March 18, 2022

Survey the Right Way

Surveys are crucial to making key strategic decisions.

There are many different methods to go about collecting surveys, but the results are varied and often frustrating. Often, it may feel like the effort taken to bring the initiative to life was a waste of time. 

Collecting customer feedback is a bit of an art, and the best tool to get the job done is, without a doubt, texting! Here are some tips and tricks to maximize the ROI of your survey campaigns with the power of SMS.

Why don’t customers take the survey in the first place?

It just takes a few minutes, right? It’s not that hard. So why won’t people just take the survey?

Even though it may not take an extreme amount of time, it still does take SOME time. People are busy, have the attention span of a gnat and, quite frankly, are lazy. 

Point is, many folks just can’t be bothered to complete any task that is a slight detour of their day or even a small inconvenience. You can’t tell me you haven’t had at least one internal battle with yourself where you fought the urge to skip brushing your teeth before bed.

A few key reasons why your survey tanks:

  • Too long: Probably the most common sin. Including open-ended questions provides a good way to figure out the “why” behind a person’s answer, but it can also make them feel like they are writing an essay for their 6th grade English teacher. Careful with adding “why?” to every question. One is a big ask, two is pushing it, and three is an insult. Keep it short and sweet.
  • Frustration: This problem is the twin to “survey is too long.” Very similar, and yet slightly different. Let’s say you have a lengthy survey with multiple open-ended questions that require some concentrated effort from your customer. Now, let’s also say that you have offered an incentive to complete the survey. The customer will be frustrated by the questions and give half-hearted (or even false) answers just to complete it and get the gift card. Your answers will be lackluster.
  • Stuck in the Middle:  They are in the middle of a task, plain and simple. Perhaps you call them while they are writing an email. Or maybe, they are browsing through your site and a pop-up intrudes over what they were doing. Have you ever paid attention to one of those? I click the ‘X’ instantly, just out of principle. You annoyed me; therefore, I won’t give you anything.
  • Bad Timing: Generally speaking, people are more willing to complete a survey when they are closer to the brand interaction. Don’t give them too much time to cool off. In a circumstance like this, a survey wasn’t planned out in advance, and it is thought of “after-the-fact.” But a month or even a couple weeks later is too late. 
  • Wrong Medium: Truthfully, a survey by phone call is little more than a sales call. Now, you can make it warmer by having a marketing rep reach out and reference the service provided. That does work from time to time, but is it the most efficient method to the madness? You can try sending an email instead, those get results. But emails sit in the inbox and get buried underneath other tasks. 

Texting Changes Things

Emails flood the inbox and intrusive calls get ignored, but texting cuts through the noise. Texting fosters immediacy and provides simplicity. 98% of texts are opened and then responded to within 3 minutes. 

Here are a few ways texting improves your surveys:

  • No extra steps: You can text out a link to a survey, which already gets better visibility than an email, but you can also have them complete the survey within the text conversation! This removes the frustration from surveys requiring lengthy responses. Programs like Text-2-Vote walk customers through a survey right then and there. If you have the right platform, you can easily track analytics from those responses. A program like Indigo’s data management works perfectly for that purpose.
  • Automation: Business texting software provides a convenient way to send out smart surveys en masse. Instead of calling one by one, send out a couple hundred surveys within a minute. Emails can also be done this way, but texting bypasses the inbox clutter. This automation also makes it easy to program a survey to go out immediately after an event and overcome the waiting delay.
  • Real-Time Damage Control: Respond to surveys in real-time. Texting software should give you immediate access to your data but also let you send custom responses from the dashboard once they come in. If someone had a bad experience or a problem needs to be dealt with, you can address it within seconds. 

Bottom Line:

The only way to ever truly perfect the survey is if somehow we lived in a world where everyone was always willing, and that’s just not the case. The goal is to make surveys as easy and convenient as possible to persuade people to take them. 

Texting provides you the best offense to combat most of the pitfalls of survey collection. Not all platforms are created equal though. Some provide more functionality than others, so make sure you choose carefully. If you need an example of a system with robust functionality coupled with powerful data management tools, check out IRIO’s new platform, Indigo. 

Next time you survey, think about using text!