Don’t guess/read minds. Survey them online, and know

Met with a great company yesterday called SurveyGizmo. Another Boulder tech start-up that saw a demand and filled it with an easy-to-use, effective, affordable product – in this case, an online survey tool.

Blogger’s Tangent: Boulder’s a great town for start-ups, by the way, in case you’re out there thinking of re-locating here, or are currently here and need a nudge to get going. Just check what the NYT says. And the fact that we are apparently the brainiest city in the US)

Back to SurveyGizmo, and online surveys in general – what business wouldn’t want to know what people think of it? Too often business leaders say “I think” when they should say “My customers told us that…”. So, here’s a list of helpful ways you should be using an online survey tool, roughly in order of business importance:

  1. Customers: What do you think of our product/service? What features would you like to see in the next version? How do you rate your last experience with your salesperson or Customer Service Representative? Which of the following product designs do you like the most? (great for testing before you build)
  2. Prospects: What are the most important things you consider when purchasing from companies in our space? What media do you spend the most time using to keep updated on your industry? (use this to plan your next media buy)
  3. Employees: What do you like/dislike about working for Company X? How can we improve our product, or the way we treat our customers?
  4. Business Partners: How can improve the quality of our strategic partnership? What are some ways we could improve our product/service that would meet the needs of your clients?
  5. Suppliers: What information could we provide to make it easier to work with us?

These are just 5 audiences who know something that you would like to know. There are obviously more. But the point is don’t assume you know what people are thinking. Just ask them!

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