The Right Reward: Fifty Percent of Respondents Demand It. How to Deliver?

How do respondents prefer to be rewarded for their survey participation? Find out how to take a strategic approach to boost engagement.

Did you know that more than half of market research respondents participate in order to win rewards or prizes? That’s what our white paper, which is based on data from the bi-annual GRIT CPR (Consumer Participation in Research) study, found. That in itself is not surprising: today’s consumer population is used to being rewarded for everything from credit card purchases to travel. In addition, they are used to being in control and are demanding more from their interactions. A new survey from the CMO Council, in partnership with SAP Hybris, found that consumers want service and experience wherever they go. Rewards feed right into this mindset.

So what’s next? We know that most respondents want to be rewarded, but how? Highly personalized experiences are the name of the game, and this also applies to rewards – people want what they want, when they want it. The data showed that respondent satisfaction is tied up in incentive type.

“When we were analyzing the data from the study that applied specifically to respondent incentive preferences it became clear fairly quickly which options stood out from the crowd,” said Lenny Murphy of Greenbook, publisher of the bi-annual GRIT studies. “Cash is always a welcome reward, but when you look at the type of incentive that makes sense for market research companies, virtual cards led the pack.”

When it came to the types of rewards respondents prefer, virtual cards were the number one selection in North America. While cash was the number one reward overall, it presents complications for market research companies and isn’t a practical option in most cases.

In fact, across all demographic cuts and comparisons by other variables in the study, virtual cards scored well. When broken down by age group, the sought-after Boomers picked it as a number one choice and, factoring out the impractical cash choice, virtual cards were the top choice almost across the board for every generation. In addition, those elusive, high quality respondents who participate in research less frequently have a strong preference for virtual cards.

Data likes this means that market research companies need to be thoughtful about their approach in incentives for respondents, asking questions like:

  • What are the top reward choices by various age groups and geographic regions and what constituents make up my target audience?
  • Where is my audience participating in the research: mobile, online in-person, telephone, mail? The platform may better advise preferred reward type.
  • Is my audience made up of frequent or infrequent participants?
  • What is the respondent’s motivation for participation in research?

All of these factors can be examined when looking at specific study in order to tailor an incentive program that resonates the most with the target audiences. Taking a strategic approach like this can help boost engagement and, ultimately, market research outcomes.

The CPR study, on which the “Improving the Research Respondent Experience” white paper is based, was conducted in 14 countries and 8 languages among 6,750 consumers via online, telephone, and mobile-only surveys. The full white paper can be found here:

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