Narrative Focus Group – This type of focus group is generally conducted early in a case. Rather than share lots of facts, you simply tell group members a story to discover what they think is most important about the case. People tend to understand and respond to stories better than they do to lists of factual information.
Subject Matter Focus Group – Words and ideas don’t mean the same thing to everyone. So it’s important to discover how much the potential jurors know about particular topics and how they respond to certain words. This can help you know how much explanation may be needed and what words and phrases will best convey your meaning.
Attitudes Focus Group – In this type of focus group, you ask questions about various topics related to your case and ask group members to respond. This lets you explore the feelings, beliefs, and ideologies of a particular group of people.
Concept Focus Group – Concepts are notoriously difficult to explain or illustrate. However, by narrowing the subject matter and conducting a focus group on just one issue, you can test and improve the effectiveness of exhibits and demonstrations. Good exhibits should speak for themselves and be able to tell a clear and compelling story without explanation. Concept Focus Groups can also be used to discover stereotypes and biases.
Themes & Analogies Focus Group – It’s always easier to explain something to people when they’ve had a similar experience or when you can present a simple analogy to which they can relate. So you present your case then ask the group to tell you about similar experiences they or someone they know have had. Or you ask them to say what this reminds them of, where they have seen this before, what something looks or sounds like, etc.
Voir dire Focus Group – This gives you feedback about the elements of the case that scare you the most. In addition, you get a chance to practice voir dire, learn how to interact with jurors, and hear both positive and negative feedback on your case. You want to do this as close to trial as possible, even right up to the day before.
Mock Trial Focus Group – These are usually done immediately before trial when you have transformed your information into a compelling narrative. Your goal is to gauge the impact and effectiveness of your presentation. While this is one of the best-known types of focus groups, it is generally the least reliable.