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How do you encourage people to be part of your research?

Encouraging participants to apply and take part in research can be hard. However, there are various ways to get people to participate in your study and, more importantly, how to encourage them to complete the study.

This blog provides ways to encourage participation by all group members; strategies for attracting people to your study and enticing them to finish the entire study. We recommend that you:

  • Offer incentives for participants.
  • Make use of positive, action-focused language when you promote your business.
  • Make it simple but fun for people to complete your research
  • Retain their interest throughout the entire research
  • Be truthful and transparent.


Provide participants with an incentive to finish the study

The incentive does not have to be huge (or financial); however, it needs to appeal to your intended audience. A gift card for a particular shop is not likely to be a hit with all people, as we know everybody has their tastes and interests. Because of this, you may not accurately target your desired audience range, which could affect your research results. It would help if you aimed for incentives that can be used either in many ways or have some options for participants to at least choose from.

Sometimes just appealing to the good nature of people can be enough, especially in the case of an active community that appreciates your work and would appreciate it if you did it better. Other times you’ll want to offer good-as-cash-vouchers or just cash itself. We would recommend avoiding using a ‘prize’ incentive such as “Fill out this survey for a chance to win…”. We recommend avoiding this as if someone does not win, it will decrease their energy to participate again, and they receive no reward for the time they dedicated to you.


Make use of positive, action-oriented words throughout your study.

When you ask someone to finish your research, be positive and provide the people with a reason for them to take part. Begin by clearly explaining how participants can help by completing the study, including an explicit call to action. If someone feels as though they are getting something or receiving a positive impact from partaking, they will willingly help you.

“By partaking in our study, you are helping create a more user-friendly experience for yourself and everyone after you! Thank you for being an integral piece of the change!”

Simple yet effective messages like this to your respondents now and then will reassure them during your study that they are benefitting from this, but they are also helping their community. A majority of people will cherish this sign of appreciation.


Facilitate participants to finish your study

After they have clicked your link, participants can jump right into the study. Start your study while they’re still engaged, and the excitement of a new study is still present. Complicated directions turn many people off. Therefore, make it easy. Inform them HONESTLY of the time the research will take and how their participation will improve your site. If you’d like to ask questions about demographics, ask them in the final section. Some participants can feel uncomfortable sharing personal information about themselves, so sometimes, it can help to delve into more personal data once they have started a rapport with you. (However, this isn’t particularly useful if you are looking for specific demographics before the research. We recommend adding demographic questions to all your studies. It is valuable information to note and makes people more comfortable if they know it is a routine process).


Keep participants’ attention for the duration of the study.

Respondents are usually bored quickly and have poor time management as the research is optional. It is not their daily job that they are required to keep up with, so attention can easily waiver without some encouragement. Keep as many of your questions as brief and short as possible. Avoid making your questions repetitive. From experience, we have seen that some studies can feel like going round in circles, which infuriates participants. If respondents start to feel as though they are wasting their time, the study is not going well. We aim to make respondents feel like they are helping the process and that their answers are worthwhile, as the quality of results will plummet if people lose their effort or willingness to care. As long as you ensure your questions/study is interactive, interesting and quick-fire, it would help if you did not have any concerns regarding respondent attention.


Be sure to keep participants honest (well, your performance at the very least)

It’s challenging to keep people honest; however, you can eliminate the comments of those who do not take your research seriously. It is inevitable to have people who have completed the research only to try and receive their incentive for as little work as possible. When you examine the results, the answers will be evident. They’ve often finished the research quickly, their responses aren’t logical, and they are entirely different from the other answers. Eliminate their data and remove these from your prize pools. This will set an example for other respondents you need to participate in to receive your incentive actively!

At our company, we find it necessary to ensure that participants are aware that their incentive has terms and conditions during our recruitment process. As quickly as they are placed on the study, they can be removed; however, we make a point to ensure them that this is the last thing we want as a recruitment company and encourage them to complete the study to the best of their ability. We assure them that they can call us with any queries and that honesty is the best policy. This builds a good rapport between our participants and us and makes them feel loyal to completing their tasks efficiently. Without a good recruiter-respondent relationship, participants will not care as much.


Even the most stunning study on the most thrilling subject will see some people abandon the study before they’ve completed the task; however, If you’re experiencing dropping off rates greater than 50%, you ought to investigate the issue. As mentioned earlier, it could simply be that questions are boring or repetitive, so it may be worthwhile to contact those dropping off for first-class insight into why they abandoned your project. Remember, all critiques are helpful for your business, whether good or bad, so it is essential to take your respondent’s feelings into account; there is no market research without a market!

If you are a client looking for a recruitment company that can meet all these criteria and assist you in formulating the best results, Vocal Views are always here to help. Even if you are reading this as a consumer, please come and try a study with us! We promise you will have a brilliant experience.