<span id="hs_cos_wrapper_name" class="hs_cos_wrapper hs_cos_wrapper_meta_field hs_cos_wrapper_type_text" style="" data-hs-cos-general-type="meta_field" data-hs-cos-type="text" >The Consultant's Guide to Diligence Surveys</span>
02/04/2022

The Consultant's Guide to Diligence Surveys

As a consultant working with institutional investors, your goals change from project to project. Whether you’re diligencing an investment target, optimizing pricing for a new portfolio company, or preparing for a new product launch, primary research is always essential

Note: this is the prologue to our series: "The Consultant's Guide to Diligence Surveys."  You can download the full guide here.

Surveys are an important piece of the consultant toolkit - tapping into relevant consumer or industry expert groups can offer profound insight and understanding of niche markets

Some of the most common data points that surveys seek to uncover include:

  • How large is the market for a product or service?
  • How does the target brand compare to competitors?
  • What is the net promoter score (NPS) of the target relative to its competition?
  • How much are likely buyers willing to pay for a product or service?
  • How important is an investment target’s product or service?

However, while surveys can deliver crucial data to help you build a recommendation for your client, there are significant challenges when using them during due diligence: 

  • Time restrictions—private equity clients often need a recommendation within 2-3 weeks, leaving little margin for error.
  • Data integrity—it can be challenging to ensure survey responses and target audiences are genuine.
  • Programming complex logic— it’s frequently difficult to translate complex logic recorded in your internal Word document into programmed survey logic.
  • Managing stakeholders—juggling your client, survey platform engineers, and multiple respondent panels is time-intensive and frustrating.

With these challenges in mind, we've worked with our team of seasoned Survey Directors to craft a holistic guide to running a diligence survey. This guide will teach you how to overcome common challenges and more seamlessly incorporate a survey into your research process, unlocking structured and statistically significant aggregate data to help you build your client decks.

The Chapters

1. Planning your survey - Understand how to outline your survey to accelerate timelines and find better respondents, including:

  • Client scoping calls
  • Designing respondent profiles
  • Outlining survey paths
  • Writing thorough screeners

2. Authoring your survey - Learn survey writing best practices gleaned from the thousands of surveys we've programmed for management consultants and investors, including:

  • Common diligence question types
  • Quality control
  • Limiting user fatigue

3. Testing and launch - Enhance the integrity of your survey with systematic testing and launch practices to minimize errors and setbacks, including:

  • How to test your survey
  • Implementing soft launches
  • Post-survey reporting

By the time you finish this guide, you'll be prepared to run effective and efficient diligence surveys for even the most demanding private equity client!

Read Chapter 1

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