A focus group is a demographically diverse group of people usually consisting of 6-10 members who participate in discussions about particular products before they are launched. Focus groups were originally called "group depth interviews" or "focus interviews". Focus groups are useful since feelings, perceptions or opinions of members about a certain product can be obtained. Focus groups can provide immediate ideas for the improvement of particular products. It is also cost effective when interviewing a group than when interviewing an individual.
We do this at work. It's pretty good to determine smaller issues within our product. But they are still kind of smaller groups, and we found when some like it and some don't it's not much of an indicator of success. If it is well liked or well hated, it's more easy to get an idea of how the product is...but everybody is so different it's hard to change your product just based on focus groups. But they are a good way to find small issues/negatives of a product you never thought about/considered. Probably better for fine tuning rather than large scale ideas. At least for my company.

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