Around a third of people in the UK collect something. Whether its stamps, coins or memorabilia – for varying reasons, many people take comfort in owning collections. Something being collected more than ever is data, but how should you carry out a customer feedback or PR survey?

By Leah Elston-Thompson, senior account executive.

An important choice to make when conducting an online survey is distribution method. There are a multitude of platforms available to design and distribute your survey, including Survey Monkey, Survey Gizmo and Typeform.

Most platforms offer both a paid for and a free version. You need to be sure before you distribute your survey that your software will allow you to do everything you need to with the collected data. For example, you may be limited to a certain number of recipients or be unable to export your data to Excel. If your project requires a large sample size and statistical analysis, both of these will be necessary.

Checking your software offers all the functions you need, before you send out your survey, is essential. A simple Google search will pull up the most popular survey tools as well as some comparison sites. You may be required to pay for a premium tool, so investigating whether this is billed annually or monthly is also important in getting the best deal. Things to check for include survey logic, export data, logo and design, limit on recipients and available question types.

Send it out

Some platforms have their own distribution options, but if not, you could use a marketing automation tool, like MailChimp, to send your survey out.

When inviting survey participants, I recommend using this three step guide:
1. Warn people – let your intended participants know you’ll be conducting a survey and why
2. Send your survey out – remember to include an indication of how long it takes to complete
3. Follow up – this can remind people to participate and allow you to thank those who have already responded.

Collect it

Once you’ve closed your survey, you’ll be left with a lot of data to play with. Exporting into Excel will allow you to analyse to your heart’s content.

The resulting data can then be used in your PR material, or to make decisions based on your customers’ views. Sorting answers by a demographic, such as nation, region or age, can generate multiple news stories to get the most out of your results.

For more information on using surveys in your PR campaign, Stone Junction on 01785 224416 or e-mail me at

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