You should be hungry for feedback

Updated On: September 13, 2020

Today (really, every day) feedback is not negotiable. Plus, GrubHub launches a subscription to get ahead of the competition. And finally, a newly dropped newsletter you gotta get on board with. 


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Survey says: feedback rules

Ah, feedback. A topic we can, quite frankly, never get enough of. 

Which is why, when we saw an article published by OptinMonster’s Co-Founder and President Thomas Griffin on how to leverage customer feedback, we took it as the perfect excuse to resurface the idea ourselves.   

Thomas knows the foundation of SaaS is about providing the absolute best product for your users. To do so, he encourages things like: 

  • Offering valuable, relevant content
  • Improving your onboarding process
  • Driving product development
  • Boosting customer loyalty

And of course, each one of these suggestions has nuances in and of themselves—which we'll no doubt touch on, individually, in the course of this series. But what I want to focus on today is the customer feedback aspect. Because one of the most useful tools in the marketer’s toolkit is the survey. Yet, one of the most despised emails to receive as a prospect or customer is also the survey. 

So over the past 3+ years, we’ve sent more than five million customer development surveys, and of course, recorded the data to share with our crew. Here’s what we found

  • The shorter the survey, the more effective. No surprise: Shorter surveys get better customer engagement, feedback, and can be sent more frequently.

  • You can cut down length by simply: not asking lazy questions. You should never be asking the respondent for their email address, what plan they're on, how often they use the product, etc., because you should already know the answers to these questions in your respective databases.

  • You can also cut down on length by asking the right questions. Keep the goal of the survey focused and singular, but also make sure you’re forcing respondents to make tradeoffs and decisions. Too many surveys ask people to rank a bunch of features on a scale of 1 to 10 for wishy washy responses. In turn, you have no idea what’s actually best and what’s worst on the list.

    Instead, force respondents to make decisions by choosing a most important and a least important feature out of a group, or by asking for open-ended (but targeted) feedback, such as “At what price point is the product too cheap you’d question the quality of it?”

  • Respondents respond best to a “community” feeling. We’ve found that the best brands who’ve built communities around their products, even if it’s just wanting to see the company succeed, get the best response rates. Evoke the sense of “this is a two-way conversation” and you’ll do better.

  • Incentives only work if they’re large enough and given to each respondent. We use a lot of market panelists (people who are paid with cash, airline miles, donations to charity, etc.) to complete surveys for targeted user types. Yet, incentives in terms of a contest for a free iPad or another gift typically work very poorly. The difference is market panelists are opting in to providing feedback, whereas someone contacted via email needs more intrinsic incentive to take a survey.

There is plenty more where this came from, so check out Thomas’ piece, as well as our data breakdown of five million surveys sent, in your subscriber newsletter.


A tasty hub for brand affinity

Grubhub is looking to subscription to stick out as a delivery player in the market, with what some are calling “the Amazon Prime of food delivery services.” 

For $9.99 per month and a promise that you can cancel at any time, Grubhub+ includes unlimited free delivery, unlimited 10% cash back on orders, donation matching to No Kid Hungry, access to Elite Care for support, and priority access to other perks.

So Grubhub is making a serious push here. Uber Eats, DoorDash, and Postmates all have their own versions of subscription programs, but do they actually increase customer loyalty? It seems Grubhub is really honing in on that affinity factor. 

Wistia defines brand affinity as, “The most enduring and valuable level of a relationship between a business and consumer, based on the mutual belief that they share common values.” And Grubhub is playing into this. 

We know monetizing existing customers is highly contingent on customer success. If you measure net promoter scores and work to improve the customer experience and brand loyalty of customers with low scores, you stand to create happier customers that are more likely to retain and expand their plans. The more loyalty, the less churn. 

We’ll see how this one plays out for Grubhub amid others in the market. 

Marketing advice from the mind of a master

We are on the path to CMO 3.0. 

Let me preface this one: We’re big fans of our friend David Cancel and the Drift team— masters of the conversational marketing platform. And we’re loyal followers to his weekly newsletter, The One Thing—with which he spotlights personal lessons from being a five-time founder, two-time CEO, and overall badass. It’s comprised of the actual content he sends out to his own team each week, so it feels a bit like you’re on the inside.  

So naturally, our ears were perked when we heard that Drift’s CMO Tricia Gellman decided to drop her own. It’s called The Path to CMO 3.0. Tricia’s a 3x CMO with decades of experience as a marketing leader in tech. Part of her mission at Drift is taking her background and turning it into real value for their customers. So it makes sense that she took it a step further, to share, with the larger community, the trends that shape the decisions she makes on a daily basis.

Another reason I'm so intrigued: Marketing is such a foundational part of our orgs, it cannot be ignored. From seamlessly marrying sales into your marketing strategy to honing in on content creation, there are so many layers to this part of the business. And we find it super refreshing to hear from the actual minds of the masters—whether it’s all rainbows and butterflies, or it’s an honest look at getting through the grind. 

We’ve featured David Cancel’s content in episodes prior, so I’m sure Tricia will deliver just the same. Here's a link if you're interested in checking it out.

And please let us know if you’re interested in more content on marketing. We have an episode of our show the ProfitWell Report on content marketing, specifically, that you might be interested in if you're digging into this. It answers the questions: Can content marketing help your company grow? and Does it have an impact on net retention? (backed by data from 3,000 subscription companies and 30,000 subscription consumers). 

Here's what the data says

That’s it for your March 5 episode of Recur Now. You can check back here tomorrow for more, and remember—this show is for you. If you have news or resources to share with our listeners, email me at and we’ll connect on a potential feature in the show. 

This has been a Recur Studios production—the fastest-growing subscription network out there. If you find use for this show, subscribe for more like it at

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