Unlike a jury summons, being selected for a focus group can be fun and exciting. Not only are you getting paid for your time but you have the unique opportunity to provide direct feedback that can influence the future of a product or service that you might use. That’s pretty cool. But what happens when you are actually in the focus group? There are a few things that you can expect.
Most focus groups have between five and eight people in them so you can expect to be with a small group of people. You were picked for a specific reason and will likely have a different opinion or experience than the others. It’s important for you to speak up! You can offer a viewpoint that represents a certain market segment that the company is interested in so give your honest opinions and thoughts to their questions.
Your time commitment will usually be around one to two hours. This is so everyone can be heard and the moderator has a chance to go through all the topics and points but not so long that it is a burden on you.
The moderator is there to make sure the group stays on task and will guide the discussion. They may or may not be an employee of the company but they are a professional and have a unique skill to identify trends and items of importance without skewing the data. They will have a predetermined set of questions but will also follow other threads that may be beneficial to the company.
The hard work of focus groups is in the planning so participants get to have the fun. So just show up, give your opinion, and maybe enjoy a snack!