Upload Contacts and Send Survey Emails using SurveyTown


Email is one of the best ways to get your surveys directly in front of your customers. Up until now, if you wanted to get your SurveyTown survey in front of your customers you would need to take the link or embeddable question and add it in an email generated by another email system like Mailchimp, Constant Contact or Bronto.  That is no longer your only option With SurveyTown’s new email feature, you can customize a fantastic looking email, upload your contacts directly into SurveyTown and SurveyTown will email your contacts for you. Not only that, but you can set SurveyTown to automatically send survey reminder emails to those that did not initially respond.  You can also define custom fields for your contacts and then create custom filters based on those custom fields. So, for example, you can see how your NPS scores change based on a customer’s account manager or perhaps on the product they bought. 

Here’s a quick guide to the new email functionality inside of SurveyTown. 

Design Your Emails

When sending your email, you have the option to customize the way the email looks. In the upper left-hand corner of the email icon, click on the gray menu icon.  To change the appearance of your email, choose “Customize design” in the options. 

From here, you can begin to customize the email to match your brand. In the email settings, design an email that that matches your brand by setting the brand color and logo image. Additionally, you can customize your email by writing a personalized intro and subject, as well as defining who the survey is from. 

Your customers may be busy and may have forgotten to take your survey the first time you send them the email.  In order to ensure your customers respond to your survey, you have the opportunity to send “Automatic Reminders” to customers that have not yet completed your survey.  A reminder email can be set as early as 7 days, or as late as 21 days after sending. 

Your customers’ opinion of your business may change over time – hopefully for the better – and you want to know where your where that opinion stands.  In order to stay on top of your customers’ needs, you have the opportunity to send a “Recurring Email”. You can send “Recurring Emails” to customers if you want to email them once a quarter or once a year automatically to ask them their opinion.

Add Contacts to Your Survey Email

Adding contacts to your survey is easy and convenient. With this feature, you can add your contacts with a number of supported files, or simply copy and paste. This SurveyTown email feature allows you to add contacts to your email in a variety of ways. 

  • Copy/Paste
  • .xlsx
  • .xls
  • .csv
  • API

Once you have uploaded your contacts you will have the option to send a survey right away or schedule it for the future.

Once you press send you will be given an import summary that shows how many contacts you send to and who was filtered out because they were a bad (malformed) email address or were already on your survey email list.

Define Custom Fields

Before adding contacts though, you may want to define custom fields for your contacts.  Contact custom fields in SurveyTown will give you the option to create custom reports on your survey data based on contact data. When reading your responses, you can filter the results to only be applied to custom fields set by you.  For example, if you uploaded a list of contacts and knew the state where for each contact after the survey had collected responses you could breakdown your customer satisfaction levels by state. The different custom field types are: Textbox, Email address, Date, Mailing Address, Decimal, State dropdown, Integer, Checkbox, Radio buttons, Checkbox, Checkbox list. 

View Responses from Contacts

The results are the most important part of receiving responses. Your responses to your survey can help navigate which direction your business needs to be going.  When adding custom fields for your contacts, you can easily review filtered responses defined by custom fields set by you. You can view your results through:

  • Overview reports 
  • By Contact
  • Through Custom Fields
  • By  API 
  • Through Webhooks

Final Thoughts

In today’s competitive market, it is essential that you stay on top of how your customer feels about your product, service or business. Sending out direct email surveys to your customers can help gather the input needed to navigate your business to success. Sending email surveys directly from SurveyTown can help simplify the process of sending emails by allowing you to send emails and gathering responses all on the same platform.  All you need to do is design, set up your custom fields, import your contacts, and your on your way to receiving responses that will help you exceed your customers’ needs.

5 Ways to Make Your Survey Attractive to Your Customers to Increase Response Rates


While some people enjoy taking surveys and sharing their opinions, there are others who don’t feel quite as compelled to complete your survey.

So, how do you reach these people and encourage them to move forward and complete your survey?

In this article, we look at five ways to make your survey attractive to your customers to increase response rates.

#1: Disguise Your Survey

People love to complete quizzes which is why you see them so often in your social media news feeds.

For marketing gurus, quizzes are interactive content that works. They prompt people to take action, and they enable you to get responses.

According to the Content Marketing Institute, nearly 90% of marketers believe interactive content grabs more attention than static content.

This is why, from time to time, you should disguise your survey as a quiz. Not only does it take the perceived responsibility off the respondents’ shoulders, it makes them think taking your “quiz” will be fun.

A marketing tip is to use a subject line in your email. When sending out your quiz through email, use “Take Our Quiz” in the subject line instead of “Take Our Survey.”

As always, keep your quiz short and ask only the survey questions that matter most.

You can also ask a rating question at the very end because by this time, your respondents are invested in your quiz. This allows people a chance to compliment you or share their concerns.

Be sure to follow regular survey protocol and reach out to the negative commenters. And, always share your results with your customers.

#2: Gamify Your Survey

No, this doesn’t mean creating a survey that would be at home in Minecraft.

What it does mean is using game thinking and game mechanics in your survey. Use these tools to engage your respondents so they think they’re helping you solve a problem.

Usually this means changing the way you word your survey questions. Doing this helps make your survey more attractive and increasing response rates at the same time.

You want your survey to engage your customers, so making your survey more game-like allows them to feel like they’re playing a game while answering your survey. (tweet this)

Consider these game-like elements:

  • Make it competitive. For example, ask: “What are your favorite things to eat on our menu? Click as many as you can in 30 seconds.”
  • Offer a reward. For example, say: “If you complete the survey in less than five minutes, we’ll give you a coupon for 20% off.” You of course aren’t timing it, but you are offering a coupon at the end.

By gamifying your survey, you are creatively taking the burden of the survey off your respondents. This way, the survey doesn’t feel like something they have to do but something they want to do.

#3: Create an Exchange

Another way to get people to take your survey is to use a bit of psychology. There is a long-standing theory that if someone does something good for you, you’ll be happy to return the favor. This plays on a human’s need to do the next right thing.

If you give your customers something, they’ll feel morally compelled to give something back which for you is completing your survey.

So, let’s say you sell vacuums. Your customer purchases a vacuum from you. Typically, this is the act that would trigger the survey.

Instead of sending it after the purchase, send your customer something worthwhile to them in their email. You might send them several videos on how to use their vacuum, how to set it up, and how to troubleshoot issues.

After this, you send out your survey. Because you helped your customers by providing them information, they’ll feel the need to reciprocate. One good deed does indeed encourage another, and you’ll find you have a better response rate.

#4: Make Your Survey Customer-Centric

Your customers are more likely to complete their survey if it’s of interest to them.

By making the topic of your survey interesting, your customers find it more relevant, and will be more likely to complete it.

From the email subject line to the brief description, make sure your customers know the survey is directly related to their purchase and their experience. Your customers should know the purpose of your survey from the very beginning.

By segmenting your list, you can tailor surveys to specific customer populations. You can also alter your language slightly, so that customers feel like you’re talking directly to them. Use quality questions that pertain specifically to their experience.

Instead of saying something like, “Help us make the customer experience better,” say, “Improve your customer experience by taking this survey.”

Don’t forget to use conditional logic when appropriate to again improve the survey experience for your customers and keep them more engaged. The more specific the survey, the better your responses.

#5: Respect Their Privacy

In today’s digital age, you’ll find that people are more reluctant than ever to share their personal information.

To encourage a higher response rate, be upfront about the data you are collecting.

In addition, just like on your website, include a privacy disclaimer to help encourage people to take your survey. You’ll want to include the following:

  • Why you’re conducting a survey.
  • What personal data you are collecting.
  • How you’ll use the data.
  • If you’ll disclose the data to anyone else, and if so, to whom.
  • How respondents can contact you with questions.
  • How they can delete or not give you their personal information.

A good rule of thumb is to only collect the information you absolutely need to encourage a higher response rate.

To Conclude

We’ll leave you with two final tips, so you can make your survey more attractive to customers:

  • Consider sending a pre-survey email to let your customers know it’s coming. Explain why you’re sending them a survey and what you will do with their responses. Tell them you care about their privacy as well as their comments.
  • Always say thank you. You want to tell your respondents thank you for their time, for participating in your survey, and for helping you make their experience better.

Wish your customers well at the end of the survey, and you’re on your way to creating loyal customers who don’t mind answering your questions.

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: Charisse Kenion on Unsplash

Workflow improvements launched with SurveyTown release – March 2018


Hi fellow SurveyTown surveyers:

It is March 12, 2018 and we have just released a new version of SurveyTown designed to give you a better access to the workflow of making a survey.  See below for the major changes.

Redesigned WorkFlow for Creating and Sharing Surveys

Now that you can more or less freely edit active surveys, we have turned the management of surveys into a “Build -> Preview -> Share -> Results” workflow.  This makes it easier to get a comprehensive view of your survey before and after you have started collecting results.


Mobile, Tablet and Desktop Previews

We have added an new preview step which give you an opportunity to see what  your survey looks like in a tablet and mobile screen size.

Interface de-cluttering

We de-cluttered the listing of surveys by moving the Close, Copy and Delete functions under a “three dot” navigation on the left.

Word Cloud Report

We have added a Word Cloud report to the short text and long text question types. This gives you a visualization of the words used in people’s responses to give you a “feel” for how people are responding.  You can still of course read individual responses by clicking on “Show Responses”.

Modified Look for Survey List

We have added hover-over navigation to give you quick access to the “Build > Preview > Share > Results” sections of your survey.  Additionally we have a slightly different look in the list for surveys are have not collected any responses yet.  If the survey has not collected any responses, the list of surveys will show the number of questions.  Once the survey collects its first response, it will show the number of responses.

PLEASE NOTE: We have done away with the concept of having to “Start” a survey. Newly created surveys are ready to collect responses immediately. When a survey collects its first response it will automatically be switched from “New” to “Active”.  The API call Survey_Start will still function to move a survey from “New” (formerly “Draft”) to “Active”.  API call Survey_Status_Changed will fire when a survey collects its first response.  The survey value “status” returned by the API  are also unchanged, meaning they will return “Draft” instead of “New”

Change in restrictions on Basic accounts

We have modified the restrictions on our Basic account.  Instead of just one survey, our trial accounts get Unlimited surveys but with only 100 responses allowed on any particular survey.  This is a by-product of our having lifted the requirement that people press start to activate surveys.  If your survey goes over the 100 response limit, we will continue to gather responses, but you will need to upgrade to see and download all of them.

We hope you enjoy the new SurveyTown features!




Drag and drop survey creation


We have just launched some changes to way surveys are created by introducing a new drag and drop interface for questions.  This interface reduces the number of clicks needed to add questions into a survey as well as allows you a better vantage point to “see” how your survey is coming together while you create it.  Here’s a guide to the major changes.

Drag questions into place

First main change is that you now see all your questions types in a list on the left.  You can then choose among the list, select them and then drag and drop them into your survey area which is the main area on the right.


Inline editing

Once you drop your question in the main survey editing area, the dialog to add in your question text or set your choices will appear right there inline.  You can then save your settings and the question will appear right there.  This change saves several clicks back and forth between pages.


See your survey as you build it

With these changes you can now get a better view of your survey as you build it.  After you save your questions they appear in the main editing area so you can see how they will look in the final published survey.

Actions are now exposed via hovering

The Edit, Copy, Move and Delete actions on survey questions are now exposed when you hover over the questions.


We hope we have made the survey creation process even easier our new drag-and-drop interface for creating surveys.  This new interface for creating surveys will reduce the number of clicks and give you a better view of your survey as you create it.

Happy Surveying!

Create automatic Slack messages when you receive a survey response


Slack is a workplace collaboration tool that has grown exponentially and many companies use it to facilitate communication.

Imagine if you wanted to receive a Slack message when you receive a new survey response.  Well, you can!  For example you could use this feature to alert support team members to new responses to Net Promoter Score (NPS). Or you could alert team members when someone has filled out a survey describing their experience or preferences.

Using Zapier, you can create an automatic slack message after you receive a survey response in SurveyTown.  Its fun and easy to setup.

SurveyTown alert inside of Slack

The three things you need are …

  1. SurveyTown account (Professional level, so you can get API Keys)
  2. Slack account
  3. Zapier account (free or paid)


Step 1 – Connect your SurveyTown account to Zapier

Login to Zapier and connect SurveyTown account.  Go to Connected Accounts, search for SurveyTown.  It will ask you for your API key.  Grab your API key from SurveyTown and copy and paste it into Zapier.

Step 2 – Connect your Slack account to Zapier

Login to Zapier account.  Go to Connect Acounts and search for Slack.  The connection process involves giving permission for Zapier to be able to post messages to your Slack (among other things).

Step 3 – Setup a Zap!

This step is to create the connection between SurveyTown and Slack.  This involves setting up the trigger and the action.  So we want a new survey response to create a message in Slack.  So the trigger is the survey response and the action is the posting of the message to Slack.

When you setup your SurveyTown trigger it will look into your account for active surveys.  Choose survey which is receiving the responses you want posted to Slack. (NOTE: You will need to have at least one recent survey response in there to run a test.)

Create SurveyTown Trigger in Zapier

Next you setup the action which is posting the message in Slack.  When you set up the action you will have the option to choose to post to Slack a “Direct” message or a “Channel” message.  If you choose a “Direct” message you will need to choose you to send the message to and if you choose “Channel” which channel you will send the message to.

Create a Slack action with SurveyTown trigger in Zapier


You will then write in the message you want sent.  You can also add into the message a question response.  So for example you can write in the NPS score you just received into the message.

From there you follow the steps, press “Finish”, name your Zap and then activate it.

Your Zaps will run automatically but if you want to submit a survey response and see it in Slack, you can force a Zap to run by going to the dashboard and clicking “Run”.

Here’s a full demo of the SurveyTown <> Slack setup.