We’re huge fans of Kissmetrics at Rival IQ. When we first started incorporating Kissmetrics into our workflow, we were using it primarily to track customer acquisition and activation by way of a custom funnel. As we increased signups and activation, we started to wonder what was happening post-activation.
In the void between activation and money, there are so many questions. What happens between activation and conversion? What makes certain people convert from using a free trial to becoming a paying customer? In the end, all of this boils down to: what gets people to activate, engage, and eventually purchase our product?
To answer these questions and many others, we made it our mission to integrate the data we gather from Kissmetrics into more of our daily workflow. Using the Kiss S3 data export functionality, we bring detailed application usage data to our own database so that we can include it with additional information from other sources, including FullContact and Intercom.io.
With this rich set of information, we have much more visibility as we focus on targeting, lead qualification, and product design. Now, every decision we make, from social media and content marketing all the way down to shipping new product features, is influenced by the metrics we gather from Kissmetrics.
We quickly realized that Kissmetrics is useful for so much more than basic conversion tracking.
Targeting Our Lead Generation Activities
To measure the top of our acquisition and activation rates, we have a funnel report set up to track site visits, signup form views, actual signups, and account activation.
When we look at the top of our funnel, our goal is to understand the behavior of our customer as a function of how they came to the site. In general, we’ve found that traffic from blogs – focused on analytics and social media – signs up and activates at a much higher rate than traffic from organic search.
Additionally, we can use the full referrer path to measure which posts maintain these elevated conversion rates. With this information, we can prioritize which posts to spend more time and money re-promoting.
In addition to content marketing, Rival IQ also aims to have a thriving and engaging social media presence. By segmenting our funnel by referrer, it’s very easy to see which social media channel is driving qualified leads to our site. This information allows us to spend more time tailoring our social media strategy so that we can keep moving in the right direction.
For example, we know that LinkedIn is a great way to generate leads for B2B businesses. Therefore, if we closely track how much of our traffic comes from LinkedIn, we can make strategic and educated decisions about whether our “LI strategy” is successful. From there, we can experiment with new approaches to improving our efforts on LinkedIn, and then follow up with Kissmetrics to track our results.
Using Data to Enhance Our Lead Qualification
We use Kissmetrics to track the activities of our customers that we know are correlated with purchase behavior, including pricing page views and healthy usage during the second week of a trial.
Because we have our usage information from Kissmetrics readily available, we can do great things, like having a morning mail to all customer-facing staff that includes details on qualified leads. We can quickly decide which trial experience could really benefit from additional outreach.
Here are a couple of examples of (obvious) activities that we look for during targeting:
- Pricing page views: If people view our pricing page near the end of their trial, that is a clear sign they are interested in continuing their relationship with us.
- Second-week users who are deeply engaged with our product: We can quickly determine which of our trialers are really engaged at the end of their trial period. Obviously, reaching out to them to help remove any last barriers to purchase is a good time investment.
Of course, these specific activities aren’t the only facets of qualifying leads that matter, but understanding the behavior of trial users definitely adds an additional dimension to other demographic details that can be useful in understanding who is likely to purchase our product.
Improving Product Discovery and Product Usage
We want users to have a great experience while using our product, and we want them to see as much of the value we provide as possible. The discoverability of each of our product’s features is certainly of concern to us.
We use Kissmetrics to help us track how our users consume our product, including specific feature usage. On many occasions, we have been able to use this data to confirm or disprove hypotheses about changes in data display and menus.
I’ll give you a couple of specific examples:
Data Display – Landscape Overview Report
One key report in Rival IQ is our Landscape Overview, a summary of information about social engagement and reach, along with deeper details, such as average post engagement for our users and their competitors. When we first shipped this feature, we obscured the deeper details behind a link to minimize information overload for our users. Our hypothesis was that users would click the button to expand the additional details.
Using Kissmetrics, we found that only 9% of customers who visited this report actually expanded the details.
Perhaps you could write off such low usage as disinterest, but the number of support questions we received from customers asking for information that was already on the page (just hidden behind an “expand for more details” link) led us to believe otherwise.
This experience motivated us to change the design to expand more of the details by default.
Menu Location – Top Social Content Report
Another feature that is a favorite among our users is our Top Social Content report, which aggregates and displays the most engaging social posts from their competitors. When we launched this report about 6 months ago, we had fewer reports in our product. We were able to let the Top Social Content report live at the top level of our navigation. Using Kissmetrics, we knew that 70% of new customers viewed this report during their first session, which was plenty good.
However, we continued to add functionality and reports to our application, and eventually, we needed to restructure our site navigation. We created a Reports tab, and we moved our Top Social Content report to the drop-down menu under the new tab.
After this change, the percentage of first-session customers that saw the Top Social Content report decreased to 40% (from 70% previously). Yikes!! Thankfully, we had the data, and we were able to improve the situation by pointing our new customers in the right direction using a combination of email and in-app messaging from Intercom.io.
Had it not been for the information we acquired from Kissmetrics, we might not have ever realized the impact the relocation had on the report discovery.
Working Smart Is Key
As we continue to improve our product, whether it’s new features or messaging, we make a point to consistently track how these changes affect the way our customers use the app. There are times when the changes we make result in improvements, and there are times when the changes we make are wrong. Both situations are valuable because they allow us to tweak certain aspects of our product. It’s about always learning and always improving.
Kissmetrics continues to be a reliable, simple way for us to gather usage details that enable our product and marketing teams to make informed decisions in building and marketing our product. For Rival IQ, Kissmetrics ensures we always are working smart.
About the Author: Danielle is a self-confessed social media addict. She drives the content and social media marketing for Rival IQ, a competitive benchmarking and monitoring SaaS software solution. You can read more of her posts on the Rival IQ blog, and can also follow her on Twitter for continued inbound marketing insights.