Sunday, August 9, 2009

Over the Shoulder Shots Draw Them In

As readers of this blog know, I use pictographs to duplicate the purchasing scenario for profiled consumers related to a specific product or service. This allows the respondents to explain their purchasing experience step by step. A bonus of this type of research is that it captures both emotions and resonant statements.

As is well known, emotions play a big part in purchasing behavior, and resonant statements are important as well. Who can forget the phrase from Wendy’s advertisements “Where’s the beef” or ’Avis’s “We’re number two but we try harder.” These two examples came from the minds of marketing geniuses but oftentimes context-related consumer comments can help the process along.

There are three types of pictographs that are used - those that set the scene (situational), those that show some interaction with the product or service (interactive), and those that provide an opportunity to comment about the previous two types of pictographs (reflective).

Here, I will discuss a specific type of interactive pictograph called the “Over-the-shoulder shot.” This is an example:

This shows an individual looking at an automobile sticker in a showroom. This type of pictograph quickly puts the respondent into the picture. They often preface their comments with “I.” An over-the-shoulder shot allows the researcher to place the product in the consumer’s hands. After this pictograph, it is possible to magnify various aspects of the product and the respondent will assume that he or she is still subjectively involved.

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