Ten easy ways to boost membership survey response rates

Members needs are likely to have changed since these challenging times began. Conducting research can help you gain insight into these changes and understand if your organisation is providing the type of membership they want now.

When is the best time to send out a survey?

Members are more likely to engage with a survey that is sent to them on a Monday says research conducted by Survey Monkey, who looked into the performance of  over 100,000 surveys. Could this be true for your members too?

Regardless of the time of the week, creating a sound survey communications plan is fundamental for healthy response rates.

Here are our tips for creating a successful member survey communications plan:

  1. Have a clear survey message
    Explain why taking part is important and how it benefits the respondent. Move away from asking members “fill in this survey” to help the association.
  2. Use incentives that are relevant to your members Would something the associations offers, or something relevant to their membership be a better incentive than something transactional.
  3. Set up survey reminders and integrate with ongoing communications
    Coordinate survey reminders and all survey communications into your ongoing marketing communications plan and have a positive online reminder system.
  4. Create a buzz beforehand
    Create a series of communications to send out before you launch the survey so that members know to look out for it.
  5. Create with your audience in mind
    Think of any factors that may prevent your members from completing the survey. For example, avoid sending out a survey during busy times in the industry and on national holidays.
  6. Have an inclusive approach
    Test the survey with a few friendly members before launching.
  7. Use data
    Use data from survey results to inform your decisions and make a plan to track outcomes in the future. Which day or time was most popular with your members? Do they prefer short snappy surveys or space to explain themselves?
  8. Be reactive
    React to responses as they come in to encourage members to engage further.
  9.  Think about the implications of your sample size
    “It is true that statistically relevant conclusions can be found from relatively small sample sizes, however when reporting to stakeholders or feeding back results to members, a larger sample size conveys a more powerful message” says Maria Fager, Head of Projects and Research, Membership Matters.
  10.  Communicate back. Let members know that you have received their feedback and share what you plan to do with it.

Using a thorough survey communications plan have more than doubled response rates for many of our clients.

Grow your membership base
If you think your membership organisation could benefit from our 10+ years of industry-leading experience in membership research, financial modelling and proposition development, please contact us on 08459 555 155 or email hello@membership-matters.co.uk.

Find out about our membership expertise: Membership Research | Membership Consultancy.