Even with the advance of all of the online survey and mobile survey capabilities over the past decade, several of our clients prefer using a mail survey when contacting customers or members. Why? It stands out and it's different.
Just think back 15 to 20 years ago. All of us used to get so excited when we received an email. Actual mail in our mailboxes was boring. We received too much of it and a lot of it was overlooked.
Now fast-forward 15 to 20 years and it's the exact opposite. We now are excited to receive actual mail in our mailbox because the 100+ emails we get per day are overwhelming. How times have changed.
As a result, mail surveys still prove to be an excellent way to survey customers if you can afford a little extra cost and time to print, assemble, and mail the information to members or customers.
Here are 4 ideas and suggestions to help you with a mail survey.
4 Quick Tips for Your Mail Survey Market Research Project
Mail Survey Tip 1: Use a Cover Letter
Rather than jumping right into the survey and Q1, include a cover letter in your mailing. The cover letter should address the following: what the survey is about, why a response is important, what is going to be done with the feedback, introduce the third-party mail survey market research company managing the research, and a deadline to respond.
The cover letter helps make the survey appear more formal and organized. It often includes the sponsoring company letterhead with a contact email or phone if there are questions. The cover letter is usually signed by an appropriate staff member at the organization to wrap things up.
Mail Survey Tip 2: Include an Online Survey Link
This is the best of both worlds. For your tech-savvy respondents or those who prefer to complete the survey via mobile device or PC, give them an option. Some prefer this over filling out a survey on paper with pencil and paper or pen and paper. Face it, many can type so much faster than write.
Here you should include a link on the top of the survey document or the cover page. Give them a web address to enter online which takes them to Q1 of your survey. A side benefit here in addition to giving respondents several ways to reply? It saves on data entry costs and fieldwork time.
Mail Survey Tip 3: Keep it Short and Simple
Arguably the best tip of the 4. True for not only mail surveys but also any survey in general. A sure fire way to get no response or little response to your mail survey is by making it too long. If a recipient opens up the mail and sees a cover letter with a 6 page survey, you stand a very small chance of receiving lots of responses.
Keep your survey short (1-page front or 1-page front and back is best). This also applies to questions. Keep those short as well. Asking questions with 15 to 20 answer categories or long grids will harm engagement and increase the chance of drop-out where a mail survey respondent believes it's not worth the time invested.
Mail Survey Tip 4: Pay for Return Postage
Lastly, make it as easy as possible to get your respondents to reply. This includes offering a prepaid postage return envelope with your mail survey. This can either be pre-stamped or an envelope with a BRE code and permit. Either way, you need to pay for the postage.
It seems small but for the respondent it is one additional step and one additional barrier to not reply and return their mail survey. No stamps, not traveling to the Post Office for stamps, etc. Including the prepaid postage envelope absolutely helps.
Drive Research is a mail survey company in New York. We can assist with all pieces of a mail survey project. Our team can help you design the survey, manage the data entry, and create a report. We partner with some of the best and most affordable mail houses to assist us with printing, assembly, postage, and mailings.
Questions or need assistance from our mail survey company in New York? Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 315-303-2040.