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Sharing Survey Secrets at the American Marketing Association Conference

Sharing Survey Secrets at the American Marketing Association Conference

SecretBusiness moves fast these days and you can’t afford not to incorporate data into your decision making. But research projects can be costly, and it can take weeks–sometimes months–to get data back. What if you could launch a survey and get quality results back in just two days?

At this year’s Annual Marketing Conference hosted by the American Marketing Association, Brent Chudoba, VP and General Manager of SurveyMonkey Audience shared our secret survey sauce needed to get better quality results in just a few days. Try our approach and you’ll be on your way to making even faster decisions.

Here are just a few secret ingredients from Brent’s presentation:

Secret 1: Limit your survey to just ONE goal

Remember, the only purpose of your survey is to give you data that you can take action on. But having too much data from multiple goals makes it harder to pick out the most important information and makes data analysis take longer.

Don’t try to boil the ocean with one “kitchen sink” survey. Instead, we suggest breaking your goals into multiple surveys and choosing just one major goal per survey with 2-4 subtopics. Watch our 2-minute tutorial on how to choose your survey goal.

Secret 2: Write your conclusions BEFORE you create your survey

This may seem counterintuitive. How can you write conclusions before you have any data? Wouldn’t doing so introduce bias? Of course not. We think that’s just bananas!

Let’s step back for a moment and think about the scientific method. Remember your 8th grade science fair? The basic framework for each experiment was:

  1. Make an observation

  2. Propose a hypothesis

  3. Design an experiment

  4. Test

  5. Accept or reject the hypothesis

  6. Revise hypothesis or draw conclusions

When you propose a hypothesis, you’re stating what you believe the conclusion will be before you start the experiment. The same principle stands for surveys. After you identify your survey goal, make a hypothesis about the results and draft your final product (blog post, research report, memo, etc). Your assumptions don’t have to be right, but drafting your conclusions first helps you identify the right questions to ask respondents.

Check out our framework for launching surveys:


Again, if you take this approach, you’ll be able to make better decisions faster because:

  • Your project cycle will be much faster.
  • You’ll have time to make survey tweaks after getting initial data.
  • You’ll have time to do follow up projects.
  • Analysis will be faster due to well-structured questions and fewer data points to juggle.

Need an example? Check out Brent’s full presentation over at our Slideshare page or take it for a whirl below.

Questions, comments? Let us know!

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