Affordable Research
Think you can't afford Market Research?
Talk to us before trying it on your own!

We have the expertise to use inexpensive DIY research tools
that save money and get reliable results...
Do you?

Sampling: Selecting the right participants is a science in itself. Pick the wrong ones and your effort is totally wasted: Your best hope is that the results won't send you in exactly the wrong direction!

If the terms "convenience sample" and "self-selection bias" are foreign to you, STOP NOW!
Questionnaire Design: Another whole science here!
How long is too long? What order should questions be asked in? What does a neutrally worded question look like compared to a leading one? When should you rotate the order of possible responses? (When shouldn't you?)

"Common sense" is not "good enough" here!
Confidentiality, Privacy & Objectivity: Is it okay for your respondents to know whose study they are responding to? Will respondents be more forthcoming if you can assure them no personally identifiable information will be passed along? Can you distance yourself enough from the business to ask tough questions when doing research?

The answers to these questions directly impact costs, response rates and accuracy of any study.
Response Rates: Clients are surprised to learn that researchers have to invite many more respondents than will actually reply. To get, say, 300 complete responses, how many invitations would you send out? What would you do if too few appear to be replying in the first few days of fielding the study? How will you protect your budget from the risks of either too few or even too many respondents?

These are expensive lessons to learn first-hand!
Email delivery; spam blocking; open rates; etc: Email marketers know there are many potential technical hurdles to getting their emails into the hands of even verified opt-in list members. Sadly, the spammers are constantly trying to outwit the ISP's, and the ISP's are constantly responding, for instance, by blacklisting bulk mailers.

Can you avoid -– or fix –- mistaken blacklisting?
Incentives: The longer a survey is, and the more intrusive the questions are, the more likely a larger incentive will be required. If you send out your own survey to your own list, are you prepared to procure, fulfill the incentives and then follow up on complaints about unreceived incentives?

The last thing your business needs is "customer blowback" -- lost loyalty, complaints, bad press -- due to bungled research implementation.
"Statistical significance:" You hear about "margin of error" in political polls reported on the news all the time. Well, every single number in a research study has a margin of error. When we interpret research data and make management recommendations, we look for "significant differences" in comparable statistics for different products, companies, brands, etc

Do you know how to find out when two scores are "statistically different" at a high "confidence level," or is this question mumbo-jumbo to you?
Federal Law: Do the terms CAN-SPAM and COPPA mean anything to you? See:
  • CAN-SPAM for generally accepted "white hat" mailer practices.
  • COPPA for rules about soliciting information from minors.
Compliance with these is generally not difficult, once you know the rules: Don't make a courtroom your classroom.
Compared to what? Researchers (and good clients) constantly ask this question. Many research numbers are meaningless without a frame of reference.

Do you know how to interpret whether a number is "good" or "bad" for your business?
Now what? Good research leads to better, more strategic and more actionable decisions... that save money or time, or grow revenues and profits. All the research data in the world mean nothing until it influences key business decisions. "Pure market researchers" may come up short on this, so be sure to work with someone who has actually run a business based on research input.

Are you good at translating large data into insights that drive business decisions? (We are!)

This endorsement of my research work is from a major catalog and online retailer in home furnishings.
(Note: "BLM" is a predecessor firm where I led this heavily research-driven project.)
    “BLM does their homework. Before initiating the engagement, they went to school on the smith+noble customer experience, including ride-alongs with our in-home design consultants. This experience provided them with valuable insights that shaped the work that they subsequently delivered.
    BLM is creative and cost effective. They successfully suggested that we leverage a non-buying portion of our e-mail file as a proxy for competitor customers, thereby generating significant research savings
    BLM perseveres. When online survey responses were not achieving required rates, they innovated on the fly to test a variety of different incentives that ultimately delivered the target response rates, while containing cost.
    BLM delivers. Cost effective customer research uncovered a number of “aha’s”. Web store user experience upgrade deliverables laid the groundwork for an anticipated significant gain in conversion and customer experience quality.

                    -- Ken Constable, President”

      While online surveys are a proven specialty, SurveyConcierge can also deliver good quality results for a reasonable price in other areas of market research. Not least important, a former executive (me) interprets those results and makes fact-based management recommendations for your business.
      • Focus Groups and Other Qualitative Research, including logistical management, coordination, moderation, analysis and reporting.
      • Depth interviews with key stakeholders, including your executive management, key customers, lost customers, etc. Interviews often surface "hidden gems" of business ideas that have not reached executive management's ears yet. They can also help to diagnose situations where your company's "business promise" could be better in step with key customer expectations. Often these interviews reveal business process bottlenecks that can be remedied within and between your departments.
      • Commission, oversee and report on results of sub-contracted research for clients who do not have the in-house resources (time or expertise) to work with research specialists unassisted.