Mock Trials and Focus Groups

Informing Case Strategy with Jury Research:
Mock Trials and Focus Groups

Before you can win a trial, you must first understand your opponents’ strengths and how you could lose. Jury trials are dynamic, complex, and (in many ways) unpredictable. Pre-trial jury research sheds a light on how jurors will perceive the case long before you need to present your arguments in court.

We understand that every case is different. Highly capable trial attorneys would never apply the same strategy to each case they argue in court. Likewise, we at Mind Matters do not apply the same cookie-cutter format to pre-trial focus groups or mock trials. For each project, we work closely with our clients to understand your specific case issues and what questions you want answered so we can design a project to fit your specific needs within a clearly defined budget.

When the world adapted to working remotely, so did we. We offer the same great, reliable, quality pre-trial research whether the study is conducted in person or online. Contact our focus group specialist, Dr. Andrea Hunter, to learn how we can design a focus group to meet your specific needs (andrea@mmjury.com or 206-886-3985).

Case-Specific Research Design:

Once we fully understand the nature of the case, we can determine which research format would be most appropriate for your case:

  • Discovery & Discussion Focus Groups. Ideal for cases early in the discovery process. We present the case facts in a neutral format to group(s) of mock jurors. Afterward, we lead an in-depth group discussion to explore juror reactions to the case and answer their questions.
  • Guided Narrative Focus Groups. Useful at any point in the trial process. A Mind Matters consultant or the participating attorney presents the case facts in a narrative format, followed by an optional Q&A session facilitated by Mind Matters. Mock jurors are divided into balanced deliberation groups to deliberate the case.
  • Mock Trial / Adversarial Focus Groups. Ideal for cases set for trial within 6 months. Attorneys present a “cl-opening” (a hybrid of opening and closing remarks) on behalf of each party, including the display of witness videos, to 24-48 participant jurors. Individual written feedback is obtained after each case presentation so we can track what aspects of the case were most influential to jurors’ decision-making. Jurors are divided into 2-4 balanced discussion groups to deliberate the case and render a verdict.
The best time to learn if an argument or witness is effective is BEFORE the trial begins.


Mind Matters has conducted several hundred mock trials and focus groups to help litigators develop a winning case strategy by sharpening arguments and perfecting strategies.

Pre-trial jury research might seem daunting from a financial or logistical perspective, but with their vast experience, Mind Matters has the process down to a science. We know the most efficient and budget-friendly research methods to obtain insights about your case strengths and weaknesses.
“Andrea and George are terrific. Both have assisted me in preparing clients to testify and with jury selection. Before I go to trial, I like to work with Andrea as we develop themes and figure out the best way to structure the case story. She has a talent for simplifying a case and identifying the language and arguments that will resonate with jurors. Not only is working with both of them a pleasure, they have helped me win trials.”NANCY ELLIOTTPartner 
Merrick Hofstedt Lindsey
 Seattle, WA

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