Are focus groups just a one-sided mirror, asks CPD fellow Eva Cox in this 9 August article on Crikey.
“The primary purpose of properly run focus groups as a marketing tool is to work out how to sell a product by understanding what people think and feel about it. A free flowing discussion, not question and answers, gives insight into both initial responses and how views are defended and changed. So the way the ‘product’ is discussed between group participants provides clues to how it can be sold.
“If competently interpreted, the advice being given to political parties could not result in the current policy platitudes and sales pitch, unless the ‘product’ to be discussed was very dull. If there was any imagination in the products and proper processes were followed, we would not be reliant on gender, dog whistles and internecine personal warfare to provide the main interest in the last three weeks.”
Read the whole article here.