Recruiting the right participants for a focus group is one of the most crucial parts of the research project. Participants must be willing and qualified to participate but should also work well with the rest of the focus group. 

In this article, we’ll answer questions and share resources that may be beneficial while creating a focus group screening questionnaire. 

A focus group screening questionnaire aims to find qualified and reliable participants for a marketing research study. The questionnaire document will often indicate what the study consists of, explain participant expectations and ask questions to indicate whether an individual is a good fit. If individuals are deemed to be inadequate candidates, they will be ineligible for the study and will be removed from the potential pool of participants. The marketing research screener can look for demographic aspects, general characteristics or behaviors to indicate whether the individual would work well within the focus group. Along with this, it also often asks questions related to the study to determine whether a respondent has the needed experience to participate. 

In the article “5 steps to take before developing a questionnaire,” Athena Rodriguez outlines the key steps to follow when creating a general questionnaire. In the first step, Rodrigues says, “It’s much better to identify and address potential disconnects prior to getting started.” It is important to know what the expectations are for participants before designing the focus group screening questionnaire to eliminate any disconnect and confusion. 

Rodriguez also encourages the researcher to define success prior to beginning the questionnaire. What is your desired end goal? How will the insights gathered be used? What does success look like to you, your team and participants? Finding the answer to these questions can ease the design process and help you better understand the inten...