nDash helps brands connect with writing talent within their community of content professionals. The company’s platform enables its community of freelance writers to pitch highly targeted ideas directly to nDash customers, or for these brands to hire writers on a per-project basis. The two-sided marketplace nDash created is disrupting the content marketing process to work for businesses and writers alike. It also creates unique challenges for their marketing efforts. Content creation is not a one-person job. This is the main thrust behind nDash.co, the world’s first content community platform used by companies of all sizes and industries to build and manage elite writing teams.
Born as a content marketing agency, the company pivoted into a SaaS platform in 2016 and began to grow a two-sided marketplace consisting of companies and freelance writers. Very quickly, they went from managing hundreds of customers and prospects to thousands, and the nDash leadership team realized that their marketing, sales, and customer success operations would need to be completely revamped.
Michael Brown, CEO and Founder of nDash said, “We’re thrilled with the interest and growth of our platform. It is really important to me and the team that our platform serves a need in the market and provides a delightful experience for our writers and customers so they keep coming back with new projects.”
CMOs and marketing directors are busy people, often too busy to write content on a regular basis which is why they would need nDash. But, as Michael Brown learned, this obvious opportunity for his company also presented a significant challenge – nDash’s paying customers were too busy to engage with the platform. The vision was that users would sign up, add a payment method, and then continue into a successful routine of finding writers, accepting content pitches, and publishing projects. The problem was that users were getting stuck between steps one and two: they’d sign up for the platform, but never add a payment method. They needed a nudge, however, the nDash team had no process or mechanism to adequately and efficiently guide these customers forward.
A growing tech startup looks for accurate, sustainable, and scalable processes, but the nDash team’s process of finding inactive users was exactly the opposite: manual, time-consuming, and error-prone. Not only did it take a long time to understand which users had added payment methods and which hadn’t, the customer success team often found false negatives using their original signal metrics. These metrics would indicate inactive users, but when nDash reached out, they learned that the users were in fact using the platform just fine.
Additionally, in an era in which customers demand a personalized experience, nDash found their user outreach process to be extremely impersonal. It involved identifying large swatches of their user base and sending generic, one-size-fits-all recommendations. And personalized email greetings weren’t enough to satisfy nDash’s goals – they wanted to be able to zero in on specific users and offer truly personalized support and recommendations that would drive higher conversion and success rates.
Prior to recognizing these additional needs, nDash was already using Mautic to achieve their lead generation goals. Having seen the platform’s flexible problem-solving capabilities, nDash started to imagine new possibilities for using Mautic to help drive repeat customers. They required a more accurate, reliable workflow for information and activation, and they needed it to be automated.
Mautic was up to the task. Their point of view has always been that the utility and value of marketing automation far exceeds the top of the funnel. Instead of stopping after a prospect signs up for a newsletter, Mautic works with their customers to build campaigns that target prospects drifting in the awareness stage and stimulates them to engage more meaningfully (and show stronger buying signs to the company). Here’s how Mautic did that with nDash:
- First, Mautic worked with nDash to establish their most important user KPIs: Customer’s last login date, frequency of publishing, confirmed payment method, and subscription upgrades.
- Next, they helped nDash create the right custom fields that would capture this information and make it actionable via audience segmentation and communication triggers.
- Finally, they created intuitive workflows for the outreach campaigns to key nDash audiences: inactive users and users who hadn’t added a payment method.
Mautic helped nDash create three major stages – or bases – of opportunity:
- First base was companies with no payment methods
- Second base was companies with a payment method;
- And third base was premium accounts.
nDash wanted their customers at first base to run to second, the ones at second base to run to third, and the ones at third base to not churn.
Mautic showed nDash how practical and easy automation could be. With Mautic seamlessly integrated into nDash’s proprietary platform, the system was able to automatically detect customers that had joined the platform but not added a payment method. It then added those customers’ users to an email campaign and reminded them to add a payment method at regular intervals. After a few intervals without a response, Mautic flagged accounts and specific users for personal intervention from the nDash Customer Success team.
Mautic also used determined KPIs to start flagging inactive customers, such as clients that had not logged in for a certain amount of time, not received pitches for any assignments, and not accepted assignments they had received. Each of these individual KPI suggests an inactive user, and deserves a tailored auto-response. If a customer hasn’t received any pitches for an article, the reminder email may highlight some available writers to work with directly.
The result was a smart, powerful marketing automation deployment that fit nDash’s specific team and business needs perfectly. By successfully identifying and responding to middle-of-funnel users in real time, Mautic helped nDash shape their entire customer experience and internal team process.
nDash’s Mautic implementation had a few immediate results:
- nDash was able to save money right away by consolidating from two marketing platforms into one. They deciding to leave their previous CRM in favor of Mautic because their original CRM platform made it much too difficult to set up the automation they needed, and it also failed to surface actionable intelligence in a timely manner.
- nDash was able to save time and effort. Before Mautic, nDash administrators had to manually dig into customer records to find out which ones were active, which ones were inactive, and which exact inactive accounts needed attention. This was a time-consuming activity that often produced no useful results. Switching to Mautic helped the nDash team spend their time more effectively — devoting a smaller amount of time to only the customers most critically in need of attention, and giving the internal team more time for other mission-critical activities.
- nDash customers benefited from timely, tailored communications. No one wants to join a platform they don’t use, or pay for a subscription that they don’t need. By converting inactive users, nDash was able to ensure that their customers were using the platform for its intended purpose.
- Most importantly, nDash found that their campaign was successful. This lead to markedly lower customer churn and more premium upsells.