A software startup wanted delightfully human marketing, but lacked the time & resources
Our social proof software Proof Notifications is used on over 18,000 sites across industries — from E-commerce to SaaS and beyond. But trying to build and manage multiple funnels for our software as a scrappy startup with limited time & resources was a ton of work for our small marketing team. We knew the power and effectiveness of personalization, but we lacked the platform to accomplish our goals. Before Proof Experiences, our team relied on one marketing funnel to speak to our incredibly diverse audiences. By implementing Experiences, we created one demo funnel and used our new software to personalize our pages for each unique industry. This resulted in a 54% increase in demo registrations and a 32% increase in trials. We hit all of our aggressive growth goals while and creating a delightful buying experience for our customers.
choose to personalize with Smart Journeys?
Our philosophy for deciding what product to build next always starts with the same question: "What problem are we constantly frustrated by?"
We always try to solve for our own needs, and we’ve found that generally our own frustrations are not isolated. Before entering the software business, our co-founders created courses on how to run paid advertising and perform CRO. When we needed a way to increase the conversion rate on our pages, we created our social proof software to solve an internal need. It worked incredibly well for us, and now over 18,000 customers trust our product to increase their own conversion rates. As we’ve grown that product, we became frustrated by the offerings that existed to easily personalize our own marketing site. And that's when we came up with the idea for Proof Experiences.
Right now, Proof Notifications serves five distinct industries. We used Proof Experiences to implement personalization on our demo funnel and to humanize every element on a page for a visitor's unique industry.
Building out and managing unique funnels for all the industries we serve would be a nightmare and too time consuming for our team. Experiences simplified everything. We now only build one funnel that can real-time adapt for all of our customer segments.
We looked at our touch points across a customer’s journey and determined that watching a demo is the single-most crucial step to getting a prospect to start a trial. Our hypothesis was that if we could increase demo registrations, it would have a direct lift on new trials, new customers, and most importantly, revenue.
Since Proof serves several industries and has several use cases, it was always hard to communicate well without at least alienating one group of visitors. That was, until we started using Proof Experiences.
Our funnel begins on our highest traffic page: our homepage. If a visitor is unidentified, a generic benefit headline sparks the interest of the visitor and pushes them towards the call to action, "Watch an instant demo."
If this is the visitor's first time coming to the site, we likely don't know their industry yet. However, if the visitor is already a contact in our HubSpot CRM and tagged with an industry —then the homepage will dynamically adjust to call out their industry (more on that in a second).
Once a visitor clicks "Watch an instant demo," they go to a survey page where they can choose an industry. While we serve many other industries, 80% of our customers identify as SaaS, E-Commerce, Coaching, or Agency. If one of these 4 industries is not a good fit, then a visitor will click "Other" and type in their industry manually. We look at those submissions every week to understand which industry we may want to personalize for next.
When a visitor clicks on their industry, the event is instantly passed into Segment to communicate who a person is within the Proof Experiences platform. This triggers all of the visitor's future on-site experiences to be uniquely tailored to their industry. Instantly, the elements on the page adapt without a page refresh!
Once we know a visitor's industry, the elements on the demo registration page dynamically adjust to position for an industry. What do we mean by that?
Let’s look at an example!
For our SaaS audience, notice that the screenshot below the headline says, "See why the fastest SaaS companies use Proof to acquire more users." The secondary text below the headline has been updated to mention specific SaaS customer that use Proof on their sites. And of course, our Social Proof Notification in the bottom left corner has also been adjusted to note, "50 SaaS marketers watched the demo in the last 7 days".
As a visitor scrolls down the page, they will see several other elements all tailored to their unique industry, such as logos and testimonials of Proof customers from their same industry.
After a visitor opts-in, on the following page they watch a 7-minute demo discussing the value proposition of installing Proof Notifications on a site. For the time being, this demo is not personalized based on industry, but a personalized demo is in our personalization roadmap. On this page, the only element that is personalized is the headline which reads, "Watch the SaaS demo below to learn more about our marketing platform."
Let's say the visitor got this far, but wasn't quite ready to start their free 14-day trial. Days later, they see a retargeting ad on Facebook urging them to start a trial. When they click the ad, it takes them to the homepage. But not a generic homepage – Experiences remembers the visitor has already watched the demo and that they are a SaaS company.
Now the call to action is adjusted to display, "Start my free trial".
The headline and sub-headline have both been updated to reflect the visitor’s industry as well.
Finally, Embedded Social Proof shows "🔥153 SaaS companies started a trial in the last month" right below the CTA.
If a visitor clicks the "Start my free trial" CTA, they’ll arrive on the account creation page.
Again, the headline is personalized for their industry and the testimonial is adjusted to reference someone of influence from their same industry.
In this screenshot, the testimonial is from Gustaf Alstromer, Former Head of Growth at Airbnb who said, "Adding live social proof was the #1 driver of increased revenue in all my experiments while at Airbnb."
Ultimately, personalizing the experience for visitors to our demo funnel increased demo signups by 54% and new trial registrations by 32%!
Using Proof Experiences is like building a Facebook Ad campaign. First I create an audience in Experiences for each of our 4 industries. Then using the Experiences Chrome extension, I choose to target an audience and write a headline I want my audience to see. Segment tracks every visitor's actions across the site to update our audiences in real-time.
What key results did
achieve after implementing Smart Journeys?
The marketing team at Proof is very data-driven. To know the true impact of tailoring content based on industry, we ran an A/B test where 50% our traffic went through our original, unpersonalized demo funnel and the other 50% went through a personalized demo funnel. We used Google Optimize to split our traffic into audiences and monitor our results. The test ran for 61 days and completed with a 98% statistical significance.
The results of this A/B test concluded with:
- A 54% increase in demo registrations
- A 32% increase in new trials
Plus, visitors in this cohort had a more delightful, relevant experience when on our site. While we can not quantify"delightful" and "relevance", we hypothesize that this audience will have more success with our product because their expectations and education were specifically aligned to an industry. We anticipate a greater level of production adoption by this cohort, and ultimately a higher lifetime value.