Market research has been a valued strategy for decades. Traditionally, marketers have employed focus groups, product testing, interviews and telemarketing surveys to get that all-important customer and prospect input. Companies that invest in employee incentive and recognition strategies can also benefit from market research. For incentive and recognition programs, input from representatives of the target group is critical to ensure that the process is effective and the rewards will be motivating to the audience.
In the consumer world, online surveys make it easier than ever to measure brand awareness and get feedback from customers on current products and services or future innovations. In a corporate application for employee programs, online surveys provide real-time feedback on all aspects of the program, allowing administrators to course-correct as they go. Here are just a few of the advantages of online surveys:
- Speed: Technology allows for a poll or survey to be quickly put into action. No need to staff up or train interviewers.
- Relatively inexpensive: Because an online survey can be conducted without staff, collecting data is much less expensive than traditional methods.
- Convenient: For the responder as well as for the company running the survey. The responder can take the survey at their leisure 24/7, and the sponsoring company can access the data in real time.
- Flexible design: Online surveys can be designed to be consistent with the company brand or program theme. Artificial intelligence technology and programming logic allows for more customized questions based on answers to previous questions.
- Targeted: Technology also offers the ability to segment a specific audience and pre-qualify respondents.
- Accurate: Answers are entered directly into the system to eliminate human error in interpretation or in entering the data in more traditional survey methods.
- Honest: Participants that may be reluctant to provide honest feedback may be less likely to sugar coat their responses on an anonymous survey.
- Reporting: Some online survey software can transform feedback into testimonials and reports.
The ability to collect, analyze and act on data is increasingly important to businesses. While incentive and recognition programs were once thought of as “soft” benefit, technology now allows the ability to calculate return on investment with measurable results including improved performance, reduced absenteeism, lower turnover, increased engagement, higher customer satisfaction and loyalty and increased market share.
Inviting employee or target audience input via online surveys ensures that you are not designing your employee programs in a vacuum, assuming what might be rewarding to that program audience demographic. Using online surveys before, during and after your employee programs will provide accurate data on which you can base decisions for meeting future business goals.