If I receive an invitation to apply for a project, does that mean I've been selected?

No, we generally send out an invitation to people who appear to fit the basic criteria such as age, gender, location etc.   If you wish to apply you need fill out the relevant questionnaire. We then use the answers you have given to determine whether you fit the target criteria for the project.  If you do, we will usually call you to check your answers and see if you are still available.   If you don't fit the criteria OR we fill the project we will send an email to let you know.

What will I be expected to do at the session?

Generally you will be asked for your opinion on whatever is being researched.  This could be anything from a new website or app which is being tested, a new product or service or an old product or service which is being revamped, an advertising campaign, new packaging.....the list is endless.

We don't expect you to be an expert about the topic being researched, however our clients will have invested a lot of money into the research so it's really important that you do contribute and share your honest opinion as that's what you're being paid to do.

How do I get paid?

Usually in cash at the session.  Sometimes we pay by BACS or cheque and occasionally vouchers are offered instead.  It really is dependant on each individual project.  The method of payment should however, normally be advised to you at the outset so you know what to expect.

Will I be offered refreshments?

Normally yes, but it really does depend on how long the session is for.  Sometimes the refreshments are just drinks and at other projects you could be offered a buffet meal.

I've been selected to take part but I can't go.  Can I send a friend or family member instead?

No, if you can't make it for any reason, please do let us know as soon as possible.  We will have used specific criteria to determine whether you are suitable for the research project so your friend or family member will most likely not match the same criteria and would therefore be unsuitable

Will it cost me anything to sign up?

No, it is completely free to register with us and take part in our events.  At no point will we ask you to pay out anything.

It sounds too good to be true, will I really be paid?

YES, if you are selected to take part in one of our projects and you attend as agreed, you will be paid.  Payment is usually made in cash at the session, however, if the method of payment is anything other than cash we will usually let you know beforehand.

Will anyone try to sell me anything at a session or try to get me to sign up for a product or service?

Absolutely not.  The Market Research Society expressly forbids Clients from trying to sell participants anything at the session.  The session will be purely for Market Research purposes and is designed to enable clients to get feedback on their products or services directly from their target audience.

Can I take part in an event every week?

No, generally participants would not be able to take part in more than one event in any six month period. However, there are other opportunities to get involved in surveys and online blog panels. 

Please note that taking part in market research events is not going to give you a regular income. 

Is there anything I can do to improve my chances of being selected?

Yes, if you build up your profile by answering extra questions you are more likely to receive priority emails.  For example if we only need a small number of iPhone users for an event in London, we are more likely to invite the people we know have iPhones before inviting everyone else.  Building up your profile also helps to cut down on the number of duplicate questions you need to answer.

There are other ways you can improve your chances:

- Ensure your application is correctly completed and you have answered all of the relevant questions.

- Answer honestly!  Sometimes we see applications where the applicant has ticked EVERY option, buy EVERY product, EVERY day/week.  If it doesn't seem feasible we are less likely to select you for a phone call.

- If there is a question asking you who your top 3 people to invite to dinner would be or 3 alternative things you could do with a house brick....we're generally asking for a reason.  It gives us some indication of how creative you can be but also gives us a great idea of who is more interested in the project (and therefore most likely to turn up).

- If you are selected to take part in a session, be polite and courteous and contribute to the session.  If we receive feedback that you were unco-operative, rude or not willing to contribute we would not select you again.

- Be flexible! The more session times you highlight that you are available for the more likely we will call you to check your availability.

I am supposed to attend a project but I can't go now.  Will it matter if I just don't show up?

Yes it will.  Our client will have invested thousands of pounds in the research and will have asked us to recruit specific numbers to attend.  It's very important  that they get the right number of participants in order for the results to be meaningful.

If you cannot attend, it's very important that you let us know - ideally giving as much notice as possible so we can try to find a replacement for you.  If you do need to cancel on the day it's not ideal but we'd much rather you do that then just not show up. 

If you don't show up for an event and you don't let anyone know you have cancelled, it's highly unlikely that we'll select you for anything again.

I've been asked to do a pre-session task but I don't feel like doing it, do I have to bother?

Yes, the pre-session task is a very important part of the research.  If you have been asked to do a pre-task and you are unable to do it for any reason, please do let us know as soon as possible and we will advise whether you can still attend.

I fitted the criteria you were looking for, so why was I not selected to take part?

When we send out invitations we only make known a small amount of the criteria.  

This is because we need people to answer honestly and spontaneously and not to just select the answers we are looking for.  

We therefore only publish a very small account of the full criiteria.  

For example, we may say in the invite that we are looking for ladies aged 25 to 45 years who use skincare products.  

What we may not say in the invite is that we are looking for one group who have children and use Brand X at least weekly, Another group with children who have never used Brand X before but are open to doing so and another group who do not have children and use either Brand Y or Z.

That is why we need you to fill out the questionaire so we can determine who fits the full criteria and who we can in invite to the event.

Where possible, we do try to priorise people who have not taken part before.

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