How Better Collective boosted customer engagement rates by 30 per cent
Edward Fowler, marketing technology lead at iGaming affiliate, Better Collective, discusses the successful acquisition of VegasInsider and RotoGrinders.
Onsite at Oracle OpenWorld London, he reveals how the available data following the acquisition was used to significantly improve the level of customer engagement.
Reflecting on Better Collective’s acquisition of web-based sport betting and gambling news site VegasInsider, the outset of the project revealed to Fowler that some organizations are quite unaware of how to successfully action data. “They didn’t realize the wealth of data they were sat on and were doing absolutely nothing with. Upon the acquisition, marketing was relying purely on organic, SEO traffic – an email hadn’t been sent in over four years!”
Reflecting on Better Collective’s acquisition of web-based daily fantasy sports community RotoGrinders “They were collecting data so they could display a basic feed showing the rankings of people,” he remarks. “But they hadn’t thought, hold on, this is really rich data that we can leverage on other channels, or tried to link this to how customers use the tools and services opening opportunity to upsell when this data was centralized in a marketing automation platform.”
Understanding customer data
The strategy to action the data dwelling in VegasInsider repositories begun with the challenge of identifying the valuable data available.
“It was about going through all these databases and tables and asking, ‘what do we have here of value?”
Fowler knew it was important to be aware of the limitations of the data to ensure expectations of stakeholders in the acquisitions were set at a realistic level.
“Did I want to go over and pretend that we were going to change this all around in two days and build a bespoke API?” Fowler questions. “No. It was finding that balance of what we can actually do to deliver results with minimal time and resource.”
In order to sculpt a plan that both parties were going to be committed to, Fowler involved RotoGrinders developers in the process and obtained their input on how strategies could be improved based on the initial data.
“I passed the plan over to the developers and asked, where are the inefficiencies here? Let’s make sure we’re not doubling up data, and if we are, let’s have a look to see where.”
In his mission to provide more value to the experiences provided to customers, Fowler initially faced skepticism from RotoGrinders’ teams.
“There were a few weeks of just being completely ignored on Slack, email, Google Hangouts, pretty much any channel I can think of – marketing automation wasn’t a priority for them and I needed buy in from the people on the ground that would deliver the integration.” Fowler admits. “So, what I eventually did is I got on a flight to Nashville, and got to a base level with the tech team, the marketing team and digital.”
Trying to implement change in a business that may not initially see the value of it can be tricky, Fowler explains. “You need to educate people and really get them to buy-in to what you’re doing,” he advises. “People are very much used to doing things in a certain way and it’s about changing a mindset.”
It is about the approach that you take, convincing the organization of the value that you can add. “I don’t want to just take over. I want to empower them to be able to do more - success is about adding value, not disrupting what they already are doing well.”
Improving customer experiences
Teams saw success from the introduction of personalized emails.
It is about providing one-to-one personalization based on all of the available data, Fowler advises. “In the case of betting expert, we were pulling from about seven of our different APIs just to produce one email for each person.” From this previous integration, we knew what we had to do with RotoGrinders and VegasInsider to replicate success.”
Thanks to the data-driven personalization, customer engagement has significantly improved, notes Fowler. “On one campaign, the daily open rates for a three-month period since rolling out are over 40 per cent, for what normally as an (iGaming) industry average is a few percent and is seen as notoriously poor or spammy content.”
Getting value from customer data
Generating an understanding of your customers through the data you collect is key, and using that data to produce personalized interactions and services means that customers are much more likely to engage than with traditional means.
“That's why, in the case of RotoGrinders, it was so important to be able to connect the dots and map user IDs on the fantasy sport sites with our users,” begins Fowler. “Being able to find that link to third party data is where the real value has been with RotoGrinders, and to me, that’s the real value in customer data.”
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