Summary of The Mirrored Window

Focus Groups from a Moderator's Point of View

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The Mirrored Window book summary
Sex, greed, fear and other consumer motivations as revealed through qualitative research conducted with focus groups.


7 Overall

8 Applicability

7 Innovation

6 Style


The hidden persuaders of marketing have come out of their mazes to explain willingly how they probe people to find out what makes them tick and why they buy one product instead of another. Everybody knows about surveys and nose counting from political polls and other quantitative research. Now Judith Langer covers qualitative research (QR), the established, but often less explained, way to find out what consumers like and dislike on a deeper level. She notes the advantages and disadvantages of focus group set-ups that allow marketers' clients to hide behind big one-way mirrors, and watch and hear representative customers responding to their product. QR's chief drawback and the reason some companies prohibit it, Langer notes, is that some clients find it "vague," and are uncomfortable with its surveillance tactics. getAbstract recommends this authoritative look behind the one-way mirror to those who deal with focus group results.

In this summary, you will learn

  • What qualitative research (QR) is and how it differs from quantitative research
  • How an expert moderator conducts a focus group session
  • How QR helps create superior products and high-impact advertising


Focus Group Tactics and Results
Qualitative research is a type of business motivation research methodology that works "without the numbers." It uses many types of psychological, sociological and even anthropological theories and testing methods to probe the consumer's mindset. QR often...
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About the Author

Judith Langer has been a QR practitioner since l970 and has moderated focus groups for many major companies.

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