Getting Started with Video Responses:

We recently wrote an article that introduced the idea (and benefits) of adding open-ended video responses to market surveys. The potential is significant: when used effectively, video can provide deeper insights and more complete understanding of respondents’ views.

Yet getting started—and how to write the ideal question—may not be as easy as it might seem, especially if you’ve never written a video response question before. To help, we created this article to give you some high-level suggestions as well as specific recommendations to make sure you develop the best video questions possible.

Key considerations

Here are some main thoughts to keep in mind as you get started.

  • Are you using video for the right reason? Remember, like many other “new” technologies, using video just for video’s sake is never a good reason. Make sure you’re using video questions to get information and insights you may not get using standard questions.
  • Will video work for your audience? Not everyone may love the idea of posting a video, especially older audiences who may be content to answer a traditional survey question. It’s important to use video responses where you’ll see the most user adoption.
  • Are you communicating effectively? It is important to let your audience know exactly what you’re asking them to do, how the process will go, and how much time and effort is required. It’s also a good idea to let them know how the video will be used, what this means to them, and how they can get answers to specific questions.
  • Will your video produce the results you want? Not all video questions are created equal. For example, a one-minute open response with a one-minute cap will generally get respondents to give a brief, reactionary comment. This may be helpful, but you can also consider other strategies, such as video diaries, asking your audience to show themselves in the product’s setting (such as a kitchen), and other ideas.
  • Are your expectations reasonable? Make sure you think through the entire process and carefully evaluate all that you’re asking respondents to do. Don’t ask them to spend too much time or effort on any one question, or face the risk that they will ignore your question completely.How to Capture the Power of Video Responses Capturing


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How to write an effective video response question

Ready to jump in? To write an effective question, consider these best practices:

  • Ask one question at a time: Resist the urge to try to get more out of each video question by asking for too much or additional information. Focus on asking the question in a way so your audience will give a single answer and supporting views or information.
  • Make sure questions are open-ended: This starts with the idea of asking questions that can’t be answered with a simple “yes” or “no,” but also includes the thought of including questions to ask for any additional thoughts that may not have been covered.
  • Get to the “why”: Make sure you always ask why (or why not). You may think respondents will always give you the full information, but sometimes they need a little prompt.
  • Be provocative (but be nice!): Sometimes it’s effective to offer one side of a topic and let respondents either agree or offer a differing perspective. Here the goal is not to provoke, but to engage your audience and encourage a passionate response.

What can video responses do for you?

You can even use video responses to accomplish specific goals or gain specific insights. For example, many companies have successfully used video questions to:

  • Request feedback: You can choose to present something—such as a logo, a new product concept, new packaging, etc.—and ask respondents to give their reaction. This is an extremely effective way to get honest answers and additional feedback.
  • Focus on a specific task: Ask your audience to complete a task using a video diary. They can record themselves performing the specific task—such as trying a new product or approach—and give real-time reactions and opinions.
  • Get a review: Ask respondents to review your product or service and ask for specific details behind their experience.
  • Seek a testimonial: If respondents like your product or service, ask them to provide a quick testimonial with the reasons why.

Let’s do this!

These are just a few recommendations to help you devise better video responses (and gain new insights). But we’re always here to help, so let us know if you have additional questions or want more information.

As always, feel free to reach out and contact us to learn more about our new video capturing tool or other research programming services and solutions.

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