One of the most commonly asked questions about survey responses is where to find people to take a survey. When you’re looking for input from a particular segment of the population, it can be challenging to identify the right channels for distribution.
The good news is that adoption rates for the most popular social media networks continue to rise, creating diverse pools of respondents of almost any demographic.
While social networks like Twitter and Facebook do offer an easy way to gather survey responses, you need to tread carefully when sharing your survey this way.
How to Post Surveys on Your Social Media Profiles
Once you’ve created a survey, you can grab the customized URL and share it with your followers on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.
This type of social sharing works best if your survey is aimed at your existing customer base, and/or to the demographics that you know are represented in your social media audience.
Advanced survey software tools should also integrate with popular social sharing software like Buffer, meaning you can quickly and easily share your survey on a regular schedule that you customize.
Spacing out your social shares can increase the likelihood that you’ll reach a higher percentage of your followers and may improve your response rate overall. Recent research seems to indicate that three times per day is a good level of frequency for Twitter, while Facebook engagement peaks at two shares per day.
A Buffer integration makes posting your survey to your social media profiles much simpler, because you can intersperse these shares with your other regular tweets or posts.
How to Get the Best Responses When You Post Your Survey on Social Media
While it’s tempting to simply login to a social network, throw out a link to your survey and leave, this type of behavior is unlikely to get you the response rate that you need.
You’ll get the most engagement, and the highest quality responses, if you interact regularly on the channel where you choose to post your survey.
This is a more time consuming way to gather responses, but it’s certainly worth if you get a better response rate.
Additionally, if you’re posting a survey on social media you should make sure that you have enough disqualifying logic in your survey to eliminate people who aren’t suitable respondents.
This means that you ask a few questions about the person answering your survey, generally about their demographic details or experiences, and determine if they are a good fit for your survey based on their answers.
For example, if you want to survey women who traveled to Asia in the last 18 months, you would need to ask at least two separate disqualifying questions:
- Are you male or female?
- Have you visited Asia in the past 18 months?
If they answer that they are male for the first question, or answer “No” to the second one then your survey tool should direct them to a page thanking them for their time and informing them that they don’t meet your survey criteria.
This type of survey logic is great in almost any situation to help hone your data, but it’s particularly vital when you’re posting surveys via social media and need to carefully vet those who are answering.
Where to Post Surveys for the Best Response Rate
When deciding where to post your survey, consider your target audience and overall survey goals. As mentioned above, if you’re concerned primarily with input from your own customers or audience, you can simply incorporate sharing links to your survey into your existing social media strategy.
If, however, you’re interested in getting more diverse responses you may need to get more creative about where you post your links.
Here’s a breakdown of common traits for each social network’s audience so you can make an informed decision about which network(s) you should post your survey on.
Facebook Audience Demographics
For sheer audience size, it’s still tough to beat Facebook. With 1.44 billion (yes, that’s billion with a “b”), chances are whatever type of respondent you need is somewhere on Facebook.
There are some clearly identifiable trends, however. The 18-24 year old age group is still the biggest on Facebook.
- 87% of adults 18-29 are on Facebook
- 73% of adults 30-49 are on Facebook
- 63% of adults 50-64 use Facebook
- 56% of adults 65+ use Facebook
- 74% of adults who went to college use Facebook
- 71% of adults with some college experience use Facebook
- 70% of adults who graduated high school or less use Facebook
Facebook is also highly international in its reach, with just a total of 14% of its user base living in the United States.
Clearly, there’s a high level of diversity in respondents on Facebook. The trick is finding them.
Two ways to get started are by trying hashtag searches to identify interest areas, and by running paid ad campaigns that allow for a highly granular level of targeting.
For instance, if you were looking for feedback about a new running shoe you could only show your ad to men ages 28-39 with more than two kids who have an interest in running.
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Twitter Audience Demographics
Twitter is becoming increasingly business friendly, with more and more professional interaction happening in the land of the hashtag.
It doesn’t have the reach that you’ll get with Facebook, but the ability to target an audience with a hashtag means that you have a better chance of reaching respondents with the need for an ad campaign.
Here are some general insights into the kinds of users you’ll find on Twitter.
- 30% have graduated college
- 24% have some college experience
- 16% are high school grads or less
- 37% of adults 18-29 use Twitter
- 25% of adults 30-49 use Twitter
- 12% of adults 50-64 use Twitter
- 10% of adults 65+ use Twitter
LinkedIn Audience Demographics
Long known as the bastion of professional networking, LinkedIn can give you instant access to large collections of interest-driven respondents with its Groups feature.
By simply joining a pre-existing group based on your survey’s topic you can post a link to your survey instantly, hopefully getting a strong response rate from an engaged population.
While LinkedIn is targeted to professionals, you can find some B2C opportunities here too if you investigate thoroughly enough. And with 347 million users, your odds of finding respondents are pretty high.
Here are some insights into the average LinkedIn users:
- 111 million users in the US
- 84 million users in Europe
- 64 million users in Asia and the Pacific
- 48 million users in Latin America
LinkedIn is one of the few social networks that doesn’t skew into the 18-29 age bracket:
- 31% of adults 30-49 use LinkedIn
- 30% of adults 50-64 use LinkedIn
- 23% of adults 18-29 use LinkedIn
- 21% of adults over 65 use LinkedIn
Pinterest Audience Demographics
In terms of audience and content, you don’t get much different than LinkedIn and Pinterest. Make sure that if you’re planning to post a survey on Pinterest that you have the ability to create compelling visual accompaniments, otherwise your response rates will be disappointing at best.
The traditional wisdom about Pinterest is that it’s almost all women with a high income level and a college degree, but the platform has been diversifying its reach rapidly.
Here’s the type of audience you’re likely to find for your surveys if you post it on Pinterest.
- 34% of adults making over $75,000 use Pinterest
- 30% of adults making $50,000 – $74,999 use Pinterest
- 28% of adults making $30,000 – $49,999 use Pinterest
- 22% of adults making less than $30,000 use Pinterest
Location (note the prevalence in rural areas):
- 30% of adults in rural areas use Pinterest
- 29% of adults in suburban areas use Pinterest
- 25% of adults in urban areas use Pinterest
Posting Your Survey on Social Media Makes Sense
Regardless of the demographic that you’re trying to reach, posting your survey on social media is a great way to gather responses.
Whether it’s Facebook or Pinterest, LinkedIn or Buffer, the right survey software will make it easy for you to quickly and easily get responses from your followers.