[player] Ever wonder how some people sell things that everyone loves to buy? Why does Apple always run out of iPhones? How can internet entrepreneurs sell the same course and keep people coming back again and again? How do some coaches find the perfect clients? How do some authors write books that their audience loves? The key to success with your market isn’t luck, or guessing, or trying, trying and trying. It’s understanding your audience. It’s knowing what they want. Today, we’ll talk about how you can know what they want, and it won’t cost you a penny to find out.
Anyone who will answer. If they’re going to take the time to fill out a survey, then they are the kind of person you want to hear from. People are too busy to fill out a survey when they don’t care. You want to know as much as you can from as many people as you can in your audience. You can’t do this often so when you do you have to get as many people and get as much info from them as possible. Obviously, your email subscribers are your best bet, but you can also send it out via all of your social media channels and post it as a blog post. But also do a short video about it on Snapchat, Instagram and your FB profile, personal and professional. Don’t leave any stone unturned. You’re looking to build a true picture of your audience so the more, the better. I got 300 people to complete my survey after sending it out to around 4,000 email subscribers. Most of those email subscribers are from a list that is older, so I’m quite pleased with 300 responses.
Should you incentivize them? Purists might say that incentivizing your audience to fill out a survey will change the results of the survey, but IMO I think that’s invalid. I just don’t see any negative with incentivizing your audience to fill out the survey and frankly I think it’s a nice gesture since so many people will be taking their time to fill it out and get nothing in return.
How should you incentivize them? Amazon gift cards are the most valuable giveaway IMO and they don’t eliminate people in the same way that an iPhone or Kindle would. Believe it or not some people just don’t want those devices. Amazon cards are like cash, but even easier. Don’t give away one prize though. Give away at least three so people feel like they have a chance to win. $25 is a good amount. Obviously the more possible winners and the higher the dollar amount the better.
Your survey should give you demographic and psychographic information on your audience. Special thanks to my friend Michael Hyatt for teaching me so much about surveys. You want to find out as much as you can about your audience without getting too personal. You’re going to ask questions about their gender, income, where they live, age, if they have kids, marital status, how long they’ve been married…but ONLY ask questions that will help you. You don’t want to waste questions. People have a tolerance for their time and attention being taken from them. Respect it.
The other kinds of demographic questions you’re going to ask to relate to where they fit in their relationship to your content or products. Where did they hear about you? How do they consume your content? What have they purchased from you? Demographic content is fact based.
We’ll get into psychographic next. You want to know what their practical needs are so you can ask them questions like, What is your greatest need as it relates to your work/family/faith etc. Their answers may become demographic but they may also become psychographic because they may have emotional answers. I really like my data to be either demographic or psychographic, not both. So create your questions with that in mind.
The psychographic questions relate to feeling and thought/opinions. Why do you buy from me? Why do you read my content? What is your greatest need as it relates to your business – then leave it blank = that will probably get you a mix of psychographic and demographic.
When should you send your first one and how often should you send it?
The goal of any survey is to get information from your audience that will help you reach them more effectively. If you only get 18 people to give you feedback you will have a difficult time getting meaningful data.
Survey Monkey has a post on how many people you need to take your survey from you audience to create a +/- percentage of accuracy.
If you have 1000 people in your community you need 285 to respond to get an accuracy level of +/- 5%
Perhaps you’re interested in finding out how many people in your region of 10,000 people favor a longer school day for children and you’re willing to accept an error of plus or minus 5%. You sample 385 people, as the table recommends, and find that 70% of those surveyed are in favor of a longer school day. Given your 5% acceptable error rate, you can assume that if you’d asked every person in your region to take your survey, the actual proportion in favor of the longer school day would range from 65% to 75%.
Let’s assume you are an archer. Your singular goal is to hit the target dead center.
To do that you need three things.
1. Identify where the target is
2. Aim for the target
3. Shoot at the target
When you survey, you’re finding the target. Their answers help you with your aim. You will send them information that should be received after you gather the data from your survey because it has helped you aim better.
Without a survey you don’t know what you’re shooting for. You’re blindly guessing where your target is. What if you could actually have your target raise their hand and then tell you exactly what they receive?
This isn’t just about commerce. If you’re a ministry you should survey the people you minister to. If you’ve got donors and want to understand them more, survey them. If you have employees that you want to be more productive and feel more cared for, survey them.
You survey so you can better target your audience, no matter who that audience is.
I’ve created a step by step tutorial on exactly how to build your survey, including a list of the questions that I asked in my survey, for you. You can get it by going to http://www.takepermission.com/show003.
To survey you only need three things:
1. Survey tool
2. Great questions
3. An audience
As we talked about in the who section, if you don’t have an audience then you’ll need to build one. Some people look to a survey to add clarity when it can’t. You can’t get clarity if your audience is really small. I think you need at least 50 respondents to get any type of clarity on your message. Surveys are powerful if you have an audience but they’re a LOUSY way to build one.