/ Qualitative Research

How To 'Virtually' Get More Out of Your Focus Groups

Since the second World War, Focus Groups have been used to analyze the effectiveness of propaganda. Since then, it has been used by various organizations to understand how effective or efficient a product or service is and what can be done to improve it.

By definition, a Focus Group is a "carefully planned discussion designed to obtain perceptions on a defined area of interest in a permissive, non-threatening environment." [*Krueger, R. A. (1988). Focus groups: A practical guide for applied research.*] Traditionally it is conducted with 7 - 10 people with a very seasoned interviewer in a location that helps interviewees focus on the questions. As this is a group activity, an individual's attitudes and personality can have a profound impact on other group members, which, in most cases, can allow the group to be more responsive to questions by helping them to open up, or, allow shy participants to agree with those who have a more dominant personality. This is only the tip of the iceberg.

Advantages of Focus Groups

1. Gives New Insights
When people are allowed to be themselves and relay their experiences in the form of a story it allows them to be as raw as it can get, leading to key insights that can allow organizations to learn significantly.

2. Provides a Deeper Understanding of a Topic
Providing the right platform and phrasing the right questions plays an important role in enabling participants to speak deeply about their concerns.

3. Explains Statistical Data
Allowing people to speak freely explains the statistical data garnered from other evaluative processes.

While all these points are great, the disadvantages, in many cases, outweigh the benefits.

Disadvantages of Focus Groups

1. It's Extremely Difficult to Get Everyone In The Same Place
It's usually a logistical nightmare to get everyone in one location.

2. It's Expensive and Time Consuming
Ample preparations have to be made in order for respondents to feel comfortable. Food, transportation, cost of location, incentives for respondents are some of the associated costs.

3. Groups Are Difficult to Manage
Getting shy respondents to participate while quelling dominant respondents is a very draining task, even for experienced Focus Group leaders. This can lead to inaccurate data collection as a group usually leans to the side of the more dominant participants.

4. The Data is Difficult to Analyze
Currently, most Focus Group data is recorded by hand, then manually entered into tools like SPSS to be analyzed. This activity is ripe for disruption.

Making Your Focus Group Virtual

Samelogic Q is ideal for taking the hassle out of organizing Focus Groups. Samelogic Q is a Qualitative Mobile Video Survey Platform that enables an individual to ask an audience as many questions as they like, in return, their audience responds with a video for each question. These responses are then analyzed with facial emotional algorithms and speech is then transcribed to text and analyzed with NLU (Natural Language Understanding) to get a better understanding of what people say and how they feel about the topic being discussed.

Samelogic, Create Campaign

Creating Your Focus Group Session There is no need to have all your respondents in one location. First create a session by selecting "Create" from the vertical navigation menu. Name your session by inserting it in "Campaign Name". Then enter the session description, select the language you expect respondents to speak in, then finally add the questions. You can add as many questions as you like but we recommend a maximum of 10. After all this is done, click 'Create Campaign'.

Samelogic, Share Survey Link

Distributing The Session Survey Link
After creating your session, go to the session page, click the "Survey" button and copy the session survey link. You can distribute via SMS, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp or any mobile friendly method you see fit.


Participating in The Virtual Focus Group
Respondents then tap the link on their mobile and respond with a video to each question. A response can range from 15 seconds to 5 minutes. It's as easy as recording a video for Snapchat.

Samelogic Dashboard

Analyzing Responses
The Samelogic Q dashboard has a bunch of metrics that enables you to analyze responses very quickly which allows you to act quicker than usual.

With the Samelogic Frustration and Delight Scores one can easily know how Frustrated or Delighted respondents are about a particular topic. The Frustration and Delight scores are calculated by analyzing what words are used and what emotions are expressed.

The Emotional Correlation Radar can tell how 'truthful' respondents are by looking at the overlap of Facial and Vocal Emotions expressed. If there is a negative correlation, we advise to take a closer look at responses, if not, we can assume respondents are being 'truthful'.


Each response can be viewed to understand what each respondent had to say about the each question. When watching a video, the facial emotions expressed can be on the video timeline. Under the video, a transcript of what was said is displayed and beneath that are the keywords (or keyterms) detected. Using tonal analysis we can know if a keyword was said positively or negatively. If the keyword is highlighted in green, it was said positively, if highlighted in red, it was said negatively.On the right hand of the video the Frustration and Delight score of the respondent can seen, along with the Correlation Radar. Finally, the video, audio or JSON on the video can be downloaded for deeper analysis.


Focus Groups are difficult to manage. Samelogic Q makes it much easier as respondents can participate from the comfort of their own homes, which saves the you, the organizer, time and money. Focus Group data is difficult to analyze. Samelogic Q provides a platform with actionable metrics that does this automatically. Interested? Sign up today!

Dwayne Samuels

Dwayne Samuels

Cofounder & CEO @ Samelogic. I love videos. Even more, I love using ML to understand videos.

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