Five Common Errors Small Businesses Make In Marketing Research

Not leveraging secondary research.

Understand the difference between primary and secondary research and fully leverage your secondary research before moving onto primary research.

Inaccurate questionnaires.

Improper survey instrument design is the most common of all small business mistakes. The best survey brings in unknown and needed information for decision-making purposes. The worst leads to strategic decisions based on inaccurate or incorrect information.

Incomplete questionnaire.

Small businesses projects we revise often miss questioning on key strategic areas, either because they were not thought of or because the survey designer did not know particular survey capabilities were available to them (i.e., question type, online reporting). Discuss your project with as many leaders as possible for ideas and understand what survey tools are available to you!

Surveying the wrong people.

To survey only potential customers of a new product, and not talk with existing customers, can be a mistake. Make sure you are surveying the right group of people.

Missing key groups.

If you are trying to establish a 360 degree view of customer satisfaction and loyalty, don't just survey existing customers, consider the entire lifecycle -- new customers, current customers and lost customers.

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