Dear Focus Groups, We Need to Talk

Dear Focus Groups, We Need to Talk

In October of 2015, Paul Hudson, CEO of Flex MR, published a post on LinkedIn titled Dear Focus Groups, We Need to Talk. The message to focus groups from a marketing research veteran is an important one to notice. We decided to share a few of the key points from Paul’s article with you and why it matters to Package InSight.

The Depth of Focus Groups is Fading

For a long time, focus groups have been popular in qualitative research for their depth of understanding. Paul and many others believe that focus groups don’t even know what that means anymore. He does say they still may be useful for creative jam sessions, but even that arena is being shaken with new methods. The key point about why the depth of focus groups is fading is because “we create a narrative and story about what was said, not how it was said.” The bottom line is we want to see how humans interact in the wild, not in an artificial setting.

The Focus Group Budget was so Convincing

Another key point that Paul made about focus groups is their budget convinced him of their validity. It wasn’t always the process and the results, but the cost effectiveness that convinced him. The bottom line can sometimes get in the way of doing the most effective research. Insightful research takes time, experimenting and more money than the traditional focus group.

Read the full article here.

Where do we go From Here?

It’s true marketing research has changed drastically over the past 15 years. There is so much new technology and methodology to explore. Whether it’s online mobile diaries, virtual group brainstorms, or eye tracking, there is a wealth of information available now about your consumers. At Package InSight, companies can work with us through two paths: consumer research and ideation for product innovation.

Consumer Research

Consumer research is our most cost effective solution for understanding the impact of your package and product design on consumers. We use a blend of qualitative and quantitative methods to fully understand the significance of changes in your design. Our quantitative method is primarily based through eye tracking inside of our retail lab at Clemson University.

Ideation for Product Innovation

We are a resource for innovation, allowing clients to engage product and packaging improvement outside corporate confines or other natural constraints. Our resources and methodology capture and organize ideas, then iteratively design, prototype, test, and improve those ideas. The resulting seeds and opportunities belong to the client.

If you are interested in learning more about the Package InSight process and research, download a few of our case studies.

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