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3 Ideas for Survey Incentives That Work

screen-shot-2013-03-19-at-9.28.58-am-300x300Incentives are a normal part of any market research project. With each project we ask ourselves: What will we give participants? How much will it cost? How do we sweeten the pot to ensure high participation? Do we really need to give people stuff to make them talk to us? Most of the time the answer is “yes.” Here are 3 ideas on incentives for surveys that work.

  1. A large number of small incentives typically gets better response than a small number of large incentives. When offering incentives to each early respondent, make certain to prompt them for an electronic or physical address to deliver the incentive to. Electronic incentives are easier to administer, but not all are created equal: in one study, receiving a $5 credit on the credit card of a respondent’s choice provided a 30% higher return than crediting frequent flier miles. (source: Vovici)
  2. Incentives, like subject titles and the body of survey invitations, requires a bit of creativity. Whoever first offered an iPod as an incentive was a genius; whoever offered it second was clever, and whoever offered it last week was disappointed by the response it generated. Relevant incentives motivate invitees. What’s your favorite example of a good survey incentive? (source: Vovici)
  3. Results as an Incentive. Many researchers will mention that one of the things they have heard from respondents is that they would like to know the results of the survey, whatever they may be. Respondents want to know why their information matters, and they want to see that they are a part of something important, especially if it may result in anything significant. (source: Survey Methods)

We admit that we, at Virtual Incentives, have a bias towards this area. Virtual Incentives provides solutions that help market research companies connect with survey respondents in ways never before possible. Our prepaid platform is powered by a simple, customizable virtual solution that closes the gap between action/achievement and incentives offers. Our Virtual Visa® Reward card, corporate buyers can meet increasing demand for fast, virtual incentives that offer built-in control. Now recipients can spend rewards where they want — online. But, with any incentive, we’ve learned it only as good as the idea behind it. Are these ideas on survey incentives helpful to you?

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