Welcome to the DTC Boardroom series, where we ask past podcast guests to dive into their personal picks for the most exciting strategies and tactics to help brands win big! 🙌
Today’s guest is Bryan Holladay, Fractional CMO and Paid Ads Agency Partner at The Spacestation, who has spent most of his career brand side as VP or Head of Marketing for multiple large DTC brands.
Bryan is a huge advocate for DTC brands using post-purchase surveys and estimates that he's had half a million people complete a survey over the past three years of implementing this strategy for brands. 🔥
Here are the insights he shared with us. Let’s go!
💡 Nailing the first touch
Post-purchase surveys have been a game-changer for all DTC websites that I run, and the strategy is one of the best ways to combat limited attribution.
As marketers, we know that consumers can take thousands of different paths to convert. The prime objective of all marketing is to make sure that the first thing your customer sees is the most impactful thing they see. 👀
First impressions are key to a quality brand experience, and as marketers, we want to know which top of funnel impressions are working best, so we can scale them.
The tricky part is narrowing down things like first click or first view attribution.
In some cases, that first brand experience could have come from a personal recommendation or someone who’s seen the brand and searched for it later.
Post-purchase surveys have been a powerful weapon for building confidence in a full-funnel marketing strategy.
👋 The brand introduction
I’ve put together a few simple examples of post-purchase surveys that have proven to be super valuable to DTC stores.
The most impactful survey I run is about how someone was introduced to a brand. The question is simple, “How did you first hear about us?”
Then, I go through a list of responses: 👇
- Google Search
- Social Media Influencer
- Friends + Family Referral
- Instagram Ad
- Facebook Ad
I end with an open-ended ‘Other’ text field where the audience types whatever they want to help us gain deeper insights and understanding.
You need to make sure that the platforms or methods of brand reach you’re tracking are listed. I’ve found it helpful to provide specific responses like, “I follow you on Facebook,” “I follow you on Instagram,” or “I saw your brand on an Instagram Ad,” “I saw your brand on a Facebook Ad,” etc.
This is especially helpful if you spend heavily on Facebook ads and have a strong organic Facebook/Instagram presence. Most consumers know when an ad got them to act, so just putting Facebook or Instagram can leave out some helpful clarifying responses.
👀 Getting to the ‘Why’
Other questions brands have asked are, “What was the reason you purchased from [the brand]?” A list of product features is listed that are usually core reasons why people purchase.
You can also ask things like, “How long have you known about the brand?” You can then put a list of year ranges that meet up with your brand. If you go that route, don’t forget to get as granular as Yesterday and Today as responses.
🚀 Implementing your survey
It is super important that you only ask one question at a time in the survey. The simpler you keep it, the more responses you’ll get.
Implementation is super easy. In most cases, you just use your favorite survey program. I’ve found that Grapevine has been the easiest one to implement for Shopify stores.
Deliver these surveys in two main ways: 👇
1️⃣ In-line on the Thank You page
In most cases for a Shopify store, it’s the out-of-the-box page that you’re already sending the customer to. So you just display the survey in one of the sections on that page.
2️⃣ Have the survey pop up a few seconds after they land on the Thank You page
There’s no right or wrong way to do it. I recommend testing it out to see what gets you the highest number of responses and don’t forget that you can switch the questions up monthly or quarterly, depending on what info you would like to learn about your most recent buyers.
📊 How to use your survey data
The best part of running these surveys is validating the data you see from other platforms like Google Analytics.
If you’re spending heavily on TikTok ads and get many responses indicating that’s where people found you, you know your efforts on the platform are working!
I have also found that we would see a big spike in Friends & Family purchases. In those cases, we have decided to implement a solid referral/loyalty program.
Post-purchase surveys can be a game-changer for DTC marketers when executed with the right strategy in place.
Post-purchase surveys allow you to know your customers on a deeper level. Using the information they provide can help:
- Guide product development ✅
- New angles for your creative efforts ✅
- Understand which products resonate most with shoppers ✅
All valuable information to inform your marketing strategy.
For more information on post-purchase surveys and the wisdom of Bryan, check out his recent recording on DTC Podcast!