Best Practices: Effective Emailing

Product Consultant: Jonathan Wilson My name is Jonathan Wilson and I am a Product Consultant supporting the Web Survey tool.

The survey invitation is one of the most important, yet often under appreciated, components of the survey process. The content and appearance of your email invitation can play a huge role in determining whether a respondent will enter the survey, and when formatted well, it will ultimately help boost your response rate. This month I have a few best practice tips to improve your survey invitation.

The most important part of an email is what respondents see before they even open it in their inbox. The From Email Address, Name, and Subject line can often determine whether or not an email will earn a closer look. It is always best to use a recognizable From Name and Email Address. Also make sure to update the subject line of your invitation to give respondents some general information about the survey. Even the simple addition of your organization name or the title of your survey can help boost your open rate.

Email Subject Line and From Name

The next tip is to brand your email invitation. Make use of the ability to include graphics to add a company banner. The instant recognition a banner provides will reassure respondents and help draw them into your survey. Particularly when communicating with respondents who know your organization name, take full advantage of your brand to drive email open and click-through rates.

Another tip when creating your survey invitation is to personalize the email with data tags. Data tags pull in contact information and can be used for both general contact information as well as your survey links. Using data tags in the email salutation ensures that your are personalizing the invitations and is much more effective than a generic "Dear Sir or Madam."


Personalize Email Content

Now that we have covered the opening and greeting of your email invitation, there are a few key points to include in the body of the email invitation. The first is a brief description of how you plan to use the collected data. This will help respondents realize the importance of the survey and their pivotal role in the process. Second, make sure to give respondents an idea of the average amount of time it will take them to complete the survey. For shorter surveys, this will encourage respondents to answer. It is still important to manage expectations when running a longer survey. And lastly, drive urgency with respondents. This can be accomplished by explaining how respondent's feedback can affect change or, where applicable, offering an incentive.

By implementing these features in your email invitation, you can increase your email open rate and thereby drive more respondents into the survey.


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