If you need to collect feedback from your customers or non-customers in your business-to-business (B2B) space, a survey is an excellent option. Collecting feedback offers several benefits to an organization. The simple fact of reaching out and listening to customer and non-customer thoughts carries some value in itself.
Beyond just reaching out, the data helps guide marketing efforts, operational improvements, and high-level strategies. The insights and findings can be used to create infographics and sales materials to share with new prospects. There are endless benefits internally to use data to drive creative and messaging. The greatest value is knowing the changes you make internally are guided by customer and non-customer feedback, so you know organizational changes are driven and aligned.
The fact that the data is collected through an objective third-party market research company can help. It ensures the data is objective and unbiased. We'll get more into that in a moment.
Drive your strategy using a B2B survey.
Step 1: Determine Your Objectives
The first step of the B2B market research and survey process is to lay out your objectives. Determine what you want to learn from the audience, what your expectations are, and what you would like to do with the results.
Do you want to share the findings as part of a content marketing play? Do you want to collect data to help guide your marketing channel usage and messaging to grow revenue? Do you want to better understand the decision-making process of non-customers and why they choose competitors?
This could be a combination of both areas that your organization wants to explore and possible recommendations from a consultant you work with. This B2B market research company can suggest specific industry best-practices including questions like Net Promoter Score (NPS) and Customer Effort Score (CES). These benchmarks will help you compare your performance to key competitors in your industry or vertical.
Step 2: Decide on a Methodology (Or Not)
For this step, you may have a methodology in mind already or perhaps you are trying to determine which is best for your objectives and needs. These methodologies can vary from social media data collection to online panels, phone surveys, or even mail surveys. Each methodology offers its own unique pros and cons. For more information on choosing which methodology is best for you organization, read more here.
Again, you may have the one methodology you want to use already in mind. If not, a market research company can work with you to explain the options to you which vary in cost and timeframe. Some of the best market research companies will offer this advice as part of the quoting and proposal process at no charge.
Step 3: Collect a Quote or Proposal
One of the largest decisions you'll have as part of the B2B survey process is to determine whether or not to use an independent third-party market research company or not. The pros of conducting in-house is the perceived in-house savings on costs.
However, completing a large undertaking like this in-house often pulls you away from other priorities and may actually take you longer and more hours than if you were to hire a B2B survey company.
At the very least, you should at least talk to a firm to receive a market research proposal. Here are 7 components of a market research proposal you'll be able to read about when you receive.
The pros of using a third-party market research company for your B2B survey include:
(1) Eliminating bias and potential skews in data from conducting yourself
(2) Truthful and honest responses if respondents know results are going to a separate firm
(3) Leveraging expertise and capabilities of a market research company that you may not have
(4) Obtaining a objective opinion on the results, data, and insights
Think about it.
Step 4: Begin Your B2B Survey
So you've hammered out your objectives, methodology, and use of a B2B survey company. Once you decide to move forward with your B2B survey, the next step is to draft a survey instrument.
From there you will program the survey (for CATI or online) or format it for printing if you decide to go the mail route. After this is complete you can run a test drive soft-launch before proceeding to a full launch. Once fieldwork is complete you'll begin your analysis and reporting.
A B2B survey can take as little as 1 to 2 weeks or last several months depending on the number of desired completed surveys and whether or not you decide to use a market research company or not.
Drive Research is a B2B market research and B2B survey firm located in Upstate, NY. Our market research company has conducted many B2B studies across the country with a variety of industries.
Interested in learning more or receiving a quote? Contact us at 315-303-2040.