The Voucher Question

A survey is a powerful business tool. Used well, it provides valuable information that helps you make better decisions. Last week, I looked at how to go about building a successful survey. Now, it's time to move on to the question of how to get your audience – customers, suppliers or colleagues – to participate.


When it comes to motivating people to complete a survey, incentives like vouchers can seem like a great idea. I like vouchers. They can help. But motivating people to complete your survey is about more than that. After all, a £20 Amazon Voucher won’t put your survey to the top of everyone’s to do list when they’ve got bills to pay, products to ship or quality issues to investigate.

The key to true supplier motivation is intrinsic - an internal desire to do something. In my recent blog, 'The Carrot and the Stick: What You Need to Know for Successful Supplier Engagement', I introduced the Intrinsic Motivator 'Purpose'.


You can motivate your audience using Purpose by sharing why it's important that they complete the survey. Sounds simple. But you'd be surprised how often Purpose is used poorly, or worse, not at all.

Consider these questions when drafting the introduction to your survey:

  • What is going to change as a result of the feedback?
  • How might completing the survey benefit the person who has received it?

You aren't just surveying them for the sake of it. Make sure that they are as clear as you to why it’s important. Your Suppliers are much more likely to do something if they can understand and relate to the purpose.

You can further amplify the power of Purpose by maintaining collaborative, rather than transactional, relationships with your audience. Traditional transactional relationships lack loyalty and the extra-mile attitude that you often need for surveys – “You give me money and I give you products, so we’re even. What’s this survey business all about?”

Collaborative relationships are about working together to achieve mutual benefit or a shared goal. It’s no longer just about the exchange of products for cash. It’s one individual working with another; helping their business partner. It's personal.

We continue our Art of the Successful Supplier Survey series next week, asking "Is less really more?"

Tags: Supplier engagement

David Taylor

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