Political

How to up the response rate on surveys: use Post-It notes

From the government’s Behavioural Insight Team’s blog:

Garner (2005) tested the impact of attaching a Post-it note with a hand-written request to survey materials. The study found that the note roughly doubled response rates (76%, compared to 36% with no Post-it note). In addition, using a Post-it note increased the quality and timeliness of survey responses.

The Irish Revenue has now transferred this finding into practice – and crucially they have tested the results in a randomised controlled trial. Of 2,000 businesses, 1,700 were randomly assigned to receive a survey questionnaire and a covering letter. 300 randomly assigned businesses were sent the same materials, but with a short personalised handwritten post-it note attached to the questionnaire.

After 15 working days, response rates were 36% for the trial group and 19.2% for the control group (p < 0.001).

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