In our previous post, we explained why leveraging declared data in addition to behavioral or transactional is the best way to extend the value of your existing customers. This guide will give you the do's and don'ts of collecting declared data through engaging interactive content such as quizzes, tests, or polls for successful data-driven marketing campaigns.

First-party declared data is a type of data that has been willingly and actively given to your company by your customers. The value of declared data is in its relevance and accuracy compared to those of others. If you can utilize declared data in a way that allows you to fully engage with your audience, you can have the ability to capture their motivations, interests and preferences at scale; allowing you to create a truly personalized customer experience.

Passively collecting marketing data limits your chance for growth since the information about your customers is not enough to build accurate buyer personas. In addition, interacting with your customers raises both trust and engagement that increases customer loyalty and boosts retention rates.

We live in a world where there is an abundance of content. Marketers are struggling to create content that actually engages. To make your content stand out, you should put some effort into attracting your target audience.

Interactive content is the best way to have a conversation with your audience because it brings in the persuasive power of an in-person interaction. Static content is no longer sufficient to engage visitors. As Abhyudaya Tripathi, a digital marketing expert and Associate Director at ResultFirst, put it: "Interactive content is king".

According to Demand Metric's Content Experience Impact and the Buyer’s Journey Report, interactive content is more likely to be effective at educating buyers and differentiating from competitors compared to passive content.

Adopting a user engagement and declared data strategy through the use of interactive content can:‌‌
• Increase engagement‌‌
• Attract an audience (lead generation)‌‌
• Boost site traffic and conversion rates

Classic tools used for customer feedback such as surveys usually have limited reach and naturally boring. Given the benefits of interactive content, the proper ways to create engaging content for the purpose of collecting data and promoting is worth taking a look.

Make it fun!

1) Of course, not every question has to be about collecting data. The whole purpose of producing interactive content is to achieve high reach, especially if the content is created for promotion. Hence; the content should be fun, engaging, and non-intrusive.

Example: You can challenge your existing or potential customers by giving them a chance to showcase their knowledge on a topic they're interested in. You can also incentivize with prizes and offers.

If a question is boring, try to find a creative way to ask it!

2) You should start by figuring out what you need to learn about your customers. Think about particular segments you can create to retarget your audience based on the information you receive.

Example: A question like the one below can provide important information about a customer. Given the answers, the business can create different segments of an audience such as "parents", "in a relationship", or "party lovers".

This is much more effective than asking a classic survey question such as "What is your martial status?" and it gives you the chance to get answers to two questions with one - without the necessity of asking a "Do you have children?" question.

Don't ask what you already know

3) You shouldn't ask about what can be inferred from behavioral or transactional data. Instead of asking how much time they spend on the internet, ask about why they spend time on the internet.

Make it personal

4) The questions should be clear and to the point. Generally, content that addresses personal values or emotions have higher engagement. A user that is interested in movies would be more inclined to engage with a "What's your Oscar pick?" poll or a test that gives him or her a personal recommendation on what movie to watch next.

Make it mutually beneficial

5) Be creative and offer value. Interactive content creates a two-way dialogue between you and your customers. There is value for both parties. Successful content provides information your audience is looking for while the marketer gets educated about the audience.

Example: A user interested in wine would be willing to take a test and share personal information in return for a personal wine recommendation.

Target communities of interest

6) Instead of trying to collect all the information you need from your users with just one content, try creating different contents for different segments. Users would be willing to spend more time and share more information with content that is more appealing to them.

Track completion rate not as a single metric but per question

7) Don't treat the completion rate as a single metric. Sometimes specific questions in a long test, quiz, or survey may trigger a strong drop out. This could be because the question might not be interesting, or maybe some people find it offensive. Another possible reason could be the flow of questions convincing the user that this is not mutually beneficial and not worth spending time. Check the flow of the questions to be able to spot marginal drop-outs and take action real time.

Example: The chart below shows the results for a test created by Poltio for TechDay in New York City. Participants who visited our stand took the test to determine their own prizes such as a massage, food tour, magazine subscriptions, and Starbucks, Uber, online gaming or co-working space credits. The test resulted in an 82% completion rate.

Source: Poltio

Don't make it too long

8) The length is a significant factor when it comes to completion rates. You should give the number of questions upfront. Often times, it is safe not to have more than 7-8 questions unless it is a knowledge test, there is a prize, or you are confident that it is actually fun. I know you want to ask and learn about everything but control yourself!

Use visuals

9) Visuals are significant in making your content more attractive. Needless to say, beautiful content gets more shares. Using people in your visuals can make your content seem relatable and contribute to attracting more people.

But be careful with visuals! (don't lead answers)

10) You should avoid manipulating your audience with your choice of visuals not to end up with misleading information. The way you ask a question has a strong effect on the responses you get. Try to not lead your users towards a specific answer in order to be able to receive unbiased feedback.

For example: While asking your users if they eat ice cream during winter; if you use a picture of a person seemingly cold in the snow, you may unintentionally increase the answer 'no'.

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Poltio has a platform that helps brands access, engage with and learn from their users with interactive content and declared data. To learn more about how it works, visit Poltio.