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2 Shocking Ways to get Customer Feedback

This case study can be found in its original form on Medium, written by Christine Saba of

Our founder recently had the chance to mentor and work with the NoiseAware team. It’s so great to see some of the ideas we discussed working in their favor.

Here is their story of collecting customer feedback, and the various ways they went about contacting their prospects.

Company Background

NoiseAware is coming up on their two-year anniversary. Like many startups, they launched without in-depth customer persona data, had very simple reporting dashboards, and still had room to grow with their packaging and educational information.

As Christine describes, at the point of launching she, “was able to talk to every single person who bought. [She] could call them up, email with them, [and] they were pretty good friends of mine from the amount of time [she] spent with them.”

“We have done a lot of different things but at our core, but I’ve strived to make our brand a cool helpful friend to our customers. That’s why I found it so important to find out how they found out about us, what they loved, what they hated, and how we really helped them.” – Christine Saba

Unfortunately, with the nature of their business, they are a lot like insurance. She describes that customers will, “be glad to have us when something happens, but most people don’t purchase our smart home sensors until after they’ve had something bad happen. Hence why being so helpful was important early on.”

With the company growing to be larger than a one-man shop, collecting regular feedback from each individual prospect is not a possibility. Here are two ideas that the NoiseAware team tried out that they found not only to be insightful but also easy to do:

1. Cupcakes to Increase Survey Response Rate

  • Round 1: They ran a survey for NPS with the incentive of winning a $100 Amazon Gift Card. Though Amazon is the place to buy anything and everything, they received only 8 responses and had an NPS of 38. In person, they received great feedback, but it wasn’t translating digitally.
  • Round 2: More customers, better questions, and cupcakes. They marketed their survey this time by offering up Cupcake Delivery to their home or office (inspired by the GrowthHackers community). The responses grew by 85% and their NPS was at 55, plus they were getting great responses from those surveyed who loved the idea of the cupcakes, as seen in the email screenshot below:
  • Round 3: With a 40% growth between Q4 and Q1, they did the same thing with this larger customer set. At this point the number of responses grew by 50% and their NPS was at 66. They found real value in the survey responses from those who took the time to give candid responses and fill it out to completion.

2. Quick Question Email

The NoiseAware team found inspiration from a chapter of our founder Brice McBeth’s book, “Salon Chairs Don’t Sell Themselves” and through their mentor sessions together. As Brice phrased it:

“You wouldn’t ask your sweet Grandmother why she loves you if you wanted honest feedback you’d ask someone who really disliked you.”

Why do the same with your customers? Don’t ask them why they bought to find out what’s keeping your conversion rate from growing, ask those who didn’t buy from you.

Here’s how they took this idea and ran with it:

The email:

A response:

They crafted a simple, plain-text email. At only 4 sentences, it hit the main points they needed without being too much. From this, they received responses at a 40% rate, and about 20% of those were people still considering their service (they’d just forgotten to complete the process).

Their takeaways:

  1. Better-sync marketing emails during certain drop off points.
  2. The subject line “Quick Question” was different from the typical marketing or survey email, and grabbed users’ attention.
  3. Some of the constructive criticism was helpful and can be used to test with new leads.
  4. Follow up personally with each new response.
  5. Include this email as a part of a drip campaign automatically so they’re always learning from those who didn’t buy.
  6. This took less than a day to implement.

Overall Takeaways from These Campaigns

These each took their team less than a day to implement. They found them to be, “shockingly easy, and the feedback was even more impressively fruitful.”

As Brice described in his recent article on CrazyEgg, the important part of qualitative research is to not ask self-fulfilling questions like “what were your thoughts on our website?”… WRONG question!

Better options:

  1. “What is the number one reason that you did not buy after viewing our site?”
  2. “What’s the key benefit you recall after seeing our site?”
  3. “If you have describes us to a friend, what did you say / how did you describe us?”

Here are some additional do’s and don’t’s for asking questions to the visitors on your website:

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What Our Customers Are Saying

We have used Reap for our marketing services for several years. Brice is a brilliant guy, he and his team look at marketing from the vantage point of conversions - turning visitors into customers instead of just a branding agency.
-Ben Peterson
[Reap is] an important part of helping us hone our thinking when it comes to digital marketing. I come to them for their expertise and thought leadership on how to increase our search engine visibility, how to nurture leads in our database, and how to improve our ecommerce conversions. Their ecommerce industry expertise gives us the confidence we need to make calculated steps towards improving our current marketing efforts.
-Jaclyn Willbrand
We’ve employed Reap for over 7 years to coach our graphic designers, developers and sales staff on how to produce campaigns that generate good sales leads. They also help consult with us on our digital media buying to reach the right audiences.
-Brianna Long
Reap is helping guide us through making the right steps, thinking about the right approach, and putting the right metrics in place as I build out my own marketing department to do the actual “hands on” work.
-Jeff Owen
Reap has helped us step outside the limits of what we think is possible. They provide activities and direction to help us think in different ways - starting from a place of analytics or lateral thinking… just different ways to help us stretch our own creativity and really think differently about our site and how you can improve our site to optimize conversions.
-Michael Breed
Their ideas, analytical thinking, and iterative change methodology has helped us realize opportunity was right in front of us. They provided the framework and nudge we needed to create an internal design and UI/UX team.
-Chris Payne
They’ve been able to provide us with the research, strategy, analytics, and design direction to take our already-successful campaigns to another level. In working with Reap, we've been able to confidently put our own design and development team to work on some specific projects designed to grow sales.
-JR Denson