Chanti is a conversion copywriter and quiz funnel strategist for change makers and brands that give a damn. She’s a marketing unicorn that believes boring is the enemy, neutral is a death sentence and real talk is the way of the future. In her spare time, you can find her at the farmer’s market, wrangling her toddler, doing downward dog or binge-watching GoT.
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If you’re a bit of a personal finance nerd (like my second-hand Le Creuset buying self) you’ve probably come across this quote from Ramit Sethi: “Spend extravagantly on the things you love and cut costs mercilessly on the things you don’t.”
Okay, I feel you, Mr. Sethi, but easier said than done.
As much as I try to save with that simple rule, sometimes a product’s marketing is just too uniquely tailored to my interests and needs to pass up…
Which is precisely what I told myself while sipping kombucha and punching my credit card deets into Il Makiage’s online checkout form — Sorry, half-folded sweaters and yoga pants littering my floor, y’all can wait, right?
If Il Makiage’s ads have yet to sneak up on your newsfeed, they are an Insta famous makeup brand known for their poreless primer, concealer, and head-spinning selection of powders 💋
None of which I actually wanted…
Until I took their POWERMATCH quiz.
Knowing just how freaking fab quizzes are at transforming strangers into return customers, I probably should’ve just sat back, relaxed, and reassessed my spending priorities — but, nuh-uh.
I clicked through, got my custom product recommendations, and next thing, I was dropping $57.81 on a bottle of streak-free foundation like:
FTR my makeup preferences are usually more Burt’s Bees and True Botanicals than Sephora, but that’s the money-making magic of interactive marketing…
When your customers feel catered to — like you’ve set all else aside to meet them where they are — they are wayyy more likely to invest in your products.
Why 👉 I chalk it up to the reciprocity principle: if someone gives you something, be it a smile or a lipstick sample in that sugared plum shade you’ve been dying to try, you naturally want to return the favour.
Many businesses tap into this by offering online demos, discount codes, and downloadable cheat sheets, checklists, and templates to their prospects, who then feel moved to pay them back by making a high-ticket purchase.
One bestselling book on the topic is Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion. In this marketing must-read, Dr. Robert Cialdini teaches us how to sway prospects into saying a RuPaul-esque “YASS, HENNY” to our products.
According to Dr. Cialdini, for the principle of reciprocity to work, your offer should be personalized and unexpected.
It’s all about coming from a place of sincerity, seeing what your customers need, and giving that to them without a single string attached.
Quizzes are based on the reciprocity principle, but instead of a short-lived discount, the value your audience receives is personal insight, transformation, and actionable steps forward.
They show prospects that you’re interested in their needs, respect their time, and only want to offer them relevant products, which helps build up trust.
Oh, and quizzes are fun… did I mention they’re, like, really fun?
Maybe you’re thinking something like “Chanti, I get it. Quizzes are cooler than sparkly blue eyeliner, but how can I actually use one to grow my email list and score more sales?”
If so, I hear you. I see you. And I want you to know we’re in this together, friend!
I’m going to spend the rest of this article breaking down how Il Makiage’s POWERMATCH made me forget all about Ramit’s spending rule and why using its strategies to create your own eCommerce quiz can transform your business.
When it comes to interactive marketing (Aka. marketing that involves two-way communication between you and your customers), personality quizzes often steal the spotlight:
On top of being Drag Race level entertaining, they are a tried ‘n true tool for businesses to connect with their ideal clients, boost their email lists, and sell more of their signature services.
These quizzes promise to reveal new parts of our personalities and give us gameplans for achieving our goals!
Can’t catch me turning down that kind of opportunity…
eCommerce quizzes are usually used for recommending products, but that doesn’t mean you can’t borrow principles from personality quizzes and share that shine.
Heck, with awe-worthy writing and real sensitivity to the quiz taker, they can become stars in their own right ✨
So much of eCommerce marketing is feature-focused — instead of telling potential customers how a product can transform their lives, businesses simply spew facts about what their product has or is…
But when it comes down to it, we only really care about what’s in it for us.
Quizzes show the quiz taker what their life could look like with your business’s help, which creates an emotional connection.
And when that happens, your products become more than just products. They become part of a brand.
There are a bajillion lead magnets out there using the principle of reciprocity to score sales, so if you’re asking yourself what sets quizzes apart, I get it.
But… uhm… I don’t accept it (only because I want you to get in on all their list-building, business-growing, money-making goodness 🙌).
So let’s take a second to get clear on why investing your time and energy into creating an eCommerce quiz is worth it. Without further ado, here are their three can’t be missed benefits:
A quiz is like a conversation — As a business owner, you always come away knowing more about your customers, be it their skin tone and type or what they are struggling with in life.
But even more important than that information, itself, is how you put it to work…
If you ask questions that segment your audience, you will be better able to cater your product recommendations to their unique needs. Take it a step further, and you can use that research to develop a clearer picture of your ideal customer then target them in your advertisements.
Say you’re a coffee subscription service like Bean Box (take their What’s Your Coffee Personality?)…
If you know most of your customers prefer dark roast coffee and they tend to brew it with a drip coffee maker, you can guess that they value simplicity and speak to that in your ads.
If you’ve been around the block, you know the success of your biz is heavily tied to the health of your list. Those are the people who’ve said “Yep, I’m down to hear from you on the reg,” and you can market to them.
Because quizzes are such a joy to take, and people feel like they’ve been given something when they take yours, they’re less likely to mind handing over their emails.
According to Accenture, 91% of customers prefer a personalized experience, and 83% are willing to share their data to do so. Not bad, huh?
The results are pretty crazy amazing for product and service-based businesses alike.
Peek the number of new leads Tonic Site Shop got for their What’s Your Brand Cocktail Quiz? I’m sure they’re well beyond 7,328 by now — and seeing as they increased their sales by $20k in the first month the quiz was live alone, I’m thinkin’ you might want a piece of that pumpkin pie too, nah?
Remember when I mentioned segmentation above?
While you can use the segmentation groups from your quiz to offer relevant advertisements, you can also use them to tailor your marketing to your audience.
To return to the Bean Box example, if you know one of your quiz taker’s like light roast, you can send them content related to that — maybe how to brew with an espresso machine to bring out all those delicate notes.
It’s a win-win because your clients and customers will feel seen and like their interests have been taken into account, and they’re more likely to buy because you’re offering a product that you already know they want.
Just because you’re writing a quiz instead of a blog or social media post doesn’t mean you have to change your voice — The best eCommerce quizzes maintain their brand’s tone and style from their titles to their results pages.
Il Makiage’s tone played a huge role in my purchasing decision. It’s cool, casual, and kept me laughing throughout:
If you’re a little stuck, try writing it as if the quiz were a dialogue between you and your ideal customer. What questions would help you figure out their unique interests and needs and recommend a product?
Oof — I can’t emphasize this enough. Especially in your results pages, let your products take centre stage. And don’t just tell people their best matches, tell them why. Paint a picture of how using your offer will change their lives.
Check out how Il Makiage’s recommends its products:
It gives the quiz taker a high-quality image of the foundation along with an in-depth description and the opportunity to add it to their bag.
Plus, remember when we chatted about features versus benefits? This is your chance to tap into that and get people excited about the transformation they are about to undergo.
The real magic of the eCommerce quiz funnel comes in the follow up sequence. You don’t want to leave your quiz taker high and dry, and they’ve likely opted to enter onto your email list, so slip in there with some more custom recommendations.
Tell them about your business — what do you stand for? What sets you apart from the competition? Let them know that you’re interested in their needs.
If you need a crash course on how to write a high-converting email, check out Samar Owais’ course Emails Done Right!
Some say the best way of learning is doing (and I 82% agree), but having an idea of what to do before diving in can definitely ease the process.
And by taking a high-quality eCommerce quiz, you can discover what makes it so darn addictive and reverse engineer your way to success.
To save you from sifting through the Net for an example, I want to share a quiz that had me swooning *and nearly purchasing a Lemon Lime Dracaena for my office.*
It comes from the houseplant subscription service Rooted, and it’s called… drumroll, please… Find Your Plant!
Not the most creative title, but take a peek at how pretty it is:
You can’t tell from that screenshot, but all of Find Your Plant’s graphics are animated, too, which makes it ultra-immersive 🙌
On top of that, I love that they use lime green as their focus colour instead of a more traditional forest shade, which helps communicate their brand identity: young, vibrant, and full of flavour.
While those highfalutin visuals can be hard to pull off without a BA in Graphic Design or the budget to hire an expert, you can still make your quiz visually engaging by creating custom graphics with a free, easy to use tool like Canva.
BTW Canva, if you’re out there, I’m your biggest fan — feel free to sponsor me 😝
Another big win for Rooted? Their writing! It’s conversational with a sense of humour.
They set themselves apart from their tree-huggin’ competitors with their light-hearted, don’t-take-this-shiz-too-seriously approach.
Their result pages are also inspiringly strategic. They recommend products based on your responses, which makes you feel like you’ve just consulted with a sales rep and are purchasing the perfect plant for your lifestyle.
Even if you’re the “Have had & have killed” sort, do yourself a solid, take this quiz, and note down what makes it so special. Then you can return to your own work and apply what you’ve learned!
Woohoo — you made it through, friend!
With that kind of commitment, you’ll be able to create your very own lead-generating eCommerce quiz in no time 🎉
But if you need a lil’ extra guidance getting there, come ask your Qs in my FaceBook group The Audience Accelerator, an online community for savvy entrepreneurs to get support and surround themselves with fellow badass world changers.
If you don’t find me there chatting it up about interactive marketing, chances are I’m perfecting my Alyssa Edwards foundation routine and shamelessly voguing in the bathroom mirror: