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Amy Garrick

Published on

May 6, 2019


data, digital marketing

As a researcher, one of the most important parts of our process is ensuring we are speaking to the correct audience(s). In an ideal world, we could survey everyone in the relevant population about a specific topic, but since we cannot, we have developed sampling methods to collect a random, demographically representative subgroup of people to represent the population.

There are two challenges we often face when we are beginning a project. One of them is finding the right vendor who can supply the correct respondents for the survey. The other is helping our clients understand who the right audience is for their project.

Image of audience in black and white

Finding the Right Vendor:

To address the first issue, LEWIS Research evaluates vendors to understand what methods they are using to ensure quality respondents and using a one strike and you are out policy. Many sample providers have also been consolidating and LEWIS wants to ensure we are examining the latest and best options for sample. Sample vendors may specialize in specific audiences and each vendor uses slightly different methods. LEWIS Research will evaluate the project and assess which vendor may be best for the project depending on who we need to survey to capture the right results. LEWIS Research has also partnered with Imperium.

Imperium leads the market research industry in digital fingerprinting and data quality. By collecting additional information on respondents, they can detect if a person is trying to take the survey multiple times or with multiple accounts. These methods help researchers identify people who are trying to ‘cheat’ the vendors we use to get the benefit of taking the survey (which may be money or points or another form of reward). Good quality vendors have processes in place to avoid this on their own, but it is helpful to have an extra layer of security in place.

Finding the Right Audience:

The second issue is deciding the right audience. Many clients think the most important people to speak to are C-suite or the upper level executives, and for some projects, that may be the correct audience. But often times, the decision makers are a level or two below the upper level management and have more information on the topic at hand. LEWIS Research works with clients to decide who the right audience is for the project and then develops a series of questions to screen out the wrong type of respondents so we can ensure we target and get the right ones. LEWIS Research also consistently inspects the data during the project to determine that the respondents are answering honestly, and we remove anyone who fails our data checks and provide this information back to the vendor so they can remove any bad respondents from the panel. This process ensures that the vendors are aware of anyone who may be an issue on their end and helps to ensure quality sample in the future.

Why is sampling so important to our clients and to us?

  • LEWIS Research works collaboratively with clients to find the best option for the purposes of their research. Budgets can be restrictive, but our research team discusses the options with our clients to best suit their needs. We work to keep costs low while keeping the results within an acceptable margin of error.
  • Some of our clients work in niche spaces or tough-to-reach audiences. We have a good understanding of who we can reach, cost implications for specific job levels or titles, and how many people we need to survey.
  • Lastly, we want the results to hold weight. Clients build strategies and make decisions based upon the implications from the survey findings, so they need to accurately capture the market and sentiments of the population. Good research starts with good design and quality sample!

Want more research tips and tricks? Reach out to our research team today!

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