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Probing involves an interviewer asking follow-up questions designed to obtain more and deeper information. It is conducted in a conversational style. Some people believe that probing can elicit people's sub-conscious motivations. An example of probing is:[1]

Respondent: When I bought my new Mazda, I felt, “What a bargain!”

Interviewer: I hear what you thought, but what did you feel?

Respondent: Well, I felt that the price was fine.

Interviewer: And what did you feel?

Respondent: You know, I felt a little cheap.


  1. Adapted from: Rossiter, John R. and Larry Percy (1997), Advertising Communications & Promotion Management (Second ed.). Sydney: McGraw-Hill, page 521.