Too often, research defines its respondents based on what they look like on paper-age, income, education level, gender-and uses those statistics to imply meaning to their behaviors. But in fact, people can look very similar with regard to demographics, and make their decisions based on dramatically different motivations.
When it comes to small business owners, knowing age, gender and company size can provide some insight, but it doesn't reveal who they are-why they started their business in the first place, and how they feel about the experience of being an entrepreneur. There's no insight into what makes them tick. There's no revelation regarding the pain points they face. Demographic stats are about the who. We wanted to understand the why.