Asking the Right Questions on Surveys
Dennis Keopke, Vice President

My Analytical Side

Denny Koepke, Vice President

There have been several market research surveys flowing through my department recently and it has made me aware of how important the wording of questions can be to results.

For example, here is one from a follow-up of a webinar that made me stop taking the survey.

“If we had charged $495 for this year’s webinar series, would you have still attended?”

The purpose of the webinar series was to replace the usual live, onsite conference in a delightful resort somewhere you always like to travel. Due to the economic times, it is understandable that the company was concerned about attracting enough attendees to the live conference.

Survey QuestionThe question of one value, $495, for a week of webinars leaves so many assumptions for the responder. For example, there were two webinars at least each day for 90 minutes each. You could elect to attend one or all for free this year. To now ask the responder, without the benefit of knowing how many he/she attended, if one fee covers the experience is likely to get a swift answer of “no” for someone who attended one or two versus someone who attended all. If there had been either a question of how many were attended and what the value of each session was to the responder that would give better results to analyze.

Plus, a week of webinars where the longest you travel might be to your desk or a conference room is hard to compare in pricing to paying hundreds of dollars to be far away in an exotic location.

In my way of thinking, there should have been the question of what each webinar was worth using a multiple choice of different price points. A follow-up could then be some package price for all webinars, again with different price points.

Asking the right questions sometimes means asking them the right way!

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