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Five Reasons Focus Groups Aren't Dead!

Kat Figatner, Senior Vice President

The key to Focus Groups effective use is knowing when to use them. Here are five times when using Focus Groups makes sense.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

It is clear that Online Communities are a growing research method. But, what are communities exactly. It is not an idle question, as I was reminded this week when I was asked to explain them to a marketing manager who had never used them.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

One of the more infuriating experiences a moderator can encounter in a focus group is the respondent who seems to be critical of everything. Show him advertising, and he will quibble about an adjective. Show him a new product, and he will question its quality. Show him a completely different product, and he will have another reservation--Or, exactly the same one. Behind the mirror, the observers are losing their patience.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

By Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

We often encourage consumers to think "metaphorically." In a focus group or interview, metaphors can be powerful. Those who use them open up. They move in new and unexpected directions. Ultimately, the metaphors put us in touch with the unconscious motivations and beliefs of the consumers who create them.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

By Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

Every so often, one runs into a marvelous confluence of avocation and vocation. I love cars. So, I was reading the blog at Car and Driver and discovered a long discussion of the stagnation of the Honda brand. Cars AND marketing. I couldn't resist. Toward the end of the piece, Dave Marble described an example of how Honda got in the position of creating underwhelming products.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

By Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

By Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

The title is meant to be a bit clever. I am not talking about actual focus groups; I am referring to the term. I have always suspected that focus group was used to refer to any casual, open-ended, small sample, non-projectable research method. And, I always thought that those who used the term this way were misinformed. Well, I have to throw in the towel. I have no better authority than the Pew Research Center.

Bob Relihan, Senior Vice President

There is a good deal of received wisdom about the grocery store design and how it can both engage the consumer and structure their progress through the store. The strategy of placing the more engaging areas, such as the deli and meat, around the perimeter of the store and the packaged items in the center of the store is well known. End-caps capture attention as well as the shelves at eye level.