My contacts where email based, so I started by asking if they wanted to correspond by phone or email:
Hi [contact], My name is [your name], and I am a member of the Python Software Foundation (The PSF). Recently, you completed a survey for Python users, and I wanted to see if you wouldn't mind having a conversation about Python and the PSF. If that sounds like something you would like to do, would you prefer to correspond by email or by phone? Thanks for your interest in Python, [your sig]
For email follow ups, I'm starting with something like this:
So I see that your company uses Python for lots of web related work. How do you feel about using Python for these tasks? Do you have any particular successes or problems that you'd like to tell us about? Do you or others at your company attend PyCon or other conferences? PyCon 2010 is going to be held in Atlanta, Georgia on from February 17 through 25 (see http://us.pycon.org/2010/about/ for more) and the call for proposals ends on October 1 -- see http://us.pycon.org/2010/conference/proposals/ Are you familiar with the Python Job Board http://www.python.org/community/jobs/ ? Also, what is your perception of the PSF? Thanks again for taking time out to talk! [your sig]
Of course I try to personalize the second email, especially the first part.