To minimize marketing research costs, your company could host a meeting for a focus group online and have them take a paid survey. This is definitely cheaper than paying for travel and lodging expenses to have them in the same room. Having a focus group work on an online paid survey can also help you obtain results more effectively and efficiently.
Setting Up a Virtual Meeting for a Focus Group to Take an Online Paid Survey
A focus group should involve no more than ten members taking an online paid survey. If you go beyond that, you might need more than one focus group moderator working with the group. Working with a limited size will allow the moderator to focus more on the responses of each individual and pick up any important nuances that wont be seen in survey sheets.
Speaking of moderators, a focus group meeting online to take a paid survey and perhaps perform other tasks will be able to work with each other better if they have an experienced moderator guiding them. A good moderator is one who has excellent people skills, with the ability to mediate any possible altercation between members.
The meeting starts with the moderator introducing himself and explaining the purpose for creating the focus group as well as the need for answering the online paid survey. The moderator may also explain why there the individuals have been chosen to be part of the focus group. But the latter may not be necessary with focus groups that regularly meet up. Companies like Atkins Research Group and 20/20 Research Incorporated, for instance, regularly contact the same individuals for market surveys.
The focus group must also be made aware about time restrictions they have to work with when answering the online paid survey. This will ensure that they only give relevant answers. In most cases, two minutes is usually enough to get the responses of the group per question.
The moderator must have a prepared set of questions ready for the focus group beforehand. But he must also be prepared to ask questions that veer away from the script whenever the necessity arises.
Choosing the Right Participants for a Focus Group and Taking an Online Paid Survey
The qualifications will mainly depend on what you want to achieve with a focus group. You should get people who are not aware or have never tried your products if you wish to learn more about untapped markets. Be careful with choosing your participants since the wrong choice can produce misleading results.