Planning: Blunders in consumer insights

Taking consumer comments literally
We all know by now that consumers are apt to say one thing and do another

Investigating just our brand, rather than the larger worlds of activity
One of the most common refrains we hear in this business is "Just tell us about our brand!"

Driving methodologies rather than findings
Often when our telephone rings, the client on the other end will simply say he or she needs a quantitative survey. Why is this a blunder? Seems innocent enough. The reason is because all too often we consider the methodology before we consider the question we want answered

Pre-determining the target audience of a survey tool that is to determine target audience
It's such an easy trap to fall into

Inflating the sample to increase objectivity
We all do it

Letting those in positions of authority ask the questions
Never let those in positions of power have any control over the nature, direction or type of questions being asked

Believing consumers' emotions are easily measurable
Many companies interested in understanding the emotional component of their brand make the mistake of assuming consumers can express or communicate their emotions with language--be it written or verbal

Leaving consumer insights for the end
The most insightful consumer research requires a great deal more patience than many marketers and brand managers are willing or have time to give

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