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Our Online Reputation Management Playbook



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The author’s views are entirely their own (excluding the unlikely event of hypnosis) and may not always reflect the views of Moz.

Online reputation management can be daunting – but advantageous – for brands or individuals that are seeing their search engine displays implicated by third-party content, and want to take the reins. When the media controls the narrative, it can lead to untrue perceptions and a more biased sentiment down the line. 

At Go Fish Digital, our team works closely with our clients to understand the sensitive issue they’re facing so we can meet their goals and rectify their online reputations.

The situation

We would not perform reputation management services for any company that was a scam or has participated in fraudulent or misleading activities. Prior to taking on a client, we fully research the business and ensure we are 100% comfortable in helping them with their problem.

When big brands come to us communicating their search results complications, our team thoroughly reviews the situation before we decide to take it on. Our vetting process includes doing due diligence on each client to be sure we can validate the issue. Most of the time, a brand has a controversial topic or story in the current news cycle that is populating their search results. In such cases, the project goals usually include two things: changing the sentiment of the narrative and getting any negative articles off of the page one search results for their brand.

To give you a better idea of how our team would approach a situation like this let’s take a look at the semi-current SERP complication we’re seeing for LuLaRoe, a multi-level marketing company that sells women’s clothing. 

Back in September 2021, a couple very authoritative news sites, Forbes and The Guardian, published stories about the “downfall of the company” based on the documentary The Rise and Fall of LuLaRoe, which came out that December. While this is not necessarily a company we would take on as a client, we are using them as an example as there are specific ORM strategies that we could identify to help improve the SERPs for their brand name. 

Our research

When researching LuLaRoe, we saw that both the Forbes and The Guardian articles were ranking at the bottom of their page one search results, just below their Facebook page and just above their Amazon Storefront profile listing. We recorded what each link was, the position it was ranking in, and the sentiment of each for the first 30 results we found. 

As part of our process, it’s important we research and consider all the variables before putting together our plan of improvement. As mentioned above, we begin by gathering the search results rankings and assessing each URL we see in the first 30 positions. Our team tracks all of the factors and signals Google will look at when determining which URLs they rank for a keyword. Some of these factors include the relevance of the page, the keyword itself, backlink data, click-through rate, and social engagement. Gathering this data can be done by using tools like MozBar or Moz Keyword Explorer. Once we gather the important data points from every link on the first three pages or 30 positions using infinite scroll for our keyword, it’s time to put together our approach. 

For LuLaRoe’s case specifically, here’s some of the data we found from the  SERPs:

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Our approach

The ORM goal remained to control as much of the first 30 results as we could, as well as move the negative articles off the page one results. After doing the data collection as shown above, we took note of the areas that we could influence. For example, you can see that the Amazon link ranking in position eight has zero backlinks, so building new quality backlinks here is a strategy we would recommend to increase the quality of this signal to Google.

In addition to launching our best ORM strategies, we decided that we would identify many new pieces of content, as well as update as much existing content as we could. The action plan for each business situation is specific to what we see ranking for that brand. 

Below, you can see our ORM strategies, broken down into three different categories, including pre-existing content, existing content, and engagement tactics.

Pre-existing content strategies

Setting up subdomains on the client’s website  

In some cases, we recommend setting up subdomains that specifically address the controversy. For LuLaRoe, we would help them build out a subdomain on their website.

Identifying news articles 

A benefit of a business being in the spotlight is that they may already have plenty of mainstream press. We can identify any positive articles from high Domain Authority (DA) news sites and other industry publications to promote. 

For LuLaRoe, we would not recommend this strategy, as there’s an overwhelming amount of negative press out there. They could potentially work with an authoritative news site to publish a piece detailing their side of the story or where the business is now, but we would suggest doing so down the road,after the dust settles from the bad press. This could produce ranking potential because it could be something unique to the results of the brand.

Reviewing Wikis & other profile pages

We recommend taking stock of any Wikis and existing profile pages a brand already has out there. For example, LuLaRoe could update its Crunchbase profile regularly. Doing so may have the potential to move the profile upward in the brand’s SERP.

In LuLaRoe’s case, we would also recommend taking full advantage of its YouTube presence by adding new videos with a “new light” sentiment, and turning off all comments on each video. Since we see their YouTube profile ranking highly on their page two search results, this is a domain that has the potential to move above the negative stories ranking on page one.

New content strategies

Post on sites you have relationships with (or own)

This could be a partner that has a completely different domain than you, or another brand that you have worked with in the past and have a good relationship with. Reaching out to these confidants to create new positive press surrounding the topic could help to get something new in the SERPs. 

Leveraging any existing relationships, or forging new ones, is a strategy that could potentially work for LuLaRoe.   

Research article directories

Random directory sites are not to be forgotten. In doing research on the specific industry you’re looking to influence, you can suss out directory listings to expand your presence on. 

That said, this isn’t a strategy that would make much of a difference for a huge brand like LuLaRoe, but it could be used to make their n overall reputation look cleaner and more put together. 

Establish mini blogs

We would recommend setting up a number of mini blogs on WordPress, Blogger, Posterous, and Tumblr, as well as  a few other WordPress MU sites we have identified with high ranking potential. 

But again, these mini blogs may not have the high-ranking potential to make a significant difference for a bigger brand like LuLaRoe 

Take ownership of other domains

We would recommend purchasing the .com, .net, and .org versions of the exact match domains for the search phrase –including the The general content we would recommend adding to these pages would include customer testimonials, positive stories, general information about the company, satisfaction guarantees, posts that debunk misinformation, and other stories that either didn’t pertain to the issue at all or show positive aspects about our client. 

Also, creating new profiles on sites like Medium, or doing an IdeaMensch interview, could help positive controlled content to rank highly in your results.

Engagement strategies

Link building

We highly recommend the link building tactic for all brands, especially LuLaRoe. When it comes to positive sentiment that has a low backlink data number, building links can help to increase that number. To do this, we would work with niche bloggers to build new links to the URLs that are ranking below the negative links on page one. The goal is to build backlinks to more than one target so these blog posts aren’t all about a specific brand as the topic, but rather, mention the brand in passing. 


Another helpful tactic involves taking advantage of interlinking opportunities from the brand’s main website to the positive URLs we see ranking within the first 30 results for the brand. This will help to show Google that they’re relevant, important, and should be associated with the brand.  

Click-through rate (CTR) search team

The goal here is to send clicks to certain positive targets in the SERPs to help move them above the negative. Like other tactics, this is about sending signals to Google that the target is a valuable piece of content to put on the first page of the SERPs. We would recommend sending high-value, US or local, clicks to the target URLs you identify. For LuLaRoe these include the Amazon Storefront, thredUP, Poshmark, LuLaRoe Bless, Twitter, YouTube, eBay, and Pinterest URLs.

Competitor research  

Another tactic we would recommend is to take a look at competitors in your industry. Gathering a bigger picture of what’s ranking in a similar brands’ SERP could give you ideas of what to replicate. Sometimes, you may even find a random profile ranking for a competitor that you don’t have a profile on. LuLaRoe should take a look at other big brands facing similar controversies to gain knowledge on where and how they responded and moved forward. 

Influencer engagement 

Working with influencers and other social media engagers in the space is so important. Not only does it bring awareness to the ideas you’re trying to promote, but it helps to increase engagement to articles that your brand would like to see higher in the search results. LuLaRoe could really benefit from working with any influencers who support their new business direction and are willing to help clean up their reputation.

Case study & tracking progress 

Without giving away any of our past client’s project details, we wanted to give you an idea of some of the results we’ve seen after applying our tactics. The questionable situation was surrounding a commercial about a controversial topic at that time. After getting negative news coverage, we saw a few negative articles “stick” on the page one results for their brand. Using our proprietary technology for reputation management tracking, we calculated what’s called the “Sentiment Score” of the search result to be a 91. 

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Our team took the time to thoughtfully review all aspects of the brand’s search results, as I detailed above. From there we applied the tactics we thought would make a difference and made sense considering the industry. The strategies that were successful in this case included increasing click-through rate, link building, and social engagements. Other strategies that helped to move the negative links on to page two included new profile creation and updating pre-existing content that was dated. 

It was great to see the positive results of our work, although it did take time due to the relevance of the article. The client also took part in charitable events that helped to create new press to surround the brand, which helped to meet their end goal even. 

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These initiatives resulted in a Sentiment Score of a perfect 100 with no negatives on page one. You can read more about how we calculate the overall sentiment score for a query here


The results from implementing the ORM strategies above vary from brand to brand. It all depends on how each ranking factor is determined by Google. The authority and relevance of an article also make a huge difference in how it’s placed. Our team has seen a ton of success utilizing and being strategic when implementing many of them, but some of our techniques work better than others because of the industry. This proves the importance of doing research to find out what tactics are best suited — and will be most beneficial — to a given brand of business.

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OpenAI’s Drama Should Teach Marketers These 2 Lessons



OpenAI’s Drama Should Teach Marketers These 2 Lessons

A week or so ago, the extraordinary drama happening at OpenAI filled news feeds.

No need to get into all the saga’s details, as every publication seems to have covered it. We’re just waiting for someone to put together a video montage scored to the Game of Thrones music.

But as Sam Altman takes back the reigns of the company he helped to found, the existing board begins to disintegrate before your very eyes, and everyone agrees something spooked everybody, a question arises: Should you care?

Does OpenAI’s drama have any demonstrable implications for marketers integrating generative AI into their marketing strategies?

Watch CMI’s chief strategy advisor Robert Rose explain (and give a shoutout to Sutton’s pants rage on The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills), or keep reading his thoughts:

For those who spent last week figuring out what to put on your holiday table and missed every AI headline, here’s a brief version of what happened. OpenAI – the huge startup and creator of ChatGPT – went through dramatic events. Its board fired the mercurial CEO Sam Altman. Then, the 38-year-old entrepreneur accepted a job at Microsoft but returned to OpenAI a day later.

We won’t give a hot take on what it means for the startup world, board governance, or the tension between AI safety and Silicon Valley capitalism. Rather, we see some interesting things for marketers to put into perspective about how AI should fit into your overall content and marketing plans in the new year.

Robert highlights two takeaways from the OpenAI debacle – a drama that has yet to reach its final chapter: 1. The right structure and governance matters, and 2. Big platforms don’t become antifragile just because they’re big.

Let’s have Robert explain.

The right structure and governance matters

OpenAI’s structure may be key to the drama. OpenAI has a bizarre corporate governance framework. The board of directors controls a nonprofit called OpenAI. That nonprofit created a capped for-profit subsidiary – OpenAI GP LLC. The majority owner of that for-profit is OpenAI Global LLC, another for-profit company. The nonprofit works for the benefit of the world with a for-profit arm.

That seems like an earnest approach, given AI tech’s big and disruptive power. But it provides so many weird governance issues, including that the nonprofit board, which controls everything, has no duty to maximize profit. What could go wrong?

That’s why marketers should know more about the organizations behind the generative AI tools they use or are considering.

First, know your providers of generative AI software and services are all exploring the topics of governance and safety. Microsoft, Google, Anthropic, and others won’t have their internal debates erupt in public fireworks. Still, governance and management of safety over profits remains a big topic for them. You should be aware of how they approach those topics as you license solutions from them.

Second, recognize the productive use of generative AI is a content strategy and governance challenge, not a technology challenge. If you don’t solve the governance and cross-functional uses of the generative AI platforms you buy, you will run into big problems with its cross-functional, cross-siloed use. 

Big platforms do not become antifragile just because they’re big

Nicholas Taleb wrote a wonderful book, Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder. It explores how an antifragile structure doesn’t just withstand a shock; it actually improves because of a disruption or shock. It doesn’t just survive a big disruptive event; it gets stronger because of it.

It’s hard to imagine a company the size and scale of OpenAI could self-correct or even disappear tomorrow. But it can and does happen. And unfortunately, too many businesses build their strategies on that rented land.

In OpenAI’s recent case, the for-profit software won the day. But make no bones about that victory; the event wasn’t good for the company. If it bounces back, it won’t be stronger because of the debacle.

With that win on the for-profit side, hundreds, if not thousands, of generative AI startups breathed an audible sigh of relief. But a few moments later, they screamed “pivot” (in their best imitation of Ross from Friends instructing Chandler and Rachel to move a couch.)

They now realize the fragility of their software because it relies on OpenAI’s existence or willingness to provide the software. Imagine what could have happened if the OpenAI board had won their fight and, in the name of safety, simply killed any paid access to the API or the ability to build business models on top of it.

The last two weeks have done nothing to clear the already muddy waters encountered by companies and their plans to integrate generative AI solutions. Going forward, though, think about the issues when acquiring new generative AI software. Ask about how the vendor’s infrastructure is housed and identify the risks involved. And, if OpenAI expands its enterprise capabilities, consider the implications. What extra features will the off-the-shelf solutions provide? Do you need them? Will OpenAI become the Microsoft Office of your AI infrastructure?

Why you should care

With the voluminous media coverage of Open AI’s drama, you likely will see pushback on generative AI. In my social feeds, many marketers say they’re tired of the corporate soap opera that is irrelevant to their work.

They are half right. What Sam said and how Ilya responded, heart emojis, and how much the Twitch guy got for three days of work are fodder for the Netflix series sure to emerge. (Robert’s money is on Michael Cera starring.)

They’re wrong about its relevance to marketing. They must be experiencing attentional bias – paying more attention to some elements of the big event and ignoring others. OpenAI’s struggle is entertaining, no doubt. You’re glued to the drama. But understanding what happened with the events directly relates to your ability to manage similar ones successfully. That’s the part you need to get right.

Want more content marketing tips, insights, and examples? Subscribe to workday or weekly emails from CMI.


Cover image by Joseph Kalinowski/Content Marketing Institute

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The Complete Guide to Becoming an Authentic Thought Leader



The Complete Guide to Becoming an Authentic Thought Leader

Introduce your processes: If you’ve streamlined a particular process, share it. It could be the solution someone else is looking for.

Jump on trends and news: If there’s a hot topic or emerging trend, offer your unique perspective.

Share industry insights: Attended a webinar or podcast that offered valuable insights. Summarize the key takeaways and how they can be applied.

Share your successes: Write about strategies that have worked exceptionally well for you. Your audience will appreciate the proven advice. For example, I shared the process I used to help a former client rank for a keyword with over 2.2 million monthly searches.

Question outdated strategies: If you see a strategy that’s losing steam, suggest alternatives based on your experience and data.

5. Establish communication channels (How)

Once you know who your audience is and what they want to hear, the next step is figuring out how to reach them. Here’s how:

Choose the right platforms: You don’t need to have a presence on every social media platform. Pick two platforms where your audience hangs out and create content for that platform. For example, I’m active on LinkedIn and X because my target audience (SEOs, B2B SaaS, and marketers) is active on these platforms.

Repurpose content: Don’t limit yourself to just one type of content. Consider repurposing your content on Quora, Reddit, or even in webinars and podcasts. This increases your reach and reinforces your message.

Follow Your audience: Go where your audience goes. If they’re active on X, that’s where you should be posting. If they frequent industry webinars, consider becoming a guest on these webinars.

Daily vs. In-depth content: Balance is key. Use social media for daily tips and insights, and reserve your blog for more comprehensive guides and articles.

Network with influencers: Your audience is likely following other experts in the field. Engaging with these influencers puts your content in front of a like-minded audience. I try to spend 30 minutes to an hour daily engaging with content on X and LinkedIn. This is the best way to build a relationship so you’re not a complete stranger when you DM privately.

6. Think of thought leadership as part of your content marketing efforts

As with other content efforts, thought leadership doesn’t exist in a vacuum. It thrives when woven into a cohesive content marketing strategy. By aligning individual authority with your brand, you amplify the credibility of both.

Think of it as top-of-the-funnel content to:

  • Build awareness about your brand

  • Highlight the problems you solve

  • Demonstrate expertise by platforming experts within the company who deliver solutions

Consider the user journey. An individual enters at the top through a social media post, podcast, or blog post. Intrigued, they want to learn more about you and either search your name on Google or social media. If they like what they see, they might visit your website, and if the information fits their needs, they move from passive readers to active prospects in your sales pipeline.

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How to Increase Survey Completion Rate With 5 Top Tips



How to Increase Survey Completion Rate With 5 Top Tips

Collecting high-quality data is crucial to making strategic observations about your customers. Researchers have to consider the best ways to design their surveys and then how to increase survey completion, because it makes the data more reliable.

→ Free Download: 5 Customer Survey Templates [Access Now]

I’m going to explain how survey completion plays into the reliability of data. Then, we’ll get into how to calculate your survey completion rate versus the number of questions you ask. Finally, I’ll offer some tips to help you increase survey completion rates.

My goal is to make your data-driven decisions more accurate and effective. And just for fun, I’ll use cats in the examples because mine won’t stop walking across my keyboard.

Why Measure Survey Completion

Let’s set the scene: We’re inside a laboratory with a group of cat researchers. They’re wearing little white coats and goggles — and they desperately want to know what other cats think of various fish.

They’ve written up a 10-question survey and invited 100 cats from all socioeconomic rungs — rough and hungry alley cats all the way up to the ones that thrice daily enjoy their Fancy Feast from a crystal dish.

Now, survey completion rates are measured with two metrics: response rate and completion rate. Combining those metrics determines what percentage, out of all 100 cats, finished the entire survey. If all 100 give their full report on how delicious fish is, you’d achieve 100% survey completion and know that your information is as accurate as possible.

But the truth is, nobody achieves 100% survey completion, not even golden retrievers.

With this in mind, here’s how it plays out:

  • Let’s say 10 cats never show up for the survey because they were sleeping.
  • Of the 90 cats that started the survey, only 25 got through a few questions. Then, they wandered off to knock over drinks.
  • Thus, 90 cats gave some level of response, and 65 completed the survey (90 – 25 = 65).
  • Unfortunately, those 25 cats who only partially completed the survey had important opinions — they like salmon way more than any other fish.

The cat researchers achieved 72% survey completion (65 divided by 90), but their survey will not reflect the 25% of cats — a full quarter! — that vastly prefer salmon. (The other 65 cats had no statistically significant preference, by the way. They just wanted to eat whatever fish they saw.)

Now, the Kitty Committee reviews the research and decides, well, if they like any old fish they see, then offer the least expensive ones so they get the highest profit margin.

CatCorp, their competitors, ran the same survey; however, they offered all 100 participants their own glass of water to knock over — with a fish inside, even!

Only 10 of their 100 cats started, but did not finish the survey. And the same 10 lazy cats from the other survey didn’t show up to this one, either.

So, there were 90 respondents and 80 completed surveys. CatCorp achieved an 88% completion rate (80 divided by 90), which recorded that most cats don’t care, but some really want salmon. CatCorp made salmon available and enjoyed higher profits than the Kitty Committee.

So you see, the higher your survey completion rates, the more reliable your data is. From there, you can make solid, data-driven decisions that are more accurate and effective. That’s the goal.

We measure the completion rates to be able to say, “Here’s how sure we can feel that this information is accurate.”

And if there’s a Maine Coon tycoon looking to invest, will they be more likely to do business with a cat food company whose decision-making metrics are 72% accurate or 88%? I suppose it could depend on who’s serving salmon.

While math was not my strongest subject in school, I had the great opportunity to take several college-level research and statistics classes, and the software we used did the math for us. That’s why I used 100 cats — to keep the math easy so we could focus on the importance of building reliable data.

Now, we’re going to talk equations and use more realistic numbers. Here’s the formula:

Completion rate equals the # of completed surveys divided by the # of survey respondents.

So, we need to take the number of completed surveys and divide that by the number of people who responded to at least one of your survey questions. Even just one question answered qualifies them as a respondent (versus nonrespondent, i.e., the 10 lazy cats who never show up).

Now, you’re running an email survey for, let’s say, Patton Avenue Pet Company. We’ll guess that the email list has 5,000 unique addresses to contact. You send out your survey to all of them.

Your analytics data reports that 3,000 people responded to one or more of your survey questions. Then, 1,200 of those respondents actually completed the entire survey.

3,000/5000 = 0.6 = 60% — that’s your pool of survey respondents who answered at least one question. That sounds pretty good! But some of them didn’t finish the survey. You need to know the percentage of people who completed the entire survey. So here we go:

Completion rate equals the # of completed surveys divided by the # of survey respondents.

Completion rate = (1,200/3,000) = 0.40 = 40%

Voila, 40% of your respondents did the entire survey.

Response Rate vs. Completion Rate

Okay, so we know why the completion rate matters and how we find the right number. But did you also hear the term response rate? They are completely different figures based on separate equations, and I’ll show them side by side to highlight the differences.

  • Completion Rate = # of Completed Surveys divided by # of Respondents
  • Response Rate = # of Respondents divided by Total # of surveys sent out

Here are examples using the same numbers from above:

Completion Rate = (1200/3,000) = 0.40 = 40%

Response Rate = (3,000/5000) = 0.60 = 60%

So, they are different figures that describe different things:

  • Completion rate: The percentage of your respondents that completed the entire survey. As a result, it indicates how sure we are that the information we have is accurate.
  • Response rate: The percentage of people who responded in any way to our survey questions.

The follow-up question is: How can we make this number as high as possible in order to be closer to a truer and more complete data set from the population we surveyed?

There’s more to learn about response rates and how to bump them up as high as you can, but we’re going to keep trucking with completion rates!

What’s a good survey completion rate?

That is a heavily loaded question. People in our industry have to say, “It depends,” far more than anybody wants to hear it, but it depends. Sorry about that.

There are lots of factors at play, such as what kind of survey you’re doing, what industry you’re doing it in, if it’s an internal or external survey, the population or sample size, the confidence level you’d like to hit, the margin of error you’re willing to accept, etc.

But you can’t really get a high completion rate unless you increase response rates first.

So instead of focusing on what’s a good completion rate, I think it’s more important to understand what makes a good response rate. Aim high enough, and survey completions should follow.

I checked in with the Qualtrics community and found this discussion about survey response rates:

“Just wondering what are the average response rates we see for online B2B CX surveys? […]

Current response rates: 6%–8%… We are looking at boosting the response rates but would first like to understand what is the average.”

The best answer came from a government service provider that works with businesses. The poster notes that their service is free to use, so they get very high response rates.

“I would say around 30–40% response rates to transactional surveys,” they write. “Our annual pulse survey usually sits closer to 12%. I think the type of survey and how long it has been since you rendered services is a huge factor.”

Since this conversation, “Delighted” (the Qualtrics blog) reported some fresher data:

survey completion rate vs number of questions new data, qualtrics data

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The takeaway here is that response rates vary widely depending on the channel you use to reach respondents. On the upper end, the Qualtrics blog reports that customers had 85% response rates for employee email NPS surveys and 33% for email NPS surveys.

A good response rate, the blog writes, “ranges between 5% and 30%. An excellent response rate is 50% or higher.”

This echoes reports from Customer Thermometer, which marks a response rate of 50% or higher as excellent. Response rates between 5%-30% are much more typical, the report notes. High response rates are driven by a strong motivation to complete the survey or a personal relationship between the brand and the customer.

If your business does little person-to-person contact, you’re out of luck. Customer Thermometer says you should expect responses on the lower end of the scale. The same goes for surveys distributed from unknown senders, which typically yield the lowest level of responses.

According to SurveyMonkey, surveys where the sender has no prior relationship have response rates of 20% to 30% on the high end.

Whatever numbers you do get, keep making those efforts to bring response rates up. That way, you have a better chance of increasing your survey completion rate. How, you ask?

Tips to Increase Survey Completion

If you want to boost survey completions among your customers, try the following tips.

1. Keep your survey brief.

We shouldn’t cram lots of questions into one survey, even if it’s tempting. Sure, it’d be nice to have more data points, but random people will probably not hunker down for 100 questions when we catch them during their half-hour lunch break.

Keep it short. Pare it down in any way you can.

Survey completion rate versus number of questions is a correlative relationship — the more questions you ask, the fewer people will answer them all. If you have the budget to pay the respondents, it’s a different story — to a degree.

“If you’re paying for survey responses, you’re more likely to get completions of a decently-sized survey. You’ll just want to avoid survey lengths that might tire, confuse, or frustrate the user. You’ll want to aim for quality over quantity,” says Pamela Bump, Head of Content Growth at HubSpot.

2. Give your customers an incentive.

For instance, if they’re cats, you could give them a glass of water with a fish inside.

Offer incentives that make sense for your target audience. If they feel like they are being rewarded for giving their time, they will have more motivation to complete the survey.

This can even accomplish two things at once — if you offer promo codes, discounts on products, or free shipping, it encourages them to shop with you again.

3. Keep it smooth and easy.

Keep your survey easy to read. Simplifying your questions has at least two benefits: People will understand the question better and give you the information you need, and people won’t get confused or frustrated and just leave the survey.

4. Know your customers and how to meet them where they are.

Here’s an anecdote about understanding your customers and learning how best to meet them where they are.

Early on in her role, Pamela Bump, HubSpot’s Head of Content Growth, conducted a survey of HubSpot Blog readers to learn more about their expertise levels, interests, challenges, and opportunities. Once published, she shared the survey with the blog’s email subscribers and a top reader list she had developed, aiming to receive 150+ responses.

“When the 20-question survey was getting a low response rate, I realized that blog readers were on the blog to read — not to give feedback. I removed questions that wouldn’t serve actionable insights. When I reshared a shorter, 10-question survey, it passed 200 responses in one week,” Bump shares.

Tip 5. Gamify your survey.

Make it fun! Brands have started turning surveys into eye candy with entertaining interfaces so they’re enjoyable to interact with.

Your respondents could unlock micro incentives as they answer more questions. You can word your questions in a fun and exciting way so it feels more like a BuzzFeed quiz. Someone saw the opportunity to make surveys into entertainment, and your imagination — well, and your budget — is the limit!

Your Turn to Boost Survey Completion Rates

Now, it’s time to start surveying. Remember to keep your user at the heart of the experience. Value your respondents’ time, and they’re more likely to give you compelling information. Creating short, fun-to-take surveys can also boost your completion rates.

Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2010 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.

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