When I was first introduced to www.SurveyMonkey.com I was inspired as to what exactly a journalist could use this tool for. I thought that it would be hard to get readers to respond to questions and you could use that data in the paper.

What I found was that millions of people all over the world had already used this tool. They have used it for businesses, schools and several types of organizations. So why not use it for online journalism?

Some of the types of surveys we can use with Survey Monkey include customer feedback, product feedback, market research surveys, employee satisfaction and even performance reviews. Not quite as advanced as the performance reviews Journal Register Company has had us learn but they are interesting.

Once an account is made (which is free depending on how in-depth the service is) people can start putting surveys on Internet, sending them by email or even using Facebook to get answers to the surveys.

Once you get your answers there are many different things you can do with them. Survey Monkey actually looks at the data and gives you results. You can use these for stories, personal use or maybe to look more in-depth at what you are trying to do. The cost is free unless you choose to upgrade it.

So have fun, explore and see what you can use from this tool to become a better journalist and online reporter.

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