This week, I’d like to start off with a piece of mail I received after the last case study, which focused on growing a company’s email database:
“I would really like to see more articles that let small communities and web sites know what works as an initial recruitment campaign. There are a lot of us out here, and it is paramount that our initial recruitment drives are successful.”
I’m happy to oblige. So today, here’s a look at another approach to recruiting customers.
Zoomerang is an Internet service – and a division of MarketTools Inc. – that allows businesses and individuals to create online surveys and analyze the results. Late last year, the company decided to divert its energies toward building a large membership database, and it concluded that a third-party loyalty program would be a good place to start. Zoomerang chose MyPoints.com, which, with nearly 16 million members, is one of the largest loyalty marketing programs in the world.
“We were trying to move quickly, and they were ready to move,” says John McCrea, vice president of worldwide marketing at MarketTools. Plus, he notes, the MyPoints. model offers a broad number of incentives to its members.
So, keeping in line with the beauty of Internet advertising, where advertisers can insist on results rather than paying for access to eyeballs and hoping for the best, Zoomerang paid MyPoints for 300,000 guaranteed click-throughs. The mailing, (please be advised this is a very large image) which was sent out over a period of a few months, starting in late December and trickling through into March, gave individuals a small incentive – 10 points, a standard MyPoints offer – for checking out the site and a larger incentive – 150 points – for registering to use the Zoomerang tool.
The results were higher than Zoomerang expected. More than 100,000 individuals (somewhere in the range of 35 to 40 percent, or between 105,000 and 120,000 people) registered to use the service.
So far, so good. At this point, Zoomerang had what McCrea called a “little problem” – lots of registered members who could use a push into actually using the tool. (This is where Zoomerang makes its money because while registering for and using the standard product itself is free, those who use it will become more inclined to upgrade to the tool that offers more features at a subscription price of $199 per year.)
So Zoomerang conducted a follow-up campaign to stimulate survey usage. The company sent out a straight plain-text mailing to Zoomerang members who had registered with Zoomerang through the MyPoints program, and it offered an additional 100 points to those who created and sent a survey.
Again, McCrea says, the results were great; usage of the tool jumped dramatically. Whereas in January Zoomerang members were creating an average of approximately 6,000 surveys per month, by September that number had soared to approximately 40,000 surveys per month. McCrea credits MyPoints with playing a large role in stimulating usage.
So, to sum up, during the time Zoomerang teamed up with MyPoints, it added more than 100,000 customers to its database, and usage of the tool increased nearly sevenfold.
What’s next for the company? Because of market conditions, MarketTools is shifting its focus on its higher-end product, zTelligence, an enterprise-wide research and knowledge management tool, and letting Zoomerang continue to flow along nicely. And thanks to the successful database-building campaign, it looks like it will do just that.