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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The risks of research: Asking too much of your customers

Observation:   A recent story in the New York Times suggests that the frequency with which companies are asking customers for feedback could be approaching a point of no response; the consumer does not have time to answer every questionnaire she is invited to fill-out.  Click here to read the story.

Implications:   Few things are more precious to a company than the input of its customers.  Their feedback tells you what you’re doing right, what you could do better, and it might even reveal services or products you could provide that you haven’t even thought of yet.

Keep in touch with your customers, but don’t take their attention for granted.  With each survey you write and every question you ask, scrutinize whether you are likely to harvest information that is actually useful.  The response of your consumer is not something to take for granted.  And you don’t want to burn them out with pointless research that presents nothing more than patronizing answers to softball questions.

Mike Anderson, for the Elm Street Economics consumer trends blog. A service of The Center for Sales Strategy, Inc.

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