Use of Focus Group in Events Management

In attempts to satisfy the needs of guests, one powerful tool to use is five senses in a focus group. When designing an event environment, it is essential to combine the five senses – auditory, visual, taste, and smell and tactile – in meeting the guest’s needs. According to Goldblatt (2011), the olfactory system creates creative reactions and instant emotion for guests. Smell is the most dominant sense as it always produces a déjà vu feeling that generates an emotional response. Every guest has a sense that they primarily rely on that is either visual, hearing, smell, or taste.

It is important to survey guests and determine their primary sensual stimuli and sensitivity level in creating a sensory event that is effective. In an event, it is important to design a sound system while communicating with guests to capture their attention. It is important to gauge the volume of the sound system so as to meet the audience’s needs. Another important sense is visual cues which are essential for Generation Y and baby boomers that are raised in front of TV sets. As a group, it is important to orient the guests while providing clear direction.

The focus group will be formed by eight members and will involve preparing a banquet for a group of royal visitors. The banquet table requires a cloth with a touch that illustrates a royal gala. The group will perform a blindfold test so as to select the right fabric for the banquet. Stretch fabrics will be used to cover seats and tables to give a dazzling look for the event. Regarding taste, the catering team plays a crucial role in establishing a strong sensory feeling.

Use of the Focus Group

The group will determine the sound system, volume, and the type of music to be used in the banquet event. Among the eight members in the focus group, all departments will be included including the catering department. This will assist in determining the type of food, cuisine or meal to be prepared for the guest. The meal of choice will be determined by the type of guests present in the event. Visual cues for the guest will be promoted using the organization’s logo to sponsor the event.

The focus group will also assist in designing a cloth to promote touch that will promote the quality of the banquet. Different types of linen will be provided to assist the group in choosing the best linen and color for the event. One of the exceptional items that can be used to increase the sense of touch is sculptware. One design that can be used is the use of fabrics to cover tables and chairs to give a dazzling look. It is the focus group’s responsibility to decide on the color to use on the seats and the table that will match the event.

Question to Ask the Focus Group

  1. How have you been involved in event management in the company and what has been your fondest memory in event planning?
  2. Which has been the best and successful event you planned?
  3. Tell me the disappointments you have experienced while planning an event?
  4. Suppose you are the manager in charge of the event at hand, how would you plan the event? What needs improvement in this organization?
  5. What sound systems do you think are suitable in the banquet preparation?
  6.  In matters to do with appearance, what color and cloth type should we use to enhance touch?
  7.  Which visual cues do you think that the company needs to include in this event?
  8. Which natural aromas should we include in designing for an appealing environment?
  9. In terms of taste, which should be the best and special dishes to prepare for the day?
  10. Of all the things we have discussed, which is the most important for you?

Conducting the Focus Group

The focus group will be conducted by by a moderator and assistant moderator. The moderator will facilitate the discussion while the assistant records the group’s discussion by taking notes. The participant will be requested to fill a consent form. The focus group commences by the moderator and the assistant introducing themselves. They will then explain their topic, the use of the discussion results and the reason why the group was specifically chosen. The moderator will guide the discussion. Every group member will be given a chance to contribute to the group discussion. The facilitator will conduct and coordinate the group to ensure every member contributes to the discussion.


Top of Form

Goldblatt, J. J. (2011). Special events: A new generation and the next frontier. Hoboken, N.J: Wiley.Bottom of Form

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