Hi colleagues – Just wanted to let you know of a little project (i.e. needs assessment survey) Alice Henneman and I recently conducted that may be of benefit for you. I am looking into creating a few NebGuides about various topics with the end goals of providing research based, non-biased documents to consumers about their food (some of these topics usually evoke strong emotional responses from consumers). Alice being the social media guru she is, suggested we use Survey Monkey to create a survey. The entire survey was 20 questions long, and asked people a few demographics, provided them some blanks to fill in their thoughts/comments on certain subjects, and then asked for their email address. Alice also sent it out to many listservs (and because she is a local celebrity, we had an amazing response!) Here is the kicker, by entering their email address they were automatically entered to win a $75 gift certificate from Amazon! Who wouldn’t like that, right? The best part, 672 persons completed the demographics (which we did make some of them required), in the areas where we asked them for comments/thoughts we had a range of 162-284 persons willingly complete these questions!! Wow – I will have a lot of data to mine for trends! 🙂 And 574 persons entered an email address for the gift card drawing! This is very interesting on several levels. First, the amount of persons who completed this needs assessment survey is amazing – especially when paired with the chance to win a gift certificate. Second, people were really interested in the topics, and wanted to help us the best they could, most of them did not just bypass the fill in the blank questions – they took time to complete them!! A big shout out to Alice for her assistance in this! I was a bit skeptical it would do this well at the beginning, but soliciting feedback through incentives works, and it works very well.