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Focus Groups &
Mock Trials

Let’s face it – some cases are more complicated than others. And when you land a particularly difficult one, it can lead you to a bit of a standstill. 

Is all the information organized? Will your witnesses be credible to a jury? Will your presentation of the evidence lead to the result you’re hoping for? 

Focus groups are a great way to get the unbiased feedback you need to move forward, and Elizabeth Larrick is here to help you do that.

SCHEDULE A FREE STRATEGY CALL

Elizabeth does an excellent job of conducting focus groups from opening focus groups to adversarial ones. She really knows how to get the focus group members to provide you the needed information. I would not hesitate to use her again as it was money very well spent. If you ever need someone to assist in running a focus group, use her!!

Jim LyonsJonesboro, Arkansas

The focus groups she has conducted for our firm have translated into significantly increased value on our cases. We appreciate how easy she made the focus group presentation process for us to show up and present without having any concern about the management of the focus group members or video recording.

Blake Erskine

Elizabeth recently assisted our office in conducting a focus group in a highly contested case. In her focus group, we were able to test what a jury would think about evidence in the case, and the credibility of key witnesses. Utilizing all of the valuable information that we learned during focus group work, we were able to obtain not only justice for our client but “full justice.” Appreciate your great help and assistance, Elizabeth.

Stephen StewartAustin, Texas

How we work together

If you’re dealing with a unique issue in a case, checking in with 12 individuals with no other knowledge of the case can be extremely beneficial. Elizabeth Larrick offers focus groups, including mock trials, on several different levels. 

In-Person Focus Groups

The in-person focus group can be used to test important parts of a case heading into mediation or trial with a flexible approach as to presentation styles and set-ups.

  • In-person focus groups are usually 3-4 hours in length with 10-12 participants. The focus group time is dedicated to one case or multiple cases.
  • Elizabeth will meet with the lawyers to understand the purpose for the focus group. Based off the planning sessions, she lays out a detailed plan for each minute of the focus group.
  • She will assist in creating presentations, visual aides, and questions to reach the focus group goals.
  • Elizabeth and her team will take care of recruiting/vetting participants, hosting, moderating, and logistics of food/ beverage and payment to the participants.
  • Immediately after the focus group, a debrief session will take place with the lawyers to roundtable the focus group feedback.
  • A focus group memo is provided to memorize the main takeaways, a full transcript of the focus group, participant demographics, and votes.
  • A final call takes place to go over in detail the focus group memo and how to best integrate what was learned into the case.

Mock Jury/ Adversarial Focus Groups

The mock jury is the traditional approach to finding out how a jury would decide the case after seeing an abbreviated opening statements, presentations of evidence, and closing arguments by both sides.

  • Mock jury or adversarial focus group is usually 6-8 hours in length with 10-12 participants. The time is dedicated to one case.
  • Elizabeth will meet with the lawyers and set-out a detailed plan for organizing and executing the mock jury, including detailed voting protocols.
  • Elizabeth can assist in recruiting and assembling lawyers and witnesses to role play the opposing counsel, judge and lay witnesses.
  • Elizabeth and her team will take care of recruiting/vetting participants, hosting, moderating, vote tracking, logistics of food/ beverage and payment to the participants.
  • Immediately after the focus group, a debrief session will take place with the lawyers to roundtable the focus group feedback.
  • A focus group memo is provided to memorize the main takeaways, a full transcript of the focus group, participant demographics, and votes.
  • A final call takes place to go over in detail the focus group memo and how to best integrate what was learned into the case.

Virtual Focus Groups

These days its more common to do a virtual focus group post pandemic because more people have access to proper technology and internet. Jumping into a virtual platform is easy for the participants and lawyers.

  • Elizabeth uses the latest technology to conduct the focus group with an online platform, collect electronic signatures and issue contact-less payment for participants.
  • Virtual focus groups are usually 2-3 hours in length with 8-10 participants.
  • Elizabeth will meet with the lawyers to understand their focus group needs. After planning sessions, Elizabeth will design a detailed plan for the focus group time. She will assist in creating presentations and questions.
  • Elizabeth and her team will take care of recruiting/vetting participants, hosting the virtual meeting, and moderating.
  • Focus group debrief meetings, memos and final analysis calls are provided to get the full use of the focus group feedback.
  • Virtual focus groups reduce the hassle of location logistics like parking and food/beverage.
  • With effective screening systems, participants can be located across the United States.
  • With virtual platforms, lawyers and co-counsel can connect seamlessly to the focus group from the comfort of their home or office.

Run your own Focus Group

Elizabeth has created a space in her office to host focus groups outfitted with audio and video equipment. You can rent the space and equipment for your next focus group.

When you work with Elizabeth Larrick, you receive help on the front end to create a strategy for discovery and figure out what depositions to take, what questions you need to ask for the answers the jury will need to have.

Want to know more about focus groups? Call Elizabeth

Call 512-893-5700

“Our Firm considers Focus Groups to be an essential part of our trial practice – in evaluating cases upon intake, testing safety rules and preparing for mediation and trial. Elizabeth does a fantastic job in preparing the case for review, conducting the Focus Group and in providing meaningful feedback following the Focus Group Study. We consider Elizabeth’s Focus Groups and case consultations to be a valuable resource for our Firm and our clients. The bottom line is that Elizabeth’s Focus Groups add real value to our cases and help us give our clients informed advice, which is why we highly recommend her and will continue using her in our own cases.”

~ Ryan Johnson

1

I organize the group by finding and vetting the individuals to participate in the focus group. These individuals are chosen from a group of people who complete an online questionnaire. The selected group is representative of a cross-section of the community – range of ages, occupations, backgrounds, etc. Participants are vetted to prevent repeat attendance. (You will be given all of this information.)
2

I have all the members of the group sign release forms, as well as another form about their experience at the end. (You will be given all of these forms.)
3

I set up video and audio to record the focus group session for review and analysis. Our office has these capabilities, so all focus groups are hosted on-site. (If you need us to come to you, this will be included in the final cost.)

FAQs

How can a focus group help even when you think you don't need it?

You will learn what potential jurors think and feel about your case. By presenting the facts and circumstances of your case in a neutral environment, potential jurors will provide more insight and comments into their positions.

Often, lawyers will develop tunnel-vision on their cases and block out other possible points-of-view. This tunnel-vision can cause lawyers to miss holes or red flags during file development, which leads to lost case value and defense verdicts.

Focus groups are the tool lawyers can use to test their case and learn the problems prospective jurors may have toward the facts, circumstances, and involved parties. Focus groups come in a wide variety of styles and designs, including mock trial, which can be used by lawyers to expand their knowledge.

When is the best time to run a focus group for my case?

From the start, a focus group can be used to issue-spot and provide guidance on discovery to conduct and investigations to perform.

In the middle, the focus group can assist in checking your case theory, test witness credibility, and gain deeper understanding of damages.

At the end, a focus group is a fantastic practice round before trial – getting on your feet to run an opening statement, check your jury selection questions or take a swing at your closing argument.

How do I know which focus group to run for my case?

Elizabeth has years of experience in trial consulting and focus group presentations and is happy to offer assistance in choosing the right focus group to yield your desired feedback.

What if I want to present but I want Elizabeth to ask the questions of the focus group?

This is a great set-up and highly recommended. Presenting to a group of 12 strangers is practice for public speaking and will improve a lawyer’s skill level. Elizabeth will jump in to ask the feedback questions of the focus group and keep the conversation neutral.

What feedback does a focus group give me?

Trial consulting and focus groups can provide feedback on … really anything! You want to learn about yourself and how you are perceived – a focus group can do it. You want to learn about the holes in your case and where you need to give attention – focus group it! You want to test your case theory, test your witness credibility, test the defense theory or defense witness credibility – focus group it! The hardest part about a focus group is learning how to present the information and ask the questions to receive unbiased feedback. (Biased feedback may make you feel fantastic, but it won’t help you learn and definitely won’t help your case!)

Will you travel / come to me?

Yes, but virtual options can offer beneficial feedback with less hassle for you and your team.

"I have scheduled many focus groups through Elizabeth Larrick over the last few years and have found them to be invaluable to the cases I handle. Whether hiring Elizabeth to handle the focus group itself or just reserving a one hour or four hour session, each time I have gained insight into the strengths and weaknesses of my cases that I never would have learned otherwise. The information obtained through focus groups has changed the types of cases I accept, the strategies I employ in representing clients and the preparation I perform in every single case. I cannot recommend Elizabeth any higher and once you work with her, I’m sure you’ll feel the same way."

~ Will | Austin, Texas

Contact Elizabeth today

Because you’re so close to your case, it can be hard to ask the right questions to get unbiased feedback. That’s why our focus group design and implementation will help you get the real results you need to move forward. Schedule a focus group strategy call today.

Call 512-893-5700SCHEDULE A FREE STRATEGY CALL

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