S3 E24: Comments on social are becoming the new customer testimonial with Lexi Montee (VP of Marketing & Communications, Happiest Baby)


On this episode of Retention Chronicles we’re joined by Lexi Montee, Vice President of Marketing and Communications at Happiest Baby. Lexi tells Mariah about:

  • their success in word of mouth marketing for their SNOO technology and building community around product,
  • how comments on social are becoming the new UGC,
  • expectation management with reviews,
  • sharing stats on what’s average with children to educate new parents,
  • segmenting based on what kind of parent their customers are,
  • in-app support for customers, working with the FDA to get approval, and more!

Be sure to subscribe to our pod to stay up-to-date and checkout Malomo, the leading order tracking platform for Shopify brands.

Subscribe to Retention Chronicles on Apple Podcasts


This transcript was completed by an automated system, please forgive any grammatical errors.


baby, sleep, product, neuroscience, brands, marketing, experience, swaddling, parents, marketers, reviews, buy, customer, happiest, love, work, great, person, people, community


Mariah Parsons, Lexi Montee

Mariah Parsons 00:04

Hi there, I'm Mariah Parsons, your host of retention Chronicles, ecommerce brands are starting to shift their strategy to focus on retention in the customer experience. And so we've decided to reach out to top DC brands and dive deeper into their tactics and challenges. But here's the thing, we love going on tangents. And so with our guests, you'll often find us talking about the latest trends, as well as any and all things in the Shopify ecosystem. So go ahead and start that workout or go on that walk and tune in as we chat with the leading minds in the space retention Chronicles is sponsored by Malomo. A shipment in order tracking platform, improving the post purchase experience, be sure to subscribe and check out all of our other episodes at go malomo.com. Hello, everyone, and welcome back to retention Chronicles. Today we are joined by Lexie. Lexie, thank you so much for making the time to be here. Super excited to have you today. Just to get started, I'm gonna have you say hi to everyone and then give a quick intro of yourself.

Lexi Montee 01:14

Sure. Nice to be here today. My name is Lexi monta. I'm the Vice President of Marketing and Communications at happiest baby. You might not have heard of happiest baby, but you might know what's new is snoo is the first robotic baby bed it comes crying and increases sleep. And we were just granted de novo approval by the FDA to be the first and only ever device to keep babies sleeping safely on their backs. And the reason that's super important is it's the number one advice by AAP World Health CDC. And the reason for that is babies who sleep on their backs have a significantly lesser risk of SIDS or SUID. So very excited. Huge innovation for parents and for anyone who worries about the babies in their families and in their communities. And excited to be here with you today.

Mariah Parsons 02:04

Yes, thank you for that. That was wonderful. I we're going to dive into everything that is happening as babies new FDA approval that is so wonderful. And I'm sure any parent listening is like wow, technology. It is it is bigger and brighter things ahead, getting back sleep and helping babies. Helping babies do so. So before we dive in, can you tell us just a little bit about your background, where you started and how you've gotten to where you are currently? Yeah,

Lexi Montee 02:31

my background is like, you're reminds me of that old like Steve Jobs thing. You know, it's like, hindsight is 2020. Like, there is like zig zaggy. I was in academia, I did a thesis in in neuro psych, I wanted to, you know, continue the legacy of the family legacy. I'm the daughter of Dr. Harvey Karp, our founder and CEO. And so he wrote these really famous parenting guides, the happiest baby on the block, the happiest toddler on the block. And I was really interested in the human brain and how it works. We studied neuroscience. And it was super cool, because my interest was there. And then, years later, Obama did got this huge grant going to do the the sort of genome mapping happened earlier. And then sort of the brain mapping and neuroscience became super popular. So it was all an exciting time for human beings and their social behavior and how the brain works. And then I was sort of disenchanted by academia, because I don't know, I thought it would be like sexy Hogwarts and like having reading conversations, and instead it was like 80 page, just table of contents in the instruction manual for a grant thesis and you can't do anything without money. And long story short, my partner was an entrepreneur, my parents, were entrepreneurs, just sort of launching happiest baby not quite yet. And so I pivoted and left academia and went into the private sector. And I thought, like, Where can someone who studied neuroscience and literature, kind of do anything in the world that's useful? And in marketing, right? How do you talk to people? And how do you figure out how they think and what they want and what they need. And so I did a few years of marketing and consulting roles, and then jumped into lots of different brands, nonprofits, one of my favorites kindness.org, a headphone company. So that's another hardware plus software like ours that was super innovative, and was picking the Cochlear initially out of acoustic emissions from your ears that happen, and kind of like making your own hearing profile. So always tech, always cutting edge science, marrying neuroscience and kind of pop culture and music and all the fun stuff I like. And then my parents were like, Hey, you're a startup consultant. We're having a startup. And this is actually really the founding story of happiest baby, which is wild. Pediatrician dad, decades after writing on these famous books decades on the road and retired retired from his practice full time speaking because he wanted to help As many families as he could. So he'd go to military bases and give out his books for free and teach them these steps called Five S's to calm colic. Because these high stress situations like in the military, they're more likely to, you know, perhaps shake their baby or have, you know, other experiences. And they're also exhausted, they needed more support. So, long story short, he's at some conference, and he's talking about the importance of paying attention to SIDS. It hasn't changed. We haven't been able to reduce the occurrence of SIDS in multiple decades. And somebody's giving a panel up in San Francisco and says to my dad, well, carp you're famous you do something? Right. Like rude heckling, but okay. And he got the idea. They went to dinner, my my parents to dinner, and he literally doodles like, oh, my gosh, that restaurant in San Francisco, essentially 98% of What's New looks like now, it took five and a half years with MIT Media Labs. And all of the four foremost engineers in the world to figure it out. It is an extremely sophisticated piece of technology. And so then, they were like, you help me since startups launch like, come to us. And I was like, You think someone is going to put your three hours of our old baby like in your contraption, you're out of your mind. out, I eat my words, because it's the best contraption I had a baby a year and a half ago, she was in there, I squeaked out every inch, every dollar of mice knew she was in there, like as long as it's allowed. And it's the best invention ever. And we launched the company. And it's been such an amazing thing to watch this successful company rise and do what it doesn't have all the impact. It's had like, I don't even have words, I'm going to trail off too long. But the journey has been incredible. And the founding story is truly what may not often be the case. But is that like singular Inception point of like someone pressing him doodling an idea? And then here it is.

Mariah Parsons 07:05

Yeah, I mean, first, before we even dive into that there is no such thing as going on too long. I loved all of that. It's all it's such a great background to have, especially as we're heading into talking more about just happiest baby in your background. And the strategy behind it. It always helps me just to know the founding story. So thank you for sharing. And quick tangent. I didn't know this about you that you had a background in neuroscience, but I did as well. That's what I said. And then I know so I was like, I it took everything in me not to interrupt you and be like, Oh my god, me too. Oh, fun. Yeah. Right. And so I also saw the bridge between, you know, how can I tie neuroscience into the business world because I, for the longest time that I was going to med school and then figured out I am a generalist at heart. So specializing in one thing, it just wasn't the right path for me. So that is wild that we share that

Lexi Montee 08:01

battle. And it's such a weird, unusual thing. But you know, it's actually getting bigger and bigger. And I'm a bit older than you. But what's interesting is, in my lab, I managed a research lab at Columbia University after graduation, I wanted to get a PhD, like the whole thing. On there was a kid in my lab, who was a double major in neuroscience and computer science. And I was like, this pool of chips and brains. I know it. Yeah. So it was it's, it was a wild time in science. I mean, it still is, look what's happening now. And, you know, that's a whole other conversation we can have again, later with AI. But But certainly, I think like, everything you know, about people comes in super handy marketing, collateral wise, I mean, if you understand, like how humans gaze, you can be like, oh, let's really sort of prioritize this piece of content to be in the upper right corner, or, you know, like little things that,

Mariah Parsons 08:50

I think probably help. Yes, oh, 100%. And I, and to like, I one of the things that always stuck with me is a professor that I was speaking to, was talking about just the intersectionality of human behavior and neuroscience. And one of the things he said was, there's never going to be a moment where understanding how people react and interact, won't be helpful to you in your career, whether whatever you go into right, like, or just to be a person. Yeah, exactly. Like you, you will always have to interact with someone somewhere, doing something. So the better that you can understand how to convey your message properly, and then how to receive messages and how to, you know, work with other people. It's like, it's stuck with me forever. And now I see it, you know, in every single conversation. I feel like that influences the way I go about things because it's just such a helpful lens to have on the world. Yeah. I did want to ask to you said with just SNU in general, and the sophisticated technology that your father rolled out with the company has been the impact that it's had on parents and families and babies. And one of the things that I wanted to ask you was about the experience on the website, because the word of mouth marketing, I think we could both agree in many marketers, I'm sure listening is very powerful. And being able to get, you know, testimonials up on your site is impactful. But for something like this, where not having kids myself, I know the impact of having a child is, so it really impacts your sleep and like the parents feel that. Yeah.

Lexi Montee 10:47

So we're a mission driven company, and the mission is going to sound simultaneously very, like cereal, and nebulous and loose, but also, it's really specific in saying mission is to really protect the health and wellness of babies and parents and families and health care workers. And so, you know, it sounds kind of like okay, good luck, sir.

Mariah Parsons 11:09

Yeah, so like, how do you achieve that?

Lexi Montee 11:11

No problem. Yeah, super small potato. Yeah, we do that. And I think getting those testimonials on sites or, or having that event Jellicle Tribe, I've never seen a community like ours for a product, right? Like, influencers might have one, you know, personalities, or a doctor or some kind of more content oriented person might have one. But for a brand that sells stuff, we have almost 300,000 influencers, rather followers on Instagram, we have, you know, such a dedicated community who comes to our defense when there's a troll instance online. And I think it's because as you said, we help people at the most critical, crucial, overwhelming, life changing, shocking experience of their whole life, right? Like, here, you have this baby, and then you go home from the hospital, and you're like, hey, let me take it home. Like there's no more. There's no more. There's no more like, adults with experience coming in and out of the room. I mean, like, you get home, and you're like, holy shit, who let me do this, I can't do this, right? The experience of a lot of my friends, for being the one I only have one, but three babies to have. They're kind of like, Thank you under your arm. Let's go. Like, I'm ready. Yeah, thing. And it's the culture. Look, as all this technology evolves, as we as women could study something. So you know, out of this world, and robust and scientifically complicated as neuroscience, women are getting educated these days very differently, and in the workforce very differently than we were in history. And so this is my pedestrian analysis. But this anthropological idea I have is that, as women, especially here in the US, we're able to get that a lot more of that equity, not saying we don't have a long way to go. But as we were, you know, really getting educated and going to work in droves differently than we were in the past. We weren't around mom, grandma, Auntie neighbor, to help each other raise children and to learn and so there wasn't that sort of like mimetic dissemination of cultural bits, right. So we forgot to swaddle, you know, in North America, and we didn't learn about other tips and tricks for calming babies. And so when Harvey's first book came out over 20 years ago, it's not like he invented swaddling or white noise. These are things that have existed in the world. But he reminded us before then nobody in the US was really swaddling. And there wasn't such a thing as a swaddle blanket. Fun fact, I worked in office, and we were naive. This was like the very beginning of the internet practically days in terms of your daily consumption. And so people would Google our office, and I put our phone number on line, they call our phone and they'd say, Hi, I'm reading Dr. carps book, where can you buy one of these swaddling blankets that you talk about? And we were like, oh, like, sorry, he's just a pediatrician. And we don't know. So we recommend going to the fabric store and buying at least 42 inches in a square shape. Like that was it and now models are like a multibillion dollar industry. So a lot has changed. And I think that that's why people needed us so badly. And that's why they still come to our site. So as you talked about organic marketing 60% plus or minus, depending on the day, I guess, but a lot of people the majority of our web traffic is completely organic. They're coming to our tips. We have a very thorough, robust, helpful blog. My own girlfriends are like, well, happiest baby blogs had this I'm like, oh, did I approve that article? Because like, so I mean, everybody I know around us is depending on us for this content. And so to have a doctor to have a founder, be a pediatrician with four decades of experience is really critical for us and then I was able as a marketer to take that and to leverage that into brand credibility. Brand and ownership, you know, equity amongst the community, they can now inform each other, they send each other links. And then when something helps them so much when you really are, I mean, that's like I wrote these sort of key terms that are common in the startup space. But like, when you are mission driven when you put the people first, when you give them the content for free, you know, right now, for example, everybody's in these sub stacks, you don't have to pay money to get our information, we're giving it to you for free. The contents of our books that cost money, or the videos that cost money to buy or to stream, it's all in there for free. And when you do that, you're bringing them to the to your site, and you're helping them so much, in addition to doing it for free, that they want to give you that testimonial. I feel like they want to scream from the rooftops like oh my God, and they kind of like, you know, one of the dreaded questions that you get as a new parent is like, Oh, how's the baby sleeping? And eating like that, right? Because they can say like, Well, I knew all these tricks for the five S's. And that translated over into SNU. Because snooze invention was sort of predicated upon these right shushing, swinging swaddling, all the stuff that's automatically done for you in a snooze, but you were still manually doing based on the happiest baby on the block book. And now they have a skill set. And so they can go and share their good experience. And you know, they reminds me of like, when you find a good mascara, right, like you tell all your friends. And that's just Euro imagine how would you know glow about

Mariah Parsons 16:28

the full Boom, baby?

Lexi Montee 16:30

Exactly. So for us, I will say what's fascinating is, when you look at a website, and when you look at comparing that browser experience, whether it's desktop or mobile, but just like an actual DTC website with community, social media, very different on social people love the testimonials, they want to hear what people experienced, was it worth the money? Did you have any issues? What was it like for you? On the website, people don't really click on them. It's interesting. They love the reviews, the written reviews, they want to see how many stars you gave and what the problem was and what the good parts were, and they want to read them and make sure they review them. But in terms of like a video testimonial, not really clicked on items, so an interesting difference between social and community and then Web.

Mariah Parsons 17:18

Yeah, I love that. You pull that out, because I haven't heard that distinction with social and website because and I was reading some newsletter, I think is the raisin bread newsletter done by marketing hire, but Instagram just released something I don't know. I don't know the actual name of that. But in that release that they're they're starting to let brands use UGC as their ads. And so, you know, I, I, I am a shopper online and use social as you know, that piece of referral or I'll go look at like comments and see what you know, who's experienced what with different products before I buy. And it's so interesting to me that you brought up that testimonials do really well on social and you've seen that. And to me, especially I don't know, if you're on Tik Tok, I mean, it's the, it's the Gen Z and me, but seeing all the comments that people will have and be like, Oh, this was my experience, this was like, where to buy it, when to get it, blah, blah, blah, all the details that you could think of, it is so powerful if you have that community that is willing to go to bat and say, I really trust this product, because it helped me so much in this very critical time.

Lexi Montee 18:37

Work for You, you know, like taking Reddit and Amazon and all the different things together. And then they do it for you. And what I love about what you said about using UGC as an ad is like, you know, okay, here's an example. You go on Yelp? I don't I don't know, like, is he canceled or whatever happened. But as he's in sorry, had to stand up. And he was like, Was it him? I think it was him. He's like, we're the generation that like yelps a taco for 45 minutes before you go, right? And it's true. Like, this is hard, like when you're having a baby or especially careful, like, what are the ingredients? What is this? Is this good enough? Is it safe, like there's so little and delicate, and you're so afraid, especially if it's your first time you don't know what you're doing. And so for the generation for like the millennials, who were the first people to have to deal with the internet, the amazingness that came, but also the information overload that comes, you know, if I am the person who maybe looks up not Yelp anymore, but like infatuation, looks up the food for 45 minutes, like, I don't have the time to give the good enough level of research for my baby product. And so the other thing that was interesting to me about about being of that generation is like, if if somebody on Yelp or like especially back in the day, TripAdvisor gave a review, I didn't care what they said because they didn't have confidence that we had the same personality or that that that person had a discerning palate, right like for cuisine and had, you know, had enough experience maybe like eating abroad or something. And so I didn't know if I could trust them. With social media, you can tap on the person's profile. And as long as they're public, you can see like, Okay, we vibe, you can figure out geographically where they live, maybe even politically how they might vote and what their morals might be. You look at their aesthetic, and you know, if you vibe, and so then you're like, cool, this person looks good enough. And unfortunately, if you see they have a bigger following. While we do especially now in I think the average consumer has become very savvy over the year. So we know that there's advertising and paid relationships or gifted product, right? On social. So maybe you take it with a grain of salt, but you also know that if they do have that large following, you see, you kind of take that as like, okay, they have to tell the truth, because their community will come for them, or will suffer. And so then it kind of verifies the opinion. And so all the heavy lifting is done. And especially, you know, if there's a product you've seen, and all the people you already follow. So rather than it being like random UGC, where you're doing a little digging, like that happens to be influencers you follow that made the ad, you're now just trusting them. And if you're seeing it repeatedly across different handles, you're like, Oh, hell yeah, what is this thing everyone's been doing? Right? We see that with, certainly with SNU. Everywhere, everyone has this new I've never seen a pregnant person at this point online who doesn't have a snoo or with the seed probiotics or with athletic greens, like, there's a couple of brands where your is everywhere. And it does a little bit of that like old fashioned, like television style marketing, where like, you're not anybody if you don't also have this, you know what I mean? Right? Yeah, like, a different type of advertising. But it's great to have that evangelism to have the people who are bought in who do the legwork for each other, and educate each other. It's fantastic.

Mariah Parsons 21:53

Yeah, it's, it's, there's so much power behind it. And that's why I think both of us to just with knowing our backgrounds, right, like, the FOMO marketing and being able to see the influence of having someone and multiple people if, you know, that's what's going on having them give credibility to something. It does, it does it, it has something that's beyond, you know, a stat or something like that, where it's it because it's emotional. And that's inherently hard to describe a hard to measure. And one of the things that I was thinking about while you were talking was, there's now for better for worse. So many options out there just when you're talking about different products. And you know, some industries have way more options than others, right, like SNU is one of its kind and, but there's a lot of other products that there's just such a high need. And like even like with fast fashion, being able to turn around something really quick or being able to with things like Shopify, being able to start business and having so many things at your fingertips. I know, as a consumer, one of the things that I feel like I need to do before I buy a product is do my due diligence, and make sure that I'm looking at different products, looking at reviews, looking at anything that I can find because I know myself I'm susceptible to if I just buy something on impulse, then that buyer's remorse will come in. And if

Lexi Montee 23:19

I have to interrupt you right here,

Mariah Parsons 23:20

please. All right.

Lexi Montee 23:22

marketers, we are both marketers. And we know the algorithms, we understand how they, you know, how they are really directed at us and how they're turning us. But tell me that you haven't found ad helpful, right? Like this? Oh, well, no longer talking about or Googling, like, forget the whole, like, they're listening or whatever. I, the last three times this happened to me this week, I was thinking about something. I didn't say it out loud. I didn't Google it. I was trying to think about if there would be an AI version of a combination of behaviors that I would have done or partaken in, that would amalgamate to somehow give an exhale, no mathematical possibility. So essentially, it read my mind. I really needed this product. And the funny thing is, I don't even remember what it is. To tell you the example. I just remember being so baffled at like, my, you know, Midnight Doom scroll before I fell asleep that like, wow, I really needed this. How did they know? And then I clicked it, and I bought it in three seconds. And I didn't do any research because the price point was low enough where I was like, okay, like fine. And because I really needed it. And if you're the right target me and you look good enough and like I tapped on the handle name and the incident was legit, like cool. Okay, I'm done. So you have to tell the truth you fall for it to even though you know that that's right. Oh, 100%

Mariah Parsons 24:44

if it's something I need, and it like it appears in an ad then yeah, I am totally, totally. All right. But yeah, on that link, checking out the handle making sure that you know, everything looks fine, like that little amount of verification. then and then I'm in like, I think, yeah, that's

Lexi Montee 25:02

the thing for marketers too. It's like there's always for us. There's not a best practice, right? Like, touch them infinity times until they convert, and you have that trepidation. Is it too much? Are we annoying? Are they sick of seeing us in their feet? Are they going to hide mute us? But I don't think so. Because I'm really busy. And I think I just like forget, or I'm waiting for it to be on sale or I don't know what my reasoning is. But sometimes the relentless ones also get me so

Mariah Parsons 25:27

yeah, right. Or you just like scroll by and then you forget about it two seconds later, right? Because we consume so much. Yeah, totally. Yeah, it's I remember, like I said, Do you know Mary Ruth's organics like they're like vitamins? Yeah. So I remember seeing an ad and this is on Tik Tok. So is some influencer, just like talking about their experience with it, and talking about all the benefits, and I was like, Oh, my God, that's like, cool. I should, like, look into that. And then forgot about it, right. And I was like, all added to the list and then saw another influencer, who made a similar video, but like, different benefits. And then immediately I was sold, because I was like, after the first ad I saw it was, it was good enough that it like stuck with me a little bit. And then the second one, I was like, Okay, now I have to try this. And I have it and I love it. And now I'm now I'm in right? Yeah. And so yeah,

Lexi Montee 26:19

you're gonna tell your friends. And that's how it works. And so it all goes back to that, like, organic, that organic traffic, I mean, that word of mouth. It's priceless. I'm so grateful for it. Because what for us in particular, you know, sometimes cosmetics or just cosmetics. But for us, like we're out there doing really hard work trying to help people. I mean, illnesses have strong correlation with sleep, Mental Health and Mental Hygiene. And a lot of other issues are related to sleep. Sometimes even like breastfeeding issues for moms, if they can get good sleep, maybe they can help improve their their milk production or their flow. And so sleep is really critical for a lot of things, not to say that SNU can help those things. But if SNU can help you sleep, you can like regenerate your own body or your own emotional well being and get yourself those things. That's priceless.

Mariah Parsons 27:14

Oh, 100% What sleep is one of those things that I have always prioritized. Like even when I was younger, my mom would be like, you were like 10 hours. Always like minimum maintenance. In even in college to like, I would just if any professors are listening, you didn't hear this, but would just like I was like, You know what, at a certain time, I'm not effective. Like, I am going to bed, like doesn't matter on the exam tomorrow, whatever, right. And even now, like past college, I like and into my career I've just been so I know the importance of it. And it's probably because of neuro background, but it's, it's been great because I think, you know, sleep, everyone is hopefully knows that it's important. But now more of the science is starting to back it and that, you know, there's only so much that you can do to help XYZ but like sleep is it touches so many different things. And so that's where I think like an even not being a mother, myself, I have seen snow and like, I was like, I know if and when the time happens. I was like, I will be purchasing so quickly. Because to me, that is something that is you can't even put a price tag on it. Right? If you're if you are fortunate enough to be able to afford such a great product that can help so many other things in your life. To me, I'm like, oh my god, that is it. It's astronomical, like the influence it can have. Yeah. And so it's so so awesome. Yeah, I Okay, so we've been talking a lot about just marketing in general, which I love going on those tangents. But I wanted to circle back real quick. Because the original thing that you said that spurred us on that tangent was having testimonials be on the website, because they're probably a necessity, right? Like you need to see some of them, but then having reviews as well. So this is getting more into the customer experience side of things. How are you capturing those reviews to put on your website? How are you making sure that you know as a marketer, you're doing your very best to make sure that the customer experience is well rounded. And you can give all the information to your customers, whether it's you know, in a review or in a blog, which we'll talk about as well.

Lexi Montee 29:27

Um, well I mean, we're we also happen to use Klaviyo like probably so many people do. And so we're just on like a typical we set a certain amount of days post purchase that we ask them to do a review. I would surmise that human behavior, probably the most incentivize people to do it are the ones who like had the most phenomenal killer experience. Just this the best thing ever happened to me saved my life saved my marriage sanity, and we hear that same couple compliments over and over again, which feels good but also, I think speaks to that, you know the strength of your product and you know, what it is you do for people? And I think the other side of that is the other incentivized group or people who are pissed, right? Yeah. So lucky for us, it's not that many. But you know, it happens to anyone, it's impossible to, you know, appease and make happy 100% is, for us, a part of that experience is really dedicated to, we have a complicated product, it is a very sophisticated piece of machinery, the box comes to your house, it weighs 53 pounds, it's huge. Like, this is a serious thing. There's an automotive drive train insights on drone suspension, like the only more robust thing on the market, essentially, as a car. And so as a result, you know, they I think, are really invested, they have high expectations. It's, it's, it's expensive for a lot of families, you can both buy and rent it. So that's what's been tastic. So people for whom buying is not an option, renting is a few bucks a day. So as much as you would spend on extra coffee to get through being tired is literally how much you can rent this new for, which is amazing. But they have really high expectations, or, you know, whatever it might be, or the I think what's hard for a brand like ours, and there's many brands that have amazing sort of reputations that precede them. But like, there's also expectation management, like everyone in the world is raving about this thing, and it's the best thing in the world. And so you picked for it to be your one splurge, you know, you may not know that it's working really well for you, even if it is so great example of this is I have a younger cousin in my mind, I'm like younger cousin, we're all above the age, we're all in our 30s and having kids and, and she said to me, she got a phone call from her friend who was like, Snoop is not working for us, I can't function like this, like we're gonna get a divorce, like, everything's so hard. And I didn't like mean to them, you know, at all, whatever it might imitation. But the punch line is, for three week old baby was already sleeping five hour stretches and night. That's like, Wow, fantastic. But she didn't know she was young, she didn't do research, she bought it because all the other influencers that all her friends had it. And so hearing about the magic pill, like, we also have a heavier burden than other companies do, because we have to teach folks, regular baseline baby behavior, right? A non snoo baby is waking up every two hours, maybe three hours, some DBS every 30 or 45 minutes. In three weeks in she's like five hours a night isn't enough. And so it's a hard thing, right? When you're like, actually, this is working for you. You just don't know it. But But of course, like she called customer care and got some great tips from our staff. But again, these are like really complicated points, right? Because there's a lot of inextricable relationships between things like, you know, feeding the baby and their sleep, are they hungry or the satiated? Are they getting enough? Are they breastfeeding versus formula feeding so many questions. So we have highly, highly, highly trained agents. And so all of this is to say that experience is really delicate. And it's a fantastic journey. A lot of our good reviews are actually about the customer care. And then what happens is, if we do get a bad review, we really take the time to do an in depth response. And that's live on the website. So for anybody who's reading those reviews, and then they can see our response and get kind of the more statistically based and larger sense of the person's personal problem. It also I think, is a really great benefit because it allows the person to decide, Okay, should I take this with a grain of salt? Were they maybe a more like an outlier type of person? Or are they just like pissed about I don't know what shipping or something that has nothing to do with the product. Right? You see that all the time? And?

Mariah Parsons 33:47

Oh, yes. In our industry, especially like, that's where we're in with? Yeah,

Lexi Montee 33:52

exactly. And so and so there's a lot of places. And so by having that really great customer care interaction on our review section of our website, I think it's it's an excellent place for a way to do more marketing, but on a real like person to person level to just help somebody who might be having a hard time. And we've seen that actually turn it around. Like someone might say, like, I don't know, if this is working for me, like my friend's kids are asleep 12 hours a night. And then when we talk to the person, you know, we get to a couple of tips on our app, you can customize the settings of the bed. So some babies need more noise or more motion or all these other tips that we have. Or sometimes we're able to say like How old is your baby and then they can say like four weeks old, and we have to say like, oh, that young baby has to eat, you know, 12 times a day so and so we're able to help them get through the hard parts, which is really rewarding. But I think that demonstrates the customer journey both have an existing customer whether they're you know, happy or not retention wise, and then also of prospective comfort customers who are coming on there to see the info.

Mariah Parsons 34:54

Yeah, there's so many things I want to dive into there like the oh my gosh, okay, so that was one of the things that stood out is just the fact that, like you said, perspective, right sharing like, Okay, if a new parent doesn't know what's average for a baby, or what to expect or anything like with expectation management, that's such a fascinating thing to tie into reviews, because and just overall customer experience, because I could see how, yeah, if you're just speaking with other parents, and they're, you know, it's Hindsight is 2020. Or as you get further from events in your life, and you've had more time, you know, you just tend to look at them from a more positive experience than when you're in it currently. And so if you're only talking to parents that, you know, maybe have kids who are a little bit older than the current newborn that you have, it's easy to maybe look and be like, Oh, my God, they're not sleeping like at all right, like, Well, meanwhile, it's that five hour example. And I think one of the things that I see, or I could see a potential for is the comparison game that I'm sure is so real. I've only heard about it, right. Like this is just from secondhand experience, but with parenting and trying to advise someone on their parenting style, or what is average, what is normal, that's such a tough dynamic to lie in, in that industry, obviously, that you're in, you have to,

Lexi Montee 36:24

and I have to stop you. But you know what, I'll do it hard. There are very concrete safe sleep guidelines, not just in the US, but kind of cohesively across all developed nations, which is like nothing in the bed until age one. So no pillow, no blanket, no stuffed animal like nothing, nothing, nothing. And when you talk about how delicate it is to tell someone how to parent, I mean, even just like trying to, every time someone tags us in the story, which is getting bigger and bigger every day, gently teach my team to go in there and like, give the Safe Sleep tips because God forbid something happens to that child, you want to know that you weren't somebody and reminded them, but also like, delicately treading to, like not be rude or hurt their feelings, or it's unsolicited advice. You know, it's really hard, because that's not even in our lane. And it's in a way because they already made the purchase, they already have this new they're already at home, they're happy, they love us. They're tagging us in stories, but we still want to make sure that we're helping save their baby potentially if they're doing something wrong by by following an unsafe sleep practice, like having blankets in the in the bed at too young an age. And it's it's hard man, it keeps us up at night, all of us because we're like, dancing delicately, exactly what you talked about.

Mariah Parsons 37:40

Yeah. And I think a lot of people hopefully listening to this and maybe have experienced that where they see a practice where it's like, oh, wait, like, maybe that's just the education that has to be shared. And I think that's what's so great with that robust blog that you spoke about earlier with, you know, your friends, sharing just content based off of, you know, like, this is what's average. And this is what is you know, what to expect it all that. All that to say that, I think that's one of the things that like, I wanted what I wanted to ask you about, are you how are you sharing that information? Is it like, Are you are you sending out emails to customers after they buy, like kinda getting the post purchase experience? And I know, that's where Malomo Typically, you know, that's, that's where our expertise in so even like, my mind was, of course, going to ideas, but I wanted to ask you about it, because I think that's something that a lot of parents can relate to, but maybe it's not, maybe, but it's really hard to put into practice and do that delicately at such a big scale, you know, rather than, ya know, your outreach,

Lexi Montee 38:47

it is hard to do on a big scale. It's kind of like what I say about America when people you know, talk badly about the government. And I'm like, listen, I get it. But like, leave hundreds of millions of people across 50 states on a big ass chunk of land, like,

Mariah Parsons 39:02

right and floating and see Yeah, exactly. It's not

Lexi Montee 39:04

easy. Because there's no monolith, right? Like I was, I was just giving a lecture at a master's program at NYU last night. And one of the things I was saying, it's like, people love branding, people marketing, people love to be like, what's your persona? Or what's your, you know, what's your customer profile? Or what's your community members personality? And I'm like, that's the problem. It's not a monolith. Right? Like, just because you all have like, I don't know, a chapstick in common, doesn't mean you have anything else in common. And so really, I'd rather you get me, you know, 10 or 20. Many different personas. And so to that same point, I think, you know, we get like one and a half million blog readers a month passed on a good month, we almost hit 2 million. That's a lot of pressure we take seriously it's a big responsibility, especially with what's at stake. We're not giving like cheap contouring tutorials. Like we're teaching you a good schedule to feed you Your baby and make sure that they are going to hit their milestones, or when to be worried about something or to encourage them to speak to doctors or you know, these big, big life moments. And so we take the responsibility very seriously being being founded and run by a pediatrician who cares very deeply. He's a fellow at the American Academy of Pediatrics, he's on several boards. And then, you know, he cares deeply about things that aren't as maybe common always, in every medical community, like, you know, the Environmental Working Group is on the board. They're so protecting children from pesticides and chemicals in their self care products, like so many different avenues we have. And so research matters to us, we're very careful to be very mindful, we don't use hyperbole on the blog, I use it a lot in my speeches, you probably hear, but in our branding, we don't, we have a very calm middle of the road voice, we only believe in science, we follow the data, we cite everything. So you can find medical journals at the bottom of our blog posts and make your way to them and read them for yourself if you would like to, you know, obviously most people aren't really trained to do so. But they can appreciate the citation. So they can at least click and see, you know, what university did the study or maybe the names of some of the researchers or something so, so we take the responsibility seriously of having that faith from our community. And we really respect them. And we want to show them that respect in what we write. And similarly, because we're a very serious company, and now is officially a medical device, we're very careful to always do diligence and do things correctly. So I joke my team hate that. But one of our business systems data guys, and our attorney, I call them compliance police. And so they tell me everything when GDPR happened, and then when CCPA happened, and at that point, I mean, I remember saying to them once, like five years ago, like what do you want me to do take out a classified ad in the newspaper, like, marketing is gonna be really hard after everything you just told me. So it's had to evolve. But we take that seriously, as well. We take the law seriously, we take the compliance seriously. And so our voice, the brand is something that I think really matters. And so again, content on the website, very middle of run, like very calm, you know, most baby brands might have like a little too much wink or whimsy and not enough seriousness. And I love that. But you know, we also have a doctor at the helm. So it can't be too fun, right? And then, conversely, to medicine and scary. And so same thing goes for our blog, and then for the way that we disseminate that information. So we have a newsletter, you can sign up for it, you get all the typical, like modals and pop ups and you visit the site. And the newsletter usually hits on baby toddler parents so that there's something relevant for everyone. Because segmentation is hard. And especially if you're a small and scrappy team, it can, it can be a hard thing to have time to do really well. So we want to make sure we're inclusive. And then we have of course the post purchase flow. But the compliance police is very clear that the post purchase flow is really transactional product information, product education and like no fluff free and no marketing. So that's hard for me it's very, I like I like can't i can't subscribe to it not to use I know a matching verb here. But it's hard. It's really hard. But we want to follow the rule. So we're really careful there as well. We now also have text marketing, we've had that for probably two ish, almost three ish years. So that's like where you can be like a little more liberal. They write they opted in and asked you to text them. And there's something different about the voice, the casual demeanor on your phone, like it's a little more pithy, it has some emojis, right, it's a different vibe than how you might mark it on a doctor driven website with the with a robust blog of educational content. But the main ways that we disseminate that information is we take all those blog posts, we share them in stories, we amalgamate them into this like group, you know, finally email newsletter. And then there are other flows, of course that you might get put into, depending on what product you were browsing for. And it's just I think, the one hardship we have that other brands might might face but I think we face more than most is education. Education is tough. And so then I worry about will open rates and especially transactional emails versus newsletters and like, am I getting them the information? are they learning what they need to learn so that I can know that, you know, our job is done and the diligence is done, and they know everything? Because I'm afraid that, you know, people throw away that user guide, right, like people don't want to read anymore. We want you to just tell them and so

Mariah Parsons 44:27

they just want to know, yeah,

Lexi Montee 44:29

just tell me tell me what taco I don't want to spend 45 minutes yelling and think that that's that's why the QR codes are really great, you know, because then finally open the box. I don't want to read the QR code takes you straight to a video. Or it takes you straight to a blog post and FAQs as well. We embed them online, so people can like search them and then and then not have to always contact customer care. So we have a very, very robust set of FAQ and we also have blog posts that get into more length or have a video embedded From from the FAQ as well. But yeah, we do we do all the same things that you were mentioning about using, you know, using that opportunity to give them information post purchase, we just are really careful in terms of subscribership. We're not trying to like annoy people or do anything non compliant.

Mariah Parsons 45:17

Yes, yeah. And that's one of the things that, I mean, I'm not on the technical side of things, right. Like with the compliance and transactional emails and marketing, and the intersectionality of all of them, it is so fascinating just to be a marketer at this time and see how the how privacy changes are changing the way that marketers are approaching different, like categories and how I think the way that at least from this conversation, what I'm seeing is like the way that you all approach, transactional emails and communications, and just marketing, even marketing collateral in general, with those blog posts, or reviews, or whatever it is, it speaks to that brand of you are making sure that everything that you are putting out there is intentional and purposeful, and isn't bothersome, right, because your, your clients or your customers are in such a busy phase of their life. Right. So trying to be aware of that, I think it speaks to your brand. And even if it isn't, you know, emojis all over the website and a typical, you know, DTC experience. And I'm using air quotes with that, for our listeners of having something that is light hearted and fun, or like super colorful, or whimsical, fluffy, whatever. Whatever. However you want to describe that experience, I think it makes sense for the product that you're selling and the experience that you want your customers to have. And I think I also hear you and like, you want to make sure that the proper information is landing. And even if you know your compliance, police are saying transactional emails are not the spot to put some of that marketing collateral, I think QR codes and other use use cases like that. Hopefully, if other marketers are in a similar experience, they're able to look at maybe unique ways that they can make sure that they're delivering that content, like the newsletter and I think it's so great that you guys segment by, you know, Age of someone's child, because I could see, you know, already chaotic enough needing just to be like, Okay, this is what the information I need, like, take a spoonful and go

Lexi Montee 47:36

Yeah, but it's hard. Like, you know, I think thing that's interesting is so in SNU, you get three snooze sacks when you buy us new, small, medium, and large. So you essentially have everything you need. And she and they're all organic and a machine washable. So like, you can just toss them in the machine. But like, for example, I have really slow washing machines, right? Like, I live in New York. And so they're like self condescending condensating dryer, it takes like hours. And so for me it was important to have backups, new sex when I had a baby. And and so it's hard because I want to go to the compliance police and say, Hey, this is product relevant. This is helpful to somebody, I'm not trying to market them sex to sell them. I actually literally just want to help them and say, Hey, poop happens, right? Like you spit happens like things. Yeah. Need a set of backup, or what's a good age or weight to size up into your neck size? I want to help them. And so being that IoT enabled device and having a companion app, like I really want to talk to them in the app and send messages that's like, Hey, I see here that your baby is like four weeks old, you know, try the louder sound in motion or try you know, buy a new sack or don't forget that you'll need your medium soon. And so what's hard about laws and as they change when it comes to tech into privacy is the laws move a lot slower than the technology and still up to now with AI and chat GBT we've been seeing so much stuff happening. We're like, yes, it was trained to not have malice, but you can take your mal intent and reframe it and then ask it like the opposite what am I not supposed to do? And then it'll tell you all the things right and so and so, you know, is there a way that we could like go to Congress and say like, can you copy out the legislature and be like, okay, but Trent, you know, transactional post purchase emails if they are not opted into marketing emails, but you have or any communications for that matter texts, you know, app. But you have information that could be really helpful or that is integral to using the product snoo won't turn on if your socks aren't clipped in, because the entire safety part that's why the FDA just gave us this de novo approval. To keep babies on their backs. You've got to clip them into the sack and zip the sack up. And if it's three o'clock in the morning, on your baby just had diarrhea all over that sack. You have two options sleep somewhere else and less safe space. Ace, or try to wash that thing and you both stay awake or something catastrophic, right? Like, none of these options are good. So I would argue that, you know, in certain instances for a product's actual use, or for the safety and benefit of the customer, if you're allowed to communicate a little more frequently, you know, that would be nice. But we'll see how we'll see what happens. And we'll see how much marketers kind of push back on that. And then the other thing is, like, you know, risk, right? Like, take some risks, maybe as a marketer, talk to your legal teams and decide when and where you're more comfortable communicating or advertising or whatever it is that you're doing it on whatever channel you're in. But you know, do you have to be 100% Perfect. Students of everything, like I'm not sure, but but certainly ask your leadership teams, ask your lawyers but don't just like take it, because in our case, like it will help a family to communicate a little more and help them out.

Mariah Parsons 50:57

Yeah, I love that message. Honestly, I think that keep that key factor of like communicating and trying to see where that balance between taking some risks and making sure that you're still obviously compliant. I think that's a great note to end on. Because I know we're here at time and blew by which is crazy, but yeah. But we were having so much fun with it. So I wanted to thank you for coming on the podcast again. Lexi. It's been such such such such a great time getting to chat with you, and learn from you all along.

Lexi Montee 51:28

Thank you so much. It was such a pleasure. And I don't know like talking about it. I'm like, well, good luck to everyone. Know, it's a fun time. It's a fun time in marketing and to see what all the tech does and brings. Yes, of course we wish there weren't like Safari and Google and other algorithmic and privacy changes, but also helps us get creative. You know, it brings us back to the days of Gorilla from our youth where we're like chalking the sidewalk so that's right. No.

Mariah Parsons 51:53

Oh, that yes. That's that's a fun one. Oh, my gosh, I don't even want to start the episode there because we could talk. I feel like for so much longer. But yes, yeah, I agree. It brings out the creativity, which is always fun to see.

Lexi Montee 52:04

Yeah. Thank you so much for having me and so nice to chat and talk soon. Yes, you as well. Bye.