Ask Method and Its Basic Setup Sequences
The ask method is as system to ask intentionally-designed questions to help you figure out exactly what your customer wants -- and the exact language to use to communicate with them.
1. You first do a survey for your customer to ask them their basic information and needs. In this way, after analysis, you can know how to segment your market and what the buckets are. And you can also find the more proper ways to communicate with each sub-segment differently. For example, using their own language.
2. Then you create a landing page which includes an another survey for new leads (cold traffic). In this survey, after being asked several questions, they will be led to the buckets, which is a sales page, that we have already set for them.
3. So they will go to different sales pages according to their answers to the questions. And on this particular sales page, you are offering valuable education to your prospects for free and offering upsell as well. The upsells here are very important, because we are trying to sell as many as possible at the initial stage.
4. Then the final part is to conduct a follow-up survey for prospects or buyers. And in this follow-up, we will promote to them with a series of emails to try to sell more products.
Survey Funnel Strategy
Ask method is a framework while, the survey funnel strategy is a step-by-step blueprint to apply that method.
The deep dive survey
The micro-commitment bucket survey
The do you hate me survey
The pivot survey
These four surveys are foundational to the ask method because they are the key to finding out exactly what your customers want to buy.
The deep dive survey
This is the foundational survey on which everything else depends. This survey collects open-ended data that you’ll use to better understand your market in a deep way, along with the natural consumer language your market use.
The micro-commitment bucket survey
The answers to the multiple-choice questions are data you will capture when your prospects provide their name and email, and opt in to your email list. You’ll use this information to not only customize your marketing messaging, but to also customize the offers you might introduce to that prospect.
The do you hate me survey
This survey goes out to non-buyers by email to figure out why they haven’t bought from you.
The pivot survey
This is a fantastic tool when you have changed the offer, sent email after email, and just can’t get any movement from your prospect.
6 Steps to Set Up the Process
The flowchart to illustrates how the process works
Prepare – the deep dive survey
Deep Dive Survey is the foundation for everything from your sales copy, to how you segment your market, to how you communicate with each sub-segment differently.
With the survey result, we can fine-tune our marketing, demographic, targeting, banner designing. We can use the elements of their most impressionable years of their life to create feeling of nostalgia.
Step 1: write an email---Incentives and discounts
Step 2: set up the survey – tips:
1. Start with open-ended survey
2. Ugly to screen off people who are not your potential customers
3. Segment survey sources—who bought and who didn’t
4. Low threshold question
5. “fishing for potential buckets”
6. Get a sense for what the breakdown of my market looks like (could be prices); identify the extremes so to decide where to best target efforts.
7. To make your case study as relevant as possible.
8. By the end of this process, you want to become so familiar with your market that you know where they hang out on the weekend, what they smell like, an what they watch on TV on a Friday night. To make them feel you almost know them personally.
Step 3: do the analysis to identify the hyper-responsive customers and then identify the buckets of this group and marketing them. Analyzing the demographics of your market will tell you who your customers are. Analyzing your open-ended responses will tell you what those customers want to buy.
1. Response length is vitally important is because it’s an indication of hyper-responsiveness, which is a leading indicator of how likely someone is to purchase a paid solution for the problem.
2. It’s wise to apply more weight to a response that includes a phone number as well
3. Focused on top 20% of the score.
4. Look to find out the 80/20 of each question. Where does the majority of the market (roughly 80%) fall?
5. Find out the categories and “buckets”. Categorizing the open-ended responses and compiling the “natural consumer language” your market uses. Again, focusing on the TOP 20% of responses.
6. Narrow down the buckets by combining and consolidating categories.
a) First pass-look for categories that are very similar to one another, or even identical. Then use the same naming and combine them into a single category.
b) Second pass-combine small volume sub-buckets into one larger bucket. Group them into different themes. Sort those themes in descending order based on the number of individual responses. Focusing on themes which cover all your 80% responses.
Persuade – the prospect self-discovery landing page
All about how to design a landing page. This is the first page prospects will land on in your website when going through your survey funnel process.
1. Presentation and positioning are key.
a) Your landing page is all about playing ‘doctor”. To diagnose the challenge or problem your website visitor is struggling with, and then prescribing a solution to that problem.
b) Video better
c) Company branding
e) For the readers - use the language from deep dive survey.
f) Scripting the landing page video
i. The hook
ii. If-then statements—according to your deep dive survey
iii. Promise of the solution and reintroducing another challenge
iv. Credibility and proof-introduce some brief elements of credibility, giving viewers a reason why anyone should pay attention to you.
v. Presenting the survey-to give a reason why your survey exists.
vi. Why free-need a good reason
vii. First call to action
viii. The take away will be followed by the second call to action
Segment – the micro-commitment bucket survey
This is what your prospect sees initially when the video starts to play. After your prospect is finished watching your landing page video, and they click on the button to start your micro-commitment bucket survey.
How to come up with your questions – we have to go back to the deep dive survey data and find out what those top buckets are, which can cover almost 80% of the market. And the survey is going to lead people into one of these buckets.
Three categories of questions should be considered.
1. Your “grease the wheels” question
2. Your “personalization” question
3. Your “segmentation” question
Question 1: simple question and clear to answer to get the ball rolling, to get the process moving.
Question 2-5: move to the second “personalization” questions. To use the answers to these questions to “personalize” your marketing messaging. Like knowing the age, you can customize the email. And also you can use the information to laser-target sub-segments of your market for future promotions or product offers.
Question 6: segmenting by demographics is less effective than segmenting based on the nuances of the situation, challenge, or problem your prospective customer is looking to solve.
The question you ask in the survey should mimic the experience someone might have if you were asking them a series of questions in person to get to know them a little bit better.
The crux to the entire ASK Method concept:
1. To capture the demographic variable and the messages might be virtually identical, except for the specific product recommendation that you make.
2. Better to send them to a name and email capture page
Prescribe – The post-survey sales prescription
After submitting their survey responses, they’re going to land on your Post-survey “same visit sale” page.
On this page, you are going to do two different things:
1. Offer valuable education to your prospect for free
2. This education piece will transition into an offer.
What should the page be like:
Same-visit sales page – first provide value and build trust.
Page layout – white background.
Exit lander – a text and graphical summary of the offer you are making. This page should be relatively short.
Constructing the script – the single most important part of the same visit sales page
The most adaptable, universal script template is called “Problem, Agitate, Solution.”
Step 1 – acknowledge their survey submission
Step 2 – provide your diagnosis and label it – problem phase
Step 3 – explain what the diagnosis means – agitate phase
1. Demonstrate that you understand
2. Demonstrate the urgency and severity of their problem by putting it under the spotlight
3. Demonstrate that you care – people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care.
Step 4 – explain your recommended solution – solution phase
Step 5 – testimonials
Profit – the profit maximization upsell sequence
The real profit comes from what else you sell to that customer both initially and over time.
Key components of this sequence:
1. Selling value – sell more of what the customer just purchased but at the same or a better-discounted price.
2. Speed & ease of implementation
3. Future – pacing a problem they don’t yet have
4. The almost as good down-sell – there needs to be a contrast between what they want and what they can afford. (80% benefit at 20% cost)
5. One time offer – it enables you to make products and services available to your customers at a price that you normally wouldn’t be able to offer.
Pivot – the email follow-up feedback loop
Following up with prospects and buyers via email is an essential part of the survey funnel strategy. The other major benefit of using email in your survey funnel is the fact that it gives you a constant feedback loop to help you improve your marketing funnel.
Non-buyers’ email should be longer than buyers’ email. Buyer email sequence represents of the lowest hanging fruit.
- To make the subject line of your email into an incomplete thought. This makes the recipient curious enough to open the email and complete the thought. (Where there’s a will there’s a ….)
- Short punchy sentences
- Casual and conversational, like a message you would send to a friend
- Condition for the click: every email needs to have a link that leads elsewhere.
Emails for non-buyers
- The first four emails are to warm them up by giving them exactly what we promised in micro-commitment survey.
- The first is to give the survey results.
- The #2, #3, #4 are story series
- Sales acceleration series (5,6,7,8): to turn up the heat; lower the threshold of commitment; aim at a few different target buyers
o #5: the urgency email – to remind them of the urgency and time limitations
o #6: the FAQ email
o #7: the testimonial email – a little fuel for their imagination
o #8: the last day email
- Feedback loop series (9, 10, 11, 12) – to present them the opportunity to interact with us and we can use the information to close the sale and get in a position to make them our next offer
o #9: the “do you hate me” survey email – to determine why people didn’t buy
o #10: the re-open/webinar email
o #11: the FAQ/last day email
o #12: the pivot survey email – to pivot in one of several possible different directions.
Emails for buyers
- 12 emails, three series of four emails each. Almost familiar
- goal is to get them to use what they bought and get positive results from what they purchased from us
- designed to initiate and close another sale based on how much they enjoyed what they already got from us.
- Email 1: Welcoming email – to keep them excited about their purchase.
- Email 2, 3, 4: the consumption series – to make sure the buyer is actually opening and using what they bought.
- The upsell/cross-sell series – similar to the sales accelerator but focusing on new offer
o Email 5: the urgency email
o Email 6: the FAQ email
o Email 7: the testimonial email
o Email 8: the last day email
- Feedback loop series – the key difference is this is going to refer to the upsell offer we just made.
o Email 9: do you hate me survey
o Email 10: the re-open/ webinar email
o Email 11: the FAQ/last day email
o Email 12: the pivot survey email