Invoke Solutions provides a unique on-line real-time researching platform that enables customers to have a live, interactive dialog with large groups of targeted participants. It helps companies gain valuable insight into the attitudes and behavior of customers, employees and consumers quickly and easily. Compared to traditional methods, the Invoke platform delivers real-time results and the ability to drill down to the reasons behind the responses - resulting in better insights, smarter decisions, and faster action.
Invoke Solutions is headquartered in Waltham, MA.
By using the Internet, the Invoke platform allows you to host a real-time session where you can present visual and/or audio materials and combine both qualitative and quantitative questioning techniques. Its powerful ability to drill down on issues through on-the-fly questioning exposes the real drivers behind participant responses.
The Invoke platform is well suited for any situation where you need to have a structured dialog with a dispersed group of people to get fast, reliable feedback and insight. It is commonly used for testing marketing materials (packaging, preliminary ad concepts, promotions, websites etc.), assessing new product concepts, capturing employee and customer feedback, and testing political messages. In general, Invoke can be beneficial for any study where you want to capture participants’ reactions and feedback to particular stimulus in a live/real-time environment.
The Invoke research platform is available in 6 languages: English, Spanish, German, French, Italian, and Portuguese.
Up to 300 participants can take part simultaneously in a live Invoke session. But a typical study is more likely to include between 50 and 100 people per single session. For hard-to-reach target audiences, sessions have been conducted with as few as 35 participants.
The primary decision criterion in choosing the appropriate group size is the likely difficulty in recruiting the target audience. For market research studies, where sample size has a direct effect on costs because of incentives and recruitment costs, budget will also be a decision factor.
For market research studies
The recruitment of participants can be handled by your preferred panel vendor or Invoke can recommend a list of reliable vendors. Alternatively, recruitment can be generated from other sources such as a customer database.
For internal studies (e.g. HR)
Participants are typically targeted and invited from an employee list. The client provides the list of intended invitees. The client also makes the initial contact with invitees to communicate that they will be receiving contact from Invoke. This client-led communication is a critical step in ensuring a high show rate.
We have perfected the recruitment process over the many hundreds of sessions we have conducted. We manage the “Show Rates” through a combination of communication protocols and processes.
For Market Research studies
Participants are also offered incentives. The typical participant incentive for a 60 minute session is $20. For 90 minutes, its $30. Professional audiences and low incidence targets are usually offered higher incentives to maximize the show rates.
For internal studies (e.g. HR)
The incentive for participants is simply the expectation from their employer to be a good corporate citizen and contribute as requested. It is important that the initial communication which an employer sends out to potential session participants clearly and compellingly states the goal of the session and how they will benefit from participating such as "having a voice in the future of the company".
Invoke uses a “3-month past participation” within each screener that is deployed that works as a filter to eliminate persons that have participated in similar studies within the past 90 days. For example, we will not allow anyone to complete or qualify for a session about financial services if they have already participated in one in the past 90 days. The past participation question (within the past 3 months) is standard for all Invoke recruitments.
Also, the majority of our vendors use technical gates that only allow panelists to be contacted a certain amount of times per month. Most vendors will state that panelists are only asked to complete 1½ to 2 surveys a month.
Yes. All participant identities are totally anonymous to the client. The system assigns random user IDs that participants receive in their invitation and use to log in to the session. Once they log in, they are also assigned a random screen name, which is how they are identified in-session. The client never sees the identity behind any screen name and they never see user IDs. Also, and importantly, under CASRO rules, we are precluded from sharing that information with clients.
Most sessions are either 60, 75, or 90 minutes in length. There are two primary determining factors for length of session: the number of variables, issues, or concepts being evaluated; and the ratio of open-ended questions to closed-ended.
The interactive nature of the Invoke platform makes it more engaging for a participant than traditional survey methods. Consequently, the Invoke methodology has a much higher completion rate than self-completion surveys. Participants enjoy the session experience and the overall dropout rate for Invoke sessions is low (generally below 5%).
Both closed-ended and open-ended questions can be asked. The closed-ended questions have to be either a scaled, multiple choice, grid question, or pre-determined list.
Participant answers to open questions can be sent out for other session participants to view and vote upon (agree/disagree). This feature can help provide feedback on the commonalties of the open-ended questions and helps provide more enjoyment and thus preclude drop out from the study.
Invoke’s Concept Rotation feature is designed to minimize the effects of order bias when showing multiple concepts. Concept rotation allows you to divide the session participants into sub-groups (based on the number of concepts you wish to test) so that each sub-group is presented with the concepts in a different order. For additional precision, you can inform your Invoke Project Manager of up to two criteria by which to balance each of the sub-groups (e.g. an equal distribution of male/female). Please note that Concept Rotation carries an additional fee.
The life cycle of a session has three phases. Controls vary depending on the phase:
Phase 1 & 3 (Before and after session): At this time, the session materials are accessible only to authorized personnel who have the internal URL, user ID and password. These personnel are the Project Managers for that study, the back office operations personnel and the facilitators.
Phase 2 (During session): During this time, the content is available only to participants that were invited to the session and received an email invitation with the session URL, user ID and password. Clicking on the session URL enables participants to log in only during the session.
While we are unable to “see” participants visually, they are fully exposed nonetheless in how they answer the questions because we are able to get more open, honest and candid responses through the anonymity and comfort offered in an Invoke session. So, if in the end what you want is the ability to get deep, diagnostic, emotional responses and know that those responses are truthful, the Invoke methodology has proven more able to achieve that than focus groups.
Yes, in the Invoke platform you have the ability to "chat" with individual participants to drill down on a particular issue. Any chat dialog is captured in the dashboard for all observers to see. And is captured in the post session reports
This capability can be turned on or off for a session, depending on your needs.
Active participation is encouraged throughout the session by the use of interesting stimulus and engaging questions. A ‘roundtable discussion’ atmosphere is fostered by allowing participants to see what others are saying and enabling them to vote on whether they agree with other statements being made. While there may be some participants who do drop off during the session, this number is typically very small (less than 5% on average).
No. Although the session moderator and observers can see all responses, each participant only sees a small number of responses from other participants and only when the moderator allows it through enabling the Voting Feature. Moreover, responses are constantly monitored, and problem participants can be quickly removed from the session on the fly.
During Invoke sessions, a variety of methods are used to summarize large numbers of closed and open-ended responses, including:
Real-time Comparison Views: A summary matrix enables the moderator and observers to compare concepts, ads, etc. on key measures at a glance. Color codes are provided to easily spot “winners” and “losers” and facilitate real-time probing.
Real-time Keyword Coding: This view processes responses in real time to create a frequency map of top keywords. This not only illuminates key ideas and insights quickly, but also allows responses to be filtered based on common themes and ideas
Real-time Cross Tabbing & Filtering: This feature offers the ability to cross tabulate and filter both closed and open-ended questions by responses to previous questions. For example, you can filter out the verbatim responses of a “likes” question based on gender, age, or even purchase intent.
In each Invoke session, there is a single host, or research moderator, but you can invite multiple people to log in and view the session remotely via an Observer Dashboard. This is a great way to include all of your project stakeholders and allow them to share in the insight as it unfolds. You can have up to 30 observers logged in to the system. The research moderator is typically in close contact with the observers during the session – either by phone or in person – and there is much benefit to the real-time discussion of the results and on-the-fly chat and probing that occurs.
We partner with various panel providers which gives us the ability to reach the most targeted demographic segments. In particular, we have done various studies with Hispanics in this age range. The Invoke platform is also available in Spanish as well as English, to facilitate reaching this portion of the Hispanic population.
The Invoke Platform helps reduce bias and incorrect assumptions due to the scale of the open-ended responses. With Keyword Coding and the Voting View, we are able to identify whether opinions are based on a group consensus or whether they are outliers. The ability to analyze large-scale qualitative responses on the fly makes it easier to manage bias in analyzing the results.
The content of the session is available to the participants only during the live session. At that point, only participants who have received the session URL address and have been assigned a user ID and password can attend and view the stimuli. The Technical Moderator may also remove the stimuli from view at any point. At the end of the session, the Technical Moderator usually instructs the system to delete all session content from the participants’ computers and their browser caches. In addition, we disable both the Print Screen key and the right click option that allows a participant to capture screen shots and save them to the clipboard and paste them into other applications. Our experience shows that clients have been satisfied with this method and it has not delayed or prevented them from conducting studies.