On the Doorstep – Market Research

So, armed with our interview feedback, draft actions from our stakeholder event and a list of willing volunteers, we re-grouped to consider the first of our themes – community feedback. There was lots of great ideas shared and a real recognition that many of us had lost sight of, or forgotten the ‘art of’…..just going out on to the street and having a good old chat with folk walking by.

We held a workshop to think and talk through some of that together, we covered:

  • Why we want to talk to people on our doorstep
  • Thinking through what we wanted to talk to people about, and how we could record that while still just “having a chat”.
  • Getting to know the questionnaire/chat we want to have
  • Practising the questionnaire and chat
  • Things to consider when approaching people (identifying ourselves, our fears, safety concerns, time out, our worry that folk would think we just wanted to sell them something, etc…)
  • What information we could share with people (including being able to say ‘I don’t know’, finding further information, handing out leaflets)

And then we had a short session of piloting the questionnaire on the doorstep.  This was a great experience for all of us, we had a lot of lovely chats and received a wealth of information, advice and suggestions from the people who stopped to talk to us. Some even came in and interacted with our talking wall.

We’ve had several sessions of on the doorstep since, conducted by members of our group made up of volunteers, staff from our charity partners and the council.  Each individual commented how valuable the experience was, having the chance to speak to different people and getting an enthusiasm for the Hub.  However, most found it a draining experience, and reflected that to keep the enthusiasm and momentum, shorter sessions were better.

Link to: Doorstep Questionnaire

It was always our intention that our ‘on the doorstep’ work would be a set of ‘evolving questions’, which could gather information for a variety of outlets.  Initially, we just wanted to find out if people knew about the hub, what they thought of the outside, whether they would use it, who they thought would use it, etc.  This will give us direction for not just community engagement, but for our marketing too.

In the future, a whole set of other questions have been put forward for us to ask, including:-

  • Do you know any groups that might want to use the space?
  • Would you like to see any particular community events there?
  • Would you like an opportunity to come and work with us to improve our communities?
  • Would you like to leave us your contact details so you can find out what we’re doing in the future?
  • Would you like our contact details, and information about our Facebook Page and Website?

In total over 3 one-hour sessions, we achieved 17 responses, which we will use to feedback to each of the working groups in due course.   The responses where mainly positive, and have given all of the working groups a lot to think about!

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We're a team from Scottish Government Social Justice and Regeneration department. Between us, we have a vast experience of working the Third Sector and Local Authority, and we're here to help the Dunfermline Advice Hub to reach is fullest potential. Our team consists of: Dave Kilgour, from Aberdeen City Council, Martin McAulay, from COSLA and Edinburgh Council and Stephanie Plotnikoff from Glasgow, various Third Sector Organisations.