5 Types of Surveys That Help You Get Acquainted With Your Customers


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Acquiring new customers can be challenging, and retaining them is even more difficult. You have to consistently meet the demands of your customers in order to give them a reason to stay and not consider other alternatives in your respective industry.

To make it work, it’s important to be familiar with what interests your target audience. Being acquainted with the preferences of your customers allows you to offer tailored experiences and helps ensure an increased level of satisfaction down the road.

Customer insights play a key role here, as 67% of marketers use customer data to offer personalized experiences for higher engagement, sales, and retention.

There are many ways you can get to know your customers and be familiar with their needs. But surveys are the most preferred and cost-effective method of them all.

Surveys provide you with valuable data that can help fuel your marketing strategies. It’s an efficient way to know your audience and gather useful market insights.

However, there are a variety of survey formats to choose from. So, selecting the one best suited to your needs can be difficult. So, let us help you out with that.

Here are the five types of surveys that help you know your customers.

1. Satisfaction Survey

Satisfaction surveys are the most commonly used survey type used by businesses to assess their performance, keeping customer satisfaction as the prime indicator.

These surveys help you figure out what customers think about your products or services and how likely they are to continue using them in the future.

It goes without saying that findings from customer satisfaction surveys play a huge role in the formation of your product development and retention strategies.

They tell you whether or not your customers are happy with what you offer and help you decide what needs to change for you to ensure your growth.

2. Market Research Survey

Market research surveys help you gather useful customer insights and enable you to come up with different buyer personas.

These surveys tell you what makes your intended audience tick and help you cook up a recipe to win their hearts.

It’s reported that around 80% of consumers are likely to prefer businesses that offer personalized experiences.

Market research surveys make it possible for you to explore the attributes representing your target audience and identify ways you can tailor your offering accordingly.

These surveys tell you what makes a product or service an ideal purchase option for your potential customers and help you understand the competitive landscape in your respective industry.

3. Brand Awareness Survey

Gone are the days when businesses used to blatantly promote their products or services and get away with it.

Things have changed. Now, if you want your potential customers to consider your products or services, you have to become people-focused and help them seek answers to their questions first.

This is where your content comes in and helps you build loyalty with your customers, according to 60% of marketers.

However, it’s essential that you know whether or not your efforts are paying off. And for that, you need to consistently assess how aware your intended audience is of your existence and how they perceive your brand.

That’s where brand awareness surveys come into play and help you gather the useful data required for the needed assessment.

4. Segmentation Survey

Segmentation surveys are used by businesses to gather information that can help them identify their customers and explore the best-suited market segments.

The data gathered through these surveys helps you align your marketing efforts in the right direction and enables you to determine whether or not you’re targeting the right market segment.

These surveys allow you to explore the needs and preferences of your customers and thus make it possible for you to design and deploy personalized marketing strategies.

Using the data collected, you can create different customer profiles and tailor your campaigns accordingly. This helps boost the likelihood of conversions and increases the chances of the campaign’s success.

5. Net Promoter Score

Though the net promoter score is generally used to measure customer satisfaction, its implications go beyond that. The net promoter score classifies your customers into three categories: detractors, passives, and promoters. 

Detractors represent a customer segment that’s very unlikely to promote your products or services to others. Promoters, on the other hand, are very likely to recommend your solutions to their friends and family.

Passives lie somewhere in between. They are OK with what you offer but not satisfied enough to become your brand ambassadors.

Around 72% of customers rely on recommendations from others and let reviews dictate their buying decisions.

This makes the NPS survey all the more important for you, as it helps you figure out whether or not your customers will recommend your products or services to others.

Net promoter score can also be considered a worthy indicator to assess your overall performance. If a vast majority of your customers are either detractors or passives, it shows that you really need to turn things around in order to survive the industry’s cut-throat competition.

It’s a Wrap

Knowing your customers is the prerequisite to achieving success in business. Being familiar with their needs and preferences helps you devise personalized strategies and paves the way for you to grow your business.

Surveys can help you do the needful and allow you to dive deep into customer insights. They help you gather useful market data and make it possible for you to know your customers inside out.

So, if you’ve been on the fence about running customer surveys, it’s highly recommended that you get started with the recommendations provided in this article and see if they work out for you.


  1. Thank you, Thomas. It is helpful to provide professionals with tools that can benefit their practice. What is even more helpful is to outline the limitations of traditional CX tools. Even the subject of survey is itself filled with controversy. How many surveys have you received in the last six months? How many did you complete? Most organization are now finding innovative ways to get important customer understanding in less-invasive ways. Let’s examine a few tools outlined in this blog.

    Satisfaction Surveys: If 75% of customers who leave an organization to go with a competitor indicate in a survey that they were satisfied or completely satisfied with the organization they abandoned, do we care if customers are satisfied? And I have never seen a CSAT survey that asked if I was happy…only if I was satisfied. Look up the two words in the dictionary and see how dramatically different they are.

    Satisfaction does not mean happy. I am satisfied with my power company; I am happy with my concierge doctor. Imagine coming back from your honeymoon and being asked, “How was your honeymoon?” What would your spouse think if you reported “I was completely satisfied?” Customers who drive your growth are not the ones that are satisfied, it is the ones that think you are awesome. Put words like that on a survey!

    Net Promoter Score: The ultimate question is “would you recommend?” Do you really care about intention? It is like the kid that starts the school year by saying, “I intend to make all A’s this year.” It is a worthy goal you cannot put on a college application. Wouldn’t you be better served by asking, “Have you recommended?” Intentions change nothing; only behavior. And, the research behind NPS is at best questionable by many experts, Look at the Summer, 2008 issue of Sloan Management Review (“Linking Customer Loyalty to Growth”).

    Market Segmentation: Market segmentation can be deceiving. Differentiation comes through distinction and uniqueness. Who was Starbucks key target market? How about people who did not drink coffee? Traditional market segmentation would not have revealed that segment. Nintendo was for kids; but, Nintendo WII was a completely different audience,. When Cirque du Soleil started, they had to become the un-circus. They went after adults willing to pay $125 admission to see a circus in their mind with no animals, no popcorn, no three-ring, and no screaming kids. Value innovation trumped market siegmentation. Think of the typical art gallery and how they might be impacted by Immersion experiences like Monet and Van Gogh? The target market for a mind-blowing experience is likely different that art gallery goers.

    Tools are important. We need to build in a caveat emptor into how they are presented, especially to partitioners new to the field. I still recall early in my career hearing a CEO tell an investor that 92% of their customers said they were satisfied on their latest satisfaction survey. The following year the company filed for bankruptcy. He thought his CSAT was the company’s ticket to success.


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