Our approach and products

We work hard to understand your unique needs and our approach is informed by years of experience (including working client-side).

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We provide strong and actionable strategies, based on solid research

Whether you want to test campaign messages, attract more of your target audience or better understand university decision making, we have the right solution for you.

Our team is skilled in project management and all areas of the research process.

We have exclusive access to a large audience of Year 11s, Year 12s, Year 13s and undergraduates through The Student Room, and we conduct regular research with prospective postgraduates.  We can also source other audiences or use your GDPR- compliant contacts.

On completion of your research, you will receive an insight-led report of our findings with bespoke, strategic recommendations for your institution.


We offer bespoke solutions and off-the-shelf products

We have created a range of products which combine some of our most in-demand services.

However, we know every client is different and your situation is unique, so TSR Insight also offers bespoke solutions that are tailored to meet your needs.

Whether you are a university marketing team, a brand looking to connect with a youth market or a graduate recruiter, get in touch to discuss your needs or send over a brief, and we can take it from there.


How you can use it

Understanding the reasons behind changes in application figures

Exploring perceptions of your university, and how it compares to key competitors

Identifying key messages to differentiate your offer

Could. Should. Would? 

Understand your missing target audience and why they don’t come to you

What is it?
Investigate prospective students who are in a position to apply to your university but are applying to your competitors instead. The research builds a picture of how your target audience makes decisions about university, helping you to understand more about their perceptions of your university and your competitors, as well as their reasons for not applying to your institution.

How it works 
An online survey is sent to The Student Room Community, targeting an audience outside of your university’s own CRM system. We’ll use tried-and-tested questions, using our knowledge and experience researching university applicants, as well as your optional bespoke questions to test your specific brand values or assumptions. 

Could. Should. Would? is a great channel for decliner-style feedback. It will help you understand prospective applicants' awareness, perceptions, and misconceptions about your brand - including whether or not they considered your university. The results will help you identify any barriers to considering and choosing your University, explore perceptions of key competitors and understand where the University sits within
the competitor set.

Request information about Could.Should.Would?

How you can use it

Course development – get in depth feedback on course overviews, features, titles, modules from prospective applicants.

Deep diving into your creatives and campaigns

Building a detailed understanding of your audience’s university application process

Bulletin boards

Tailor-made to meet your objectives, allow participants to get creative with our flexible bulletin boards

What is it?
An in-depth qualitative methodology, where research participants take part in an asynchronous manner over a 5-day period. Each day we ask the students to complete a series of tasks. These can include typical qualitative research questions, polls, or other activities, and can be used for a range of research objectives and topics.

How it works
We use a specialist bulletin boards software specifically designed for market research. We’ll design a bespoke topic guide with questions and tasks specific to your research and business needs. Participants log in to a private bulletin board for a minimum of 15-30 minutes per day to answer your questions. Experienced youth and HE specialist market researchers moderate the discussions each day ensuring your objectives are met.

The research is bespoke to you. It allows students from geographically dispersed locations to collaborate and give creative in-depth feedback online. It delivers a flexible and innovative way of conducting research, asking and answering multiple questions over five days. With additional time to reflect on questions and follow-ups you will gain highly considered responses to your questions.

Request information about Bulletin boards

How you can use it

Discover the most appealing designs for your target audience
Test your Clearing creative and copy on prospective undergraduates
Compare course information to identify optimum content levels

Vote and Tell

Refine your creative with feedback from your target audience

What is it?
Optimise your creatives before they go online or to print by testing it on your target audience. Vote and Tell gets you meaningful student feedback on up to three draft designs. Your creative will be reviewed by a target audience tailored to your campaign needs.

How it works
Our survey methodology will enable you to get measurable quantitative data to make informed decisions. Open questions delve deeper to help you get more detailed feedback. You can also include bespoke questions to fully explore your individual objectives.

Vote and Tell is a great way to compare two to three creative concepts. It provides you with both qualitative and quantitative feedback for your creative, copy and concepts direct from your target audience. You’ll find out what resonates best with your target market and the reasons behind their choices. It will enable you to have confidence the visuals or wording you use in campaigns will resonate with the audience.

Request information about Vote and Tell

How you can use it

Track awareness and perceptions of your brand over time
Explore changes in youth decision-making
Test whether your creatives and copy appeal to applicants

TSR Asks

Answer your burning questions with our simple and cost effective survey

What is it?
TSR Asks is our monthly omnibus survey which enables you to put your questions to a prospective university audience. Our flexible methodology means you can ask questions on an ad hoc basis each month or track changes over time by asking the same questions each time.

How it works
TSR Asks offers different question formats designed to cover all of your survey needs.

Choose from:

  • Multiple choice – select one answer only
  • Multiple choice – select all that apply
  • Multiple choice with ‘other - please specify’ option
  • Ranking questions
  • Open comment/verbatim questions
  • Grid questions

You’ll receive the raw data and data tables within seven days or can request bespoke reporting via our Insight Team.

A highly cost-effective research tool, TSR Asks will give you a snapshot from our student community which will inform your youth strategy. You’ll receive timely responses to your bespoke questions from a Year 12 & 13 audience.

Request information about TSR Asks

How you can use it

Target a specific group and understand their motivations
Explore perceptions and misconceptions about your brand
Understand what matters to your audience, for example the importance of
sustainability in university decision making

Online survey

Our bespoke online surveys are designed with your objectives in mind

What is it?
A quantitative methodology, where participants take part in a survey on their preferred device at a time that suits them. Screening and profile questions ensure we get to the right target audience for your research. The questions are bespoke to your and can be used to explore a range topics, and we can route questions based on respondent answers if required. 

How it works
We offer different service levels tailored to your needs and budgets. Our professional market researchers can design the whole project and research materials based on your objectives and using our knowledge and experiences of youth audiences. Alternatively, use your existing survey questions and share them with our audience. We can provide a full insight-led report of findings or the raw data and data tables only. It’s up to you!

Our online surveys are bespoke to you. They’re great to get quantifiable numbers and percentages to make informed decisions. We can also add open questions to gather in depth feedback.

Request information about online surveys

How you can use it

Learn about current students' experiences and what support they need
Test your prospectus
Understand postgraduate decision-making and barriers to applying

Online focus groups

Our bespoke online focus groups get in-depth feedback from your target audience

What is it?
A qualitative methodology, where a researcher hosts a 60 or 90-minute discussion with 6-8 participants, via an online platform. We recruit the right people for your research and get their feedback on your chosen topic. We can ask participants for their individual opinions and also gain collaborative feedback.

How it works
Our online focus groups are flexible. We take time to understand your needs and can design a discussion guide based on your objectives and our knowledge of conducting qualitative research with youth audiences. Alternatively, we can use your own discussion guide if you prefer. We can recruit respondents from The Student Room community, use a specialist recruitment agency, or work with you to recruit from your own contacts. Our HE specialist researchers will moderate the discussions, and once the research is complete, we provide a full insight-led report of findings. 

Our online focus groups are bespoke to you. They’re great to get rich, insightful feedback from your target audience. An online methodology is a cost-effective approach to speaking to audiences in geographically dispersed areas.

Request information about focus groups

How you can use it

Website UX testing
Qualitative research on a specific subject
Relieve pressure on your team - we'll report on your survey for you

Bespoke research

Have you got a specific brief or questions you need answering? Speak to us and we can tailor-make an approach to meet your objectives

What is it?
Tell us what you’re looking to research, and we’ll suggest ways we can gain the insight you are looking for. We are happy to submit formal proposals for competitive tender if required.

We offer a range of solutions up to full service, taking on as much or as little of your project as you need us to. You can be assured we will meet your objectives because we tailor our research to serve your bespoke needs.

How it works
We will take the information you give us, the questions you want answered, the hypothesis you want to test, or the problem you need to solve, and find innovative and efficient ways of delivering the insights you need. Whether it’s depth interviews, co-creation workshops, or UX testing, our HE specialist market researchers are on-hand to design and manage every aspect of the project. We can also take on parts of your existing projects to relieve pressure on your team (e.g. report writing, survey design).

How can we help you?

Want to find out more about our research solutions?

Request more info