A cash incentive can be a very effective way of enticing someone to respond to a survey. It is worth pointing out that, if offering a cash incentive, you need to have stringent checks in place to ensure the quality of your respondents. Also, be very clear on the total number of responses you are looking to achieve. Large cash incentives are only used for some qual projects or when very specialist sample is required such as medical practitioners.
In order to offer an effective prize draw, you really need to understand your target market and what prize(s) would incentivize them to act on the survey invite. All prize draws need to be accompanied with comprehensive terms & conditions with winners published publicly. You should also be aware of the MRS guidelines on prize draws. For example, winners should not have to pay extra to use the prize. Money off vouchers for a holiday would be a no-no!
Points mean prizes! Many online communities use points as a way of incentivizing their members to engage within the community, whether that’s responding to a survey, poll, discussion topic etc. Points can then be exchanged for cash or prize draw entries.
It really is a case of understanding what would work for your particular target audience. A charitable donation could be an extremely effective way of encouraging someone to participate in a project if you know they are drawn to a particular cause.
This works well for long term engagement, i.e. online communities. Members of communities love to feel that their opinion is valued and that you are listening to them. Providing feedback on surveys/polls that they have participated in is a great way to build loyalty and encourage them to participate further. This can also be effective with B2B research, giving participants an early look or exclusive access to results.