Friday, September 3, 2010

A small look into the world of Market Research from the interviewer/research agent’s POV pt 1

The point of Market Research is for companies to find out what the public likes and doesn't like about their company or their products as well as to see what they can do to improve what they have and boost their business. Most surveys are designed to learn people's opinions. Some surveys pay and some do not.

First and foremost what I want anyone who stumbles upon this blog to know, is that when you get a call from someone wanting to do a survey, listen to the agent's introduction. Refuse if you feel the need or don't want to take it but do not hang up. That gets you a call back. The best thing to do is let the agent give you a rebuttal or two and politely decline. As long as you've heard the intro and let us rebut at least once or twice, we take you out of the system.

Second, I don't know hoe we get your phone numbers. We are never told. More importantly, the numbers are in a sample that gets run through the captains computer and dialer system to each of our computers. Therefore we have no control who we call or when we call unless there is a scheduled call back time.

Third, don't get your panties in a wad because you are on a do not call list. That only applies to solicitors. Hint: Survey. We aren't trying to sell you anything therefore that do not call list doesn't apply to us. Don't like it get a privacy manager.

Now the first thing you have to know about the company I work for is that they have sections, sales and market research. They also have two shifts. Day shift is primarily sales as I understand it but they also have a some market research as as far as I know that is for businesses rather than residential. Be we will get more in to that in a bit.

When I first became employed with the company I work for at present, I was rather excited. No, I was not thrilled that it was outbound calling, but it was for research so I didn't mind too much. I thought it's research, I'm not selling anything, people should be more willing to talk and give their opinions. How naive of me. Working in a call center that does outbound will teach you a few things about people.

So let's discuss the respondents first, the people we call. As with most people you have the good apples and the rotten. Some people I have spoken with have been amazing and so very interesting. I've often wished I could have stayed on the phone with them all night just to listen to their stories and how they feel about things. Those are my favorite people to interview.

However there have been instance where I have been so shocked and even appalled. People will down right refuse to take a survey because they are watching America Idol or a sports game and get furious with us because we somehow should have known. Are we living with you? Are we watching your daily life? No. We are in a call center in the Midwest in half assed cubicles with shitty computers and outdated equipment that constantly breaks. How the hell are we supposed to know what you are doing?

Other don't want to take survey unless they are being paid or getting something out of it, which in my opinion is selfish, especially when the survey pertains to health clinics in their area as one particular survey we had did. Oh and how I love the ones who say they aren't 18 but sound like they are at least 30 years old. Don't lie to me, just say you aren't interested.

But the worst people are the ones who cuss me out for no good reason other than I dared to call. One man spewed forth narrow minded crap that didn't pertain to anything I was interviewing him for, stated talking about minorities and then talked about gays. Then he proceeded to ask me if I thought gays should be allowed to marry. When I told him politely that I really didn't think it was any of my business, he said and I quote, "You're damned right it's your business you bitch" and hung up on me.

Another man told me that was going to find me, douse me in gasoline, and light me on fire not because he wanted to, he loved me, bit it was the devil who would make him do it.

Other people have screamed at me, threatened to sue me, and so forth and long before I could even get into the survey to see if they were interested in taking it. Other people have been so disgusting as to ask me if I spit or swallow and one pant pretended that his wife was sucking his cock. Luckily I am allowed to hang up on extreme people. That is the only comfort I have when dealing with such infuriating people.

But I have a guilty pleasure, if someone pisses me off bad enough, I schedule their call back for 9 am Saturday morning.

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