How to Run Successful Online Focus Groups: A 101 for WFH Beginnersโ€‚by@Kait

How to Run Successful Online Focus Groups: A 101 for WFH Beginners

Kait Hanerfeld HackerNoon profile picture

Kait Hanerfeld

Digital Marketing Manager @My-Take

What is an Online Focus Group?

An online focus group is a focus group that has been converted to be digital either through video or text methods. Online focus groups have revolutionized the way that market researchers are able to conduct exploratory or qualitative research, making it faster than ever before to connect with consumers.

How Online Video Focus Groups are Changing Market Research

As we become more technology and internationally driven, market researchers need to access voice of customer feedback even if physically coming together in person is not an option. Focus groups conducted online have opened up new opportunities for researchers. Here are some leading-edge advantages that VoC online focus group software platforms provide researchers with:

Easier Planning:ย Online focus group software options have enabled researchers to create and execute a study on a momentโ€™s notice. The online nature of the studies allows for faster agile planning of study specifics.

Online Recruiting:ย The recruiting process is digitized when utilizing online platforms. By digitizing your focus group, you open up your market of participants to a wide range of consumers, fit to meet any study requirements across the globe.

Faster From Start to Finish:ย Online studies are faster to execute due to the fact that all steps of the process can be conducted from just about anywhere in the world at any given time with the right software platform. Automatic transcriptions expedite the reporting process by allowing researchers to directly access what was said during a session and utilize it.

Cost Savings:ย In-person focus groups can be costly to organize and conduct in terms of both money and time lost. Online focus groups eliminate the need for travel as well. The savings to be found from moving your study online using video chat methods can be worth thousands of dollars.

Client-Side Participation:ย On the client-side, participating in the study is still available with online software as well. With video and chat capabilities, people from your team can moderate, observe, and collaborate on the study without ever having to meet up in person.

How To Transition to Online Focus Groups

When transitioning to digital it is important to choose the best technology platform to fit the needs of your study. Here are some factors to consider when choosing your software provider:

1. Is the company's online focus group platform their own, or do they license or use open source tools?

Some research firms try to move into the online segment of research by deploying another companyโ€™s software as a solution application or an open source platform. This is not necessarily an issue if the provider is using one of the more advanced software platforms, but this isnโ€™t always the case.

2. Does the platform offer focus group centric features?

Are there features available in the platform that allow you to queue up questions in advance to keep the conversation flowing? Does the platform allow for moderator screen-sharing and observers? Will you be able to receive a transcription following the focus group, and if so will it be AI generated or Human? And most importantly, does the platform you are using have a secure infrastructure backing it? These are some of the things to keep in mind when choosing a platform that will offer research focused value.

Online focus groups deliver in-the-moment insights to help organizations fuel daily decision-making.

I hope this guide was able to answer some questions you may have had on conducting online focus groups. Feel free to message me if you have any questions regarding conducting your own - Kait ๐Ÿ˜Š

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