on quality and not quantity. Your panel of respondents must include specifically those individuals who can speak volume and make a legitimate contribution to increasing your know how about the market in the current scenario. Including a large number of irrelevant members as respondents, on the other hand , is a compromise that hinders research quality and has no value addition. This can make decisions based on such input have minimal to no impact and can even cause a downfall as a worst case scenario.

The benefits of using a research panel

There are certain benefits that sets apart a panel research from any other research styles. These benefits justify the use of research panel to carry out effective and targeted data collection.

 Highly reliable 

The use of a research panel makes the research data gathered using such a panel highly reliable and dependable. The people who provide such data have up to date information about the market. Such information can be used to make impactful decisions as well as the same information can be replicated as input for other relevant studies .

 Valid information

 Data collected through research panels are highly accurate. The inputs that are gathered provide a cohesive overview of the research subject which makes the analysis actionable .

Quick data collection

Panel research provides organizations with the freedom to use a small sample to gather all the data they need . The rigorous selection and screening of the panel members makes them highly representative of the actual target market. This eliminates the need for organizations to look for large number of panelists. Moreover , the distribution and collection through online channels allows the collection of responses within hours .

Unbound research

With experts and professionals as panelists , organizations have the freedom to dive into technicalities to narrow the field of study. Use of jargons and field specific terms can easily be done without causing ambiguity or confusion among the respondents. With this level of research , organizations are easily able to conduct nuanced research , identify pain points and come up with optimal solutions to complex problems.

 Cost savings

 Conducting research using a research panel is more pocket friendly than using any other sample of population that might or might not provide you with the correct information. Organizations can choose to minimize sample size due to low sampling bias. Moreover , brand related surveys use brand advocates as respondents who volunteer for research without any requirement of incentives or rewards . Their general interest levels in the brand and its products generates authentic data without any additional cost.

Processes involved

Define the eligibiity criteria

 This primary step involves defining the criteria that each individual must meet in order to be qualified as a panel member for a particular study. These criterias can be anything from demographic to geographic information that makes a person suitable for answering questions related to a specific research topic.

 These criterias are then converted into a concise survey that is sent out to multiple databases of panelists. On the basis of their answers , a limited number of well suited individuals get qualified as fit respondents.

 It is imperative that all aspects are carefully deliberated over and covered to narrow down the eligibility criteria. This way , it will be easier to choose respondents who are more representative of the target population.

Online Surveys

 Panel recruitment

 Panel recruitment is a meticulous activity. You have to precisely target those channels of recruitment where there is maximum traffic as well as response rates. Keeping this mind , the broad channels of recruitment that are as follows :

 Email

 This is one of the most common and effective channels of recruiting panel members. Emails generate a lot of commercial traffic which can be contacted for creating panels. With automated email services , emailing potential panelists and enquiring for relevant information is easier than ever. It generates good leads as well as prompt replies that make it a highly efficient and viable option to be used as a panel recruitment channel.

 Social media

The reach of social media has expanded far and wide. The worlwide user base of social media platforms such as Facebook with over 2 billion users and Twitter with over 200 million users is indicative of the kind of reach that can be generated using such platforms.

Organizations can engage with specific individuals using such platforms where the frequency of activity is very high. This makes these platform highly reliable for generating quick responses. Maintaining an active social media presence and monitoring can go a long way in filtering users that show a designated behaviour and in boosting online brand image.

Explore all the survey question types possible on Voxco

Explore all the survey question types possible on Voxco

SMS

 Short messaging services are the most widely used facility. It is a great medium to catch user attention and lure them in to be a part of research panels. Survey links and invites can easily be shared among a large mass of audience through SMS facilities. It does not ask for an online presence and can be shared with anyone owning a mobile device . Brief introductions about the company and the research can be given using the multi- language functions that are provided in survey software platforms. This enhances user understanding and reduces chances of confusion.

 Website

 Website traffic can be scruitinized and nudged to join research panels. Companies have a large amount of direct and indirect traffic that visit their websites for accomolishing multiple objectives such as customer service , increasing awareness , registering complaints or addressing queries. Using targeted landing pages and website pop-ups companies can effectively push this online audience to join research panels. This will also have the additional benefit if recruiting brand advoactes and customers as panel members , thus increasing authenticity and minimizing the need for incentivising.

 Voxco panel members are recruited through different means from trusted institutions that provide verified people best suited for any research requirement.

Panel Management

 Once you’ve selected your panel members , it is very important to keep them engaged. Panel data needs to be constantly updated using a regular survey mechanism. Panel management softwares are associated with continuous creation and maintenance of panels. Customized profiling , continuous interactions , provision of timely incentives and other activities , all come under the purview of panel management.

 Panelists esp. customers are interested in two way interactions with the organizations. There is a need to come up with new and innovative practices to maintain panel members so that they don’t lose out their interest and the quality of research can be maintained.

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Hindol Basu 
GM, Voxco Intelligence

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