One of the greatest compliments you can get hear is “I felt as though you were speaking directly to me”, or “your program is exactly what I needed”. How do you know how to speak the language of your target market? How do you know what kinds of solutions and programs your ideal client are looking for?
It’s very simple. You just ask! You have to gather ongoing feedback from your target market throughout the life of your business. And one of the best ways to get that feedback is through surveys.
Why Do Surveys?
By doing surveys, you keep your finger on the pulse of what is important to your prospects, including emerging needs. Asking for their feedback is also a great way to show that you respect and value your prospects. And when done right, surveys give you a gold mine of information, including ideas for new blog posts, programs and even language you can use in your own marketing!
When to do surveys?
You should conduct surveys throughout the life of your business, from when you are just starting to research your niche, to before you roll out a new product or service, after the roll-out, and regularly every six months to a year.
How to do surveys?
Here are some tips to keep in mind when conducting your own survey.
- Clarity – Decide what you want to know and why you want to know it. Before you include a question, ask yourself – what will I do with the information I get from this answer? If you don’t know, then it’s a good sign to omit that question.
- Timing – Conducting a general survey once or twice a year is ideal. A general survey lets you know if you’re covering all the hot issues that your clients are dealing with. You can also do a very specific survey, such as related to a product launch.
- Survey Length – Your survey should provide valuable information but shouldn’t be so long that people don’t want to take the time to complete it. Try to keep it at a maximum of ten questions.
- Type of Questions – Multiple-choice questions are great to use because they take less time to complete, and they are easier to analyze. However, it is a good idea to include one or two open-ended questions so people can have the opportunity to fully express themselves. If you use a rating scale, for example 1-10, use the same scale throughout your survey. Avoid leading questions or statements. You do not want to influence the outcome of the survey.
- Structure – Design your survey so that it follows a logical flow and doesn’t confuse your audience. For example, group questions about a particular subject together. If you have general questions, start with those and then lead into more specific questions.
- Thank You Gift – Even if your survey only takes five minutes to complete, you will get a much greater response rate if you offer a gift to everyone who completes it. You can offer a bonus training video, report or 20 minute consultation to everyone who responds to your survey. Make sure they know about the special gift when you ask them to respond, and make it enticing enough so they’ll want to fill out your survey right away.
- Keep it Confidential – Don’t require respondents to give you their name and email address. The survey results should be confidential so people can share freely. In some cases, you might ask them to provide their name and email address so you can send them something special (e.g. to share the survey findings, or to enter a chance to win a free coaching call), but make that optional.
© Copyright 2013 Cindy Schulson