MaxDiff vs Conjoint: Which to use when?

MaxDiff vs Conjoint

Maximum Differential Analysis and Conjoint Analysis (MaxDiff vs Conjoint) are both advanced analytical tools that can be used to gain greater insights into your customers’ preferences for your – and your competitors’ – products. Let’s look a bit more at each of these and when to use them.

Maximum Differential Analysis (MaxDiff)

MaxDiff is a type of analysis that I’ve seen commonly used for personality tests. A MaxDiff series of questions are set up to present a set of options to a respondent. The respondent then selects which option they most agree with and which they least agree with; when done in personality tests, it’s typically presented as “This sounds most like me,” versus, “This sounds least like me.”

For market research purposes, maxdiff can be used to narrow down the traits that a customer finds most important in a product. For example, a respondent might be presented with a list of five traits about a product, and they then have to select which item is most important to them and which is least important to them.

Taken a step further, this can be done with a brand evaluation to determine what aspects of your brand a customer finds most important versus least important. Additionally, you can use the same set of maxdiff questions, except pivot to see what your respondents believe you do best at versus do worst at; which aspects of your brand they are most satisfied with versus least satisfied with; and even what brand aspects your respondents think represent you best versus least.

Conjoint analysis

Conjoint analysis can seem a bit like a maxdiff analysis, in that respondents are presented with groups of attributes that they then need to choose between, but a conjoint analysis does this differently. First, the respondent doesn’t select which attribute lies of each end of a polar opposite spectrum. Instead, a respondent sees two lists of product attributes describing two different products, and then chooses which sounds more appealing to them (or which they are most likely to purchase).

So, you can have fun with the conjoint set of questions, varying by one or two attributes between each set presented to your respondents, and determine which attributes are your respondents valuing higher than others?

The fantastic thing about doing this in an upcoming feature enhancement in QuestionPro is that deciding what groups of attributes will be presented to your respondents will be automatically calculated by the system. All you’ll need to do is list the attributes, how many variations you want to test for each attribute, and how many total questions you want your respondents to view. The system will take care of the rest.

Applied to brand measurement, you can see how you could take the results of a maxdiff analysis and create a conjoint question set that starts to measure the actual value your respondents place on various aspects of your brand.

Have we just blown your mind?

Learn more about maxdiff and conjoint tomorrow!

Learn more about maxdiff, conjoint, when to use each, and how to use each, including some ideas we have about using these to measure brand equity in the following exclusive QuestionPro webinar.