How to moderate a Tobii Eye Glasses study

Objective Experience recently conducted an interesting study with Tobii Glasses 1 (Glasses 2 out now!). We had to visit various branches of the client’s business, to see their customers’ eye journey. The objective was to determine whether customers look at the marketing materials available (and if not, why?).

To gather the participants for this study, we used the intercepted people as they walked into a branch. This was because we wanted the regulars at the branch. Our methodology was simple. We would fit the glasses on a participant, who was then asked to go about normally in the branch to continue with their usual tasks. Subsequently, the participant was asked a few questions about the experience while we reviewed the eye-gaze data video recording with the Retrospective Think Aloud methodology.

Here are some pointers for moderating this type of study:

  • Keep it short. Participants were always short of time. Most came to the branch during their lunch breaks and they would have no time for a 20 minutes session. It is best to keep everything (tasks & interview) within 10 minutes.
  • Keep it simple. Language plays an important factor in communicating with others. The way you ask your interview questions should be localized (i.e. speak in the local slang if it helps the people understand you better). The words used should be easily understood (avoid jargon when possible) as well.
  • Keep it humorous. Your participants are probably more nervous than you are. Easing their fears and putting them at ease by making small talk or sharing a joke at the beginning will go a long way into getting better data. When participants’ feel comfortable with the moderator, they become more willing to speak their minds.
  • Keep on listening. Being a good listener is key in research. Be genuinely interested in what participants say and show them that you are listening by making eye contact as often as possible. People can somehow sense when you are not listening properly to them and they may shut themselves up. In doing so you’ll lose some valuable insights. Also, don’t rush to fill in silences when the participant pause between sentences and try not to fill-in-the-blanks when they are finding a word to describe their experience.

For more information on running a real-world/shopper research study, please contact or call us at +65 6737 4511.

Lynette Goh

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