KickoffLabs Blog:

How We Use Marketing Automation at KickoffLabs

By Josh Ledgard

Jan 21st, 2015

We believe in the power of marketing automation and customer segmentation so much that we recently invited Rob Walling, the founder of Drip (lightweight marketing automation that doesn’t suck) to teach our audience about the subject.

And also be sure to check out the full, extensive blog post on the Drip blog by clicking here.

How We Use Marketing Automation

One-to-Many Email Marketing

If you look back over the past 10 to 15 years, email marketing has essentially been a person or a company building up a list of people, and then blasting out a single email to everyone.

It’s almost like a static email newsletter.

One-to-Few & One-to-One Email Marketing

You can still have that list of 5,000… 10,000 subscribers. But based on those folks behaviour interacting with your brand, you can learn things about them.

So maybe you learn that they clicked a certain link about SEO. Now you know that the person or group of people are interested in that certain subject.

You can now funnel them into a short sequence that talks more about SEO and pitches the benefits of your product or service.

Let’s say someone clicks something about Pay-Per-Click Advertising. They may get a different email sequence.

Once you’ve started to break down the emails, you’ve gone One-to-Few.

Even though you have a list of 10,000 and everyone is getting an email every week, they are now getting different emails personalized based on their behavior.

The ultimate goal is One-to-One marketing automation. And although we’re not quite there yet, it’s the logical end of this customization.

If Customer Does This = Send This

In addition to the track and campaign emails, you can customization within an individual email.

You can include an IF statement right inside of your email body that said: IF this person likes SEO, put this sentence, ELSE if they like PPC, put this sentence in.

That is possible with marketing automation, so it’s pretty extensive.

You can imagine that this leads to higher conversion rates, more engagement…. every benefit that you can imagine from being more personalized.

What is Marketing Automation?

What is marketing automation

To give you a better idea what marketing automation is…

Let’s go behind the scenes to look at how KickoffLabs uses marketing automation to power smarter customer interactions.

We’re not fully automated YET, but we’re in the process of upgrading our entire customer and support infrastructure to provide – not a more robotic experience – but a more personalized experience for our current and potential customers.

email marketing segmentation

If you see a signup form on our site, it’s most likely a KickoffLabs form. Out of the box it’s already a great way to collect leads. But we take it one step further and push new leads to our Landing Pages 107 email course over to Rob’s awesome email marketing application, Drip.

lead nurturing

Inside of Drip, people are segmented as being interested in landing pages and are placed into our lead nurturing list. Generally, these are people who have not yet purchased an account from us, but are now in our potential customer marketing funnel.

They would then receive an email sequence of 10 emails spread out over 10 days that teaches the fundamentals of landing pages. The first step in building a relationship with free content :)

lead management

That’s pretty cool, but how do we know if people are engaging with the emails and actually interacting with the KickoffLabs app as a result?

Since customers have already been tagged, we can see who has created a landing page or not based on any email links they clicked and actions taken on our site.

self segmentation

Here we are using the confirmation screen after people sign up to ask: “Please help us optimize your KickoffLabs experience…”

We have three main customer types that use KickoffLabs

  1. People who work in marketing or an e-commerce site
  2. People who are launching a new product
  3. People who work at an agency setting up campaigns for clients

You can imagine that somebody starting a new business has very different needs and questions than somebody who works in an agency and trying to set up a marketing campaign.

We make that optional but are surprised by the number of people who actually provide this information at will… around 70%!

Knowing which one of these three somebody picks really helps us optimize the welcome trial sequence for that person.

This is even helpful for things like support; where we can see the segment of a customer and get more context about what they’re trying to do so we can help them better.

Getting someone to choose and say “I am this type of person” can help you shape the message for those segments.

smarter promotions

This is a Drip screenshot of a specific promotion that’s sent out when somebody:

  • sets an opt in segment (here it’s set to Startup).
  • is in the non-paid customer segment (so we’re tracking whether or not they’ve upgraded).
  • and they’ve subscribed after a certain date.

Sure it’s a broadcast email, but it’s down to a very narrow segment of people with a targeted promotion specifically for them.

That let’s us change the wording, the content, the promotion, and the offer specifically for other segments with ease.

action based segmentation

As people are working through the KickoffLabs product which helps you set up landing pages, opt in forms, and more… we tag people with these events.

So if they haven’t created a landing page yet they’re in Group 1, and we’ll send them an email saying “Hey, you haven’t created a page. Here’s how”.

If a couple of days go by and they still haven’t created a page, we’ll send a follow up email asking “How come you didn’t create a page? We’re here to help”.

Through this following up, we get a great response rate and clickthrough rate. It helps push people through the process.

If they created a landing page they’re in Group 2, and we’ll send them an email saying “You created a page, but you haven’t published it yet. How can we help?”. If they don’t do that for a couple days, we’ll send another email offering assistance.

And so, on…

That’s much more tailored than what we had been doing before, where we had been sending the same standard week’s worth of trial sequence emails to everybody. We didn’t know where they were in the product and didn’t have the context of where they dropped out or paused in the process.

With this new marketing automation in place, we’ve seen about a 40% increase in trial email open rates and clickthroughs tripled!

With non-personalized emails, the content just wasn’t relevant to people. Take people to the next step that’s actionable for them!

hook before ready to buy

If you try to leave the KickoffLabs marketing site, you might get this form that pops up offering free access to our Landing Pages 107 email course.

We had a popup in the lower corner for awhile but tested it against the exit intent, with a dramatic increase in sign up rate (although every company and website is different).

Bottom line is that we tested multiple ways to get people hooked onto an email marketing sequence.

web analytics and scoring

Inside of KickoffLabs, we have the ability to view, sort and score our leads based on their influence.

If somebody has signed up and shared any of our content, we send out an automatic “Thank You” email and incentivize to share some more (a KickoffLabs feature).

thank influencers

These are people who have self-identified themselves as “influencers”. These people are much more likely to keep sharing and so are put into the Influencer segment. Where as we have a different sequence for people who haven’t shared yet.

This has worked extremely well not only for us but for our customers too.

additional examples

Some additional examples that we’ve seen work effectively:

  1. Somebody views the upgrade page but doesn’t actually upgrade, we either follow up with a special offer or just follow up asking what prevented them from signing up.
  2. Somebody signs up for a webinar, we tag people as being interested in the topic of that specific webinar.
  3. Somebody’s account goes into past due status, we follow up with an email sequence trying to bring back the customer.

Why is Marketing Automation the Future?

why the future

We’ve seen that marketing automation, specifically email marketing automation has been an effective tool for growing our own business and customer list.

landing pages are changing

The same thing is happening with landing pages and opt in forms.

People are looking for that next level of personalization. Having multiple landing pages that speak to different customer segments and scenarios is the way that we’re starting to pitch people… from the very top of the funnel.

drip and kickofflabs integration

We’re customers of Drip and have been thrilled using it!

Now you can get the power of email marketing automation directly integrated with your KickoffLabs campaigns.

**Ready to start personalizing your content and message to customers?**

Sign up for your limited time extended trial here: https://www.getdrip.com/?coupon=KOL2 and look for KickoffLabs in the integration list.

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