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A Creative Approach to Promoting Survey Response (308037)*Charles F. Brady, US Census Bureau
Kari Klinedinst, US Census Bureau
Keywords: communication, outreach, response, research, campaign, social media
On May 1, 2018, the United States Census Bureau mailed the 2017 Economic Census, our largest business survey. However, we began the process of developing a communication strategy and campaign to promote response over three years earlier in September 2014. Strategic objectives set the context and direction for research and planning, most notably the shift to 100% electronic reporting.
This research combined the analysis of past response, focus groups with respondents and direct outreach with business trade associations that resulted in a communication plan. This plan determined our approach for defining targets and messaging, and created the multi-tiered framework for implementation. In the middle of our strategy development, a new respondent portal was introduced, adding another element to consider as a factor that could impact response.
This cohesive outreach program leveraged trusted business organizations, social media, video clips, email marketing, and media relations all centered on an atypical government campaign. The creative development brought a touch of humor while also highlighting the depth of statistics that result from the survey and helped to answer the universal question, “What’s in it for me?”