On the Record is Shugoll Research's
regular examination of market research in Washington, DC and around the
country. In this edition, we are discussing children's focus groups and what to look for during your focus group sessions.
online for previous editions of On The Record and further information.
Nearly two in five children have used a tablet or Smartphone before they could
speak in full sentences.
A new report reveals 38% of children under the age of two have used a
mobile device for watching videos, playing games or other media-related
study, conducted by advocacy organization Common Sense Media,
surveyed parents of children newborn to age eight on their media
habits. Read more about the study's findings at Mashable.
doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change
the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead
help with your next focus group or marketing research project? Visit
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MacDonald had a focus group
tykes know how to get those big-ticket items from mom and dad. They
drop little clues about what they can't possibly live without. One good
way to find out what youthful influencers are thinking is to interact
with them in focus groups or observe them at home. These research
methods can yield valuable information. They can show you how children
feel about a product and help you gain insight into the best way to
motivate kids to ask their parents to buy it.
Here are a few tips for conducting a focus group study with kids:
your groups no larger than six at a time. You'll be able to keep better
control and each child will be more likely to participate.
each group no longer than 60 minutes. This way you'll have enough time to get the information before attention spans start to wane.
- Make sure to plan for unstructured play time. And have your product handy,
so you can see how the kids interact with it.
put more than two grade levels together so you can create a safe and homogeneous environment for sharing.
you're working with children age four to six, interview the parent(s), then the kids. You'll learn a lot by comparing answers.
the kids are pre-teen or older, split them by gender. This will avoid teasing, flirting and embarrassment.
an alternative to focus group research, consider observing children at
home in their natural environment. Observing them in their own home,
you can gain insights into how a particular product fits into their activities and lifestyles.
Focus Groups: What To Focus
well run focus group can provide you with a wealth of information. You
may not always get exactly what you were expecting, but if you know
what to look for, it can be well worthwhile. Here are a few things to
keep in mind.
Every group is a brand new experience. All groups
are not the same. Each one has a different makeup, with different group
dynamics. So don't expect to see reruns of previous discussions.
All for one? Fuggedaboutit? Don't assume you'll see
a consensus. Members love to spout their own "unique" viewpoints.
That's why they came!
Keep an open mind. You'll hear things you don't
agree with. Don't just pick out the comments you agree with. Listen to
the full discussion. You'll learn a lot!
Bodies talk. Make sure you're watching. Non-verbal
behavior often says more than conversation about how someone feels.
Look for defensive behavior, antagonism, and reluctance to sharing.
Be patient. Don't expect every moment of the
discussion to be meaningful or quotable. Expect peaks and valleys.
Give the moderator some latitude. A resourceful
moderator will find creative ways of probing to get in-depth responses.
Don't require a rigid script to be used. And don't send a lot of notes
into the room. It can distract the moderator and the group.
Boring is good. Don't expect every group to
entertain you. Boring groups can provide exciting insights.
Look beyond what she's wearing. Don't get hung up on
how a respondent looks, dresses or acts. Focus on the information
you're looking to learn.