Digital Marketing is changing a little too fast, and it seems like the next frontier is already here. Move over Content Marketing, get ready for Interactive Marketing.
This is the story of VenturePact, a software development marketplace which was looking to accelerate growth in a competitive landscape. After exhausting classic inbound strategies, VenturePact partnered with Outgrow to build a calculator that helps its users estimate the cost of building an app. Within 2 weeks of launching, the calculator boosted traffic by 15% and increased conversion rate by 28%. What’s more? They have got more than 11K leads till date.
When Just Content Wasn’t Enough
Being a development platform, VenturePact’s clients would ask them about the cost of building a calculator time and again. They wanted to know estimates for different geographies, time zones etc. “We thought of answering the questions once and for all. We’d been creating ebooks and blog posts in the past, but the results were lukewarm. This is how the idea of building the calculator came into existence” remarks Randy Rayess, Co-Founder, VenturePact.
They realized that blogs didn’t get the kind of engagement interactive content did. Experiential marketing engages customers directly and encourages them to play an active role in brand evolution. If statistics are to be believed 98% of the users feel inclined to convert after attending an activation event and more than 77% marketers use this as a vital part of their advertising strategy. With such facts and figures in hand, it was not wise to keep away from interactive content marketing.
However, building a calculator in-house would mean lot of coding, while VenturePact wanted its resources to focus on the core business. So, they chose to
outsource the job and after weighing the options went ahead with Outgrow.co. “The one thing that struck us about Outgrow”, notes Randy, “was their determination to reinvent marketing. The intuitive Outgrow platform let us build the calculator without coding. Hence the efforts towards building the calculator were minimized.”
“Today, we are dealing with customers who are more aware than ever before. It is very clear that customers do not want to listen to marketing talk that sells brands. Instead, they are looking for solutions and hence the entire approach needs to be based on ‘helping’ the customer. Interactive content helps you succeed in this scenario. It engages the customer, provides instant gratification, and improves conversion” says Pratham Mittal, Founder, Outgrow.co.
Calculators add value and result in a 40-50% higher conversion rate. The data collected in the process help towards targeted sales.
Embarking Upon a Journey of Change
Embracing interactive marketing requires a change in the thought process. With interactive content like a calculator, the results are not instant. It focuses on qualitative traffic and reaches out to targeted audience. Thus, the conversion rates are expected to be higher. Looking at all these factors involved in determining the overall ROI, the cost was not an issue.
VenturePact as a company is heavily gravitated towards content marketing. Be it their guides, blog posts, or interview series, they’ve always focused on delivering quality content to their audience. Interactive content became a way of bridging of the gap between sales and marketing. They were surrounded with examples of companies using interactive content successfully.
At the top of the most popular stories of 2013 in New York Times was a quiz. And the story gained this popularity in just 11 days! Another example is Buzzfeed, where interactive quizzes are an integral part of the content. In both these examples it is audience engagement that results in increased shares and likes, which finally translates to loyal readers. This encouraged us to tap into, and explore, interactive content marketing.
So, Did Interactive Content Deliver the Results it Promised?
VenturePact got 11,592 leads from the calculator. The calculator landing page got a click through rate of 66%. Yes, 66%. An inbuilt form, which asked people for their email and emails of people who they’d recommend the calculator to, got a staggering conversion of 40%!
Beyond the Numbers
Interactive content requires a different mindset. Here the focus is not merely on numbers but on the quality of the numbers. You try to filter out from the traffic, a select audience that will be interested in your brand. With interactive content, you engage people in an activity and this holds their attention. In the process, they are also thinking about the situations and responding. Thus, marketers get hold of data which can tell them more about their audience and help them market better.
You might get a 1000 leads because of a static content piece that you published. However, these leads are just number till they convert. And it is possible that in the end you will not be able to close on even one lead. So much for ROI! Unfortunately, this information is available to you at the end of the process only.
As against this, with interactive content, you engage the customer and get to know him better. Even if you get half the leads with the content, you will be able to convert because the audience this time is a targeted one. Thus, the ROI will be better. Initially, you might have questioned the extra spending on embedding surveys and creating animation but the results will make you rethink.
Interactive Content – The Future of Digital Marketing
Interactive content is where the focus is now. It is not the future but the present. The standard marketing talk does not charm today’s intelligent customers who are laced with all the information. Also, there are many other brands in competition that are trying to woo them. Engaging with the customers with interactive content is therefore the way ahead. The lines between sales and marketing are becoming blurred and both need to function as a team. Brands need to market themselves as problem solvers. Once this link is establishing, sales will follow.