Before we get into why a good rewards experience matters to both you and your respondents, let’s quickly picture what a good rewards experience looks like. Here are 5 aspects that matter:
1. Fast or Instant delivery
Research rewards should be delivered within 1 or 2 days after respondents have completed a survey or an interview. Respondents don’t want to wait for weeks for their research rewards to arrive.
2. Delivered from the researcher or the researcher’s client
It is important that research rewards come from the email address of the party that the respondents interacted with, so that they instantly recognize the sender. If the research reward arrives from a third-party, it is very likely that recipients will be confused and may even ignore it.
3. Delivered with proper branding and message
A research reward delivered with proper branding and message reminds respondents why they’re receiving the rewards. A fitting note to thank the respondents makes them feel appreciated.
4. Requires minimal personal information
A good rewards experience requires minimal personal info from respondents because privacy is important. Digital rewards only require an email address. Physical rewards require a mailing address, and that is a lot of personal information.
5. Replace lost rewards
When respondents misplace their research rewards and you have the ability to reissue the rewards, your respondents will feel relieved and happy.
A fast, polished, and personalized rewards experience is a great thing for researchers too. Here are 5 reasons why a good rewards experience matters to researchers:
1. Avoid wasting time on fielding questions and complaints
Resolving delivery errors and delays costs you extra time and resources. Fast, accurate delivery means fewer questions and complaints from unhappy respondents asking, “Where’s my reward?”
2. Avoid wasting budget and time on resending lost rewards
When your respondents accidentally delete their digital rewards and you can easily resend them, your respondents will be very happy. At no extra cost to yourself, you will be happy too because you resolved the problem without wasting time or budget.
3. Engender goodwill towards your brand
If you are conducting customer satisfaction studies for your brand, your respondents know that the studies are being conducted by your brand. A branded, personalized rewards experience that thanked respondents for providing their input improves your brand’s relationship with respondents.
4. Minimizes recruiting cost and churn
A good rewards experience will retain your goodwill and encourages respondents to sign up for future studies. This is especially important if you’re relying on these respondents to return for future studies.
Conversely, a bad reward experience might prompt respondents to call and complain or air their grievances on social media.
5. Adhere to MRA’s Code of Marketing Research Standards
The first principle of the MRA’s Code states that “MRA members will treat respondents with respect and in a professional manner.” In terms of research rewards delivery, rewards delivered late, never delivered due to errors, or delivered in a confusing manner doesn’t support the spirit of the MRA’s Code. A good reward experience, in which the research rewards are delivered on time and the sender is easily recognized, better supports the MRA’s code of standards.
Now that you know why a good rewards experience matters to both you and your respondents, it might be time to consider upgrading how you do incentives. An upgrade is long overdue if you are still using physical incentives like checks and plastic gift cards. Digital incentives combined with an incentives management system can easily deliver a terrific rewards experience.