Marketing Research and How to Categorize the Type of Data You Want to Receive

You’ve been hired on for a new marketing gig to assume the responsibilities of all things marketing… including research. Where do you start? What types of information can you collect easily? One popular and promising way to collect data is through a questionnaire. These questionnaires are typically paired down to specific questions tailored to a targeted audience base. In order to collect enough pool of data to make a substantial decision when the results are in, the standard is to survey around 200-300 individuals.

Questionnaires by Categories

Where you start with a questionnaire will depend on the type of information you want to collect. See the comprehensive list below to truly understand your options.

  • Heterogeneous or Typical Survey
  • Opinions
  • Lifestyle
  • Satisfaction
  • Readership
  • Concept Tests

Examples to Make You A Better Marketing Researcher

Let’s break this down a bit. As the new marketing representative, you want to really understand your options of questionnaires so that you can utilize all your resources when beginning your research. Let’s dive in.


This type of survey allows you to understand the demographics of your audience(s). It can also give you behavioral data and insights on beliefs and values. This type of data can be collected using a brand study survey which will identify brand awareness, brand recall and ultimately categorize your audiences into segments with the results.


This type of questionnaire is filled with agree or disagree questions and include rating options within the questions. When you’re really trying to explore a specific solution, you want to understand the opinions of your customer base.


Lifestyle questions will help you understand an audience better. This type of approach will allow you to collect data on the lifestyle of your customer base, which will ultimately lead you to audience segmentations and buyer persona building. Having this type of questionnaire is a great tool to launch prior to running a targeted campaign on your audience(s).


Satisfaction questionnaires are used for companies who offer a service. For example, if you have a service center for troubleshooting, customers can go to the center, get their product serviced and then fill out how satisfied they were with their service that day. The satisfaction rating can be taken and improved upon, knowing the happy or unhappy customer data it collects for a company.


Do you know how your audience base is consuming their media? Magazines and online publications have readership data you can collect, or you can set up a questionnaire specifically asking questions that will evaluate different publications and types of media. Readership will help you understand where your audience is captivated and what publications or channels they simply do not use.

Concept Tests

By understanding your targeted audience, you will be able to make product enhancements to better meet their needs. A way to do this is by creating a mockup of your product and exposing it to a small group of customers and/or potential customers called a customer advisory board (CAB). Along with the concept piece, you provide a questionnaire specifically asking for feedback on the proposed concept. This allows you to adjust a new or updated product before it hits the market, saving the company money in the long run.

So What?

So, now you have the tools you need create specific types of questionnaires for the specific types of information you’re looking to collect. Be sure to stay tuned for a future article on the best questionnaire questions to use.

If you liked what you read in this article, feel free to read about building a brand strategy framework in my last post here.

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