Transcripts are a great tool for market research analysts.  Whether you are conducting multiple focus groups or a series of in-depth interviews, having the conversations transcribed is invaluable for reporting.  Oftentimes focus groups will last up to two hours  and IDIs can last up to an hour or more (if they do, you’d better pay the participant a nice incentive).  Although most focus groups package recorded audio files or video files with your rental, transcriptions still offer many benefits to the market research industry.

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1) Including verbatim comments in your report (made easy).

Nothing is more painful than having to watch hours upon hours of focus group video to pull additional findings or additional quotes for your market research report.  Actually, scratch that, having to listen to audio files may even be more grueling, but sometimes necessary for our clients to provide them with a quality, in-depth report.  Having the focus groups or interview pre-transcribed come the time of your report allows you to cut and paste those verbatim comments into your PowerPoint deck with ease, rather than having to listen-pause-type, listen-pause-type, etc.

2) Free up time for focus group management/logistics and listening to participants.

Although I encourage analysts in the client viewing room to take notes and jot down key takeaways for your report, often other logistics call you away from the groups.  Therefore you end up missing pieces of focus groups where participants could have mentioned something very important for the objectives of the study.  Plus, knowing that the groups will be transcribed word-for-word puts you at ease and allows you to really listen to participants and interpret their thoughts/opinions for your client.

3) Quickens the speed of reporting.

If you include selected comments in your PowerPoint deck, nothing is easier than a quick CTRL-C, CTRL-V from your transcript.  Another benefit is the ability to cut directly to a section of the group by simply doing a CTRL-F for a specific term or topic (for us PC users; forgive me Mac users).  For instance, if you’ve conducted eight focus groups across the U.S. in the past three weeks for different types of cleaning supplies, it might be very difficult to remember takeaways about shopping behavior for dish detergents in a grocery store.  It also might be difficult to remember how your urban markets differed from your rural markets.  With transcripts, just open up the file(s) and search for “dish detergent” and it will take you directly to those mentions.

4) An extra deliverable for the client.

Clients love value-added in market research.  Not only do transcripts help the market research firm write a quicker, more accurate, and more robust report, but the transcripts can also be passed to them as a deliverable.  They can refer to these transcripts down the road for key items or circulate them among staff who couldn’t attend the focus groups.   It’s a win-win situation.

Are you interested in conducting focus group research or in-depth interview market research in Upstate, NY?  Contact our Business Development Director, Sandy Baker, at or by calling 315-635-9802.  Research & Marketing Strategies (RMS) is a market research firm in NY.