Conducting your survey with video generates customer insights you could never achieve from text alone. It provides you with an invaluable set of market research tools that will tap into information your users are giving unconsciously.

A study by Albert Mehrabian in 1971 famously concluded that 93% of communication is nonverbal, particularly when a communicator is talking about their feelings, likes and dislikes, or attitudes.

Nonverbal communication can be broken down into insights from vocal expression and from body language. The study suggests that 38% of communication is found within the tone of voice used, while 55% is inherent in body language and facial expression. This means only 7% of communication is derived from the actual words a person says or writes.


That is not to say that the words themselves are unimportant, but more that body language and tone of voice can enrich, corroborate or contradict the words spoken, allowing the storyteller a richer and fuller response.

Facial expressions can tell you a wealth of detail before words have even been spoken; a smile or a frown is a powerful indicator that can silently communicate complex ideas. And while words change drastically from culture to culture, facial expressions are universal: Happiness, doubt, excitement, anger and confusion are cross-continental markers of emotion, expressed in the same way from country to country.

When your market research reaches you in written responses, all you can see is the black and white meaning of the words. But at Plotto, we're particularly interested the rich and colourful nonverbal communication that lies hidden within the faces and the voices of your users.

“I like your product.”

On the face of it, the meaning of this sentence is clear. But when viewed within the rich tapestry of tone of voice and body language, these four little words could mean so many different things.

While the words are crucial, the insights buried in their tone of voice and body language of the speaker will allow you to see the full picture of their responses, giving you unbridled access to the truth and greater quantity of information.

A sentence as simple as “I like your product” could indicate a range of complex emotions. It could mean a resounding, shout-it-from-the-rooftops, declaration of success: “I. LIKE. YOUR. PRODUCT!”

But on the other hand it could mean a shrinking, shrugging and shrewd critique that is concealing a harsher honesty: “Well, I do like your product, but...”

And this is why we are so passionate that user generated video is an invaluable market research tool. You will generate genuine customer testimonial, rather than a carefully worded response typed out in a text box.

By using this video feedback tool, researchers are not only gauging precious details about the emotion and attitude of the consumer, but are also seamlessly collecting invaluable demographic data.

Older or Younger? Wearing a suit or bright pink hair? Outside? Sat on a train? Sun tan? When asked to tick the appropriate box to describe themselves in surveys, consumers are being pigeon-holed into categories that don't adequately describe them. The way people look, what they choose to wear and their lifestyle distinctions are all valuable gauges of who your audience is. And all are subtle forms of nonverbal communication, whether consciously given or not.

Given the rich responses gathered using video, market research can be a valuable combination of both quantitative and qualitative data collection. With more in-depth knowledge of your consumers, the questions of 'Why?' and 'How?' can be attained more naturally. And with more and more consumers watching and recording selfie-style videos on their smartphones, it’s now easier than ever to reach your target audience.

Market research is changing. As technology is progressing, so the research industry is evolving. As text-boxes are swapped for video recordings and demographic tick-boxes improved with a lens-eye view of your audience, the power scale is tipping toward the consumers. With video market research, they are reinforced that their opinions are valued and that their voices are being heard.

What’s more, when companies can pose a video question and receive a video answer, the feeling of honesty can be reciprocated equally, as consumers absorb the nonverbal communications of the questioner. Being face-to-face in this way will garner a more genuine response, giving valuable video testimonial and transforming the very nature of online surveys.