Consumer Market Research and B2B Market Research – What’s the Difference?

There are many important distinctions between consumer market research and B2B market research studies. In general, a business-to-business market research survey conducted online is more difficult and expensive to complete then is a consumer research survey. This article describes some of the main reasons for these differences.

Consumer research surveys often target a balanced sampling of a survey population (such as the U.S. population in a nationwide survey or a designated market area for a geographic selection) or select demographics such as household income, age, education level, or gender. Low incidence consumer studies can frequently reach respondents based on profiles that are not pre-identified in the vendor’s database through the distribution of large numbers of email invitations. In comparison, B2B market research often targets respondents based on job title / job function, size of employer, input on purchases, and other selective items. For example, a business-to-business market research survey might target small business owners with 25 to 100 employees who are final decision makers on purchases of accounting software.

ofiles. And such profiles as geographic location, number of children, education, home ownership, and marital status change infrequently. In the case of business profiles, type of occupation can remain fairly constant, but such items as job title, decision-making authority, size of employer, and number of persons who report to a business professional can change quite frequently. The impact of frequently changing profiles is a lower incidence rate (and higher cost) for a survey research project.

For example, many B2B market research projects require a mix of different employer sizes or the targeting of specific employer size – often defined by company revenues or the number of employees, or both. Not only do employees frequently change jobs, but also the size of employers can change significantly in the current economic environment. An analogy would be a consumer market research project that targets high net worth participants. In the past, net worth profiles have been quite reliable and rarely change. However, in today’s economic climate, many individuals have experienced significant declines in net worth.

Creating Great Marketing Research Begins With Thorough Preparation – The Marketing Research Brief

What makes GREAT marketing research? It’s not necessarily the most sophisticated analysis. It’s not necessarily a brilliantly creative questionnaire. It’s answering marketing questions in a way that lets managers take ACTION to solve problems and increase profits.

And the best marketing research is done with a strong, common understanding between the marketing researchers (either in-house or external) and the clients (managers). But if you have ever cringed at the notion of getting those managers to sit down and go through the up-front thinking and discussion that leads to great research, it will help formalize and facilitate the process.

These are the essential questions that will help create your next marketing research project and get everyone involved in the project on the same page right from the start:

1. What is the budget for this project?

2. What business objective will we be addressing?

ill we do the translations in-house or externally?

e. How likely is it that the target population will respond to the survey? How busy are they? How motivated are they to provide their feedback? Do incentives need to be offered?

7. What is the best data collection methodology for the respondents?

a. Will we need to expose the respondents to graphics in the course of this interview?

8. Will the survey be conducted “blind” or will the survey sponsor be revealed?

9. How should we analyze the data?

a. How much do we want to slice the data?

b. Do we plan any multivariate analysis?

10. What is the appropriate sample size for the analysis?

11. Who is the audience for the research results?

12. How will the research results be reported?

13. Will in-person presentations be needed?

14. What taboos, if any, need to be avoided?

Symbiosis a Best Practice Approach to Market Research