11 Tips for Higher Response Rates

One of the most important questions we get at Vocal Video is “How do I improve video testimonial response rates?”

Spoiler alert: deadlines, reminders and incentives are all key techniques to improve response rates.

We’ve made it seamless for your subjects to record video testimonials for your business, but achieving high response rates still requires some planning on your part. The same would be true for any online survey, no matter how smooth and painless the process is.

Here are the top ways to optimize video response rates with Vocal Video:

1) Start small

Don’t overcomplicate your first project. To be successful, and understand the process fully, keep things relatively simple with a small group of potential respondents to start out.

2) Choose the right subjects

A good way to start is to ask 5-10 friendly subjects that you (or your collector's designated spokesperson) have a personal connection with for a video testimonial, with tailored email copy.

Once you’ve been through the full process with friendly customers or colleagues, then start to look for subjects further afield. The top video testimonial subjects we see are customers, employees & industry experts, but the sky’s the limit.

When you run out of your backlog of known prospective subjects, start building new lists by asking customer-facing colleagues for lists, with customers that have given you a high NPS rating, your customer reference database, or other employees, partners, and experts. Finally, you can also easily integrate requests for video testimonials into your ongoing programs.

3) Deadlines

Humans respond to deadlines. Make one up that’s not too far in the future when you send your subject a Video Collector. 7-10 days is a good starting point for most video testimonial projects, as you’re only asking for 5-10 minutes of your subject’s time. From there, you can be the hero for extending it if need be.

4) Reminders

It’s hard to choose what makes people act more, deadlines or reminders. Plan on sending at least one to two quick reminders about your original video request. You’re busy, and so are your customers. Depending on your relationship with the subject, and how valuable their video is to you, you might also suggest that they block out 20 minutes on their calendar to review the questions and respond, or offer to do a quick prep call with them in advance.

5) Incentives

Think about your audience. What do they care about? Free products, features or upgrades, financial incentives, gift certificates and physical gifts can all work great to increase response rates.

Don't want to keep track of sending out gifts manually? Use our Zapier integration to connect to a service like Giftbit or Sendoso to actually send physical gifts automatically after a subject replies.

6) Include questions and instructions in email

Make it easy for your subject to prepare for recording their video by including instructions and the list of questions in your email communication. This way they get themselves set up, and psyched up, to record a great video before even opening the link to your Collector.

7) Consider asking before sharing the link

Like many other requests, it can be helpful to ask subjects that you have a good relationship with if they’d be willing to record a 5-10 minute video before you actually send the link over. This is a less presumptuous process, and often yields higher response rates as your subject has already agreed to record the video in advance.

8) Choose a relevant spokesperson

We always recommend taking advantage of setting a relevant spokesperson for your Video Collector. This might be the person setting up the Collector, your CEO, a specific salesperson or anyone whose name might resonate with your subjects. Details here.

9) Use a welcome video

You can record a short welcome video message with Vocal Video to personalize your Collector. We recommend a quick intro and thank you, no more than 20 seconds. Details here

Learn how the Product Marketing Alliance uses Welcome Videos to increase response rate here

10) Use personalized links

With personalized links, respondent info is encoded in the link you share with them. So, when respondents see the attribution page after submitting their videos, their information is pre-filled. This can boost response rates. Get the details here.

11) Automate the process

One of the most powerful ways you can integrate Vocal Video into your existing customer experience flows is to automatically send an email asking for a video testimonial at key points in your customer journey.

The first step is to evaluate moments that you know customers are regularly thrilled with your product, and then use your marketing automation platform or our Zapier integration to automatically send an email at that moment. Prime times to target might include:

Bonus: a sample email sequence you can use

The following 3-email sequence is one we and many of our customers have used with great success. The first email in the sequence is a pre-ask – thanking the customer and asking if they'd be open to recording a short video testimonial. The second email includes the link to the collector, a brief explanation of the process, the questions they'll be asked to respond to, and some recording tips. The third email in the sequence is a gentle reminder. You can get 45+ templates for video testimonials here.

Adapt this sequence to your use case, incentives, and your collector's actual questions, and fire away!

Email #1 – pre-ask 

Thanks so much for being such a great customer!

Would you be able to record a short video testimonial for us? We’re using a platform called Vocal Video to collect the video, so it should only take 5-10 minutes of your time and can be easily done from your phone or laptop.

Let me know if you're open to this and I'll share the link you can record the video with, as well as the questions in advance.

Thanks so much!

Email #2 – invitation 

Thank you so much in advance for recording a video testimonial for us. We really appreciate it, and are excited to share your story with our community.

Here are the details on recording a video - it should take 5-10 minutes altogether.

Here's the link to the Vocal Video collector: (paste your collector here)

The 3 questions that we'd like you to answer are:

  • Why are video testimonials important to your organization?
  • How do you use testimonial videos from Vocal Video?
  • Would you recommend others try Vocal Video? Why?

Here are a couple of tips:

  1. Pick a quiet and well-lit place
  2. Avoid having windows or a light source in the background, since that will create glare
  3. Look directly at the camera
  4. Relax and be yourself - you'll do great!

Let me know if you have any questions, and thanks again!

Email #3 – reminder

I wanted to bump this to the top of your inbox to see when you might be able to set aside 5-10 mins to record a video testimonial for us. Thank you so much!

Here's the link to the Vocal Video collector which will include all the prompts for you to record your video: (paste your collector here)

Looking for more tips on your first project with Vocal Video overall? Check our Planning Your First Project