Media Planning Group is launching a research programme designed to provide insights about British family life to advertisers and the media.
The research, called Fabric, will use a nationwide panel of 50 families, who will regularly give their opinions on issues such as premium-rate phone calls on TV, recycling at home, bank customer service and the dominance of supermarket chains.
The research will also allow MPG to give its clients immediate national feedback on new campaigns, product launches, packaging changes and other related marketing initiatives. The first results are expected in May.
MPG will conduct a fresh wave of research each month involving both quantitative and qualitative questioning. The first business sectors to go under the microscope are expected to be finance, retail and travel.
Each of the 50 families will have a webcam and participate in video web chats live from their kitchen tables or living-room sofas. A specially created blog will enable them to post comments whenever they wish or in response to questions from MPG.
MPG head of insight Denise Turner says: "The Fabric panel will be a bang-up-to-date way to gain real consumer insight. We’ll be able to get people’s views on issues as they happen and be able to dig deeper into their motives and reasoning. People in general are sceptical of research, so it’s better to engage them in a two-way communication channel like this in their homes and build trust over time.
"Our aim is to understand the motivations behind consumers decisions. We hope to get to the point where families start telling us what their big issues are and determining the direction of the findings. We will send our families new products, ads and magazines to use and talk about. We want to make the whole thing very involving and fun."