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Surveys can be a great cultivation tool for your e-mail responsive donors. Surveys are not a new idea. Trying to discover the thoughts and habits of individuals is best done by asking them. Email has made this process easier than ever.
With the new web tools like Survey Monkey, doing a survey is easier than ever. You set up an account, create your survey, and send it out to your email list. Survey Monkey can tell when people open you email, records their responses, presents the data to you in a usable form, and can even send automated thank you notes. It makes the process so easy that anyone could do it.
The important question that you need to ask yourself is, "Why am I doing this survey?" Surveys can have different purposes.
Push polls - Some organizations use surveys to point public attention towards a particular facet of public life, with the intention of stirring them to some kind of action. Push polls are often used by political organizations to stir up their bases on a hot topic. "Do you think that XYZ company should be able to dump its industrial waste into the river?" Who answers yes to this kind of question? The point of this kind of survey is not to find out what people think, so much as it is to change the way people think.
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