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What are personal interviews? A case study
Personal interviews represent the oldest and most traditional method for data collection: these are face to face, quantitative, structured or semi-structured interviews, that can be carried out in different environments: on the street, at respondents’ homes, in store or in specially equipped facilities (central location).
These are interviews that allow you to acquire certain, detailed information and in a short time, on any topic, product or service.
Although currently self-completed interviews are preferred in many cases as they are more practical and quick, face-to-face personal interviews still represent a very valid methodology as they manage to ensure the full attention of respondents.
These are interviews that allow a direct relationship with the interviewer: they play a fundamental role as they must be able to skilfully obtain as much information as possible without influencing respondents.
Being quantitative interviews, they involve a sample large enough to be representative of a population and are generally of short duration (10-15 minutes) and the answers can be recorded on various tools (paper, tablet, PC). The questionnaire includes mostly closed questions, there may be some open-ends but not qualitative questions.
Respondents can be of any targets (consumers, B2B ..)
Personal interviews: where?
We said that personal interviews can be carried out on the street, or at a store, or at respondents’ homes or in a central location.
Street interviews or store interviews, based on where the interviewer is positioned, allow to intercept a specific category of consumers, reaching for example who is a regular buyer of a certain category of products or who only buys products in a certain price range.
The interview at the respondents’ homes or at a central location is particularly useful when respondents are asked to carry out specific tasks (tasting a product, using equipment, etc.)
Personal interviews: data entry
The interviewer collects the answers using paper questionnaires or smartphones / tablets. If the questionnaire is paper questionnaire, it will be necessary to subsequently enter the data in a special file that allows data to be processed. The use of electronic devices allows real-time data entry.