Listening to what your customers have to say and providing what they want is fundamental to the success of your business. Unfortunately, many companies make the mistake of deciding that they know better than their customers. How, though, can a modern business stay in touch with customers? With their opinions, concerns, and demands? 

That’s where surveys come in. 

Today’s technology makes it easy for businesses to design, create and distribute customer surveys.

This post will cover three ways that surveys can be used to help you drum up more leads for your business at different stages of the customer journey. 

We will cover:

  • Engaging an audience.
  • Qualifying leads.
  • Securing repeat business.

Let’s go over some of the different ways you can use surveys to help you land more leads for your business.

How to use surveys to engage your audience

There are a variety of ways that you can use a survey to engage your audience. Buzzfeed is probably the best example of a company that has popularized the use of surveys. Their site is full of fun and entertaining quiz-style surveys that have broad appeal.

Buzzfeed quizzes

Quizzes work brilliantly for social media marketing. They attract the attention of social network users and bring them to Buzzfeed’s site. They then keep those users there and get them engaged with the brand.

The data generated through these kinds of quizzes could be useful for any firm that wants to use them, though I doubt this is the case with the kind of quizzes that Buzzfeed run.

A quiz, or in our case a survey, can also be used for market research. For example, you could run a survey to your email list or website visitors to:

  • Identify what topics customers want to see covered on the brand’s blog.
  • Gather opinion on a broader aspect of the firm’s industry or niche.

With cold leads, you want to keep your survey short because people are unlikely to want to answer a lot of questions. You can run a longer survey with warm leads or people who are engaged with your business. 

Regardless of how many questions you set, make sure to check the completion rate and optimize the survey if appropriate.

How to use a survey to qualify a lead

Surveys can play an important role in qualifying leads and subsequently generating a sale. At Accelerate Agency, the firm I co-founded with my partner, we use surveys to help us secure clients. We send a survey to every company who sends us an inquiry.

Based on our experience we learned the importance of keeping the survey short and focused. The surveys that we run have just 15 questions. We ask a mix of qualifying questions, but also questions that provide insight into their needs and how they measure them. Below are some examples of the kind of questions that we ask companies that want to work with us:

  • Have you worked with an SEO agency before?
  • Do you have an existing relationship with an SEO agency?
  • What is your monthly budget for SEO and digital marketing services?
  • What KPIs do you use to measure the success of your digital marketing?

The information that we gain from these surveys is invaluable when preparing for a sales meeting. It ensures that the pitch we provide aligns with the needs of the customer. It also means that we know we’re a good fit for the customer.

We send surveys to every prospective client who contacts us. We also have a survey embedded in the website to qualify online inquiries. These surveys are useful for qualifying leads.

It’s also possible to use a survey to segment qualified leads onto your email list. This requires setting questions that bucket people into different groups based on their answers. This approach is useful for warming leads because you can send people targeted messages based on their pain points.

Use a survey to assess customer satisfaction and secure repeat business

For businesses of all shapes and sizes, the post-purchase process is both an opportunity to increase profits and improve customer service. Exit surveys are a common way to assess customer satisfaction.

Sent after purchase, they let you ask customers to feedback on their experience with you. These surveys provide an opportunity for you to gain valuable input on your service. 

You can use an exit survey to gain insights on the areas of your business that you could improve upon. This can range from the on-site experience of an e-commerce store for example, through to the quality of the product or service that you provided.

Information like this is invaluable when conducting a review of your business, or as a means of benchmarking your service against competitors. If the aim of the exit survey is solely to generate customer insights then your exit survey should be delivered after the customer has received the product or service that they purchased. If you send your exit survey too soon then you will miss out on valuable insights regarding the product or service.

Using an exit survey in this way creates a good overall impression of your brand. In turn, that might make them more likely to give you repeat business so long as you maintain the relationship with them. 

On the other hand, you can also use an exit survey to upsell customers. If you decide to use an exit survey to sell to a customer then you should send the survey within a maximum of two weeks of purchase. This is the sweet spot where your customer is most likely to continue to be in the buying mood.

Post-purchase Customer Satisfaction Score (CSAT) surveys can also help you in other ways. You can use an exit survey to ask for recommendations from your customer. This is often combined with an offer of in-store credit for recommendations or a discount for the person who is being referred and the individual making the referral.

It is worth keeping in mind that you can and should incorporate the survey feedback you receive to tweak your marketing and promotional material. That may mean adapting sales copy to incorporate the terms and language as your customers in your sales copy. Or it might mean changing the focus of the service slightly so it aligns better with the pain points of your customers.

Conclusion

Surveys are a useful marketing tool that can help you engage customers and turn warm leads into customers. In this guide I’ve revealed different strategies for utilizing surveys that you can apply to engage customers at all levels of the customer journey.

These strategies are certainly effective as we’ve implemented strategies like these for clients at our company to help them increase engagement on their site. In addition to this, we apply these strategies at Accelerate Agency to generate more leads for our own business.

Hopefully, your head is now full of ideas of different ways you can apply these tactics to your business, whatever it happens to be. If you have any questions about anything covered in this post please let me know in the comments below.

Editor’s note: This article reflects the personal opinions of our guest author, Nick Brown. 

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