Here is the latest article in an eWEEK feature series called IT Science, in which we look at what actually happens at the intersection of new-gen IT and legacy systems.
Unless it’s brand new and right off various assembly lines, servers, storage and networking inside every IT system can be considered “legacy.” This is because the iteration of both hardware and software products is speeding up all the time. It’s not unusual for an app-maker, for example, to update and/or patch for security purposes an application a few times a month, or even a week. Some apps are updated daily! Hardware moves a little slower, but manufacturing cycles are also speeding up.
These articles describe new-gen industry solutions. The idea is to look at real-world examples of how new-gen IT products and services are making a difference in production each day. Most of them are success stories, but there will also be others about projects that blew up. We’ll have IT integrators, system consultants, analysts and other experts helping us with these as needed.
Today’s Topic: Obtaining higher customer lifetime value with application integration and automated email campaigns.
Name the problem to be solved:
In addition to offering its industry-leading account-based marketing (ABM) platform, Demandbase offers a series of comprehensive ABM training and certification courses for marketing and revenue professionals to learn about the industry’s best practices and strategies.
“Our certification program is a win-win for us. The courses train marketers in ABM best practices that they can apply at any company, which is a great way to increase awareness around our category and offerings,” said John Dering, senior director at Demandbase. “From a customer marketing standpoint, our goal is to get more Demandbase customers certified, as we’ve observed that certified customers tend to show higher retention and a 2.6x higher CLV.”
The Demandbase team had noticed that while customers tended to take advantage of the company’s comprehensive ABM training, some would stop short of completing the course at different stages. The team knew the importance of encouraging certification completion, but they struggled to identify the exact location where individual customers dropped off in their training within the company’s learning management system (LMS), Decebo.
Recognizing that many of the course attendees would be interested in Demandbase products and in an effort to improve course completion, the company began pulling and exporting long lead lists from Docebo. These lists then needed to be manually reformatted and uploaded to Pardot, the company’s marketing automation platform. However, the process resulted in severe bottlenecks and required extensive time from its team to complete on a regular basis. The company found itself wasting multiple cycles on manual work that could’ve been better spent further building out and improving the certification program.
Demandbase needed a solution that could automatically identify customers who hadn’t completed their certification and then automatically hand off these qualified leads from the certification program for nurture and follow-up.
Describe the strategy that went into finding the solution:
The company began searching for a solution that would offer enterprise-grade functionality and ease-of-use.
“While we are pretty tech-savvy, we don’t have engineers on our team to build integrations. So we needed a low-code solution that didn’t require development knowledge and was flexible enough to evolve with our business needs,” said Dering. “Initially, our search led us to an integration solution that branded itself as a quick and easy automation tool. Unfortunately, that tool didn’t have the flexibility or the functionality to meet our use case.”
After discovering the Tray Platform, the Demandbase team realized that they had found a solution that offered out-of-box connectors for all of the services they needed to integrate, while also being user-friendly enough to not require an engineering background. Additionally, the platform offered strict compliance and data governance policies to ensure the security and privacy of customer data.
Key components in the solution:
Demandbase needed a powerful, low-code solution that could quickly and easily build API integrations between Docebo, Pardot and Salesforce, without the need for IT support. Using the Tray Platform’s pre-built connectors, Demandbase was able to quickly integrate its martech stack to automatically identify qualified customers from its certification program for additional nurture, ultimately driving higher CLV.
Using the Tray Platform, Demandbase automated real-time customer list uploads from Docebo to Pardot, syncing completion rate data with the customer’s record in the team’s CRM, Salesforce. The automated workflow Demandbase built on the Tray Platform automatically routes customers through an email nurture sequence that periodically sends each student personalized reminders and course follow-up material to help the student maintain momentum on what they’ve learned and ultimately drives higher course completion rates, which leads to the higher CLV observed of customers that had completed all of Demandbase’s training.
How the deployment went, and if it came off as planned:
Demandbase used the Tray Platform to bridge the gap between high-value customers and the means to engage them over the course of just a few months. “Eventually, beginners become experts, and the experts seek out tools like ours that help them execute strategic ABM campaigns,” Dering said. “These initiatives aren’t the only ways we’re using automation to augment our educational courses. The success of our first integration led us to look at ways to increase course completion rates. Now, we can identify and follow-up with enrollees that haven’t completed their certification. An investment in our educational programs is ultimately an investment in our bottom line, so we want to nudge as many people as possible to become certified.”
The result, new efficiencies gained, and what was learned from the project:
Using the Tray Platform, Demandbase transformed a very manual, business-critical process into an efficient, automated workflow that helps their team close gaps in their sales funnel and increases the company’s overall CLV.
“Not only do customers that have completed one of our certification courses have 2.6x the lifetime value of non-certified customers, but they are also 12% more likely to renew,” said Dering. “Additionally, we’re seeing a 38% lift in customer training completion rates, thanks to our automated reminder program. This uplift wouldn’t have been possible without our integrations.“
Since implementing the integrations, the company has experienced a 107% ROI in saved hours on manual work, which it has reinvested into creating new content and continually improving the customer experience.
Moving forward, the company plans to further explore the relationship between automation and strategic marketing campaigns. “These days, marketers need to achieve much more with less,” Dering said. “If you can deeply integrate your tech stack, you’re unlocking powerful automation that not only drives revenue growth but saves you time, too.”
For more details, see the full case study here.
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