While we pride ourselves in having top-notch professional youth facilitators, moderators, and researchers. We have found that there are many instances where having peer-to-peer youth moderation (most frequently as a spokesperson) is highly effective.
Allowing one or more of our promising SureShot experts to co-create the list of questions with us and kick-off the research/ideation discussion, provides the opportunity to discover authentic youth insights by reducing the “adult factor.”
How It Works
Step 1: Select A Youth Spokesperson
Having a young person that is relatable and can appropriately communicate the needs of the project is no easy task. Through our experience with SureShot, we’ve found that many bright young people can deliver/introduce the research stimulus material very efficiently via online discussion with their peers.
Having someone who is energetic, has a captivating personality, and willing to listen are the most important characteristics. One method that continues to prove itself is to incorporate the young person as a lead spokesperson in a video where you are introducing the research stimulus material.
Step 2: Brief Your Youth Spokesperson
Ensuring that your youth spokesperson knows the company, the project, speaking points, and what you are attempting to get out of the questioning process is critical.
Be sure to provide all documents to the young spokesperson ahead of time for them to read over, then follow-up with an in-depth verbal orientation (keep it video or visual based as much as you can).
Remember you’re dealing with young people, so build in some extra time and practice patience, it will be worth it. For SureShot engagements, we use an application process using mobile video responses, so we can effectively vet our young participants before the articulation interviews.
Step 3: Co-Create Your Questions & Discussion Guide
You should regularly ask your spokesperson about what questions he thinks you should come up with, and compare them to your professional research teams’ guide. Having young people frame questions in their language will start to provide you with an authentic insights framework.
Even more than this, allowing them some free reign for part of the study will make their peers feel more comfortable in answering honestly and candidly.
Step 4: Maintain An Authentic Youth Voice
After you have selected, oriented, and given clear parameters to your youth spokesperson, step back and let him be in the proverbial driver’s seat. Whether the session is in a real world setting or an online community, record the session with audio and video.
To be successful, convey an authentic peer-to-peer voice to the youth research participants. If you force your speaking points verbatim to the spokesperson without flexibility, you’ll miss the value of this exercise- reducing the “adult factor”.
Step 5: Reveal What’s Unsaid During The Session
After the session, debrief by asking everyone about their experience (spokesperson and participants alike). Gather feedback about the session outside of the questions asked for the brand/project at hand.
Doing this will allow you to determine if there were any biases during the session, thoughts that typically go unsaid, and whether or not they will directly affect the results of the insights.
– Unique research group/interview insights for product innovation, marketing strategies, and UI/UX/Iterative Design
– Less adult/professional biases
– Subtleties and intimacy of answers because of the reduced adult barriers
– Targeted research, ideation and interview findings driven by, for, and because of youth engagement.