Engaging with Members thru eMail Surveys/Evaluations

When it comes to learning about an organization’s constituents, there is rarely anything more effective than a satisfaction survey. This gives your customers/members a chance to voice their concerns and/or praise your effectiveness.

Sending an email as soon as possible after the event is best, while the experience is still fresh in the customers mind. These surveys can be short in some instances and more detailed in others depending on the circumstances. For example a meeting evaluation may have more questions while a buying experience may be one or two questions.

Using IQA in iMIS, you can query the data for the customer you wish to include in the email as long as the data is stored in iMIS. Using the example above all the data is stored in iMIS.

Using Process Automation you can have iMIS automatically generate the IQA and have it feed the eMail. For small eMails you can directly eMail from the IQA. For larger eMails you will want to use another method. If you use an eMail product with ties to iMIS, you can then use the results to send the eMail. If your eMail product does not have ties to iMIS then you would use the export feature in IQA to then merge the data to that product.

The customer can then answer the survey and reply back the answers. If your eMail service includes surveys, such as Informz does, the answers can be collected by the service otherwise the staff back at the organization’s office can accumulate the data and even put it in iMIS. For best reporting results, storing the answers in iMIS can help produce scoring (a new feature in iMIS) and tracking fringe members.

The Survey

Writing the survey is the trickiest yet most important part. First, determine the main goal of the survey. The survey objectives should be deep and narrow and not broad and shallow. For example, for a workshop, was the learning objective met and did the presenter present in an understandable way.  Next develop the list of questions. The questions should address the objective. After developing a rough draft of the questions review and refine with a group to get other view points on the questions and wording. Make sure the questions are precise and not ambiguous.

Main Ideas for Writing Questions

  1. Use Simple, Direct Language. ...
  2. Be Specific. ...
  3. Break Down Big Ideas into Multiple Questions. ...
  4. Avoid Leading Questions. ...
  5. Ask One Thing per Question. ...
  6. Use More Interval Questions.

Before sending to the customers send the survey to an internal test group for feedback. This group could be your staff or a committee involved in using results.

When is the best time to send a survey?

  1. At the close of a meeting

    When closing a meeting send an evaluation to all attendees. This evaluation could be for the meeting itself or for each function.

  2. At the payment of renewals

    The confirmation letter already acknowledges the payment. A short survey could include the ease of use of the process.

  3. New on-line join

    A short survey could ask additional questions concerning ease of use and reasons for joining

  4. After updated their own profiles

    A short survey concerning ease of use

  5. When not visiting website for a period of time

    The more a member is involved the more likely they are to renew, attend meeting, etc. A short survey to those not using the website would help in telling you how you may need to improve the website.

  6. After getting dropped for non-payment of dues

    At short survey asking for reason of non-renewal

  7. When registering for a meeting

    Survey asks about experience and ease of use

  8. After buying a product

    Ask how they heard about the product, again ease of use and ways to improve.

  9. Triggered by any activity on the website

    After visiting particular pages ask about experience.

  10. After processing transactions thru the back office why not website

    For those user still not using the website for transaction a short survey would ask for reason, thus possibly improvement to the website

  11. Annual satisfaction survey

At year end ask customer/members about their feeling about their membership and use of the website


Engaging with our customers/members is extremely important in this day with all the competition vying for their attention. Sending well timed questionnaires/surveys are but one way, although it may be the most cost effective and productive avenues for engagement.

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