Twitter surveys: the respondent experience

Twitter surveys have been live since October 2012.

This morning I noticed my first survey invitation; I completed the survey, eager to see what the platform was like.

A good user experience 

I was using Twitter’s iPhone app. The promoted tweet came 2nd in my feed (below). The tweet came from @TwitterSurveys rather than an individual or research sponsor. Users know that the invite is bona fide and objective.

@TwitterSurveys invite

@TwitterSurveys invite

There was no introduction or preamble, straight into the first question. Rather than linking to another site, the user fills out the survey within the Tweet itself, giving a seamless experience.

The user interface is clean: text is kept to a minimum & the survey buttons are large so even those with sausage fingers won’t mis-code.

@TwitterSurveys Screen 1

There is a FAQ link on each survey screen to reassure respondents. Each screen also tells the user how many questions are left, managing expectations.

My survey was short, 4 pre-coded questions plus a “thank & close” page: 5 clicks in all. It took me about 15 seconds to complete.

EE @TwitterSurveys

Overall? As you’d expect from Twitter the user experience is intuitive, well designed and should cause people minimal problems. I’d imagine the average user won’t find surveys overly intrusive if they are kept to this length.

Issues for research sponsors

The main issue I found is multiple user completions. The survey link is generic meaning I was able to re-click the link in my feed and re-complete the survey. This obviously has implications for data integrity.

Research magazine’s recent article neatly sums-up the pros and cons of using Twitter for market research. As Annie Pettit points out, Twitter users make up a unique and siloed population, and this builds bias into any data collected. You would imagine any research sponsor will be using Twitter to triangulate other research findings, not in isolation.

Mori data from July 2012 shows UK Twitter users are young (<34), ABC1, affluent and by definition connected.

Young, affluent connected ABC1s are exactly who Everything Everywhere is targeting with their new 4G services, presumably with a campaign that includes promoted tweets.

Twitter need to evidence campaign ROI to encourage advertisers: surveys now mean traditional brand metrics (as well as retweets and favorites) are now part of their toolkit as a media owner.

About Simon Shaw

I'm a Director at an insight consultancy. I'm interested in marketing, market research & consumer psychology. The views expressed are not necessarily those of my employer.
This entry was posted in Market Research, Marketing Research, Social Media and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Twitter surveys: the respondent experience

  1. LoveStats says:

    Sadly, the question capped here is not a survey question but rather a leading marketing question. Score -1 for DIY. You may not know the right answer but as soon as you’re done the survey, you know you’re going to google the “right” answer.

    • Simon Shaw says:

      Good point Annie. Wood for trees and all that.

      I quite liked the UX though – quick and clean.

      I wouldn’t object to doing surveys on Twitter if they are all this quick to complete.

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