The average lifespan of a company in the 21st century has decreased from 33 years in 1965 to 20 years in 1990 to a predicted 14 years in 2026. It’s a scary trend that highlights the need for quality intelligence that can guide businesses in ways to stay relevant and in the forefront of consumer consciences. Sending a survey out into the universe is one important step that most companies take over the course of their lifespan to gather that intelligence; surveys can provide meaningful data regarding consumers, the competition and the company itself, facts which help companies build realistic visions for their futures and remain viable in a volatile world.
For this reason, it’s extremely important that businesses choose market research survey companies that can provide the most significant results with the most efficient methods. But how do you know if you’re getting the most out of your survey partner? The odds are good that you are if you can answer “Yes” to these three questions:
Did Your Survey Partner Ask for Detailed Information About Your Company?
Surveys can’t be effective if they aren’t based on a complete understanding, not only of a company’s products and services, but also its values and mission. Survey questions must be accurate and specific to your company and the experiences people have with it in order to garner the most reliable data. And a survey company can’t craft those questions if it hasn’t first studied you. Your business is the driving force and focus of the relationships that need to be studied. A quality market research survey company should take the time to learn about your company so that it can establish a clear and singular objective for your survey, as well as target the right respondents.
Are They Innovative?
Almost anyone can craft some questions and send out an email or mail a letter. Instead, businesses need conversational and creative survey partners who are considerate of survey context and capable in a range of survey types. In short, market research survey companies need to be innovative. They need to be constantly trying new things and matching each survey they create to a unique set of parameters. They should “talk the talk” of your consumers and portray a caring concern for their participation. This means they try to make the survey as interesting and (dare we say) fun as possible! Maybe they try calling the survey a “quiz.” Maybe they use graphic images that grab respondent attention. Whatever the case, the survey should be catchy in some way and always mindful of how and when respondents will take it.
Do They Understand That Numbers Aren’t Everything?
It might seem counterintuitive, but numbers aren’t everything with surveys. Yes, a large sample base is necessary to make predictions. However, when thinking of individual answers to questions, it’s often the quality of the answer that matters more than the quantity of them. Market research survey companies need to realize that sometimes the fewer detailed responses to open-ended questions are more informative than the mass of similar curt ones. This is because the more invested someone is in something, the more likely he or she is to talk about it. Good survey partners can evaluate survey results and report data based on quality rather than quantity.
At Communications for Research (CFR), we provide a full range of market research survey solutions. We don’t use a “one size fits all” approach, but rather create specialized and strategic plans of actions for each of our clients. Contact us to see how our experience can help you make the most out of your next survey project.
You may also wish to download our FREE eBook, "The Insider’s Guide to Successfully Using Market Research Online Surveys", for additional survey tips.