It always amazes me when customers go out of their way to tell you something they like, or don't, about your product. It's too easy just to complain about something to your cubemate or co-worker. It takes time to actually verbalize that you want something to be better in the product you bought, and for what? How many companies actually listen? We're all jaded!

At Dasheroo, we decided to experiment a bit. We took an idea from a company, CoSchedule, whose product, also called CoSchedule, we use. It's a nifty tool with which, right from within WordPress, you can schedule posts for your blog to a number of social networks. It saves us a huge amount of time and we like it.

The idea we borrowed is pretty cool. As soon as someone signs up for our free business dashboard service, we send a plain vanilla email from John our CEO that reads simply this:

Subject Line: A Quick Question

I have a small favor to ask:

Can you reply to this email and tell me where you heard about Dasheroo and why you signed up?


John, Co-Founder, Dasheroo

How many people not only open this email but actually take the time to answer and hit Send? Twenty percent! Some might be happy with a 20 percent open rate, but we get 20 percent of recipients answering.

Then we did another thing: Anytime anyone answers the email, the response goes to everyone's inbox so everyone in the company is aware what users like, how they heard about us, and in the end, what's working and what isn't.

What's really important is that John personally responds to every email. It's positive, as it helps form more of a personal versus company-only bond.

Case in Point for Bigger Opportunities!

A user of ours, Bill, who runs a cool marketing consultancy, Rebar Business Builders, answered that email inquiring how we're different from the competition. John gave him an answer quickly, thinking, frankly, that was probably the end of it. But Bill got right back to John and offered a LinkedIn connection.

Email from Rebar Business Builders to Dasheroo

Bill has now also written three blog posts about us for his users, so he's spreading the word. So from a few minutes of John's time, we have a happy user who is offering to help us grow. Think you can't take the time to get back to every person? You might be right, but you can get back to some of them, which in the end is going to give you some powerful relationships with customers.

So, One Simple Question ...

  • Gives you insight into where people heard about you and why they decided to use you. You can see where customers are coming from and where you might want to focus more marketing effort. You might even get new ideas for keywords for search engine optimization!
  • Helps you identify and build relationships with people who could promote you.
  • Helps you identify new target markets. One answer we received to the email came from a social media virtual assistant. Guess what we did? We reached out to all of the virtual assistant companies we could to show off business dashboards!

What are you waiting for? Why not implement this simple question for your own business? You'll be smarter for it, promise!