Nothing in this world comes for free
It is a well-known fact and a reminder of one of the more crucial lessons in business that could ever be taught, there is nothing for free. In this day and age especially, individuals are rewarded for nearly everything they do, and they are well aware of this. At Vocal Views, we do not distribute any study for free. We understand that time is money, and when we interact with our respondents, we must recognise that it’s a “give and take” relationship.
The time of our members is not just valuable but also essential to gain the data we collect. We respect that respondents are the cog that keeps our business turning, and so every business should aim to provide incentives to people for the feedback they provide. Due to this understanding and, in turn, better relationships and results with respondents, we can then empower brands with our security and trust and provide insights to help them bring their products to market.
Rewards play a significant contribution in building a genuine part of a community that is eager, engaged, and worth listening to. This makes sure that the information that we receive comes from people who are taking the time to provide us with truthful and impartial responses and, in turn, get recognised for their efforts.
Whatever the size of the reward, it will help.
Research has shown that incentives don’t have to be massive to boost responses. A small gesture of appreciation for a consumer’s time (money, data or retail vouchers) can substantially increase response rates and response quality. Time is precious no matter the individual, and consumers will appreciate an incentive. It helps make respondents feel important and that the experience is worthwhile.
Additionally, if a respondent has a pleasant experience partaking in research and then gets paid, there is little hindrance to returning time and time.
Of course, in an ideal world, participants would take part out of the kindness of their hearts but in all reality, being willing to part with a little bit of extra money for dramatic increases in the quality of data is an undeniable feat.
Rewards are now inevitable in our current climate.
With our specific platform, we’re in a position to reward people for their efforts efficiently and safely. Rewards are an integral element of our lives. They are typically handed out to employees and come in the form of incentives given to sales representatives to help them meet their goals and increase sales. When a respondent takes part in your research, they are essentially working for you and helping your brand develop. Because of this, it does make little to no sense why businesses are still trying to obtain unpaid research. Many would never dream of unpaid labour in a workplace, so it is unjust to expect this of participants just because it is a one time job.
Specific to a particular demographic, when encouraging Generation Z individuals to participate in research, we need to be especially mindful of incentives. The younger generation has grown up witnessing people incentivise a lot of their time, such as the rise of online streamers and influencers. They have a higher acknowledgement that their time is money, and because of this, it can be impossible to research this particular group of people without an incentive.
But what form of incentivising works best?
We have found that the best incentives are always just plain old, hard cash. These incentives pay off! Vouchers can limit participants to what they can spend their earnings on and restrict their willingness to partake to the best of their ability. Furthermore, the same applies to ‘point systems’ many branded surveys use. They are good and better than nothing; however, participants have to put in much work to achieve something worthwhile, which can be incredibly off-putting for a large majority of people.
Incentivising participants can help businesses increase word-of-mouth marketing, boost revenues, reduce the cost of advertising, boost responses to panels and encourage consumers to return to get more. Researchers employ incentives because, traditionally, the proof is in the pudding.
As we discussed, they are also integral in reaching younger generations and encouraging them to join the universe of market research.
If researchers are not currently utilising incentives, they have to change their perception of the landscape and realise that each participant’s time is essential. If you ask participants to dedicate their time to meeting set objectives, they should be able to enjoy themselves and receive a reward as an act of gratitude.
Incentives play an essential role in producing informative and thorough research and how we can build an invaluable community of participants that we can engage and build the next time. It is also essential that the participants enjoy themselves as individuals who are statistically more likely to open up and give honest conversation if they are happy, comfortable and interested.