Telephone Surveys



Businesses and organizations use telephone surveys as a quantitative marketing research methodology for determining what people think and how they behave. Well-designed, high quality telephone surveys are an ideal tool for conducting awareness and image studies, customer and employee satisfaction and loyalty studies, branding and market segmentation studies, and political polls. Telephone surveys are also used to assess the market feasibility of new product or service ideas, and to compare perceptions of competitors’ strengths and weaknesses. Telephone surveys answer questions such as:


  • What proportion of my competitors’ customers are interested in my product or service?
  • How large are different market segments within a geographic region?
  • What is the demographic profile of my customers vs. those of competitors?
  • If customers buy my new product, what income is likely to be generated in a year?


What are Telephone Surveys


Telephone surveys are a quantitative marketing research methodology that involve calling and interviewing a representative sample of people within a geographic area or a targeted market served by a business or organization. Market Street Research might interview 100 people or 1,000 or more, depending on our clients’ information needs. Telephone surveys involve:


  • Identifying the marketing research objectives
  • Developing and pilot-testing a marketing research questionnaire
  • Developing an appropriate market research sampling strategy
  • Conducting the representative telephone interviews (data collection)
  • Analyzing and presenting the market research results.


Market Street handles all aspects of telephone surveys, including helping you to clearly define the research objectives based on your company or organization’s information needs. We design state-of-the-art marketing research questionnaires and research sampling methods, and closely monitor data collection by nationally respected polling firms. Our analyses and presentations are our greatest strength-Market Street goes beyond statistics, tables, and graphs to provide quality analysis and actionable results.




Market Street Research develops custom marketing research questionnaires for each project. We work closely with clients to define the goals of the research so the questions we ask focus on the specific decisions our clients need to make. Market Street has over 35 years of experience in preparing the highest quality marketing research questionnaires, and our process allows us to create questionnaires of any length and complexity. We can quickly and easily modify a questionnaire even after it is in the field. Market Street never relies on templates or “canned” questionnaires , since our clients’ information needs are unique and no single survey instrument can accurately reflect all business or organizational decisions. Our market research questionnaires typically include a mix of closed-ended and open-ended questions, to allow depth of response and probing by skilled interviewers. Market Street pilot-tests all research questionnaires on an in-house basis, and reviews suggested changes with clients before revisions are made. Our clients always have final approval on questionnaires.


Sample Design


Market Street Research brings to bear decades of experience in designing marketing research samples for telephone surveys and political polls. Depending on your needs, we might recommend a:


  • Census, in which all members of a population are contacted and interviewed
  • Representative sample using random-digit-dialing (RDD) or other systematic sampling technique
  • Disproportionate sample, in which certain groups are over-sampled in relation to their actual representation within a population, to make sure we interview enough members of that group to allow for statistical analyses of their opinions
  • Convenience sample, in which we identify people who have certain characteristics and survey as many as possible or up to a specified quota


Each year Market Street conducts literally tens of thousands of marketing research interviews with consumers, corporate executives, professionals such as doctors, not-for-profit leaders, and employees within an array of business and organizational settings.


Who Should Conduct Telephone Surveys?


Market Street recommends telephone surveys for clients who need to understand their image or reputation among the general public or within a specific market. Clients interested in branding or segmentation studies should consider telephone surveys as the best quantitative marketing research method of reaching people who fully represent the needs and opinions of the general public or market under consideration. Telephone surveys may not be an appropriate method for answering qualitative questions. These questions may require a qualitative marketing research approach, such as focus groups, to answer questions like:


  • What are my customers’ or potential customers’ reactions to new product or service ideas?
  • How effective are my advertising and marketing materials?
  • How do people make purchasing decisions?
  • What are my company’s strengths and weaknesses vis-à-vis competitors?


In addition, some populations cannot be reached effectively by telephone-examples include groups that tend not to have telephones, such as low-income residents or people who live in institutional settings, and groups for whom a list of telephone numbers does not exist, such as shoppers or patients using a particular facility whose names cannot be revealed for sampling purposes because of HIPAA. In these cases, Market Street might recommend , or .


Market Street Research has conducted telephone interviews and other quantitative marketing research for 35 years in such diverse industries as health care, industrial manufacturing, financial services, technology, education, and public policymaking. We understand the fundamental issues that concern clients in a range of arenas, the types of decisions they typically have to make, and the factors that influence those decisions. We move quickly to understanding the specific decisions you have to make and the type of information you need to make those decisions. In all cases, we bring the proper market research methodology to bear on your data needs.


Data Collection


Market Street Research contracts with nationally-respected data collection and polling firms to conduct interviews for large-scale telephone surveys. We work extremely closely with these firms, in most cases contacting them daily to monitor response rates and inspect the quality of open-ended responses. We provide interviewer training materials and work with our vendors to make sure the data collected is top-quality. When selecting a new vendor, Market Street maintains stringent quality standards and we change vendors if these standards are not met.


Telephone Surveys and Healthcare Research


Market Street Research has considerable experience and expertise in utilizing the telephone survey methodology in the research we conduct for clients in many industries, including for organizations in the healthcare field. Conducting healthcare marketing research in a range of methodologies is one of Market Street Research’s greatest strengths. Since 1978, Market Street has designed and conducted many hundreds of healthcare marketing research studies for healthcare providers ranging from internationally respected academic medical centers such as Massachusetts General Hospital, Cleveland Clinic and Johns Hopkins, health systems such as Partners Healthcare and Memorial Hermann, as well as for many regional and community-based hospitals, specialized clinics, and physicians’ practices serving urban, suburban and rural markets across the United States. Learn more about our expertise in the field of healthcare marketing research.


Please contact us to discuss how Market Street Research can help you achieve your goals.


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