Soliciting feedback from readers is an important part of a magazine’s research efforts. With a reader panel, a magazine has continual access to a group of readers who they can survey on various topics including past issues, future content and general opinions about the magazine. In addition to these editorial benefits, reader panels also provide an opportunity for advertisers to pose questions to your group of readers. Here are a few tips to help you manage your reader panel:
1. Keep it Short
Don’t be greedy with your panelists’ time. Limit each survey to 10 or fewer questions that can be answered in five minutes or less. Do not send a survey more than once a month or you risk panelist burnout. Remember these are volunteer readers so if you respect their time you are more likely to return a higher response rate.
2. Offer Incentives
Reward participation by giving readers something in exchange for their participation. Select incentives that are appropriate for your audience. Gift cards are a practical option for most groups.
3. Experiment with A/B Test
Segment your panel into two groups and try different subject lines, day of the week, time of day and personalization. Analyze the results to determine the optimal combination for the most successful survey.