Selecting a Firm: A Top Ten List

Written by
Bill Shapard
May 25, 2011

Trying to decide which market research firm is for you?  Here is our “Top 10” list of things to consider when selecting the right firm:

10. Experience – What type of projects has the firm completed in the past.  Have they done projects similar to yours?

9.  Referrals – What do previous clients say about the firm’s work?

8.  Infrastructure – Does the company have the resources to carry out your project?  Or, does it rely on “strategic partnerships” to fill important gaps?

7.  Additional Services – What in addition to research, can the firm offer in the way of support services in order to assist you in the most effective use of your research?

6.  Customization – Can the firm customize your research project to your specific business and/or industry?  Or, do they use a “cookie cutter” approach to research projects.

5.  Certification – Does the firm have a Professional Researcher Certification from the Marketing Research Association?

4.  Market/Area Knowledge – Does your firm know the market or area that comprises the majority of your customers and prospective customers?

3.  Methodology – Technology is changing the way researchers gather data.  Is your firm using the most current, statistically sound methodologies?

2.  Customer Service – Is it clear the firm cares about assisting your company and building a long-term, mutually beneficial relationship?

1.  Data Collection – This is the most critical aspect to market research.  Does your firm outsource this portion of the project, becoming hostage to the firm collecting the data?  Or does it have an in-house data collection operation capable of meeting your business’ needs?

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