How I'd grow Base

October 28, 2020

Base offers at-home testing kits that analyze saliva and finger-prick blood samples to give you insights into your body’s data.

You’ll get results through a dedicated app, and receive science-backed recommendations to improve your sleep, diet, stress and energy levels.

I summarized it for you but it took me a while to understand how it all works. I had to scroll through the site more than once.

Less is more for Base’s site. The homepage throws a lot of info at you, but when you finish reading, you don’t understand the key paragraphs.

As I land on the site I’m immediately asked to take a quiz but they don’t explain why. Why should I do it?

Turns out, Base isn’t actually a single product. There are 4 kits, one for each area (sleep, stress, energy and diet), and the quiz helps you choose the right one.

This needs to be explained immediately. A first-time visitor doesn’t understand Base; there’s no reason for them to click the CTA.

I’d also use a benefit-oriented header like “Stop feeling tired, get your energy back,” instead of “Stop guessing, start measuring” to increase interest.

If visitors have the patience to navigate the site without dropping off, the product pages dedicated to kits are really good.

There are a few elements (like the visual timeline) that clarify how the process works. They should also be added to the homepage.

As for the pricing, they sell subscriptions. It’s a great choice to maximize customers’ LTV for products like this.

But I think someone who just discovered Base would rather try a one-off purchase before committing to a subscription, something they currently don't offer.

To find new customers, I’d focus on the holy grail of customer acquisition from the get-go: organic word of mouth.

It’s not an easy task. However, I’d try to come up with ways to facilitate it as much as possible both online and in real life.

Online, Base could reverse-engineer the process: find the things people like to share, and then subtly encourage them to share.

For example, everyone loves to celebrate achievements. Designing the app so that screenshots are shareable should be a priority.

In real life, Base could send an additional free kit to every new customer, prompting them to give it to a person they really care about.

Once they receive it nicely wrapped as a gift, with no further effort required on their part, they will be inclined to do it.

Search might not seem like an important channel; people aren’t actively looking for a product like Base.

In my opinion, this is a mistake. I see a great opportunity for Base to create content in their niche. It could pay dividends for a long time.

Now, it’s true that people aren’t searching for commercial keywords. However, they’re searching for educational, informational ones.

This might not bring results from day one (they don’t have high domain authority), but they could get some traffic within a few months.

Social media is perfect for making people aware of a new product’s existence without prior demand.

For a B2C product like Base, FB & IG are the obvious choices. They’ll need to rely on paid advertising since organic reach can only get them so far.

Base is already running ads there, but they’re addressing too many problems at once.

I’d create multiple ads - each one tied to a particular Base kit (sleep, diet, etc.), and sell it as the solution to that specific problem.

Pro tip: if you want to create an effective ad but you don’t know how to get people’s attention, start by using the PAS formula:

- Problem: present your  customer’s problem
- Agitate: dive into the consequences until they hurt
- Solution: explain your solution to the pain point

I’d also experiment with different creatives. User-generated content is working especially well in the DTC space right now.

Vertical videos shot on phones with real people talking about the benefits of the product, and their experience with it.

Learn marketing from case studies

Every month I pick a website and write a short case study explaining exactly how I’d grow it