By Melanie Brewer
This article previously appeared on the Qualitative Research Consultants Association (QRCA) blog
Do you want to save time and money on recruiting? So do I. That’s why I was excited about the presentation “Catch & Release: Applying My Experience Learning to Fly Fish to Using New Recruiting Tools and Services” by Ted Kendall of TripleScoop Premium Market Research at the recent Qualitative Research Consultants Association (QRCA) professional conference in Savannah Georgia.
New platforms for recruiting respondents are disrupting the marketplace, similar to the ways that Uber and Airbnb disrupted the car services and hotel marketplaces. These platforms put the power into our hands, but as Ted put it, how do you decide whether these new platforms fit your recruiting needs and if they do, how do you adapt all your recruiting skills to the new medium?
While acknowledging that no system is perfect, Ted outlined some of the advantages (big) and challenges (modest) based on his several years of experience with Respondent.io and Userinterviews.com, two platforms that are making it possible to easily recruit for qual studies – sometimes filling a study within just a few short hours and at a significantly lower cost. Benefits include the ability to authenticate users via LinkedIn or Facebook profiles, 80% or higher show rates, easy screening, and access to diverse groups, professions and geographic locations. While there can be a learning curve, Ted argues it's well worth it for the benefits. In addition, the platforms are rapidly evolving and are likely to just keep getting better. Each offers unique features, so they're both worth trying. One twist is the need to "market" or "pitch" your study to participants, so be prepared to make your project sound awesome and exciting to motivate them to respond – but ideally without totally giving away your screening criteria.
Putting it into practice:
As a user of these tools, I plan to continue exploring these tools along with the new features that are being rolled out on a regular basis, after the conference.
The observation that these platforms are disintermediating the marketplace similar to other software tools like Uber and Airbnb, and – just like those tools – are likely to become an increasingly important part of the landscape going forward – meaning we should all learn to use them so we don’t get left behind.
I will leave you with this final pro-tip courtesy of Ted: you can use the tipping feature in Respondent to pay for extra tasks you may wish the participants to complete, like homework or pre- or post-tasks!