Simple problem, simple solution
The humble sign-in book – who would of thought that creating a digital replacement for this antiquated method of visitor management would become a global business?
SwipedOn founder Hadleigh Ford did and through the support of his Head of Marketing Paul Hansen, the business has grown exponentially, leading to its acquisition by UK-based company Smartspace Software PLC to the tune of $11m.
SwipedOn is a simple solution to a simple problem, taking the paper visitor book and turning it into a comprehensive, all-digital management system. It captures the movements of people coming in and out of your building, assigns them an ID badge, alerts the person they are visiting and can even get them to sign a health and safety agreement or NDA before they step through the door.
Paul brings almost two decades of experience in global marketing, sales and product management to the SwipedOn team, and what excited him the most was the potential for a purely digital marketing strategy.
Targeting small to medium businesses with anywhere from 10 to 500 employees, they honed in on their product position and have owned that space.
As well as discussing his unique career path (which includes a stint as an avocado grower for a year), Paul had some interesting takeaways at the latest MoPed event when it comes to digital marketing.
Data is your friend
Paul has a love for spreadsheets that would blow your mind – but it’s these spreadsheets and the extensive data capturing that played a pivotal part in the success of the company’s global sale.
One of the tools Paul has found extremely useful is Google Data Studio, a free automated data input software that allows you to connect sheets, databases, Analytics, AdWords and more, and serve up that data in a meaningful way. Its infographic format makes it accessible and easy to evaluate trends without sifting through rows and rows of numbers.
As well as a sales dashboard to track customer acquisition, Paul runs a dashboard for his marketing metrics, so he understands his ROI per channel. The data also allows them to test, measure and optimise every channel before they move on.
Be different if you can and know your brand
When Paul came into the SwipedOn team, he saw huge opportunity to refresh the company’s brand and promote their vision, values and personality.
The result is a brand that stands out from the corporate visitor management crowd, using something as simple as a vibrant orange logo in a sea of blues and incorporating lots of emojis into their communications.
Social responsibility is also important to them as a brand, which is why they partner with Trees That Count, an organisation that will plant a tree each time they get a new customer. The customer also receives a certificate acknowledging the good deed SwipedOn has done on their behalf. For SwipedOn, as a product that is reducing paper waste, the alignment made sense and it’s been a great way to give back as well.
The customer’s voice is gold
Reviews are an underrated marketing tool and incorporating review capture into SwipedOn’s marketing plan has helped increase their brand profile and preference in the market.
The key is to obtain feedback when customers are motivated. To do that, Paul uses an NPS system called Ask Nicely so whenever a user gives them an 8 to 10 rating or uses ‘heart eyes’ emoji in the website chat, they get an automated review campaign which prompts them to complete a testimonial. The automated campaign has tailored messaging across three emails, which are sent once a week for three weeks.
The thinking is that they were motivated enough to give the star rating or positive emoji, so it is imperative to capture them while they are still engaged with the product and services.
SwipedOn have a localisation strategy to keep up with Google Results, which includes targeting all campaigns at a local level. At first, SwipedOn ran Google Ads globally, then optimised it by country specific campaigns and they are now targeting at a city level – for example, in the USA, they have creative / messaging specific to Los Angeles.
SwipedOn also has webpage variations for the key countries in which they work and Google My Business listings in those countries as well. As you need a physical address for this, Paul pays for two PO Boxes in the locations where they have no physical staff present and while it is an added cost it significantly helps their Google ranking.
Great food for thought – thanks Paul for sharing your insights and experience!
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