Travelport Digital increase new customer acquisition by 10x with new product and inbound marketing
Squaredot have worked with Travelport Digital since 2016, assisting them on their inbound journey. Travelport Digital are a world-leading authority of apps and mobile technology for the airline and travel industry. Their mission is to deliver the market’s best mobile and digital solutions to facilitate the modern traveller’s need to be ultra-connected via their smartphone. Travelport were already producing content such as whitepapers and blogs, and had a strong website and brand presence. However, they were keen to enlist Squaredot and Hubspot to help create and promote new waves of content that better follow an inbound methodology and generate more leads.
WHAT WAS THE TRAVELPORT BRIEF?
Travelport needed an agency experienced in B2B technology marketing to:
- Assess their current sales and marketing function and assist Travelport in setting up an inbound sales and marketing engine
- Define and research Travelport’s buyer personas
- Drive lead generation with compelling content and impactful inbound campaigns
- Further raise Travelport’s brand profile, voice and reputation in the travel industry as a leading provider of sophisticated, multi-channel digital travel solutions
- Define Travelport’s content strategy with a quarterly approach based on a central content theme
- Create content including eBooks, infographics, blogs, webinars and associated inbound campaigns to drive leads
In short, Travelport needed an agency to work closely with their Digital Marketing Director to assist with all aspects of inbound marketing, content creation, SEM strategy, and campaign execution.CHALLENGE
Travelport wanted support throughout their journey towards adopting inbound as an important marketing methodology. They expected an average 15-20 qualified leads per month as a result of their investment in inbound and content.
Travelport’s KPIs included:
- Generate inbound leads driven by website conversions through strong Call to Actions (CTAs) and landing pages where valuable downloadable content is couched
- Raise awareness of their brand (in addition to current strong website branding) using the inbound marketing methodology
Certain, specific KPIs needed to be achieved in terms of engagement and lead generation from the recommended content and inbound strategy. Squaredot proposed benchmarking KPIs and measuring website traffic, content downloads, email open rates, CTRs etc., to ensure that results were accumulating in the right direction, and in order to tweak the strategy and better optimise it as a matter of course. Additionally, Squaredot highlighted granular KPIs that offer a barometre on the success of a campaign i.e. Facebook and Linkedin followers, comments, likes, email opens and click-throughs.
How did Squaredot approach this? Our solution proposed using many of the nuts and bolts of standard inbound practice, as follows...
As with all Squaredot engagements it started with a half day discovery session. This is where we get under the bonnet of our new client's business to get a thorough understanding of their sales and marketing set up, goals, challenges and target personas. Rather than give you chapter and verse on what we went through we have listed below the outputs.
- Decided on 3 clear personas - VP Marketing Airlines, VP ecommerce Airlines and CMO of Travel Management Company
- Got a basic understanding of each persona from Travelport’s perspective
- Confirmed revenue goals, total addressable market, conversion rates, current lead numbers and agreed what the uplift would be
- Understood their sales process, the various stages and what the typical objections are at each stage
The interesting insight to come out of the discovery session was the relatively small total addressable market, no more than 150 airlines globally with potentially more than 15 decision makers or influencers in each airline. We felt that if we got the content right, then well thought through email workflows could be a key channel for us.
Once we conducted our discovery session we headed back to Squaredot HQ and started into our telephone and intensive desk based research of our three agreed personas, to get a thorough understanding of their challenges, pain points and the types of content that would appeal to them.
We implemented a full Hubspot set up, which included designing and developing their blog page and resources page. All blog content was created and loaded to the Hubspot CMS and landing pages, downloadable assets, and email workflows were also set up through the platform. Behind-the-scenes monitoring also accounted for the necessary metrics (website visits, dwell time on content, etc.) and assisted the process of review and improvement to hone in on the most successful content.
Squaredot proposed better use of social media, recommending LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook, providing headline writing for social media content, stories and shares.
Email Workflows & LEAD SCORING using Hubspot
With such a small total addressable market we felt that a well thought through workflow and lead scoring strategy would enable Travelport Digital to engage their audience on a regular basis with relevant content. Using the workflow logic we were able to send the most relevant and valuable content based on users prior interests and interaction.
Furthermore, applying lead scoring to the engaged database meant that the SQLs marketing sent to sales were far more qualified than before which significantly increased opportunities. A total of 50 new sales opportunities were created.
SEO: technical and on-page
We recommended that the following actions need to be undertaken:
- Compression of images and website speed optimisation
- Optimised alt tags for all pages (99.43% were missing)
- H1 tags needed to be better optimised to target relevant keywords (e.g. “travel agency management software”)
Ongoing lead follow up and social selling consultancy
With the increase in content production and social amplification we provided the Travelport sales people and senior team with social selling training. Encouraging them to share, like and comment on other related content in addition to sharing the Travelport content. This was in addition to being hyper focused on connecting with their target personas on social.
Providing lead follow up best practice training initially was important too so we helped Travelport on their lead follow up strategy, lead categorisation and when a lead should be handed over to sales and when and how it should be handed back to marketing.
Mobile Travel Trends 2018 (TOFU)
Working with Travelport over time we learned that our travel industry personas are thirsty for knowledge and value the opinion of industry thought leaders. We leveraged this in 2017 and 2018 by creating an ‘expert round up’ where we approached a list of industry experts to get their view on what they saw coming down the track in travel tech. In fact in 2018 the trends piece became a campaign with an ebook, infographic and series of blogs. The numbers are detailed below:
You can see from the graph below the impact the 2018 Travel Trends piece had on conversions in December, January and February with conversions spiking during the campaign.
Here is a link to the expert round up.
Engagement Economy ebook (MOFU)
The Engagement Economy was a topic that Travelport wanted to leverage, it was trending among marketing technology companies. Travelport saw it as an opportunity to lead this thinking in the Travel space. The Engagement Economy reflects today's new era of raised expectations where everyone and everything is connected. Consumer expectations have shifted to expect more from the brands they buy from, they seek a personal relationship that offers them value wherever they are and whenever they are ready to engage. As a result, marketers have had to rapidly transform their strategies, methods, and tactics to stay relevant including choosing a platform that enables them to engage at scale.
This campaign generated 39 new contacts and 1 new customer.
RFP KIT (BOFU)
Through ongoing liaising with the Travelport sales team we discovered that there was a need to help their buyers with RFP preparation. With that in mind we created an RFP kit to help engaged buyers easily get to the next stage of their journey.
We have provided campaign numbers below which were small given the relatively small total addressable market and the fact that it’s a BOFU offer. The good news is that there are several opportunities in the sales pipeline right now that came from downloading this offer.
ABM Pages (BOFU)
Again, using the relatively small total addressable market as an advantage we advised account based marketing to engage specific airlines that the Travelport sales team wanted to speak to. See below an example of the Frontier Air ABM page.
These campaigns resulted in a number of meaningful sales conversations, opportunities are currently being worked in the sales pipeline.
- Content Examples
- Persona research and content schedule
- Secrets Revealed: Growing Airline and Travel Revenues Through Mobile (ebook)
- Engagement Economy in Travel: How Travel Brands Will Succeed in the New Mobile World (ebook)
- Engagement Economy (Infographic)
- 2017 Mobile Travel Trends (ebook)
- 2018 Travel Trends expert round-up blog
- ABM Page Example
- RFP Kit including:
- How to Write a Mobile Travel App RFP
- 6 Key Questions to Help Shortlist Suppliers in your RFI
- Guide to Creating a Tender/RFP for Mobile Travel
You will have seen specific results relating to various campaigns above, however, the high level numbers are detailed below:
From June 2017 to Sept 2018 visit to contact conversions increased considerably, going from 1% at the end of 2017 to 5.68% in January 2018.
In relation to Travelport Digital’s new product the MQLs, new sales opportunities and new customers are detailed below:
New Opportunities Created 77
New Customers 23
Travelport had traditionally won 2 to 3 new customers each year. With the introduction of a new product and marketing it through an Inbound methodology, new customers increased to 23 in 2018.
In addition, for every ebook we produced 60-70 of the world’s top airlines (our target personas) engaged with the ebooks; that’s almost a third of the global airline companies actively engaging with Travelport's remarkable content!