Editor's note: Susan Fader is qualitative researcher, strategist and moderator at Fader and Associates, a New York research firm. This is an edited version of a post that originally appeared under the title, “Opportunities conducting market research during the COVID-19 pandemic.” 

The COVID-19 pandemic has upended the world of market research and unleashed:

Recognizing that some research studies should be shelved and that some demographics should not be contacted right now, there are some unique opportunities that COVID-19 has provided market researchers. 

In fact, many crave the chance to have a conversation and share their opinions today. Here are a few tips to get you through this unusual time.

Review all the demographics you generally want to conduct research with and see if any, especially the ones that are ordinarily harder to recruit, seem open and available to participate. Some demographics may be more accessible and be more willing to share, talk and participate in a research study in the COVID-19 world. In addition, the high incentives we usually pay for participation in these studies can be a bonus form many who have seen their income cut. 

While COVID-19 has overwhelmed frontline medical professionals in the U.S., the CDC and the Surgeon General have recommended non-urgent appointments and surgeries to be postponed. Therefore, those who focus on elective surgery, e.g., orthopedic surgeons, cataract surgeons, elective cosmetic plastic surgery and even dentists, are significantly less busy. Many physicians/non-surgeons who have mostly office-based practices are finding themselves with time on their hands – with many of staying within the confines of their homes – and available to take part in a market research study.

Over the past few weeks, I have found these medical market research discussions to be more focused, informative and relaxed compared to other physician and h...