If this child were a car, what sort of car would it be?

Date of publication: November 28, 2004

Author: Barbie Clarke

Abstract:

Many clients around the world are trying to understand what appeals to a young audience, raising many challenges. Children differ vastly between age and gender, with clear global social and cultural differences. How can research be carried out on a global basis with such a diverse audience? This paper argues that qualitative research is far better suited to research with children and young people than quantitative research. Children may not have the capacity to fully understand pre-determined questions. They may dislike, or not be good at, reading; find it hard to think coherently; are easily distracted; and opinions are not yet fully formed. This means commonly used quantitative methods may be less effective with such a audience. Too often a methodology more suited to adults is imposed on children's research. It is possible, however, to look at their attitude, need states, and drivers through the use of projective techniques, but not necessarily the projective techniques more commonly associated with adults. A study assessing global differences and similarities, using specialized projective techniques for young people, can be invaluable to clients seeking a world picture of their brand or service.

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