Making Your Media Count: A Conversion Case Study

The Challenge

An important business strategy at Randall-Reilly is to ensure our media brands are providing the audiences our clients are promised. Within Randall-Reilly’s corporate marketing department, audience marketing’s goal is to help support and build those brand audiences with the editorial, sales and events staff.

For Total Landscape Care, the audience marketing team and the editors identified three goals they wanted to accomplish. These goals were:

  • to grow subscribers to the newsletter.
  • collect more audience email addresses.
  • collect other audience data (i.e. occupational code, name, company name, physical address, etc.).

The Approach

To accomplish these goals the audience marketing team collaborated with the editors to develop an ongoing promotion, the Editor’s Picks Giveaway.

They began by developing the scope of the promotion. It was determined that the promotion would be bi-monthly (a total of 6 over the year). Therefore, they would need to build the campaign so that everything wouldn’t have to be reinvented every other month. They also determined the channels through which they would promote the campaign.

They asked questions like: Is there an event we can promote at? Can we use social media? Should we do a webinar or a hangout? Could we utilize a promotional YouTube video?

Once the marketing plan was developed, the audience team and the editorial staff crafted a logo and promotion-specific landing page, which could be updated as the promotion evolved. They also created a dedicated URL. This URL redirected to the landing page housed on the TLC website, and was short and easy-to-remember. They also recognized its usefulness for print ads, since TLC is both a print and digital publication.

The editorial staff developed a rotating banner and a static banner for the TLC website. These banners were designed to have a specific call-to-action to get the attention of the TLC audience.

TLC banner ad

On the website, the team added a contest section to the header bar and built a general contest landing page. This gave the audience two points of entry: one through the general contest landing page (which listed the other current promotions as well as the Editor’s Picks Giveaway), and the promotion specific landing page by clicking specific contests on the header bar drop down menu.

The audience marketing team also used social media channels to market the promotion, including Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google+, and YouTube. By embedding a link to the landing page in social media posts with the contest logo and name and creating short videos, they built initial interest and engagement. They also utilized countdowns and changed the images and calls-to-action for the promotion to build anticipation. Once the promotion gained momentum, they used that engagement to drive even more submissions, i.e. “John entered to win, have you?”

tlc facebook ad

The TLC editorial staff was key to the success of this promotion. They leveraged the TLC newsletter, creating a specific header banner with an effective call-to-action. The editors also wrote blog posts hosted on the TLC website, and created an ad for the print magazine. This ad also utilized a specific call-to-action and promoted the dedicated URL.

Finally, they developed a “thank you” page to be shown once someone had submitted the form on the landing page.

A good thank you page will accomplish two things: First, it gives your audience the confidence that the entry went through, and second, it gives us one more chance to engage with them. We can ask them to share the promotion on facebook or social media, or ask them to sign up for the newsletter. Now, instead of only leveraging your own social media presence, you are using your audience to grow your engagement. The takeaway: don’t forget to use the thank you page as the last touch point.
Ashlee Potter, Director of Audience Marketing

The Results

Looking at the Editor’s Picks Giveaway promotional data acquired over a period from February 13, 2014 to April 16, 2014 (during which time the promotion was giving away a free spreader), the results were phenomenal. The landing page conversion rate was a whopping 74.1%. And each of those entries included the data originally stipulated in the planning stages.

Over the life of the campaign, the TLC newsletter subscription list has increased by 73.99%.

If you are looking at a promotion as individual tasks, checked off one at a time, your campaign will never get the momentum it deserves. By selecting your channels and then determining how those can support each other ensures your efforts form a complete circle, thus generating an overall higher conversion.
Ashlee Potter, Director of Audience Marketing