Qualitative and exploratory nature of this tool is focused on a targeted group of people – whose participation is expected over an extended period of time. On most occasions participants are exposed to product and brand stimuli. Interaction happens with the help of both open-ended, as well as closed-end questions.
They interact with other participants and get involved in discussions about specific brands or products. These communities are sometimes designed in such a way that allow participants to share their own contents – which could be in the form of either blog entries, video upload or with the help of any other multimedia. It is also accompanied with commenting and sharing the view points on other participants’ insights, similar to social networking websites.
Online research communities are widely used to develop effective advertising campaigns, or to develop new services or products with the help of novel idea.