Fan Engagement Pod: Bas Chat Ep #6

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Surveying & Questionnaires: How to do it

Definition: a method of data collection where a sample is taken from the population and researched via a standardised questionnaire


  • Post match Fan Experience
  • Annual or mid-season Fan Engagement/Fan Experience
  • Annual fan survey by a league or FA/federation
  • Done before season ticket campaigns

Step One: Preparations

1. Decide what you want to measure. What is it you’re trying to understand/get insights about? Which departments/teams/staff members will be involved?

2. How much analysis can I do? This will help you to decide whether you want to do open questions or closed questions

3. Design the type of questions you want to ask. Examples below (NB: Suggesting or hinting at answers you want respondents to make is a big no no. Don’t do it!)

  • Fact questions
  • Knowledge questions
  • Opinion questions
  • Open questions
  • Closed questions

4. If you’re doing questions using ‘ranking’ (e.g. ‘good’ to ‘bad’, or ‘1-5’), what scale are you going to use (Likert scale is the most common:

5. Ensuring the order of questions is balanced (the order of questions in a survey really matters:

6. Run a test survey. You could do this with your Fans Parliament, supporters’ trust, or you could test with colleagues

7. Ensure you think about these issues properly

  • Language used (make it understandable: use the test survey for this)
  • Be careful not to ask about multiple issues at the same time
  • Ensure answer options are clear and unambiguous: avoid confusion
  • Avoid leading questions, steering respondent towards a desired answer
  • Ensure you define the audience you’re targeting (e.g. age, whether a season ticket holder or member)

Step Two: Who to involve

  1. Which departments, teams or employees will be the subject of the survey?


Step Three: How to execute

  1. When is the best time to issue the survey? A quick matchday survey is best issued straight after the game, not two days afterwards!

Step Four: How to analyse

  1. If you’re analysing yourself, what tools are you going to use? SurveyMonkey has built-in features for this.
  2. If you’re going to have your data analysed by someone else, who are you going to use? Do they have the skills to do it? Can you engage an expert in surveying to do this for you?

Step Five: How to report

  1. Ensure you involve all internal stakeholders: staff, teams or departments involved. Always ensure that senior management are involved where necessary – particularly if it’s an annual survey. Feeding in the views of fans is important to the overall operation of the club/business
  2. Ensure results are presented in a clear and structured manner (see analysis section), and that all of your research objectives are met

Don’t forget!

More Reading

If you want to read more about the subject, try this from Bas Schnater’s LinkedIn page:


Economic and Social Research Council

Market Research Association

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