Everyone knows how to send links by email, or post links on social media. These are the basics of distributing your survey that everyone uses. But it’s not working you.
People simply aren’t clicking on your survey link, or they click it only to leave after realizing it’s a survey.
You know all the basics but it’s just not enough—the struggle to increase response rates is always difficult.
So, here are 5 ways to distribute your survey that you didn’t know already, and that will definitely increase your survey response rates.
New Snapchat Update Hack
Snapchat is the new trend in marketing. Everyone is trying to be on the Snapchat train, and use it for staying connected, promoting their business or just personal use. With its popularity, the app is constantly rolling out updates—and the latest one is something you can take advantage of to distribute your survey.
So what is it?
You can simply send your survey via a snapchat.
The new update on Snapchat allows you to send links through Snapchat, which the receivers can choose to swipe up and directly access the link.
This dramatically increases the cross-platform, or promotional platform for Snapchat, and for you—well you can send your survey link through Snapchat.
ACTION: Now send your survey to your Snapchat friends, and with a simple swipe up of the finger they have your survey in their hands.
I told you that you wouldn’t have thought of these methods.
Pinterest is a interestingly a very promotion-friendly platform. So long as the posts or “pins” aren’t spammy, there is plenty of potential for you to distribute your survey through Pinterest.
So how do you use Pinterest to promote your survey?
Pinterest is driven by images. So to use Pinterest, you’re can go through a easy 3-step-process.
Use Canva to create an appealing banner or image for your survey
Pick an appropriate title that captures attention and makes people want to actually participate.
Save the picture and post it on Pinterest with your survey link.
Ironic Facebook Event
Everyone is using facebook. It’s very likely that you have a Facebook yourself, and that you have your fair share of friends on it too.
Posting links on Facebook and asking your friends to participate is also a very known and very common way to increase survey response rates. But you already know that.
Everyone knows about making a page, publishing a post, whatever on Facebook, but you need something to set yourself, and your survey apart. You need an event page.
What’s an event page?
A page with a designated date and time that marks an event for your Facebook page or profile. People have the option to rsvp to this event by responding Going, Maybe, or Not.
But what does an event on Facebook have anything to do with distributing surveys you ask?
Literally make an event with a date and time dedicated for doing the survey.
I know it sounds absurd, but people love simple meta things like this nowadays, and it will work if you already have a decent friend list or following.
In addition, it will help you share results with the participants of the event and even engage in interesting interactions on the event page.
ACTION: Make a Facebook Event page for your survey.
Slide into DMs
How can you use Twitter or Instagram to promote your survey BESIDES simply tweeting links?
Slide into DMs of course. (This is a popularized expression that just refers to smoothly engaging an individual through direct message.)
You want to create value and entertainment in your interactions. Use a relevant topic, trend, or event and begin Tweeting or Instagramming (commenting, posting, etc) interactively about it. Interaction is KEY.
After a few valuable interactions, don’t be shy and DM someone that you’ve just engaged with a link to your survey with some context. Don’t be spammy, or pushy—make it a personal message that relates to the interaction you’ve just had! and make sure you express your gratitude.
Not only will this increase your social media presence and interaction, but it will help promote your survey.
ACTION: Have valuable interactions, then slide into DMs.
Make a Youtube video
This might be the most challenging of all of methods mentioned in this article, but if done right can be extremely valuable. Videos are in the forefront of appeal and attention in social media and internet visibility.
If you make an entertaining and informative video and put it on Youtube, you can post a link to that video instead.
What you want to do is at the end of the video, ask viewers to click on a link in the description to give their ideas about your [survey topic].
Afterwards, share the video on various social media pages, and voila.
This works because people are more likely to click and watch videos on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, than click on just any random link.
The important this is this.
On Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram videos can play in the native window rather than open up a new window of Youtube. This is important because people dislike the hassle of being directed to another page than they were on. If they click your video and decide to watch it to the end, they are invested enough to potentially take your survey.
ACTION: Make a Youtube video to garner attention, and ask viewers to give their input through your survey.
Your response rates for that survey you posted up are horrible.
There’s so little data, there’s no way you’re going to be able to receive actionable results.
Breathe. You’re here now, you’ve found this list.
Following this list is a 100% guarantee of increasing response rates, and receiving actionable feedback.
If you don’t have time, skip to #13 for a nice summary.
Keep your survey on one page.
People hate clicking the next button.
Why? It could be several reasons:
- the loading time for the next page,
- having to click a small button that says next (especially on smartphone screens)
- Gives a feeling that the survey will take a long time
But mostly, just think about any time you have had to fill out a page of information or answers.
You thought it was going to be just that front page,
Only to flip the page and find there was an entire back page to fill out.
Delete unnecessary questions
In light of #1, keep your survey focused and deliberate for every question.
Decide which questions are the most important for you and cut the rest.
Even if you want to ask a lot of questions, it won’t matter if you don’t get any responses…
Whereas making your survey shorter might help you get the answers you need for your most important questions.
Optimize your survey for mobile-use
This is one of the most important things you can do.
People are lazy.
But if your survey can be opened on their phone, and the respondent ticks off a few answers and clicks submit, you’re good to go.
Use modern methods of survey distribution
Email links are still good and fine, but surely in this modern age there are more appealing methods?
In general, emails (especially ones that ask you to do something) have become a kind of nuisance to be over with.
This means while emails are still the most common way to send survey links, consider other methods to distribute your survey.
Among these are Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter,
Make people care
Give people a reason to do the survey.
Let them know how much this data matters to you,
And convince them this data matters for them too
Essentially, feedback should be a win-win process.
People give feedback about problems, problems are fixed.
Give people an option to receive follow-up on what the results of the survey are, and what actions you’re going to take through it.
Doing this well increases brand awareness too.
Try not to ask for personal information
People don’t like giving it.
To read more about it and learn more about things you shouldn’t do in a survey refer to this blog post.
Tell participants how long the survey will take
If you let participants know how long the survey will take, (and it’s true) it increases their willingness to take the survey.
Typically, people don’t want to spend more than 5 minutes on a survey.
And if the survey is supposed to take longer (refer to #1 &2 about why it shouldn’t be)
They know to take it later when they have time.
Believe it or not, incentivization doesn’t always have to cost money
If you have money for your research, then by all means use it.
But sometimes you have the resource of ‘you’ to offer.
There are a lot of people willing to take your survey in exchange for you taking theirs.
If you really need to crank up those response rates, this is a sure method.
There are plenty of other creative ways to incentivize your survey.
Experiment and figure out what works for you, or check out some suggestions.
Change your pitch
“Take this survey!”
Is the best way for people (unless they know you personally) not to take your survey.
Relate to people, and tell them what’s going on.
Before: “Take this survey!”
After: “It sucks when the customer service of a company is bad. We want to make sure you’re getting the best customer service you can. Fill out this feedback survey so we can make sure you’re getting the best customer service, every time.”
Now apply #9 to questions
Ask questions in a way that people don’t have to force themselves to finish even reading the question.
Make it simple, sweet, and most of all human.
Depending on the situation, see if you can make your questions as conversational as possible.
Stay away from asking “explain” questions.
While allowing respondents an option to make additional at the end is appropriate, asking “Explain” open-endedly after a question is a no-go.
Because as a survey maker,
you should have a rough idea about why a participant might choose a particular answer.
Make a list of possible reasons, allow participants to choose one or more, and then an extra “Other” fill in the blank just in case.
Improve User Experience (UX) and User Interface (UI)
No one ever thinks about this.
User experience and user interface have a huge impact on whether people follow through with surveys or not.
Partially because it might affect whether or not they can even do so comfortably.
User experience is what the experience of the user is like, and in this case their experience when they take the survey.
Does the survey load too slow, is the font big enough to read?
These are questions to be asking.
Maybe the large-resolution image in the survey is making it take long to load.
If so, these are things you need to be aware of.
User interface of a survey is the interface or the layout of the survey.
Are the answer buttons too small to click, or the submit button not obviously placed?
Even simple issues like these need to be resolved to increase response rate.
Focus on the Participant, not You.
This whole list can be summarized with this statement.
Focus on the participant, not you.
While of course, the survey is meant to help you achieve whatever needs to be achieved through the survey, you’re not the one taking the survey.
Cater the survey to be friendly and pleasant, and most of accessible for potential participants.
Now that you know what to do, do it.
You don’t really like taking surveys.
But here you are, in a situation where you need to write one for yourself.
It’s interesting how much people hate taking surveys, but when they get a chance to write one themselves, they don’t bother changing what they hate about surveys.
You might have even said in the past:
“I hate taking surveys,” and promised yourself that if you ever had to make one it would be better.
Oh how the tables have turned.
Because you have no idea how to get started.
Well, at the least here are a list of things you shouldn’t do, to jar your memory about why you didn’t like surveys so much.
SurveyYes presents: The 7 Deadly Sins of Survey Writing
Lust: the desire to get unnecessarily intimate with the respondent
There’s a time for intimacy, and a time for privacy.
One of the greatest turn-offs that you and your respondents might experience in a survey are questions about personal information.
Doesn’t that make you cringe?
People are hesitant about giving such information away.
There are exceptions:
In an information form, or a very close-knit organizational survey or any other applicable circumstance—this information may be needed.
People are more inclined to give honest feedback about their experience when their feedback is anonymous, or feels private.
If you need to ask, ask at the end.
Gluttony: Consuming too many responses
“I’d like 30 multiple choice questions with a side of 5 required open-ended questions (each 100 words minimum).”
SAID NO ONE EVER.
Asking too many questions, and therefore trying to get an overwhelming amount of responses—
if people can even complete your survey at this point,
Strip down your questions to the bare minimum nutritious value that you need!
Greed: trying to kill two birds with one stone (and killing no birds with two stones)
While killing two birds with one stone sounds incredibly efficient, killing no birds with two stones is just plain silly.
Case 1 – The Double-Barreled question
“What is the juiciest and sweetest fruit you’ve ever tasted?”
The juiciest may not be the sweetest, and the sweetest may not be the juiciest.
Case 2 – The Wordy Question that tries to say/ask too much
Get to the point.
No one likes word jumbles. Ask questions efficiently, and keep it simple.
If you need a lengthy description for your question, do so prudently.
There are some questions that just need to be split up into smaller questions.
Just because you’re trying not to violate Deadly Sin #2 (too many questions), doesn’t mean you stuff it all into one.
So again, keep questions simple.
This being said…
Sloth: Gettin’ lazy.
…simple doesn’t mean sloppy.
- Make sure the survey is grammar and punctuation-polished.
- Order your questions so that the survey flows in a logical way.
- Look through your questions and make sure they aren’t confusing, complicated, or too general, and
MAKE SURE you aren’t making any of the mistakes on this list,
or wrath shall come upon you.
Speaking of which—
Wrath: Forcing respondents to give you an answer
What’s something that might guarantee an unfinished survey?
When a respondent is trying to answer a question, and can’t find their answer choice or even an “Other” option.
When this happens, you’re forcing the respondent to either:
- choose the closest answer which may not be the answer at all, or more likely
- give up and close out the survey
Go the extra finger tappings.
Write out as many possible choices as you can, and then the “Other” option at the end just in case.
Other: or you could do whatever you want to I guess
Envy: wanting what answer you need
Do you want authentic results and actionable feedback?
Don’t do this:
Envying a certain response that you need (AKA, bias) and building your survey in that way.
Case 1: The Loaded Question (Can’t stop thinking of loaded potatoes)
This type of question has a presumption of something that is unjustified.
Example: How many people are you going to share this article with?
This assumes you’re going to share the article at ALL.
Which of course, could be the case. *hint*
Case 2: The Leading Question
This type of question usually leads into an answer that is desired
Example: Don’t you think this survey guide is great?
As opposed to asking,
What do you think about this survey guide? (comment your answer below)
Pride: using lofty jargon
Talk on people’s level.
Don’t use jargon.
Jargon complicates and confuses respondents, making a question difficult to answer.
When a question is difficult to answer, it often gets unanswered.
So take a dosage of humility, get your talk down to earth, take a chill pill, whatever you need to do.
Because more than anything,
A survey is a conversation
Remember this, and you’re sure to succeed.
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Everyone knows how to send links by email, or post links on social media. These are the basics of distributing your survey that everyone uses. But it’s not working you. People simply aren’t... READ MORE
Face it. Your response rates for that survey you posted up are horrible. There’s so little data, there’s no way you’re going to be able to receive actionable results. Breathe. You’re here... READ MORE