Although personalized invitations tend to increase response rates in web surveys, little is known about how personalization impacts data quality. To evaluate the impact of personalization on survey estimates of sensitive items, the effects of personalized and generic greetings in a survey (n = 9,673) on an extremely sensitive topic-sexual assault victimization-were experimentally compared. Personalization was found to have increased response rates with negligible impact on victimization reporting, and this impact was similar across most demographic groups. The findings suggest that future studies may benefit from the use of a personalized greeting when recruiting sample members to participate in a sensitive survey, but that further research is necessary to better understand how the impact of personalization on reporting may differ across some demographic groups.
The impact of greeting personalization on prevalence estimates in a survey of sexual assault victimization
Griggs, A. K., Berzofsky, M. E., Shook-Sa, B. E., Lindquist, C. H., Enders, K. P., Krebs, C. P., ... Langton, L. (2018). The impact of greeting personalization on prevalence estimates in a survey of sexual assault victimization. Public Opinion Quarterly, 82(2), 366-378. https://doi.org/10.1093/poq/nfy019, https://doi.org/10.1093/poq/nfy019