Market Research



Market Research

While any research firm can collect survey data, our emphasis is on collecting the right data and analyzing it rigorously and with an eye to its operational use.

Having conducted dozens of transit research projects, we know what questions yield the most useful information.

Market Research, Customer-Based Planning and Community Outreach are intrinsic to our work. To see our experience in these areas, click here and select the appropriate category.

Transit Marketing provides a full menu of market research services. More importantly, however, we provide the experience and expertise to design and execute scientifically valid research studies customized to your organization’s needs. In the belief that “cookie cutter” research is not in the best interest of our clients, we work closely with you to identify and address issues critical to your transit market.

Passenger Surveys

Passenger surveys are a critical source of information to guide decisions regarding transit planning, marketing and customer service. Transit customer services can be conducted in a number of ways – at bus stops, at transit centers, by phone – however, our experience has shown that an on-board survey is generally the most effective for capturing a representative sampling of all riders.

An on-board survey can be used to collect a wide variety of data, including:

  • Origin and Destination Information
  • Transit Use Characteristics of Passengers
  • Demographic Passenger Profile
  • Passenger Satisfaction/Attitudes
  • Demographic Passenger Profile
  • Comparison/Contrast of Ridership Segments
  • Specific Passenger Comments

While conducting an on-board survey seems like a simple task to many, executing a high-quality study that provides useful, representative data requires a significant effort and a high level of supervision. Over the past several years, we have developed procedures for conducting on-board surveys that insure a representative sample and measurable response rate. While the logistics of implementation are different in every city, our experience provides a firm base from which to proceed.

Community Surveys

A community-wide market segmentation study can measure the awareness, knowledge and image of your transit system. In addition, it can assess the level of potential for increased transit usage and identify the measures required to capture that potential. CJI pioneered the technique of using a stratified sample and branched questionnaire to cost effectively collect detailed, comparative information about riders, potential riders and non-riders. Our proven research designs allow us to create in-depth profiles of each group while also maintaining an overall sample which accurately reflects the attitudes, behavior and characteristics of your total community. Our iterative analysis process, user friendly reports and results-oriented recommendations then turn the data into information that is useful to transit managers, planners and marketers.

Focus Groups

Focus groups are a cost-effective means of exploring the attitudes of a specific target group – users, potential users, voters or employees. Both Hugh Clark, Ph.D., and Selena Barlow, M.B.A., are experienced focus group moderators.-Transit Marketing can provide all of the services necessary for a successful focus group – from recruitment to reporting.

Key Informant or “Gatekeeper” Interviews

In-depth personal interviews with “gatekeepers” can provide valuable perspectives on the demand for public transit services among various constituencies. They can also gauge overall attitudes towards transit and be very useful in identifying issues to be studied in more depth. Our team will identify, locate and interview gatekeepers relevant to a particular project, such as:

  • Representatives of the business, educational or social service community.
  • Advocates for specific groups such as the elderly or disabled.
  • Elected officials and key staff members for relevant jurisdictions.

Community Involvement

When implemented effectively, community involvement can be a valuable qualitative research tool. We aggressively recruit participation in community workshops, stakeholder meetings and other outreach efforts, in order to understand the needs and view of all sectors of a community’s population.

Internet Surveys

We conduct e-surveys of target groups with high levels of Internet access, such as college students and employees at major worksites. We can also assist you in adding a survey form to your website, then provide periodic analysis and interpretation of the data.