Just because a survey is short doesn't mean people will finish it. B-to-B prospects are more likely to fill out a form that takes less time and are more likely to be impressed by a quick response, Silverpop found in research it announced two weeks ago.
To complete research for its whitepaper, Benchmark Study of Lead Management Practices, the Atlanta-based Web and e-mail marketing software company reviewed six months of data from 250 businesses. Here are Silverpop's main findings:
1. Customers care less about the number of questions than time it takes to answer them.
"The forms that were able to be completed quickly - say within one to two minutes or less - were most likely to be finished, while those that took longer were more often abandoned midway through," said Bryan Brown, director of product management and development for Silverpop's B-to-B Vtrenz solution.
2. People prefer forms with pre-existing data collected from sales leads, completing them at 20 percent to 25 percent higher rates than blank forms.
3. Provide drop-down menus that define choices.
Brown said these forms allow companies to define leads more uniformly.
4. Bump forms to the head of the line when they show that customers want a product demonstration or a sales call.
"Customers who receive a sales call within hours of indicating they're ready to talk will be much more impressed with your program than if they sit for days without a contact," Brown said.
5. Leads prefer to hear from companies three or four times a month instead of just once a month.
Silverpop found that the more frequent e-mails in lead nurturing programs had higher click rates.