5 thoughts on “NewsGator Survey

  1. LOTD: June 7

    Lifehacker leads us to something interesting for people to check out: a short blogging glossary. Dave Winer informs that one ISP’s customers are having trouble viewing Craigslist if they happen to download a security software utility offered to them. I…

  2. I got the impression it may be a usability survey, or somesuch. Something that would be relevant for most users, anyway.
    But the survey seemed only focused on business related, and even at that it’s not clear what you can get from it beyond assessing a market for maybe a new enterprise service…
    That’s perfectly legitimate, of course, but it would have been nice to mention in advance that the survey is a marketing survey targeted at a specific group of people, and not all customers.
    Oh, well, it was indeed short, though, so not a real problem.
    Keep up the good work on FeedDemon.

  3. Yaron – Aren’t all surveys, by definition, a form of marketing? What did you think it was going to be?

  4. Of course all surveys are in part a form of marketing. But ideally a survey by a company about existing products is supposed to be a way to get feedback on the product, to hear what people like about the product, what they don’t, what do users consider the strengths and weaknesses of the product, and so on.
    So I expected questions about the interface, responsiveness, configuration, which of the different products (Newsgator on-line, FeedDemon, etc) do I prefer and why, etc…
    Instead the survey gave the distinct impression of being there for two (Well, one in two parts) purposes:
    1. Assessing the market for some enterprise level feed aggregation/publication/managing product
    2. Letting people know that such a product is coming, and trying to get them interested.
    It started alright, asking which of the products I’m using, and if it’s for home or business use.
    The follow-up questions, though, didn’t really follow-up, except to catch on to the fact that if I’m using Newsgator and FeedDemon both home and for work, it means I use something of theirs for work.
    Since it was all about work use.
    Some of the questions were alright, asking what work-related purposes am I reading feeds for. Others seemed to me to contain too much hyperbole and overly excited adverbs in describing the ways reading feeds at work really helps me and drastically improves my productivity and quality of life…
    And in asking about the size of the company, the smallest option was 1-100. Which is a pretty clear indication that they’re aiming at enterprise level. For other purposes, even if it’s just to get an idea of who the users are, I’d expect there to be a difference between a 1-5 people company, and a 70 people company, for example.
    And so on.
    So yes, all surveys are marketing. But generally when a major developer of a product says they’re having a survey for all users of any of the company’s products, well, I expect it to be more about the products themselves, and less on seeing if I’d like to buy their future new offering for my large company.
    I didn’t mind the survey, and I suppose it was fair enough for its purpose. Just not what I expected, and I was entirely not the target customer for it. Now both Nick and the rest of Newgator are doing a good job, and offer pretty solid products. So I’m sure whatever the new things is, it’s going to be interesting for someone. But not to me. So having me answer the survey expecting something of a different angle is both bad for me, and bad for them (since I’m so out of the relevant scope, then my own answers to this survey are probably irrelevant and are just noise making it harder to get some useful info from better targeted users). Now the “Badness” is very minor to both parts, it took very little of my time, and will probably not take too much of theirs either, but nothing is still better than even a little bad…
    This is why I think adding the word “marketing” here like Nick did, and possibly adding to the first page of the survey a notice that it’s about a potential new enterprise/large-business service, is a good idea. It will spare them noise in the data, and will ensure that people will have a better idea of what’s it about.
    Heh, OK, this comment is already far bigger than the actual survey, and I think I explained my point, so this would be a good point to stop.

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