The estimated reading time for this post is 4 minutes
Let me share how Alisa Tincup, Teacher Effectiveness Coach and I, used a ten-second video and a 1 minute workflow, to help increase the likelihood that teachers at her sites would follow through on completing a survey that she emailed out to them.
“Holding Hands and Humanizing the Google Form” is the subtitle I’d like to use for this blog, because in this short scenario, you’ll see how working “with” people and actually doing the work with them – you’ll see what I mean in a minute – and knowing a little bit about internet marketing can make an impact in terms of productivity, risk-taking, and raising the quality of work that we do.
Background: Alisa Tincup built a Google Form to use as a questionnaire to learn more about her teachers’ experience with types of math professional development.
Question: Alisa asked me, “How do I send the form to the teachers?”
Opportunity #1: Instead of interpreting her question as “where is the link to paste in the email,” I chose to hear her question as a design-thinking type prompt: “How might we best send this form to teachers” or “How might we make the most impact by sending this form to the teachers?”
Opportunity #2: I asked, “Do you mind if I ask a couple of questions?” Ask permission to help people, even if they’ve already invited you in to their work.
Opportunity #3: “How do people feel when they land on this Google Form after clicking on the link?” Alisa: “Well, I don’t know.” Me: “What do you think the emotional content or connection of this page is for them?” Alisa: “I’m not sure. It’s pretty plain.” Me: “What opportunities do we have to add color, images, or video?” Alisa: “I don’t really know.” Me: I showed her how to change the background color using the palette button, add a header image or add a video.
Another teacher nearby jokingly said, “Like you want them to find a picture of you staring them in the face when they land on the page. Scary!”
Opportunity #4: “Hmmm, could be awkward,” I responded. “How would they feel if at the top of the page was a short video of you thanking them for taking the survey?” Alisa: “Yes, I guess that could work. I know how to do that. I’ll do it at home.”
Check for understanding: I asked her if she knew about the best selfie angles and how to shoot cell phone video horizontally, instead of vertically, load it to YouTube and embed it in the form.
Opportunity #5: “Why don’t we walk through those steps right now?” I turned my phone sideways and turned on the video camera. “Okay, go!”
We shot the video, I texted it to Alisa, she installed the YouTube app on her new phone, and she uploaded it to her sausdlearns YouTube account (everyone in the district has a YouTube account as part of their Google account).
Opportunity #6: After embedding the video at the top of the form (copying the YouTube video url from another browser window) and then selecting the video icon from the right side of the edit screen and pasting the link in the “url” option), we addressed Alisa’s original intent: the link to include in the email.
Opportunity #7: “Did you know that you can track how many people click on the link and compare it to how many people complete your survey as a way to measure the effectiveness of your communication?” Alisa: “That’s cool! How?” I might be paraphrasing Alisa a bit here and maybe I misread the body language of the rest of our table, but I feel like all the coaches at the table sat forward as if to say, “Yes, tell me more about how to apply internet marketing techniques in our daily work as coaches!” Hey, that’s what I heard anyway. Or wanted to hear. And, this is the 21st Century Learning Department, so I’m like “Let’s make this a 21st Century Learning experience!”
Opportunity #8: In brief – take the Google Form “send” link and go to Bit.ly. Create an account or login and then click the “Create Bit.ly” button and paste your link in the box. Customize the url to something memorable. bit.ly/sendmyawesomesurvey or something like that. Paste that link in your email out to teachers. The Bit.ly account you created tracks how many people click on the link in your email! Then compare the number of responses in your spreadsheet. If you get 100 clicks and 10 responses in your spreadsheet, that’s a 10% conversion rate! That’s very good in internet marketing. That’s bad in your job as a coach, because you only have 10% of the information you need.
Opportunity #9: The opportunity for informed feedback to your market. Thank the people who took the survey and say, “10 of you already responded, thank you so much. I noticed that quite a few more accessed the survey but didn’t finish. If you finish the survey, it helps me better prepare…. etc.” You can also ask people “How can I improve or clarify the purpose for the survey?”
I want to thank Alisa Tincup for being brave and walking through the steps to make her coaching work a little bit more effective with her teachers! It’s not easy to be as vulnerable as she was in this process and I know the teachers with whom she works will see her commitment in her work. This idea behind this simple 10-second video and 1-minute workflow can be used over and over as we reach out to those with whom we work.
Reflection: How can you use short personal videos to humanize our communication?