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  • 00:12

    KAREN FERNANDEZ: Hi, so I'm Karen Fernandez.[Karen Fernandez, PhD, Associate Professorof Marketing, University of Auckland]And I'm an Associate Professor of Marketingat the University of Auckland Business School in New Zealand.[What is the Mindcam method and how did you become interestedin it?]His name is Rich Starr and he's a Senior Lecturerat the University of Auckland as well.

  • 00:33

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: And he was actually originally my PhD student.And what he did was he--this is back in the day when you couldn't buy miniature videocameras and stuff.And so he was just playing with the technologyand putting a little camera on his son, who was about four.And his son is running around the gardenand we were watching the video.And I said, "this is so cool.

  • 00:53

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: We can use this for research".And he goes, "well, no one's ever been interested in itbefore".And I'm like, "no, no, we can do this".So there are two problems in research.One is we like to obviously observepeople to see what they do.But you can see what they do.You don't always know why they do it.They can't always even explain it.The other thing that we do often is we then

  • 01:14

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: try a different approach.Instead of observation, we interview peopleand say, "well, when you went to the store, how didyou feel, what did you buy, and all that stuff".And sometimes, we corroborate it with the register tapefrom the store to see what they bought.And that research has found out that people forgeta lot of what they bought.So what about things they saw, but didn't buy?

  • 01:35

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: How do we find out what they evensaw and didn't buy if they can't even remember it?So we said, how about if you put the two methods together?So instead of just videotaping them as like a weird video fromthe supermarket-- they do that, like,in the food area or whatever--we said if we can put a camera on someone

  • 01:55

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: as close to their eyes as possible.So in those days, we used a baseball cap,but even ideally now with the little miniature camerasthey sell in the stores, you could put one, like,here in the middle on a pair of glasses.OK.And so you could have just fake clear glasses.And that means your recording would be from the person's eye

  • 02:17

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: point of view and you would see everything that they saw.You still wouldn't know everythingthey felt. So one way could be to getthem to talk as they go along.People do that, but that's quite artificial as well.So just do the camera.Where the technique comes in-- because anyone nowcan get a camera, put it on.In those days, it was cool because we made it and solderedit, and all that.

  • 02:37

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: But now, you know, you just buy a camera, put it on.OK, fine.What is really cool is we then watched the videowith the person immediately after their shopping tripor whatever it is we've asked them to do,and then they talk about it then.So you've got 100% recall because they'reseeing everything again with their eyes.

  • 02:58

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: And in fact, they're seeing thingsthat they didn't realize they had seen.And they're talking about it, but you're alsogetting their explanation.So the coolness is the blend of the two,each separately, it's nothing new.So it's called the Mindcam.And that's what we called it.And we have an article on it that I've given you also.

  • 03:19

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: [What kind of research questions have you investigated usingthis method?]Well, the project, we started trialing it on,that's in the paper, is a mall wasinterested in why one particular area of the mallwasn't really doing very well comparedto all the rest of the mall.

  • 03:40

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: And so we got people to put on the camera.It was women because that was the demographic of the mall.And we said, here's $100.Go shopping like you normally do.And if you don't spend it all, you get to keep it.And no one-- then everyone spent it all.And they went and we said, do anything

  • 04:02

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: you'd normally want to do, but would youmind going through this part of the mall in particularon your trip?And then we'd debrief them.The cool things that came up was people was like, "look at me,look at me.I can't believe it.Every time I go in a store, I go to the blue area",whether it's blue clothes or-- and she hadn't evenrealized that she was always being drawn to blue.So unconscious things were being picked up

  • 04:24

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: as well, which is really interesting.And when people went through that part of the mall--the part that wasn't doing well--people were like, "look at it.It's so dark.I don't really like this place.This doesn't make me feel happy" and things like that.And then we corroborated that by using thensecurity footage, which was legal, to just count people.

  • 04:46

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: We weren't, you know, because you can't tellsecurity cameras are out there.So we counted.We got a student to count--paid someone to count, you know, how many peoplego through this part of the mall comparedto other parts of the mall.And people went through.They just went through really quickly.And they didn't go into stores and stuff.

  • 05:07

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: It turned out the whole area was quite darkand there was just like a strip of glass in the middle.And people just walked in the middlewhere the light was that was comingthrough the glass in the roof, and then gointo the stores on the ends.So that was what it was.People don't like the dark.[What other methods did you use in conjunction with the Mindcam

  • 05:30

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: method?]Well, there was the observation data.I mean, we could have just stood people there watching,but since we had security camera footage,we thought we'd just use that.And there are ethical issues because there's the issue of,well, they know they're being recorded--and they're not actually on the camera anyway,

  • 05:50

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: it's only what they see-- but then salespeopledon't know they're being recorded, passersby don't know.But we looked into it and we figured outthat because people know that malls have security cameras,they do know they're being recorded by someone.And also salespeople know that there are mystery shoppers

  • 06:12

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: and they can get recorded.So we thought it would be OK, but wedid check with our institution and get approval and all that.But that has been raised before that youhave to be quite careful.And we ask people that if you are trying something on,like in a changing room, could youactually take the camera off and make sure it's not on youand things like that.[What tools and resources are helpful for students looking

  • 06:36

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: to use this method?]Well, there's the article.And it's in a journal called Qualitative Market Research.And anyone that wants to do qualitative research, that'sa really good journal for just cutting-edge whateveris happening new in the area.And there is a handbook of qualitative researchthat has a chapter on videography and stuff.

  • 06:58

    KAREN FERNANDEZ [continued]: And then there's also a book on qualitative researchin marketing and consumer research.And I'm not involved in any of those books.I'm not the author or anything, but they're really,really good books, which is why I recommend themfor someone getting started.[FURTHER READING]

  • 07:19


Video Info

Publisher: SAGE Publications Ltd.

Publication Year: 2020

Video Type:Video Case

Methods: Video research, Observational research, Qualitative data collection, Qualitative data analysis, Marketing research

Keywords: consumer behavior; malls; observational methods; recall; Shopping; video methods; video recording; video research ... Show More

Segment Info

Segment Num.: 1

Persons Discussed:

Events Discussed:



Karen Fernandez, PhD, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Auckland, explains the Mindcam method of marrying first-person camera footage with recall from participants, and gives an example of its use in a study on shopping behavior.

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Researching Consumer Behavior using the Mindcam Video Methodology

Karen Fernandez, PhD, Associate Professor of Marketing at the University of Auckland, explains the Mindcam method of marrying first-person camera footage with recall from participants, and gives an example of its use in a study on shopping behavior.

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