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In this demonstration, we’ll be opening a free Survey Monkey account, which allows you to create a 10-question survey and collect up to 100 responses.

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The Pro accounts, available for a monthly fee, might be helpful if your law firm intends to conduct surveys regularly. The Pro accounts offer unlimited questions and responses, as well as enhanced branding and reporting features.

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  1. Go to https://www.surveymonkey.com/MyAccount_Join.aspx and sign up either with an email account or with your Google or Facebook account.If you are signing up with an email account, select a username appropriate to your law firm, a secure password, and an email address where you would prefer to receive survey-related communications.

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Before building your law firm’s first survey using Survey Monkey, spend some time determining which information you are seeking to gather from your clients by defining your goals.

For instance, are you looking to improve customer service and communications? Gather more clients? Test the effectiveness of an online tool? These are all excellent reasons to use surveys to solicit feedback from your clients.

For this survey, the goal will be to improve customer service and communications.

Creating and Customizing Your First Survey

1. Click the Create Survey button in the box labeled “Create Your Survey in 3 Easy Steps.”

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2. You are presented with two options:

a. Create a new survey. This option allows you to create a survey from scratch, with your own questions using a basic template. We’ll use this option.

b. Use an expert survey template. This option gives you a prefilled survey template with commonly asked questions already included. While you may be able to use these generic surveys, it is preferable to customize your survey to specifically speak to your clients.

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3. Enter the title of your survey, which will be visible to your clients, and a category from the drop-down menu, and click Continue.

4. With a Basic account, you can choose the color scheme of the survey from among 12 choices. Select a color scheme that most complements the color scheme used by your law firm. The colors will change below as you select different options from the drop-down menu.

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You can create multi-page surveys or a single-page survey for your firm. For this survey, we’ll have an introductory page (Page 1), a page of questions (Page 2), and a closing page (Page 3).

5. From the drop-down alongside Page 1, select Edit Page Options > Edit Page Information

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6. In the dialog box that appears, you have two optional boxes where you can enter a title and paragraph copy. Enter your text and click Save Page.

7. You may want to gather simple contact information, although providing this information should not be required in most cases. To collect a name and email address, click the +Add Question button.

8. In the text box, enter a simple line of text such as “Enter your name and email address (optional).”

9. Select Demographic Information from the Question Type drop-down menu and uncheck fields you would like to make invisible. If you’re requiring contact information, check the box next to Answer Required. Click the Save & Close button.

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NOTE: At any time, you can see how your survey will look by clicking the Preview Survey button in the upper right-hand corner of the editing area. A new window will open, so be sure that your pop-up blocker is not preventing it from doing so.

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10. To create Page 2, click the +Add Page button below Page 1. (Clicking +Add Page above Page 1 will insert a page ahead of Page 1.)

11. Under Page 2, enter some brief direction text, if you choose, by following the same steps described in steps 5-6.

12. Start inputting your questions by clicking the +Add Question option. You have three options: standard questions, image-based questions, and text-based questions.

Begin typing your question and some options may appear to help you ask your question in a non-biased way. In this example, we are asking, “How professional is our company?” Survey Monkey then gives the option to customize the question even further by entering the name of the law firm.

Survey Monkey has verified that a question phrased in this way is less subject to bias, so using their suggested questions, whenever possible, is a good idea to ensure the accuracy of your survey data.

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When you select one of their certified questions, Survey Monkey offers common answer options, or you can click Edit to change the answer options.

Select whether or not to add an Other / Comment field to gather more information, as well as whether or not to make this a required question (clients must answer it before they can exit the survey).

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13. If you have text or a photo to insert as a reference for a question, you can do so by clicking the drop-down arrow next to +Add Question and selecting Add Image or Add Text.

14. Continue adding your questions one at a time, up to 10 questions for free accounts. To see examples of the various question types available to you, visit https://www.surveymonkey.com/QuestionBuilder_Examples.aspx

15. Follow step 10 to insert a new page beneath Page 2, and then follow steps 5-6 above to create a closing page for your survey.

16. Preview and test your survey to ensure that it’s functioning as you would expect it to for your firm’s clients.

17. From the menu along the left-hand side, select Survey Options.

18. Decide whether or not to use page numbering and/or question numbering for your law firm’s survey, and how you would like question numbering to work. Particularly useful when you have multiple pages of survey questions for your clients to answer, select whether or not to show your clients a progress bar of how far they are in the survey.

Then select whether or not to show survey and page titles, the words used in the navigation buttons used between pages, and how to highlight required questions. Click the Save Changes button.

Distributing Your Survey

1. When your survey is ready to be distributed, click the Send Survey button, which opens it up to anyone with the link.

2. First, enter the name of your law firm into the Organization Name field and click the Enter button.

3. The most common ways to share your survey for the purpose of gathering client information are: by sharing the dedicated web link, by embedding the survey into a page on your website (and directing your clients to that page), and by sharing it over Facebook via your law firm’s business page.

4. Select Change Settings from the left-hand sidebar to allow multiple responses per computer, to allow respondents to edit their responses once they’ve exited the survey, and to display survey results after the survey has been completed. Click the Save Settings button when finished.

5. Select Change Restrictions to set cutoff dates and times, set a maximum number of responses, password-protect the survey, or block certain IP addresses. Click the Save Restrictions button when finished.

6. If you’re ready to close your survey early, you can go to the Collector tab and select Close Collector Now. Simply customize the text and click Stop Collecting Now to close the survey to further responses. For free Basic accounts, once you have collected 100 responses, your survey will automatically be closed.

Analyzing Results

When you’re ready to evaluate the results from your law firm’s survey, simply go to the Analyze Results tab.

1. You can see which questions have received results on a response-by-response basis in graph and table form.

2. You can also review individual responses on a client-by-client basis by clicking the Individual Responses tab.

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