How BuildFire Used Experiences to Increase MQLs by 46%

Ian Blair
Founder & CEO
at
BuildFire
Auston Troyer
+46%
MQLs
+48%
Homepage CTR
1 hour
Engineering Time
By personalizing their site using Proof Experiences
Ian Blair
Founder & CEO
,
BuildFire
Industry
SaaS
Employees:
46
Headquarters:
San Diego, CA
Products Used
Experiences
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An app development agency sought a solution to increase SQLs without using engineering resources

BuildFire is a mobile app development platform based in San Diego, California that operates as a traditional app agency and as a SaaS business. Bob Warrington, VP of Marketing, and Ian Blair, Founder & CEO, were looking for ways to grow the number of monthly Marketing Qualified Leads (MQLs) for their Sales Team. In order to reach their aggressive growth goals, BuildFire implemented Proof Experiences to enrich 8 contact forms and humanize each visitor's experience on a return visit to the site. After 30 days of using Experiences, BuildFire hit a company record high number of MQLs (a 46% increase), and their sales team reported higher quality prospects from Proof-enriched leads.

Why did

BuildFire

choose to personalize with Smart Journeys?

Before turning to Proof, BuildFire's marketing team did an amazing job optimizing their customer journey through highly-targeted Facebook ads, personalized email outreach, and relevant content drip campaigns to high-value segments. But the one touchpoint BuildFire continually struggled to personalize was the on-site web experience. Pulling engineers away from product tasks to work on site personalization was nearly an impossible feat. When Ian discovered Experiences could allow his marketing team to easily and quickly personalize their website without engineering resources, we quickly decided to work together.

Before using Experiences, we personalized every marketing touchpoint at BuildFire except our website... because taking engineers away from building product is impossible.

Ian Blair
Founder & CEO
,
BuildFire

How did

BuildFire

implement Experiences?

Strategies used:

  • Pre-filled forms using Clearbit enrichment
  • In-line social proof notifications
  • Personalized testimonials
  • Personalized headlines
  • Auto-fill & auto-hide form fields
  • Audience bucketing and data-enrichment

1) Added on-page social proof (and boosted homepage click-through rates by 48%)

Social proof is one of the most powerful tactics in any marketer's toolkit. Humans validate their own actions based on the behaviors of others — it's why we stand in lines at crowded restaurants, buy the same items as our friends, and value the opinions of others. You've likely seen the widespread deployment of social proof online as you’ve booked a hotel room or a flight. But that tactic doesn’t just work in the travel industry, it’s incredibly effective for B2B marketing as well.

Below the "Get started" button on BuildFire's homepage, we implemented "In-line Social Proof" to add a real-time data stream showing how many people have recently taken action on page.

As a result of implementing in-line social proof with Experiences, 48% more people clicked the “Get started” button.

We hypothesize the audience who was served with "🔥 8664 companies got started with BuildFire in the past month" had more trust in BuildFire’s services and were consequently more likely to convert.

2) Increased momentum on subsequent pages from top of funnel personalization

On the next page in BuildFire’s funnel, 70% more people clicked "Let BuildFire Build It" (even though the Experiences team did not change any on-page elements).

When visitors saw social proof on the Homepage, that counteracted their first objection and that carried through to subsequent pages.

3) Identified visitors with auto-fill form fields

Before using Experiences, BuildFire collected emails in a form at the end of this signup flow. In order to personalize the rest of the signup flow, we moved the email field to the first step of the signup flow to allow Proof to call Clearbit’s API to find out a person's identify if Experiences doesn't already know.

Using the autofill feature, if a visitor has already opted-in elsewhere on the site, a form will auto-fill known fields and hide the email field to reduce the length of the form.

Because BuildFire was already storing their customer data in Segment, they were able to quickly integrate with Experiences with a few clicks through our Segment Destination integration.

Deep integration between Segment and Proof Experiences

Fields in their signup funnel are pre-filled with known data from 3 warehouses:

  1. Contact properties in BuildFire's HubSpot CRM
  2. 3rd party Clearbit data
  3. Past website activity (recorded and stored by Segment's pixel)

One of the most important questions in BuildFire’s signup flow is the question, "What type of app are you looking to build?"

This qualifies a lead based on an Industry's unique use case. Based on what a visitor chooses in this dropdown, Experiences builds a custom audience to target a personalized experience in future interactions.

Finally, we implemented the in-line social proof playbook at the bottom of the form to add even more confidence for visitors signing up.

4) Auto-filled known data on business information page

Since an email address is now collected on the first step of the signup flow, Experiences instantly searches Clearbit and Segment's databases to find a contact match and auto-fill the second page of the signup form with this information.

Using Experiences, the headline has been dynamically updated to reflect a visitor’s response to the first question, "What type of app are you looking to build?"

In the screenshot below, you can see the headline now reads, "Is this corporate mobile app for an existing business?"


5) Auto-populated the final page with contact fields

The last step of BuildFire's lead funnel is a simple contact form. Using the email collected in the first form field — a user’s First Name, Last Name, Email, and Phone Number are auto-filled if the data is found in Clearbit and Segment. Then the visitor confirms that the data is correct rather than having to provide the data — reducing yet another point of friction.


6) Personalized Calendly call bookings

Once the visitors has completed the lead capture flow, they are encouraged to schedule a time to talk with a BuildFire consultant to chat about their app project.

The Calendly fields are autofilled from a visitor’s signup flow data.

In addition to auto-filling the form fields, Experiences has personalized the headline to reflect the answer from the question, "What type of app are you looking to build?" In the screenshot below, you can see the headline now says "Almost done! Schedule a time with a Corporate App Consultant."


We already had our customer data in Segment, which made it incredibly easy to pull into Proof using their Segment integration. Combining that with Clearbit data allowed us to create personalized inline social proof, fill forms, and change the text on the funnel to give a more relevant experience at each step.

Ian Blair
Founder & CEO
,
BuildFire

What key results did

BuildFire

achieve after implementing Smart Journeys?

BuildFire is an extremely data-driven SaaS company, so they wanted to be absolutely sure personalization was positively affecting their KPIs before fully committing their traffic to the experiment. Using Experiences’ built-in A/B testing feature, they were able to show a personalized experience to half of their visitors and a default experience for the other half.

After 10 days, the experiment reached a 95% statistical significance. The marketing team still  wanted to run the test for an additional 2 week period to account for any fluctuations in data. Once that two week window passed, it was very clear that personalization had a big impact. And as a result of implementing Experiences, BuildFire achieved:

  1. A 46% increase in MQLs
  2. A 48% increase in CTR from step 1 to step 2 of the funnel
  3. Only 1 hour of internal engineering hours dedicated to implementing personalization with Experiences

Now that Experiences proved to increase conversions, they concluded the A/B test and transitioned 100% of their traffic to the personalized signup flow powered by Proof Experiences.

After 2 weeks using Experiences on our sales demo funnel, we increased leads for our sales team by 46%! Personalization absolutely works and now is easy enough for our marketing team to implement.

Ian Blair
Founder & CEO
,
BuildFire
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