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Contracting With Commercial Facilities

One way to conduct face-to-face focus groups or individual interviews is to contract with a company that specializes in this service. Before you contract with a commercial facilit , prepare a specification sheet

detailing all the services you need, and if you will be asking the facility to recruit participants, prepare a profile of your audience. Vendors will use this information to estimate the project’s cost and to develop bids.

Use this checklist to decide which vendors to consider. Each vendor should provide these items:

Descriptions of past projects

Descriptions of or a list of clients (If you are unfamiliar with the vendor, check the company’s references.)

Location of the facility (Is it conveniently located? Accessible by public transportation? If not, does the vendor provide transportation assistance, such as taxi money or van service? What does this

add to the cost?)

Size of the interview room(s)

Diagram of the table/seating arrangements (What shape is the table? How big is the table? Where does the moderator sit?)

Size and features of the observation room(s)

Details about audio recording and video recording arrangements and costs

Details about food arrangements for participants and observers, including staff from your

organization and ad agency

Description of the vendor’s moderator services

Description of the vendor’s method of recruitment, including the database used and the

geographic area the company covers

Recommendations for participant incentives

Reasonable rates for vendor services (Ask for nonprofit rates.)

Examples of focus group summaries/reports, moderator notes, screeners (short questionnaires used to recruit potential participants), and other documents produced by the vendor for other clients if you’re going to ask the vendor to provide these services

Chapter 3: Gaining and Using Target Audience Insights

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