Over the past few weeks, we’ve published a blog series focused on Expert Networks. Our first blog explained the basics of expert networks, our second blog focused on how expert networks can benefit market research, and this week’s blog will explain how to connect with expert networks.
As discussed in the previous blogs, as market research becomes more demanding, connecting to expert networks can be the difference between mediocre research summaries and outstanding research summaries.
If you do an online search for expert networks, you’ll quickly find links to some of the bigger names and companies that professionally manage expert networks. For those working in market research, the costs may be prohibitive to consider using an expert from one of the larger expert network companies. The good news is that many market research recruiting firms have a less formalized, but no less effective, database of experts that can be called upon when conducting market research studies.
Many qualitative research consultants already rely on nationwide recruitment services when conducting market research. Typically, the recruitment agency will be responsible for finding and managing study participants. For many qualitative market research studies, limiting the scope of work of the recruiter to finding, screening, and managing the recruits is sufficient. What some research consultants many not realize is that many market research recruiting firms also have relationships and established networks with many experts and executives. Including one or two experts in a market research study may provide valuable insights, and can be beneficial to the researchers when designing the study, or as a touchpoint during the study.
Similar to writing a comprehensive screening guide for recruiting participants for a market study, connecting with the right type of expert is no different. It may not be necessary to write a full screening guide to connect with one or two experts, but having a clear idea of what you hope to achieve by including an expert will help guide you to the type of qualifications you are looking for. Sharing these parameters with the recruiting firm will help ensure they connect you with the best-qualified expert.
Including an expert in your market research study can greatly enhance the overall study.