This morning an email popped in to my mailbox, with the invitation to participate in a student survey.

uitnodiging nationale studentenenquete

The invitation read:

Dear student,

The National Student Survey will be closing today. Use this last opportunity to share your opinion about your school and possibly win an iPad2 or a voucher. Almost 200.000 students filled out the Survey before you!

There are three separate parts of this call to action. The first sentence tries to do two things:
1. It tries to appeal to my sense of scarcity. Time is running out. If I don’t fill out the survey now, I never will!
2. It tries to lure me in with the promise of winning an iPad2 or a voucher
3. It tries to use social proof by saying: 200.000 students before you filled out the survey, so you probably should do the same.

Points 3. really takes away from point 2. though. If 200.000 students already filled out the survey, then what does that say about my chance to win the iPad or voucher? The call to action would have probably been more effective with either point 2. or point 3. taken out.