Modern virtual focus groups from New Perspectives have many advantages over traditional focus groups. Traditional focus groups have been formally used by organizations to evaluate products and services ever since the publication of “Paul F. Lazarsfeld and Mass Communication Effects” in 1941. In the past, consumers were brought together at a particular location to test products or answer questions about goods or services. This process although useful and powerful was expensive, time consuming and at times logistically challenging.
Coordinating these events would often become a project within itself.
In order to conduct a traditional focus group, significant obstacles and requirements need to be overcome. Non-virtual focus groups require arranging and paying for travel, securing a facility and providing amenities like refreshments. Often keeping this powerful capability out of reach for many smaller companies. With the growth, and expansive use of the Internet, New Perspectives virtual focus groups are a more practical option for companies, agencies and organizations.
Just as many companies began using conference calling, and email to bring together business associates from around the country and the world, now many companies use virtual focus groups to inform their research and market studies.
More people becoming computer savvy and spending time online has created a “virtual” real-time world that provides an excellent environment for virtual focus groups.
As pointed out in the article “The Virtues of Virtual Focus Groups,” virtual focus groups possess several advantages over traditional focus groups:
- they are 30 to 40% cheaper to administer than conventional focus groups
- they can draw from a broader demographic base
- they are not geographically restricted
- they eliminate the need for travel
- the results are compiled and tabulated in real time
- respondents are likely to be more open and honest in their responses
Although there still is a place for traditional (non-virtual) focus groups, the prevailing winds of change indicate virtual focus groups are on the rise and continue to make a meaningful improvement in modern market research.
For information on how New Perspectives can help you with your virtual focus groups and marketing research needs, contact us today.