We’ve been conducting qualitative research with kids and teens for years. We have a range of tricks and tools that enable us to get in-depth, creative responses from young respondents whilst making them feel relaxed and safe.

We wouldn’t want to give all our secrets away here as we believe communicating with young people is a real art that we have mastered.

A year in a child’s life is huge, they are changing all the time and therefore our approaches need to change too. The methodologies we select for each project are strongly impacted by the age, gender and specific needs of the respondents.

We have listed a few of our methodologies, but if you’d like to find out more, please get in touch as we feel passionately that each methodology design should be tailored to meet the needs of individual clients, budgets and of course the children!


When connecting with kids, there’s real value in overtly embracing their world, talking their language and experiencing life in their shoes. Ethnographic techniques provide an opportunity to do this. It’s quite common to find us surfing the internet with kids, watching TV with tweens and hanging out in shopping centres with teens. It’s important for us to see them in their own environment as it allows us to put all of the clever stuff (strategy and analysis) into context.

When the project calls for it, we even give kids and teens video cameras/flipcams so our clients can see them in action!

Great for:

    • Immersion
    • Exploratory research
    • Big questions
    • Finding out about your target consumer
    • Looking at how they behave/use/consume your products in real life

Simultaneous Sessions

We are often asked to explore family dynamics, and a great way to capture this is to run simultaneous groups. Using two separate rooms, we begin by talking to parents and young people together, we then split them up for separate discussions, ending with both adults and young people summing up as a group, making group decisions, or having a debate!

Great for:

    • Hearing both sides of the debate, whether it’s mum vs their kids or even different segments of teens all in one place, in one evening/afternoon
    • Comparing opinions and sparking a debate
    • Finding the common ground
    • Client participation

Friendship Hangouts

We believe that it’s always better to talk to under 16s in friendship groups. It makes them feel relaxed and confident. It also lets us observe the all important peer dynamic and we find that kids can’t tell lies if their friends are there as they’re always willing to pull each other up! We use friendship pairs, triads, quads or larger groups depending on the age and nature of the project.

Great for:

    • Talking to under 16s, in fact we’d recommend most groups are collections of friends for this age
    • Helping younger kids and teens open up
    • Bringing out the truth
    • Watching peer dynamic at work

School Research

If a project has an educational or developmental links, then we are happy to conduct research in school, otherwise we prefer to let the busy teachers and pupils get on with their work! Talking to kids in school allows us to see another side to kids and captures them in a learning environment.

Coffee Mornings

We rarely speak to children under 4 without mum being around, but it’s great to have their input when we can so we host coffee mornings for mums and kids to come along to. We get mums to answer all the hard stuff and we have the kids on hand to observe their responses to stimulus.

Great for:

    • Speaking to new mums who aren’t comfortable leaving their babies
    • Setting mums at ease, it’s a lovely relaxed atmosphere
    • Seeing how babies/toddlers react to concepts in the presence of mum
    • Getting a sense of what it’s like being them – clients are welcome to come and participate

Family Hub

Family dynamics play a crucial role to many brands and products and spending time with a family in their own home environment can unlock rich insights. This is a great methodology to observe relationships between different family members.

Great for:

    • Hearing from every member of the family in one session
    • Seeing family dynamics at work
    • Hearing similarities and differences
    • A level of insight and depth into family relationships and behaviour not possible in a viewing facility

Online Blogs, Boards and Groups

There’s loads of interesting things we can do online. As well as hosting online chats, we can also use the internet as a creative medium to express young people’s ideas. We also have an online panel of kids ready and waiting to give instant feedback on ideas.

Great for:

    • Getting a glimpse into their day to day lives
    • Instant feedback if you need it then and there
    • Depth of information if you can wait longer
    • Personal photos and videos
    • The benefits are limitless… give us a call if you’d like to know more

Bedrooms hang out sessions

We often conduct research in kids’ bedrooms as it’s a place where kids feel more relaxed and confident to chat. Ultimately you are entering their space and that places the power in their hands unlike more traditional methodologies where the moderator is more in control. What’s more, kids’ bedrooms are a place of shared secrets and gossip so it’s a great space to have an in-depth chat around some of the more personal issues in their lives. Added to which, there’s a whole load of cool stimulus to look at which helps us to get a true insight into their world.

Great for:

    • Immersion into their world
    • Explorative briefs that require a detailed understanding of a specific age group
    • Watching natural behaviour and group dynamics

Moderator-less Sleepovers

This methodology allows us to get ‘under the skin’ of an issue as kids’ say so much more in an adult free zone! Before the sleepover we send the kids secret tasks to be completed. Exit the adults; leaving the kids with some more tasks and questions we want them to answer over the course of the evening, and the all important video camera to capture “the group” in action. We then collect the footage, do the analysis and edit the best bits!

Great for:

    • Seeing young people interacting with all different types of stimulus in a totally unstructured and ‘real’ environment
    • An insight into a specific age group without adult/moderator influence
    • Fly on the wall style footage
    • Hearing the truth about your product!
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