Accelerating Insights with Real-Time Surveys

In the fast-paced world of advertising and public health marketing, insights are invaluable and often needed "yesterday." Understanding audience preferences, behaviors, and trends is crucial to making informed decisions and driving impactful campaigns. To stay ahead of the curve, ad agencies and public health professionals are turning to real-time surveys as a powerful tool for accelerating insights and optimizing their strategies.


The Power of Real-Time Surveys

It typically takes 1-2 weeks to collect responses on an online survey, which is too long when the data is needed immediately. Our live-reporting capabilities allow our clients see the data as it’s coming in, giving them a sneak peek into the insights we're collecting to make informed decisions quickly. It provides a snapshot of audience sentiment, preferences, and needs; allowing clients to make iterative improvements to messaging and campaigns accordingly. Seeing the data in real time gives them an edge because they can carry on with producing their creative work instead of waiting for all of the results to come in.


Applications in Advertising Agencies

Our ad agency partners rely heavily on data and insights to drive their campaigns. Research enables them to understand consumer preferences, identify emerging trends, and optimize audience targeting. By leveraging real-time surveys, they can gather immediate feedback on ad concepts, product features, and test campaign messaging. This allows them to fine-tune their strategies faster, ensuring that their campaigns resonate with their target audience and drive maximum impact.


Applications in Public Health Marketing

Research plays a crucial role in shaping messaging and behavior change initiatives for our public health clients. Gathering insights on public perceptions, knowledge gaps, and barriers to behavior change is crucial for an effective campaign, allowing them to address specific concerns or misconceptions, and ultimately drive positive behavior change. Real-time data enables them to monitor the impact of their campaigns and make data-driven adjustments for better outcomes.


Best Practices for Implementing Real-Time Surveys

To maximize the effectiveness of real-time surveys, it is essential to follow best practices in survey design and implementation. Here are some key tips to consider:

  • Define clear objectives:  Clearly outline what insights you want to gather from the survey and how you plan to use the data.

  • Keep it short and focused:  People are more likely to complete shorter surveys. Focus on collecting essential information and avoid unnecessary questions.

  • Use clear and concise language:  Ensure that survey questions are easy to understand and answer. Avoid using jargon.

  • Balance your sample throughout the fieldwork process:  When looking at survey data in real-time while the fieldwork is ongoing, it’s crucial that you pay attention to the demographics and ensure that you’re not skewing towards certain groups of people. For example, females and older respondents tend to respond faster than males and younger audiences. If your sample isn’t balanced from the start, the real-time data may be skewed.

  • Remember margin of error:  The margin of error naturally improves as the data collection progresses. When looking at real-time data, its important to not react too quickly, as a survey just getting started with just 100-200 responses will have a wide MoE. Once you get to n=300+ in the data collection process, it’s safer to begin using the real-time data and making strategic decisions.

  • Don’t forget the full analysis:  While the benefit of real-time data is not having to wait around for your insights, it’s still important to analyze the results to uncover the full story. Real-time data works best when it’s used to guide campaign production and give a head start, but there are usually deeper insights uncovered once the research team dives deeper into the dataset. Don’t finalize anything until you have the full story in your hands.

  • Act on the insights:  Once you have the full report, use the insights to inform your decision-making process. Confirm that the decisions you made with the preliminary, real-time insights are still valid. Act on the findings to drive meaningful change.


Real-time surveys are a game-changer in accelerating insights for advertising agencies and public health marketing professionals. Real-time feedback enables them to optimize their strategies, tailor their messaging, and drive more impactful results. By following best practices in survey design and implementation, we gather valuable data so our clients can make informed decisions in a timely manner. Our real-time reporting capabilities give our clients a strategic advantage by staying ahead of the curve and driving successful campaigns.




Related Content:

Posted by Stewart

Stewart is passionate about all things research. Designing studies, analyzing data, and moderating interviews - Stew does it all. Outside of research, he enjoys spending time with his wife and kids and trying new recipes on the grill.

Topics: Research Tips, Research, What We Do, Reporting, #publichealth, Capabilities & Tools