Surveys – You’re Doing It Wrong

I’m one of those people who actually fills out customer feedback surveys. I figure, it’s a bit silly to complain about bad customer service if I’m never willing to tell them what I want. Asking for feedback should be encouraged, right?

So I usually follow the links and click the little boxes.

Sometimes, though…

Take a look at this e-mail I got from Anytime Fitness (addressed to my wife). See if you can spot the problem.


Your feedback is incredibly important to us. Let us know how we’re doing by providing your candid feedback in this quick survey. The survey itself takes no more than five minutes to complete. Your input will be shared with myself and the club staff along with our corporate office to help improve your experience with our clubs.  If necessary, we may be in contact with you to better understand your needs as a member.

To access the survey, please use the following link.


Yours sincerely,

[name withheld]

Do you see it?

If you answered, “We may be in contact with you to better understand your needs,” DING! We have a winner.

From their perspective, this probably seems fine. Their customers have something negative to say, well, they want to understand it better. So they ask.

From my perspective, though, this simply translates to, “If you give us anything less than glowing praise, we’ll probably e-mail or even call to bug you about it.”

Well, screw that. If I wanted to talk to you, I’d talk to you. What I want is to go the gym and not have a conversation about it.

Hm. I guess that qualifies as feedback. Right?

2 responses to “Surveys – You’re Doing It Wrong

  1. I see nothing wrong with responding to negative feedback from a survey. At the very least, it shows that the company cares about the issue and are actively trying to better the situation.

    One minor detail I would like to see added is that they only contact you IF you explicitly state you are open to them responding. a simple checkbox of “allow company to contact you to discuss survey results” is just too easy to add.

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