Radical Transparency: Research Live Features FlexMR Innovation
On 12th June 2019, Research Live published an article in the quarterly Impact magazine, exploring the ways in which firms are adopting a “more radically transparent” approach and gaining competitive advantage from it. One example explored in the article is our own work with The Coventry Building Society, in which the financial services firm is using the concept of reverse focus groups to bridge the gap between customers and senior stakeholders.
Seeing Things Clearly: Radical Transparency and Research
The article, written by Rob Grey, highlights the fact that organisations are under more pressure to be open about their activities, values, and motives when it comes to consumers. However, only 50% of companies are actually publishing information on environmental matters that are clear on concrete issues, targets, and principal risks. When it comes to social and anti-corruption matters, the figures are even worse, with more than 60% of those published not being up the standard. With the pressure rising and companies doing little to nothing to embody transparency in their processes and values, it is time for those who are to step up and lead the way to openness.
Alongside examples such as Patagonia, GiveWell, Nationwide, American Airlines, and Reformation, the research conducted by The Coventry on our InsightHub was explored by way of an interview with FlexMR’s Chief Marketing Officer - Chris Martin and The Coventry’s Emma Baxter (Head of Market Research). This article focussed particularly on the innovative reverse focus groups that the Coventry run as a regular part of their research projects, in an effort to put members first.
Emma Baxter highlighted that one of the more successful research tactics they used was to “not make any topics out of bounds” and to let “members… decide what they wanted to talk about on the day” instead of the traditional researcher-led experience. This reverse research structure was perhaps one of the more successful techniques to encourage transparency within the Coventry within this area, but it also works to make the experience less scripted and more human in terms of the interaction between the Coventry and their members.
In an era of low consumer trust in the business industries, transparency in all areas has become increasingly more important in order to combat consumer distrust, and has become a way for brands to stand out from the crowd. For more information on The Coventry’s research experience, check out the Research Live article or, take a look at our case study and MRS Financial Services presentation.
About Research Live & Impact Magazine
Research Live is the world's leading source of industry news, opinion, special reports and feature articles for market and social researchers, data analysts and consumer insight professionals. Covering the latest trends and techniques from behavioural economics to big data analytics, as well as hot topics like polling and privacy.
Impact magazine is the quarterly membership magazine of the Market Research Society (MRS). The magazine is sent out to all MRS Members and senior marketers and buyers of research in client organisations.