How to Accelerate Your Digital Marketing Funnel with Customer Data

Use customer data to create user cohorts that supercharge your growth marketing efforts at every stage of the funnel.

Best Practices
August 17, 2020
Image of Linnea Schulenburg
Linnea Schulenburg
Senior Manager, Marketing Operations
How to Accelerate Your Digital Marketing Funnel with Customer Data

As modern, data-driven marketers, we know how to run A/B tests and create segments using demographic and firmographic information about our customers. But there is an oft-overlooked data treasure trove beyond the acquisition stage and beyond your CRM — behavioral data. Behavioral marketing data is information about how your customers use your product and it can supercharge your digital marketing funnel.

Companies that know how to properly leverage their customers’ behavioral data thrive where others struggle, especially as more businesses rely on creating compelling digital experiences for their customers, regardless of industry. The easiest way for marketers to use behavioral data and build great marketing experiences is with product intelligence—a combination of data management, product analytics, and behavioral targeting.

Here’s how to use your customer data and product intelligence to improve each stage of your digital marketing funnel:

TOFU: Use First-party Behavioral Data to Improve Advertising

Advertising to users at the top of the funnel (TOFU) who are more likely to convert will make your ad spend more efficient. You’re probably already advertising to your website visitors on social media or finding look-alike audiences based on your current users. But you can take it one step further by advertising to behavioral cohorts. A behavioral cohort is a group of users who took the same action or exhibited the same behavior in your product. You can find those users with your own first-party behavioral data.

In Amplitude, you can create a behavioral cohort by defining the exact type of user you want more of. Maybe users who made two purchases within a month, or your daily active users you retained after 30 days. Then, integrate Amplitude with the social platform of your choice—let’s say Facebook. Export the cohort to Facebook; they will appear as a custom audience in your Business Manager.

From there, use Facebook’s advertising tools to find look-alike audiences that share similar characteristics with your cohort. Then, advertise to people who are likely to behave like the users in your cohort—highly engaged, high lifetime-value customers.

MOFU: Convert Traffic to Leads Using A/B Testing

So you’ve gotten people to visit your website or download your app. They’ve just moved past the awareness stage of your digital marketing funnel into the middle of the funnel (MOFU), where they are learning about your brand and considering a purchase or paid subscription. Use customer data from A/B tests to turn these visitors into solid leads.

Amplitude integrates with experimentation platforms, such as Optimizely, that let you quickly and easily run A/B tests and experiments. Instead of just testing a different product image, layout, or onboarding flow on your general user base, you can run tests on specific cohorts. This will help you find conversion drivers that are highly relevant to niche user cohorts.

For example, you could test different calls-to-action to start a free trial with cohorts based on an acquisition channel. Let’s say your general user set has a 13.5% conversion rate to a free trial, and the test has a 15% conversion rate, which is not a statistically significant difference. When tested on users who discovered your product through YouTube advertisements however, the new call-to-action has a 30% conversion rate—double your average! Now you can run more experiments to find out what it is about YouTubers that leads to increased free trial conversions in your product and then optimize for that acquisition channel.

You can also create cohorts based on what experiments a user was a part of to see the impact of your experiment over time. See how your experiment affects stickiness—long-term retention—as opposed to focusing only on conversions.

BOFU: Convert Leads and Re-engage Users with Marketing Automation

At the bottom of the funnel, good marketers use automated campaigns to bring their leads over the conversion finish line. Great marketers use behavioral data to personalize their campaigns based on specific actions users have taken in your product.

The cornerstone of strong marketing campaigns is “right message, right audience, right time.” But segmenting users by basics such as location or demographics isn’t enough to achieve all three. You need to combine customers’ behavioral data with an automated customer engagement system. Do this with Amplitude Engage and our integrations with marketing automation platforms such as Braze, Iterable, SendGrid, and more.

Don’t rely just on generic email or push campaigns built on surface-level demographics. Make cohorts based on where users are in the product lifecycle, what content they engage with most, what features they use, or what kinds of products they browse. For example, you could use Amplitude and Braze to send users a push notification if they signed up but left before taking an important action in your app, like playing a song within an hour of registration. Or you could send recommendations to an online shopper, based on what products they’ve searched for in your ecommerce website.

These cohorts will automatically sync between systems hourly, daily, or on-demand so that you can keep campaigns running and see their impact in real time.

Case Study: Rappi

Rappi is a delivery-tech company in Colombia that began with restaurant delivery and has expanded into groceries, electronics, clothes, medicine, and pet services throughout Latin America. They used Amplitude to analyze their customer data and create user cohorts that improved every step of their digital marketing funnel.

First, Rappi changed the way the company handled data. Previously, a data analyst team had to handle requests from the entire company and manually track down results. This process could take days and slowed down their ability to quickly experiment and adapt to customer needs. With Amplitude, they democratized their data so that users across the company—including nontechnical teams and marketers—could easily explore their customer data, validate ideas, and run experiments.

Rappi wanted their growth marketing team to activate more new users by getting them to complete their first purchase. With Amplitude, the company identified four key user segments based on factors that defined users’ first experience in the app. Then, Rappi developed personalized campaigns for each audience. They automatically synced new users into the four target cohorts and synced those cohorts with Braze to deliver customized campaigns to the right audience.

The results: a 30% decrease in their customer acquisition costs, a 10% increase in the number of first-time orders, and a 5% decrease in activation cost for paid channels.

Read the full case study here.

Beyond Your Digital Marketing Funnel

Once you’re leveraging user cohorts at each stage of your digital marketing funnel, keep using behavioral data to optimize for long-term retention and high lifetime value in your user base. Now you’re using more than just marketing analytics—you’re tapping into product analytics too.

About the Author
Image of Linnea Schulenburg
Linnea Schulenburg
Senior Manager, Marketing Operations
Linnea leads lifecycle marketing at Amplitude. She builds multi-channel experiences that drive engagement, conversion and retention, and uses Amplitude to nerd out about user behavior data.