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12 inspiring digital marketing case studies prove ROI 1

Posted on April 30, 2018 by Rob Petersen

digital marketing case studies

Digital marketing case studies show how businesses and brands produce great results with the benefits of digital targeting, media selection and data analytics.

Here are a few reasons why companies are moving in this direction.

  • 86% of women turn to social networks before making a purchase (Alist daily)
  • 49% of organizations do not have a clearly defined digital marketing strategy (Smart Insights, Managing Digital Marketing research report)
  • 40% of marketers say proving the ROI of their marketing activities is their top marketing  challenge. (HubSpot, State of Inbound)

Here are examples of companies large and small, B2C and B2B to help spark great content, creative thinkingand execution at your organization, 12 inspiring digital marketing case studies that prove ROI.

  1. BRITISH TELECOM: Managed to save £2m per year by routing around 600,000 contacts per year through social media instead of its call centres. This also improved the customer experience, as these people preferred to deal with BT via social instead of phone or email.
  2. CLEAN & CLEAR: Used Snapchat to help raise awareness of its Morning Burst facial cleanser among females age 13 to 24. Clean & Clear partnered with Snapchat to run animated Snap Ads that reached the right people at the right time. Clean & Clear used Snapchat’s Lifestyle Categories to optimize its Snap Ads between Stories campaign and reach Snapchatters more likely to be interested in beauty. Clean & Clear’s Snap Ads and Filters campaign generated an 11.2% lift in Aided Awareness (5.5X higher than Millward Brown Norms) and a 7% lift in brand favorability (3.5X higher than Millward Brown Mobile Norms).
  3. CREME EGG: Switched ad spend from TV to Facebook in this example of digital marketing case studies. A seasonal social media campaign invited people to ‘Have a fling with Crème Egg’ on Facebook, created a long series of one-off posts that fed into an overall narrative across the three months. Facebook matched TV in driving brand consideration for a third of the cost increasing sales by 7% as a result.
  4. FISHER TANK: A welded steel tank constructed with a sales cycle of 12 months to several years. They used an Inbound Marketing approach would attract more (and more qualified) prospects to their website and give the company a chance to demonstrate how they think and what they do. They developed a more visually attractive site, and one that was a magnet for search engines. They included calls-to-action to download content of interest and value to prospects (primarily engineers, owners and facility and project managers) and integrated a blog with social sharing abilities, established company social media profiles, and optimized the site with the right long-tail keywords to get Fisher found in more searches. As a result, 1) website traffic increase by 119%, 2) quote request increased by 500% and 3) drove up the value of qualified sales opportunities by $3.4 million.
  5. HCC MEDICAL INSURANCE SERVICE: Infographics have been overused in recent years, but they’re still an effective medium for content marketing.HCC Medical Insurance Services (HCCMIS) managed to increase blog traffic and email revenue using an infographic aimed at its travel customers. Compared to its normal sales emails the infographic achieved a 96% lift in email revenue, while on Facebook the post that featured the graphic had more than 2,000 interactions compared to an average of 10.Overall HCCMIS’s blog post featuring the graphic achieved 3.9m views, of which 90% were new visitors.
  6. IBM: trained its sales people to use LinkedIn and Twitter, and also gave them access to a content calendar so they had relevant things to share. In this example of digital marketing case studies, the program resulted in 4x more sales year-on-year, though there are a few caveats to take into account.
  7. KLM: Noticed, from one of its employees, that a lot of people were asking about social payments, so they spoke to KLM’s IT and accounts teams to see if it was possible to set it up.This resulted in a new social payments tool, which cost €3,500 to setup and now takes €80,000 per week in sales.
  8. MANN FAMILY DENTAL: A comprehensive family care and cosmetic dentistry practice, wasn’t generating leads that would convert to patients. The creation of a blog on their website saw an immediate rise in phone calls. They used social media to strengthen and increase that organic referral web by engaging with their patients on Facebook. They focused on long tail keyword with local geographic terms. Mann Family Dental saw a: 1) 270% increase in web traffic 2) 10X increase in leads and a 3) 50% increase in patients generated from the website.
  9. NEUTROGENA: Used shopping basket data to identify competitor products loyal customers were already buying that were within their own range. Neutrogena knew they had a loyal base of customers, but 75% of shoppers were only buying items within a single segment of the Neutrogena range. They created a “product pairings” campaign delivered through video, banner ads and coupons to drive sampling. Consumers were targeted based on their personal buying habits. They saw an Increase in incremental sales with 18.1 million households reached and a  £5.84 return on advertising spend (ROAS).
  10. NILLA WAFERS: used Facebook to reinvigorate its Nilla Wafers brand and boost sales. A study showed Nilla Wafers sales increased 9% in test market locations among consumers who saw Facebook ads versus a control group of consumers over the course of a five-month campaign. The Facebook ad campaign for Nilla Wafers also was able to reach 11.3 million households through 190 million total impressions (16.8 impressions per household).
  11. SNICKERS: Targeting fat-fingered typists, this clever search campaign from Snickers used misspelled words in Google keywords to capture hungry office workers’ attention during the working day. The chocolate bar brand managed to reach 500,000 people within just three days of launch, without any seeding and for less cost than bidding on brand keywords.
  12. W HOLLYWOOD: Knew their luxury condominiums were expertly-crafted. Vibrant homes in the L.A. spotlight are eye-catching to many people. They created a lead-generation strategy which included SEO and Facebook ads to drive engaged visitors to the site. Google AdWords campaigns targeted specific areas within the California region and other cities where qualified lead potential was determined. The campaign resulted in: 1) 115% increase in conversions from Google Adwords, 2) 63% increase in site visits from SEO and 3) 1,800 goal completions from Facebook.

Do these digital marketing case studies inspire you? Did they prove ROI to your satisfaction? Could a creative digital marketing program help increase business in your organization?

10 influencer marketing case studies get to real results 0

Posted on September 18, 2017 by Rob Petersen

sInfluencer Marketing Case Studies

Influencer marketing is the fastest growing customer acquisition channel according to a poll by Tomoson.

  • 88% of customers trust online reviews and recommendations from people they don’t know as much as from friends (Bright Local)
  • 84% marketers have at least one influencer marketing campaign planned for 2017 (Smart Insights)
  • 51% of marketers believe they acquire better customer through influencer marketing (Tomoson)

What are the results driving this interest. Here are 10 influencer marketing case studies that get to the real results.

  1. ABSOLUT: Wants to create awareness and engagement in 8 key countries. They use Brand Ambassadors to create posts for #AbsolutNights. Each post begins the phrase “You know those #AbsolutNights when…” and then a sentence with a beautiful image explaining the content. 225+ posts are created in 8 countries over 17 weeks. They generate a reach of 2,800,000, 65,000 interactions for an engagement rate of 2.34%.
  2. ADDIDAS: Wants to push content to their German sportswear market during Summer Olympic Games in Rio in the first ‘Influencer Games’. For the campaign, Adidas sent 20 popular influencers to Rio. The team includes fashion bloggers and celebrity models – such as Germany’s Next Top Model winner and top Instagrammer, Lena Gerke. In Rio, the influencers producd social media content promoting the Olympics. Over 54 million Germans go on the watch the Olympics.
  3. BEAUTYCON (L’OREAL): Has become an iconic convention and event where the most daring and bold individuals. L’Oreal sponsors 9 macro influencers, each a heavy-hitter in the digital beauty community. One of the top performers in L’Oreal’s campaign is Chantel Jefferies. Known by her 3 million fans for her sun-kissed aesthetic and fashionable outfits, Chantel’s single post found over 225,000 likes, 1,100 comments, and an engagement rate of 15% among these influencer marketing case studies.
  4. BIGELOW TEA: Wants to promote their products, and encourage healthy living. Influencers incorporate Bigelow tea into their content in different ways. Some create original recipes using it, and others turn the packaging into DIY art. Blogger Ashley Thurman, of Cherished Bliss, provides her readers with a recipe to make iced tea with Bigelow tea and lemonade ice cubes. Jess, of A Million Moments provides her readers with a guide to creating beautiful flower pots from the tea packaging. The bloggers manage to generate more than 32,000 blog page engagements for their sponsored posts. Total media value for Bigelow Tea increases more than threefold, and the brand experiences an 18.5% increase in sales.
  5. BONOBOS: A men’s clothing line, wants to promote their Summer 2016 Collection through social media, and digital marketing campaigns. They launch, among these influencer marketing case studies, the #BetterThanAC campaign to promote the idea that the new Bonobos collection is designed to keep men cool. To leverage this campaign, they work with Foster Huntington, an influential videographer and photographer. The influencer creates several posts showcasing Bonobos clothing in the midst of outdoor summer moments. The campaign yields 5.1 million impressions, and more than 68,200 engagements in the form of likes, shares, and comments.
  6. IKEA: Launches their first influencer campaign for IKEA Germany with YouTubers. The brand hopes that stars’ fans would respond positively to the social content. Celebrity YouTubers from Germany – including Klein aber Hannah and beauty guru Sara Desideria – set an interior design challenge by IKEA. Their task is to transform a blank canvas into a stylishly decorated living space – all within their 180 minute time limit. The vlogs capturing these challenges were uploaded to YouTube, where they quickly gain over 300,000 views and received thousands of audience engagements.
  7. HULU: Wants to promote their new show, “Casual,” and reach their existing audience, as well as the audience of  Thrillist, a men’s digital lifestyle brand among these influencer marketing case studies. They need someone influential to get the word out. So they decide to work with TV personality Andi Dorfman, who previously starred in, “The Bachelorette.” She is invited to the show’s event premiere. She then entices her social media fans with images from the event, through which she shared her experience. Her posts include hashtags like #keepitcasual and #casualonhulu to promote the new show. These images and other images from the event are then added to a landing page on Thrillist. Through just one influencer, Hulu is able to reach more than 1.3 million people. The influencer’s content generates high levels of engagement, with over 13,000 likes, 81 comments, and 96 shares. Andi’s appearance at the event helps build hype for the new TV show, enabling Hulu to achieve their goal.
  8. LEESA.COM: The direct-to-consumer mattress company, Leesa, wantes to win the trust of their target audience through unbiased reviews. Since they only sell online, online reviews sre the best way for the company to prove that their products are worth the investment. They work with influencers who could generate high levels of engagement. To find the right influencers for their campaign, the brand focuses on follower engagement rates rather than number of followers. Blogs like Sleepopolis review the mattresses from Leesa, and provide their readers with their unbiased reviews, The bloggers also provide their readers with a coupon code to help them save money on their purchase. Leesa was able to drive more than 400 mattress sales, and 100,000 clicks to the brand’s website.
  9. NORDSTROM: To promote its Anniversary Sale, Nordstrom partners with 22 Instagram influencers to create 46 sponsored posts on Instagram. The vast majority of the influencers involve were millennial females with fashion-focused feeds. They range from up-and-coming fashion Instagrammers with around 100,000 followers to some of the most well-known fashion influencers in the industry. The Instagram influencer campaign has generated 1.1M likes and 10K comments, with a total engagement rate of 6.3%.
  10. PEDIGREE: Wants to humanize their brand by standing up for a cause. The brand runs, “Buy a Bag, Give a Bowl,” campaign to support a national effort, and amplifies it with the help of influencers. The influencers promote the campaign through their social media content, blog posts, and video content. Influencers like Kristyn Cole help promote the campaign on Instagram by sharing touching stories about their pets to appeal to their followers’ emotions. The campaign helps Pedigree increase their total media value 1.3 times, and generates more than 43 million impressions, and 62,800+ content views. The campaign drives 9,300 blog page engagements, and helped Pedigree win the love of their target audience.

Are you convinced from the results of these influencer marketing case studies? Does your company need help with influencer marketing?

 

 

10 inspiring social media case studies in disaster response 0

Posted on September 11, 2017 by Rob Petersen

social media case studies in disaster response

Social media case studies in disaster response show social media as a vital communication vehicle and database to government agencies and communities. And how they use both the networks and technology available in life saving ways.

Consider these facts for people who have survived a disaster:

  • 76% contact friends to make sure they are safe
  • 37% use info on social media to buy supplies and seek shelter
  • 35% post a request for help on a first responder’s Facebook page (Source: Emergency Management)

To view more facts, there is an infographic at the bottom of these social media case studies in disaster response.

Here are 10 inspiring social media case studies in disaster response.

  1. AMERICAN RED CROSS: The Red Cross has been at the forefront of social media case studies in disaster response using its social media accounts to serve communities in an emergency. BLOG: The Red Cross blog covers many topics related to the organization and its mission. During active disasters, the blog is the primary tool for sharing disaster-related information. FACEBOOK: The Red Cross’ Facebook page, which has more than 830,000+ Likes, serves as a community forum for providing information, sharing and discussing current issues, and learning how to take action and donate funds. FLICKR: The Red Cross’ extensive volunteer network operating in many locations provides a substantial database of photos of impacted communities and relief efforts. PINTEREST: The Red Cross uses Pinterest to give visitors the ability to pin Red Cross-related images to their own pinboards and share information through social media platforms.
  2. CITY OF NEW ORLEANS, HURRICANE ISSAC (2012): Early on, reports indicated that Florida would be in the storm’s path during the same week as the scheduled Republican National Convention. As the storm changed its path and headed toward New Orleans, official organizations such as the National Hurricane Center, the National Weather Service, FEMA, and the City of New Orleans used #Isaac and #NOLA consistently on social media networks to clarify alerts and warnings. The New Orleans mayor’s Twitter account was used to respond directly to community members’ Twitter messages and to correct misinformation. Community members posted eyewitness videos and photos of damages and reported utility outages, flooding locations, and road closures. FEMA and the City of New Orleans used this information to plan their response efforts.
  3. CITY OF SAN FRANCISCO: The city uses a text-based notification system, AlertSF, and encourages its Twitter followers to sign up for those alerts and AlertSF subscribers to use Twitter. More information is pushed onto Twitter, such as traffic and weather details. AlertSF is used solely for emergencies because officials do not want to clutter people’s cell phones with messages, Dudgeon said. The city also uses an outdoor public warning system.
  4. FEMA APP: With hurricane season continuing through November 30, the FEMA app is an essential tool to help your family weather the storm, nationwide. Receive weather alerts from the National Weather Service for up to five different locations anywhere in the United States. Learn what to do before, during and after emergencies with safety tips. This is a free app.
  5. MAKE AMERICA SAFER THROUGH SOCIAL MEDIA COMMUNITY: The Make America Safer through Social Media community, led by Hal Grieb of Plano, is collecting the best practices of the different social media tools available, DHS’ Vazquez said.Members of the network can engage in specific forums, contribute to blogs and wikis, post documents, share calendars, and bookmark content from the Internet. Members also have profiles that give details about their accreditations, association memberships, credentials, training, and areas of interest related to job activities, such as social media. “They have a level of trust that we, the government, can verify that the people there are also first responders and have a need to know information” related to emergency management, Vazquez said.“In many ways, it gives [first responders] a social collaboration tool similar to Facebook and LinkedIn,” he said, “but the difference is that this is a controlled environment.”
  6. PORT-AU-PRINCE, HAITI, 2010 EARTHQUAKE (2010): After the Haiti earthquake, hundreds of volunteers around the world, dubbed in the media as “digital humanitarians.” As part of the effort, the volunteers first completed the digital mapping of the country using satellite imagery. An open source interactive mapping solution called Ushahidi Platform was then used to map geotagged Twitter messages and other mappable content from hundreds of other online sources. Another successful venture during the Haiti crisis, the American Red Cross’ charity text message campaign, took advantage of smartphone and SMS messaging technology. The campaign raised more than $22 million for Haiti relief within only a few days of the earthquake, thereby demonstrating the power of mobile technology. The charity’s previous record for a text-based campaign was $400,000.
  7. QUEENLAND FLOODS (2010): Long lasting and intensive rainfalls over large areas of north eastern Australia during the wet season of 2010 led to large flooding in Queensland. Nearly seventy-eight per cent of the state of Queensland had been declared a disaster zone in this example of social media case studies in disaster response. The QPS used Social Media streams during the 2011 flood disaster mostly to get information and warnings out to their following community and the public. They wanted to act as a centralised clearing house for disaster-related information. The need for verified informations two significant boosts of “Likes” on Facebook. The first boost occurred in December 2010 and doubled in number. About 14,000 people followed the QPS Facebook account by the end of December 2010. The second more powerful boost occurred after the flash flooding events of Toowoomba and the Lockyer Valley on the 10th of January 2011, and at the beginning of the flooding of Brisbane on the 11th January. “Likes” of the QPS Facebook page increased from 14,000 to over 160,000
  8. TORONTO POLlCE SERVICE: The Toronto Police Service (TPS) has taken an aggressive approach to social media. By mid-2012, it had trained 300 staff to use networking tools such as Twitter, Facebook and blogs. One example of this strategy emerged when police were conducting a manhunt in a residential community. The suspect was regarded as armed and dangerous; as a precaution, some schools were locked down and homes secured. By following keywords and hashtags (a symbol used tomark keywords or topics), the TPS were able to monitor what the community was saying about the incident. In doing so, they were able to correct misinformation, dispel rumors and provide assurance that police were on the scene.
  9. U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY: The U.S. Geological Survey is developing a prototype site that monitors Twitter feeds to provide scientists with real-time data about earthquakes in this example of social media case studies in disaster response. The goal of the Twitter Earthquake Detector effort is to demonstrate a way to rapidly detect earthquakes and provide an initial damage assessment. TED taps into the Twitter API and searches for keywords such as “earthquake.” It then pulls and aggregates the information, including photographs, to give USGS scientists a map based on the number of tweets coming from a geographic area. That information is useful because there is a time lag between an earthquake and its official verification.
  10. VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT (VDEM): Launched an emergency management system — the Virginia Interoperability Picture for Emergency Response — that has transformed how it prepares for emergencies and responds to disasters. VIPER is a geospatial information system-based enterprise platform that integrates with numerous information systems and links with approximately 250 data feeds. It supplies a Web-based common operating picture and numerous analysis tools. Emergency commanders; first responders; and police, fire and government officials can tap into a single information resource to gain an accurate understanding of events.

Do these case studies convince you of the value of social media in disaster response. To help your understanding, here is an infographic of the ways that it is used.

15 eCommerce case studies show big results from small changes 0

Posted on September 04, 2017 by Rob Petersen

ecommerce case studies

eCommerce case studies show how regular audits and improvements to a website produce big results from seemingly small changes.

That’s because most of us now prefer to buy online, especially Millennials. And businesses that make the process easier, simpler and more seamless are going to see the benefits. Consider these facts:

  • 85% of customers start a purchase on one device and finish it on another. (Google)
  • 67% of Millennials and 56% of Gen Xers prefer to shop on online rather than in-store. (Big Commerce)
  • 51% of Americans prefer to shop online. (Big Commerce)

Just what happens?

Here are 15 eCommerce case studies that show big results from small changes.

  1. BANDAGES PLUS: Is an eCommerce site that sells compression therapy supplies, bandages, tapes, ready-made kits and more. Bandages Plus serves a unique audience specifically looking for their products. They segmented products into categories that included best sellers, high-margin items and others. The segmentation was reflected in their Paid Search ad campaigns which targeted ads by user groups. The improvements resulted in a 50% increase in both transactions and revenue.
  2. COMPANY FOLDER: Makes custom folders and wanted to remedy their online quote function. This was a vital step in their marketing funnel, so making the process as smooth as possible was essential to ultimately driving more sales for the business. They took a cumbersome single step process with lots of options and broke it up into a multi-step bite size process. Doing this resulted in a whopping 67.68% increase in total quotes.
  3. DIAMOND CANDLES: Is a company that features rings beneath the wax of its candles. By utilizing customer-contributed photos on its Facebook page, Diamond Candles upped conversion rates and attracted more than 290,000 new Facebook fans.
  4. DIVA: Is a fashion retail chain based in Australia with more than 160 stores worldwide. Slow load times and functional obstacles created challenges for conversions among eCommerce case studies. Site improvements were implemented such as: 1) Removing obstacles and diversions to the Shopping Cart when the user wanted to keep shopping, 2) speeding up the site via site enhancements and Google Page Speed Service and 3) improving social sharing and proof. The results was average revenue per visitor was up 92%
  5. EDIBLE ARRANGEMENTS: Offered customers a same-day delivery option but people weren’t taking advantage of the offer because they didn’t know about it. To educate customers about this option they significantly increased visibility with a large banner in an extremely prominent position on the homepage, just below the navigation bar and featured a countdown timer to the deadline for same day delivery. It was impossible to miss or misunderstand. What is the result of this simple countdown feature among our eCommerce case studies? An increase in same-day sales by 8%.
  6. ENVELOPES.COM: Wanted to see if they could “rekindle the flame” and land some sales from hot leads using target followups. So they tested out email sends at two alternate time lapses post cart abandonment; the first group sent the following morning at 11 am and the second group 48 hours post cart abandonment.  Although both did well, the emails sent 48 hours later delivered the best conversion rate and sales with: 1) An open rate of 38.0%, 2)  a click-through rate of 24.7% and 3) a conversion rate of 40.0%
  7. EXPRESS WATCHES: Debated whether to communicate a lowest price guarantee versus a stamp of authenticity on their website. They tested variants with both, each telling a different story about the clientele: bargain hunters vs aficionados. The results were pretty surprising. By labeling the site with a badge of authenticity, Express Watches saw an increase in online sales of 107%. A huge differential from the price based messaging, simply from a little seal of authenticity.
  8. HOUSEPLANS.NET: Is an eCommerce site that sells ready-designed house plans direct to consumers. The audit revealed some issues that could be addressed with a thorough link audit and cleanup. A Content Audit found opportunities to improve the site quality as a whole and clean up indexation in Google. That process involved pruning underperforming content on the site, which turned out to be close to 80% of all product pages. This resulted in a 434% increase in organic traffic revenue over the previous year.
  9. LILGADGETS HEADPHONES: Sold its headphones exclusively on Amazon. The idea was to offer parents a choice they didn’t previously have in the children headphones market — a simple and clean look with amazing sound and premium components. But to stand out and create a competitive advantage, Lilgadgets needed to build a brand, which meant developing a site of their own. They made sure to offer a custom checkout experience where customer could see where they were in the process and what was left to complete. The result was: 1) A 38.3% lift in peak conversions, 2) an average conversion rate of 8% and 3) conversions have risen despite advertising campaigns that have increased site traffic by 80%.
  10. MODERN COIN MART: The self-described “Modern Coin Superstore” added a simple trustmark to its eCommerce site to ease customers’ anxieties about the purchasing process. A tiny graphic produced monumental results among our eCommerce case studies, boosting sales conversions to 14%.
  11. PAPERSTONE: Is a small paper company that competes with large brand big box stores like Staples and Viking. With most people defaulting to the brands they know best, Paperstone needed to find a way to leverage their strengths against the competition; lower prices.
  12. RADICALGOLFCARTS.COM: Is an eCommerce store selling aftermarket golf cart parts and accessories. They overhauled their website with changes such as: 1) Fix a SSL Certificate Issue on the site, which caused some browsers to prompt users in the cart with a warning the site was susceptible to hackers, 2) use a Favicon, the little icon seen at the top of tabs and in browser bookmarks is the unsung hero on online branding and conversions, 3) increase the presence of Free Shipping on the site and 3) elevate the presence of Trust Factors in the Cart and Checkout. When the pieces came together, sales were up 66%,
  13. TOTAL HOME SUPPLY: Is an eCommerce site that specializes in selling products for private homes and businesses, such as air conditioners, heaters, fireplaces and appliances, as well as other home and business needs. There was no call tracking to determine where conversions were coming from, and lack of tracking made it hard to determine the full value of their ad campaigns. Call tracking was implemented to better understand conversion. The call tracked increased cost 9%, but revenue increased 199%.
  14. UNDERWATER AUDIO: Had a problem with visitors who were in the middle of their sales funnel, researching specific products but then dropping off at the comparison page. When they noticed this leak they decided to get to the bottom of it. The new version did away with the data tables, streamlined the text, and put everything above the fold. The redesigned page had an increase in online sales of 40.8%
  15. WINE ENTHUSIAST: Put content into play to earn trust with consumers. The company’s website features wine reviews, articles and videos to help build an audience. The content helped yield a 50% increase in monthly email opt-ins.

Do these eCommerce case studies convince you of the big results possible from small changes? Does your eCommerce business need to be examined to see you can improve?

10 greatest growth hacking case studies and their learning 0

Posted on July 17, 2017 by Rob Petersen

growth hacking case studies

Growth hacking is a process of rapid experimentation across marketing channels and product development to identify the most effective, efficient ways to grow a business.

Growth hacking case studies involves outside-the-box marketing strategies used to get the maximum number of users with minimal spend. Growth hacking is particularly prevalent with startups.

A growth hacker is a person whose sole focus is growth. Every decision that a growth hacker makes is informed by growth. Every strategy, every tactic, and every initiative, is attempted in the hopes of growing. Growth hackers experiment, test, and are always pushing limits with unconventional acquisition strategies. The term was coined by Seth Ellis in 2010, the CEO and Founder of GrowthHackers.

What are examples?

Here are 10 greatest growth hacking case studies and their learning.

AIRBNB: Know where your audience hangs out.

growth hacking case studies - airbnb

After raising the initial round of funding, the founders focused their plans to grow the company in an exponential fashion. In the world of internet marketing, it is all about getting traffic from some other platform to your own. The founders understood that Craigslist was one of the platforms where their target audience hangs out. With a very smooth messaging (above), Airbnb encouraged people to share their listing on Craigslist as well. This resulted in exponential growth for Airbnb as their listings were much better (than the regular Craigslist one) in terms of images, structure and appeal.

BEYONCE: Make your own news

growth hacking case studies - beyonce

Beyonce launched in 2013 her new album. Normally when you launch a new album you’ll hire a PR company, pay for advertising, make small intro videos and many other things to increase awareness. Beyonce did not do that. Instead she uploaded her album on Itunes without telling anyone. What happened the next morning? Everyone bought her album. Newspapers, bloggers, social medias were exploding: How can you release a album without any promotion? She actually got more PR and coverage than under a regular album release. The album sales made Beyonce one of richest in the industry during 2013.

BUZZFEED: Understand what engages people and gets shared

 

growth hacking case studies - BuzzFeed

BuzzFeed started as a side project when one of its co-founders was working at Huffington post. The team started getting a hang of why people share content, how stories spread and what makes someone engage with content. One of the first memes that got viral was a girl standing outside a burning house. The look on the girl’s face indicated that she set the house on fire. Over the years, BuzzFeed has evolved its content as the Internet changed. However, at the core, the team knows what makes people click and what influences social sharing.

DROPBOX: Invite a friend

growth hacking case studies - dropbox

After realizing that paid media was costing more than the lifetime value of their customers, Dropbox had to start thinking out of the (drop)box. They decided to start incentivizing customers to refer more business by offering additional storage space. They grew from 100,000 users to over 4,000,000 in a little over a year. Dropbox is valued at $10 billion dollars.

HOTMAIL: Show appreciation

growth hacking case studies - hotmail

Hotmail is one of the most outstanding growth hacking case studies. They started and developed with a slow pace. In some first period, Hotmail executed traditional marketing channels such as radio, billboards, etc. After that, however, everything got much better when a small line was dropped at the end of each email: “PS: I love you. Get your free e-mail at Hotmail”. The small sentence caused their user base to boom and a year and a half later Microsoft bought them for $400,000,000.

HUBSPOT: Educate and help your audience

image-source-ph-creative

HubSpot practices what it preaches for growth hacking case studies. Both the co-founders were focused on building content and tools that would generate inbound leads which could be further converted into paying customers. HubSpot invested extensively in:

  • Building valuable content in the form of blog posts, eBooks etc. for marketers and sales professionals.
  • They launched free tools like website grader and Twitter grader which help you understand your site’s and Twitter performance. Till date, Hubspot has received millions of requests for using these tools.
  • Hubspot also invested in webinars to teach people about marketing and sales.

The conversion rates on inbound leads that came through these efforts were phenomenal. HubSpot began with just 3 customers in 2006 and last year they had revenue of over $271,000,000.

SNAPCHAT: Create a new type of user experience

growth hacking case studies - snapchat

Snapchat creates a new way to communicate with friends that is fun and interactive and different from the other social networks. It creates a sense of privacy through the disappearing nature of the content. Snapchat allows users to send photos and videos to one or many friends, while limiting how long the recipients can see them. The maximum time is 10 seconds, just enough for the recipients to enjoy the moment before it is lost forever. In addition to photos and videos, Snapchat lets users express their creativity by adding text and drawing on the photos. This allows the user to create all types of goofy images and fun things that add to the experience. In 2 years , the company achieved and eye-popping 350 million “snaps” per day.

SPOTIFY: Try before you buy from Freemium to Premium

growth hacking case studies - spotify

Unlike many streaming options, Spotify puts the control firmly in the user’s hands, allowing them to select specific songs and create playlists instead of roughly approximating terrestrial radio by choosing an artist or station and listening to or skipping whatever song comes on, as is the case with Pandora and Last.fm. Spotify has two tiers:

  • Free: Spotify’s free tier is ad-supported, with skip-restricted shuffle and ready-made playlists available on mobile and the ability to choose any song, any time on tablets and computers.
  • Premium: As with a free membership, paid subscribers can listen to any song at any time, only they can do so at a higher bitrate, via their mobile devices, in offline mode, and without ads. A Premium subscription costs $9.99 per month, though Spotify offers a free 30-day trial along with a discounted $5 per month plan for students.

80% of Spotify subscribers began as free users.

UBER: Disrupt the market and fill a huge need

growth hacking case studies - uber

Uber provides a solution to a real problem that impacts millions of people. In all sense of the word they have disrupted the monopoly of taxi cab transportation that exists in many cities and reinvented the experience from top to bottom. The disruption of the market is manifest in so many way for the passenger from: 1) Concept of “ride sharing” vs “taxi”, 2) transportation brought to you vs you having to find a cap, and 3) Ordering through an app vs. traditional means. On the passenger side, Uber is obsessed with customer satisfaction. On the driver side, Uber offer people who are out of work or in need of additional income, a way to make a living.  Uber is valued at $3.76 billion.

WALL STREET JOURNAL: Acquire and activate your audience at the same time

growth hacking case studies - wall street journal

The Wall Street Journal an approach to both acquisition and activation by offering access to free WiFI through 500 hotspots in high-traffic areas in New York City such as Union Square, SoHo, Greenwich Village, Chelsea and Times Square. In order to use the WiFi, a simple instruction is provided which requests “Name”, “Password” and “Job title”. Creating an additional data collection field such as “Job Title”, can help create targeted email marketing for future retention campaigns. Although actual results are not available, the effort has been repeated multiple times as well as expanded to San Francisco.

Do these growth hacking case studies have value for you? Can you apply any learning from these growth hacking case studies to your business? Does growth hacking have a place in your company?

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