Results from surveys can be disappointing. One of two things happens: we get back information we already knew. Or we get back incomplete information that leaves us asking many more questions. Either way, the results are not all that helpful or actionable. This happens because we have big questions that we need to answer about our members. Big questions that should not be constrained by a survey.
The questions we really need the answers to
We need to know:
- Why they joined
- Why they renew
- Why they don’t renew
- What their biggest problems are, why the problem is a problem and how they feel about it
- What their professional goals are, why they have these goals and what they are doing about them
The questions we need to ask have deep, complex, detailed answers. To get answers like these we need to have conversations with members or we need to observe them. Gathering insights like these is messy. The results are not yes or no and they do not fit into a nice neat box. But information like this is exactly what we need because we need to know why. Why did you join? Why did you stay? Market researchers call this qualitative research.
Surveys cannot answer the questions we are asking
Surveys make it easy on us by packaging up the results in a nice neat box. The data is clean and easy to analyze. Unfortunately, most of the time, surveys give us answers that are inaccurate, incomplete or not actionable. Surveys can answer some of our questions but not our big questions. Surveys can answer:
- What did they choose?
- What satisfaction rating will they give us?
- What media do they consume?
- What ranking will they give our benefits?
There is a huge difference between seeing a member satisfaction rating verses knowing why they are satisfied. It is not enough to know which of our existing benefits members prefer; it is far better to know what their biggest problems are. It is fine to know that our members use Twitter but first we have to have a compelling story. A story that says we understand our members at every turn. A story based in insights only qualitative research will get you.
My holiday gift to you
Are you interested in learning more about how to answer your toughest member questions? Schedule a free, 45 minute consultation; my holiday gift to you. Just send me a quick email and type “Free45”.