I got a question from Jane Jung Edrosa today that I think other people also have, so I want to share it with you here. Jane asks about what topics to cover during the interviews with her research participants.
Jane: Our website, Realtor.org, is a member website that supplies information, resources, tools to real estate agents and brokers. Should the scope of the non-directed interviews be focused on how Realtors run their business and function as Realtors, which may bring up the subject of using websites and specifically Realtor.org as a resource to run their business or function as a Realtor. Or should I focus the interview directly toward how Realtors use Realtor.org. I’m afraid if I use the latter, I might miss out on other websites Realtors visit and functions they provide that might be helpful to them that we don’t currently provide and should. … In the recruiting process, we’ll have to make sure we screen for Realtors that have used Realtor.org within the month.
Indi: Yes, you’re right. Definitely use the wider scope: how Realtors sell real estate, treat clients, interact with other Realtors and brokers and mortgage folks, learn about new legislation and new forms, set up broker tours and open houses, collaborate with inspectors, home “staging,” and caterers, etc. Yes, they may use Realtor.org as one tool among many, but don’t just focus on that. I would even suggest only screening for half of your recruits being recent users of Realtor.org, and the other half never or rarely using it as a tool, just so you open yourself up to finding out about surprises.
If the list I mentioned above seems way too wide for the scope of your project, whittle it down a bit to the areas that you are interested in. Perhaps Realtor.org will *never* want to be in the business of hooking Realtors up with inspectors, right?