Octane AI

1. What’s your name and title, what do you do day-to-day in 20 words or fewer?

I’m Marina Pérez, Director of Account Management at Octane AI.
I lead a team focused on designing quiz strategies focused on boosting sales, revenue and customer retention all while gathering crucial Zero zero-party data.

2. At Octane AI you use AI to create quizzes for customers that can be used to grow subscribers and increase sales. Can you give us a success story for a D2C brand you’ve worked with? E.g. what was the problem? What did you do? What were the results?

We all know about quizzes helping with conversions and revenue but if well implemented, a quiz strategy can help with much more than sales!

One of my favourite examples is Buckle Me Baby Coats, a brand which invented children’s coats designed for the car seat. Before launching their quiz, they had a very high return rate (avg. 23,000 a year). Our team helped the Buckle Me Baby Coats launch a quiz that was able to match customers with the exact size and level of warmth that they need for their children resulting in a drastic drop in returns by 95%, and a conversion rate of 16%.

3. You specialise in data marketing – what piece of advice would you give to DTC brands who want to improve in this area?

Use a quiz to learn as much as you can about your customers and use that information to:

  • Segment customers into different groups and tailor your communications to them. For example, a skincare brand that knows its customers have dry skin and want to improve the appearance of wrinkles can create a post-quiz flow that offers tips and advice to prevent dry skin and offer product recommendations to combat wrinkles. 
  • Develop new products and content based on your customers’ input. You can include any questions in your quiz that serve marketing or product development purposes and use that information to improve your communication and products.
  • Introduce different quizzes to different audiences. Use quizzes across different channels and introduce variations depending on who you’re speaking to. For example, a brand running TikTok ads leading to a quiz will want to add more educational information about the brand, have fewer questions, and focus on lead capture instead of conversions.

4. What do you think the biggest challenges facing eCommerce/D2C businesses will be over the next 12-18 months?

I speak to dozens of brands every week and one common struggle is standing out from the competition and increasing retention. New customer acquisition can be pretty expensive, so being able to nurture that relationship from the start is key to retention.

Once they manage to turn a website visitor into a customer, brands need to keep that connection by understanding what their customers like, what they don’t, and what type of content they want to see from you.

That’s why Zero Party Data and segmentation are a key part of that retention strategy. Not all customers are the same, so why do brands keep talking to them as if they were?

5. Complete this sentence – DTC brands that survive and thrive in 2023 will …

Focus on using Zero Party Data to boost new customer acquisition and retention.

6. Name three D2C brands that are killing it and whom you recommend others to emulate/learn from.

Jones Road Beauty is doing a fantastic job of incorporating quizzes at every step of the customer journey. They have shade finders for every product and use that information to cross-sell other products within quizzes and email marketing. And that’s not all! They also made 7 figures in 3 months with a combined TikTok Ads + Quiz Strategy that resulted in one of our most successful case studies.

Alleyoop has built an incredible post-quiz email strategy with impressive open and click-through rates. When customers enter their email in any of Alleyoop’s onsite or social media quizzes they receive highly personalized content. For example, in one of their flows, they use different imagery based on the customer’s skin tone, to showcase how their products look on customers with similar skin tones.

Milk Makeup does not only have a dedicated quiz section on their site to help customers create tailored makeup and skincare routines based on their needs, but they went a step further with an in-store Shade Finder quiz in Sephora for their newest product launch. Through a QR code on their product stands, customers were able to get a shade match on their phones, making the in-store shopping experience much easier.