The client is a $10 million tech company that sells a variety of utility apps aimed at Enterprise IT Organizations. Over the years, through its marketing and free trial efforts, it had collected many tens of thousands of contact records in its HubSpot database.
Although the company had a fairly large database of contacts, it did not know the quality of the data. Most of the records contained email and first name only. This was primarily due to the company’s policy of only asking these two data points in the hopes of getting as many people as possible to fill out its forms.
As a result, most of its emails were untargeted–they mostly announced the next event the company was holding and invited everyone in their database to it.
This practice resulted in high unsubscribe rates, including a couple of blacklistings, at which point, the CEO asked us to help.
What We Did
- The first thing we did was to analyze the data they had in HubSpot.
We first removed all of the bounces to arrive at the emails that appear to be valid. We then ran these through an email validation process, which showed us that only 31% of the records included valid email addresses–the rest called what are known as “catch all” addresses that company’s deliberately make accessible to divert marketing emails to these unattended email addresses.
Next, we created workflow rules to segment the data, then exported into spreadsheets to analyze the accuracy of the rules. Based on what we saw, we divided the data into two groups: where we knew at least at a high level what role the contact played in his or her company (IT, customer support, sales, etc), and another group where we either had no idea at all or where we were so unsure we classified it as unknown. By far the largest was the second group.
With that information, we proposed a new strategy to the client.
Step 1: Build a library of high quality content consisting of both general purpose and very role specific content.
Step 2: Enrich the contact database by offering this content to get more information from the recipient:
- First, send more general purpose high quality content to get the recipient fill out his or her title to get the asset
- Use the title to enroll the contact into the right nurture program so we can progressively get more information such as company name, industry, size, and phone number
- With each information we received, we tightened the nurture program so we could obtain more information so we would categorize our contact more accurately.
Step 3: use the enriched data to conduct more focused marketing such as organize workshops and targeted webinars, enabling the sales team to interact with contacts in their specific product and geographic territories.
At the same time, we ran Google Ad and Paid Social campaigns to increase the number of contacts. And as we were using the new progressive forms to acquire contact data, the new contacts were automatically and accurately enrolled into the right nurture campaigns.
We started with around 22,000 contacts with valid emails, of which only about 4,600 had titles that indicated their roles, and only a few hundred phone numbers.
Four months later, the contact database had grown to over 28,000 records with about 9,400 contacts with titles and about 23% of these providing company names and phone numbers.
Because we now know who they are and are sending them targeted messages, email open rates increased significantly from an average of around 5-6% to over 15% and more importantly, click through rates went from around 0.7% to over 6%.
Other metrics also grew significantly such as workshop and webinar registrations, call connects, and appointment setting.
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