Bill Pay Providers: Marketing Campaigns Part 1
Some best marketing campaigns by bill pay providers include PayPal's massive campaign to split from eBay, PayPal's marketing automation campaign for lead generation, and Stripe's word of mouth campaign.
PAYPAL'S CAMPAIGN TO SPLIT FROM EBAY/MARKETING AUTOMATION CAMPAIGN
- PayPal is a United States-based global online bill "payments company." It provides a platform for internet vendors, auction sites, as well as e-commerce consumers to make secure payments from any location in the world. PayPal charges a fee for every transaction on its platform.
- In 2014, an investor of PayPal (Carl Icahn), carried out a weighty public campaign in favor of splitting PayPal from eBay.
- After staying under cover of its parent company for over a decade, PayPal split from eBay and independently marketed itself. Higher growth rates that were earlier predicted by Carl Icahn followed the split.
- PayPal was eBay’s most significant payments service provider in 2003. Over 30% of PayPal’s sales and over 50% of its profits came from eBay.
- Following the split, PayPal "sought to diversify its business" and targeted several other customers other than eBay.
- The public welcomed the concept of PayPay to diversify, and PayPal’s market worth increased to $49 billion on the first official day of public trading after the split. The market value of PayPal then exceeded eBay’s market value.
- To further its diversification campaign, the United States-based company (PayPal) embarked on a marketing automation campaign to also cover additional markets within the United Kingdom.
- The year 2014 was the year PayPal officially split from eBay. It was the same year PayPal embarked on marketing automation campaigns. The campaign involved an intelligent engagement via all key customer channels and providing a means of support for its United Kingdom sales teams.
- PayPal made the first move in its marketing automation campaign by selecting Eloqua as its platform of choice. Specialist teams/agencies were chosen to work with the various internal teams to shape, execute as well as evolve the campaign.
- CleverTouch was selected to provide a platform level technical support and expertise in the campaign workflow, mapping as well as delivery. Purestone was also recruited to devise a creative strategy to produce associated assets, including emails, micro sites, and campaign content.
- According to Clevertouch Intelligent Engagement, the campaign yielded a 26% increase in lead conversion rates when compared to PayPal’s regular campaign results. Eventually, PayPal won a silver award in the "Best Use of Digital by Sector" for financial services award.
- Purestone collaborated with CleverTouch to devise an "innovative lead nurture" campaign which emphasized "sales accepted leads," against "marketing qualified leads," to improve lead-to-opportunity conversion.
- The best practice in the creative strategy campaign above is that it focused on "sales accepted leads" and not just "marketing qualified leads."
- According to a recent Conversica web publication, sales accepted leads (SALs) are marketing qualified leads that have been validated by a sales team. They will eventually get contacted by a salesperson.
- The SAL is better than marketing qualified lead (MQL) because MQL data might be incomplete due to insufficient lead activities. Often unusable, MQL can be sent back to marketing for this reason.
- A SAL, on the other hand, has significant benefits. It is used to "force sales to give feedback" to the marketing team in the measurable form of data. This process eliminates instances of incomplete data noted with MQL above.
- Another best practice noticed in the campaign is harmony (tripartite agreement) between the internal sales team and hired marketing agencies using a specified "communications plan."
- Demand generation is possible only when harmony and collaboration exist between the sales unit and marketing agencies. Therefore, the best practice was practiced by the PayPal team, Clevertouch, and Purestone by having a specified "communications plan," which enhanced harmony and, collaboration.
STRIPE'S WORD OF MOUTH CAMPAIGN
- In 2011, two brothers (Patrick and John) officially launched Stripe and visited PayPal co-founders Elon Musk and Peter Thiel. They revealed a problem they identified with PayPal (a broken and outdated payment system) to PayPal co-founders. They got some funding from following a request and decided to work on fixing broken internet payment challenges.
- The two brothers wanted to solve a legitimate problem they had faced as developers/entrepreneurs. However, they were not facing this challenge alone as fellow developers, as well as entrepreneurs, were experiencing difficulties with broken and outdated payments.
- For a few years, word of mouth amongst developers fueled Stripe’s business. As Patrick later explained in his interview with TechZing. Initially, their business spread via "word of mouth" process. It was surprising to them because their solution (a payment system) is not a social network, and they never thought it would go viral.
- It later became clear that payment platforms were difficult to program and so painful for developers. The solution of Stripe was being marketed by developers to other developers/friends by word of mouth after benefiting from it.
- Stripe’s experienced rapid growth by identifying a legitimate problem that affected lots of people. The company also keep word of mouth positive; it did’t rely on its laurels. It invested in delivering "a stellar customer experience," to its customers and those patronizing its customers.
- Web developers that switch from legacy payments platforms to Stripe felt the value and experience immediately. Integrating Stripe's payment on a website or an app required copying and pasting only seven lines of program code. Integration took weeks before Stripes innovation which reduced it to a single day.
- Stripe’s documentation was clear and concise, which made it easier for developers to get answers to any questions they had. Stripe also hosted frequent meetings, hackathons, and several other events for developers to talk about their experiences with its product.
- Stripes also sent out t-shirts that were worn proudly and pictures shared on social media. The company sent several care packages to developers who continued spreading the solution to other developers through word of mouth.
- Relying on word of mouth, Stripes grew from $0 valuation in 2012 to a value of $20 billion in 2018. The company also successfully raised $245 million in funding.
- Stripes achieved all these by solving a real problem, obsessing customers with experience, having a vision for the future, and via word of mouth.
- The best practice here is solving a real problem which obsesses customers with the right experience to rely on their word of mouth to generate leads.
- According to Impact Learning Center, word of mouth is the best practice in lead generation because about 75% of consumers don’t believe the content of advertisements. However, 92% believe/trust brand recommendations that originate from friends.
- One of the best practice/must-have word-of-mouth strategy for marketing/lead generation is offering a unique, share-worthy experience (such as solving a tough real-life challenge). This is what Stripe did to engage consumers.
The research included digital communication agency publications such as Lewis Purestone, informative media publications such as Richtopia, etc. We studied some best marketing campaigns by bill pay providers. We investigated one reason why the campaigns were successful, any qualitative or quantitative results that demonstrate success, and any best practices that can be inferred from the campaigns. Several marketing campaigns related to Stripe, PayPal, etc., were uncovered. PayPal is a United States-based global online bill "payments company." Stripe has its headquarters in San Francisco. Various campaign publications published the reasons why the campaigns were successful and qualitative/quantitative insights. We have verified that these reasons are best practices from a plethora of resources. We have considered best marketing campaigns by the increase in the number of lead conversions when compared with traditional campaigns or revenue generated from a campaign.