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Sending Surveys During the Holidays

Here’s a quick situation to consider:

You're planning to email your primary Net Promoter® survey to customers this week. However, there’s a local/national/global holiday coming up in three days (let’s say Thanksgiving). What do you do? Should you still send your survey campaign so close to an upcoming holiday? Or should you wait to send this one until next week, after the holiday has passed?

As a Customer Success Manager, I often get asked for advice on this matter by some of my customers. What I typically advise is fairly simple: I wouldn't recommend sending survey emails (or really any email you want someone to read and pay attention to—except maybe an email with some juicy Black Friday deals!) so close to a holiday.

The reason—people aren’t as likely to reply to survey emails during the week of a holiday. Many people have already left the office and gone home to spend time with friends and/or family. Your response rate will likely suffer by at least a few percentage points as a result.

But don’t they get a reminder email anyway? Sure, but if you miss people during the holiday week, then the reminder they get the following week is almost like their primary email. Which means, in a sense, you’ve lost the opportunity to actually "remind" them, since their "reminder" may be the first time they are actually seeing it or paying attention to it. This will also have negative consequences on your overall response rate, which may have been better if the customer had been given two “legitimate” opportunities to respond to the survey, increasing the chances that they respond.

Speaking of reminder emails...Don’t forget to consider them when you are approaching a holiday period, even if the holiday is more than three days away. Instead, if you planned to send your first emails 10 days before the holiday, but your reminder rule is 7 days, then the reminder email should be delivered just 3 days before the holiday. In this case, you’ve also lost a good chance of reminding your customer of the survey, for the same reasons listed above!

In short, be cognizant of the holiday periods, particularly if you send surveys to customers across multiple regions or countries where the holiday dates may differ.

Next Up: When to Send Your Net Promoter® Surveys

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