survey incentives

Should You Reward Customers For Taking Surveys?

Survey Tips

There’s a fine balance between giving rewards for taking surveys and not giving them at all. The most important thing to consider is your results.

You don’t want to skew your results by offering rewards, and you certainly want to avoid tainted data as much as possible.

So, this begs this question, “Should you reward customers for taking surveys?”

First, let’s look at the distinction between reward and incentive.

Rewards vs. Incentives

An incentive is often given to respondents for completing a survey. A reward may be seen as a thank-you for finishing a survey.

This distinction may be important to consider when offering them to respondents. For example, big survey companies offer monetary incentives to random survey takers, and the results have a higher probability of being skewed.

A reward may be offered by your company to your specific customers for taking your survey, and it may be less skewed than the incentive.

So, one can deduce that it may not be the value of the incentive or reward that increases the responses, but it’s the way it’s offered that makes a difference to your respondents.

How to Decide

As you ponder the question of whether or not you should offer a reward, you want to consider the following questions:

  • Who is your target? Is it existing customers or a specific demographic? Will these people have something important to offer? If so, you might consider offering a little boost for taking your survey. Yet, if you’re sending out a blanket survey, an incentive isn’t a great idea.
  • What’s your relationship with your respondents? If you’re sending it to customers after they make a purchase, a thank you reward in the form of a coupon may be a good idea. On the other hand, you might not want to offer an incentive for a survey that isn’t specifically targeted.
  • Are people interested in my business? If so, a reward is a bonus. If they aren’t, then the reward will attract the wrong respondents.
  • How long is your survey? Short surveys don’t need a reward. A longer survey certainly merits one because you want to show respondents you value and appreciate the time it takes to fill out your survey.

When to Offer the Incentive

Should you offer it before the survey or after?

To increase your response rate, you can offer it before the survey. But, beware that this may cost more because you provide the incentive before anyone even takes your survey.

Your audience may take the incentive and leave your survey unfinished.

Conversely, offering the promise of the reward for taking your survey is a much better option because it’s a true reward provided after the work of taking the survey. 

Final Thoughts

Offering rewards for taking your surveys may make respondents more likely to complete your survey, but you want to be careful with your offer.

For example, you don’t want to attract the wrong type of respondent. Consider the boat dealership that attracts online shoppers with the wrong type of incentive or reward.

The best way to avoid problems is to know who you’re sending your survey to. The reward should match the audience. (tweet this)

This way you won’t end up with people who misrepresent themselves. These folks may not know or care about your services or products. They simply want a reward.

Offering survey rewards should be well thought out. You want to consider the survey, your audience, and the results you’re after before deciding to offer a reward. 

Finally, consider the type of reward you offer. It should fit the survey and the audience. These may be monetary, in the form of a coupon, or something that benefits a third-party like a charity. 

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

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Rewarding Managers For Good Survey Scores

Survey Tips

Should you reward your managers for providing a superb customer experience by managing their employees well and setting the tone for improved customer encounters?

In many cases, the answer to this question is, “Yes.” While you expect your managers to excel at leading their teams, you also want to reward them when they’ve done well.

How will you know when they’ve excelled at their job? When you’ve received positive survey scores.

In this article, we look at rewarding managers for good survey scores.

Customer Service is Key

In today’s digital world where reviews are everywhere on the internet, it’s never been more important to provide the best possible customer service. It’s what separates your business from the competition.

One way to encourage your staff to provide top notch service is to reward them, and this starts with your managers.

Since you recognize the importance of providing excellent service, you want to use your surveys to find out if your customers agree that is what is happening.

By surveying respondents to learn how they feel about your service, you are immediately putting your staff on notice. This may be a cultural shift for some of them, but one that’s immensely important to your overall success.

As your managers and ultimately your entire team see that customer service is your top concern, and they note that you are going to use surveys to gauge it, they’ll soon jump on-board.

So, by rewarding managers for good survey scores, you send a strong message that customer service matters, and that you’re willing to reward staff members for helping you excel.

Tips for Succeeding with Rewards

Before you decide to reward your managers for good survey scores, you want to have the following in place:

  • Set up a training program for your managers as well as your staff so they know how to serve your customers best.
  • Create some parameters for measuring customer service through your surveys. Decide what you’d like to benchmark and what you consider good enough for rewarding your managers. They must know what’s expected if they’re going to reach your goals.
  • Make sure your surveys reflect what’s important to the customer and not necessarily to you. For example, what the customer wants out of the experience might not be what you think they want.
  • Once you receive the surveys, go through them with your managers. You want to communicate the feedback you receive so everyone understands it and places the same value on it.
  • Use your Net Promoter Score. Let it drive the change you want to see in your business. The NPS tells you the value your company has in the eyes of the consumer. This is a good way to measure the customer experience, so you can reward managers when it’s positive.
  • If the surveys aren’t positive, do you have a structure in place to identify problems and effect change? Talk to your manager and implement the proper procedures.
  • Make sure your managers have ownership of the survey results and create a plan with your team for managing the customer experience throughout the year.
  • Outline the reward program so it’s official. Give them a target to reach for and encourage them to share the “thank-you” with their staff for a job well done.

Final Thoughts

It can be beneficial for your company to reward and incentivize your managers for good survey scores.

Not only will it help your company excel at customer service, it let’s your entire staff know that a culture of “customer first” is important to you.

On the flip side, you do want to set out in writing what you’re going to do when surveys don’t come back with good scores. It pays to make your staff aware of what happens when you receive good survey scores and when you receive not-so-good scores.

Ultimately, the goal of rewarding your managers is to encourage their strong participation in your customer service goals and to improve your bottom line.

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

Image: Štefan Štefančík on Unsplash

7 Survey Incentives That Get Respondents Every Time

Survey Tips

According to a survey by the American Statistical Association, surveys with incentives have a better response rate.

They tested a control group with no incentive, a group that was given $5 as an incentive upfront and a group that was told they’d receive $5 at the end of the survey.

Their data showed that the use of prepaid incentives not only increases response rates, but it increases the quality of the survey data.

What’s more, when offered the prepaid incentive, survey respondents were less likely to ignore a question and more likely to offer longer answers.

What does this tell us? It suggests that offering incentives is a valuable way to increase your response rates and the quality of your answers. (tweet this)

In this article, we look at seven survey incentives that get respondents every time.

#1: The Monetary Incentive

Have you ever been asked to take a survey that offered you money for doing so?

This is one of the most common types of incentives and the most successful.

When using a monetary incentive, it can come in several forms:

  • Cash (think PayPal)
  • Check (either mailed or e-Check)
  • Gift card

You’ll often find a higher completion rate when respondents are offered a cash reward.

Why is the return better? Survey respondents who are offered a cash incentive are more likely to complete your survey because there is a monetary reward. What’s more, they are more likely to feel compelled to take their time when responding to your survey because they feel obligated to do so.

How do you find the right amount of money to offer? First, look at your survey length. How long will it take to complete?

Then, think about your audience. If it’s college students, and it’s a five-minute survey, anywhere from $1-5 should suffice.

On the other hand, if the survey is sent to a professional group like doctors, and your survey takes 30 minutes to complete, your price should be significantly more – around $25-100.

#2: The Sample Product or Service

Knowing your audience is key to deciding what type of incentive you want to provide.

While cash is always a great idea, offering respondents a sample product or service is another way to give them what they want.

Let’s say you want to survey people to find out how they feel about your sports drinks. You’ve just developed a new flavor, and for completing the survey, you offer them a sample of the new flavor.

This can work if your respondents are your current sports drink customers, and they’re interested in trying new flavors.

Likewise, if you offer computer-type services, you might offer respondents a beta version of your newest software.

With this type of incentive, make it relevant to your company so it encourages your respondent’s continued business.

#3: The Coupon

Coupons are another often successful way to incentivize respondents.

Many businesses have success offering a 25% discount to people completing their surveys. This is often enough to encourage and grow your response rates.

The coupon or discount costs you less than offering a straight cash reward. Why? With a coupon, you are still driving business.

#4: The Charitable Donation

Again, you’ve got to know your target audience. For example, pick a charity that ties into your product line.

Let your customers know that for each survey returned, you’ll donate X amount to your favorite charity.

Your customers will feel good knowing that by completing your survey they did something good for the world.

In addition, you’ll provide a good feeling for your customers. In today’s world, people are more charitable than ever before, and they want to feel a part of something bigger than themselves.

This can be a good way to build good feelings for your brand while helping others.

#5: The Drawing

Another type of incentive is the drawing or raffle.

With this incentive, you tell survey respondents that for completing your survey they’ll be entered into a drawing to win something.

Popular items include gift cards, cash and iPads.

Just be sure the lottery incentive won’t break your marketing budget.

#6: The Whitepaper

You can also offer your survey respondents something tangible. For example, you can offer them something of value.

Let’s say you run a marketing business, and you are sending your survey to all of your retainer customers.

You might offer them a how-to manual, video or whitepaper that you aren’t offering anyone else for free.

While not the most enticing incentive, it can work for the right audience.

#7: The Giveaway

This type of incentive includes branded giveaways. We’re talking pens, cups, notebooks, etc. with your company’s logo.

You want to know your target audience well, and if you’re giving away something they find useful, this can work.

Things to Consider

Now that we’ve looked at survey incentives that get respondents every time, we’re going to provide you with a few more things to think about.

  1. Know your budget. This is the most important thing to consider when deciding on an incentive. Make sure you can afford to give away the item you promised.
  2. Decide if every respondent gets your incentive. You can also offer the first 200 respondents the incentive or even the lottery option giving them a chance to win the incentive.
  3. Know your audience. When choosing your incentive, it’s vital that you can define this group of people. Offering an incentive that’s valuable is of utmost importance. If they don’t care about the incentive, it won’t matter.
  4. Decide on your delivery method. You want to provide an incentive that is easy to redeem and one that doesn’t eat up your manpower.
  5. Pick the time you’ll offer the incentive. Will you offer it before they complete the survey or after? Upfront surveys have been known to increase response rates because survey takers feel obligated to complete the survey.
  6. Set up some form of quality control. This is especially true if your survey incentive is really valuable. You don’t want people completing it more than once.

To Conclude

If you aren’t sure where to start, you can begin with testing a few different incentives.

Begin with a small group of respondents and see if they respond. For example, if you decide to offer cash, test this out with half of your respondents. Then compare it to your control group and see if it made a difference.

Through testing you’ll know what works and what doesn’t. You might have to test a few times to find out which one works best for your target audience.

Surveys help you make the best decisions for your business. Are you ready to get started with your free Survey Town trial? Start with your free account today, and you can upgrade at any time.

Image: Annie Spratt