Cultivating a Community Through Email Automation

STRAINPRINT / CASE STUDY

SITUATION

Business with a smartphone app was looking for a way to reduce their user drop-off (churn) rate.

SOLUTION

We designed, developed, tested and integrated a marketing automation system which used intelligent automations to nurture users with emails based on their use patterns.

SUCCESS

By developing and integrating an email automation system with their mobile app, we increased engagement and retention of the valued user base.

THE OVERVIEW

Strainprint is a companion app for smartphones that allows users to monitor and track their medicinal marijuana use. With the tagline “use cannabis better,” the app launched in April 2017 with great initial marketing traction and the company was well on its way to securing major partnerships in the medical cannabis industry. Despite having a strong user base, like any app, Strainprint faced the challenge of retaining valued users and minimizing churn. Hoping to reduce their churn rate, they partnered with 44 North Digital Marketing to develop a system that would retain users and encourage them to stay engaged with the app.

THE STRATEGY

To create a surefire plan, we knew the best option was to develop and integrate an email automation system right into their software to minimize drop off and build relationships with each user. But, it was going to take a lot more than “thanks for signing up” emails to retain the niche market. To do this right, we’d have to take a formal engineering approach in order to design, develop, test and integrate a system that functioned as per Strainprint’s detailed statement of requirements.

Statement of Requirements

We worked with Strainprint to understand what the system needed to do. By analyzing the application, we could determine into which “bucket” each user would be categorized. These buckets corresponded with the stage that the user was in app usage lifecycle.

Marketing Automation

We designed the system and determined how each of the workflows would function. We developed a tagging and lead scoring system which would allow the automation system to intelligently move each user between the buckets based on their use patterns. Based on the bucket, a corresponding series of emails would be sent based on a predetermined schedule.

Software Testing Plan & Procedure Development

Before we even programmed the system, we developed a software quality assurance testing plan and procedure. The purpose with this procedure was to validate that the system would function properly in all situations and reduce the probability that the wrong type of email would be sent to a user. Given the privacy and sensitivity of the industry, there was no room for error.

Software Testing Plan & Procedure Development

Before we even programmed the system, we developed a software quality assurance testing plan and procedure. The purpose with this procedure was to validate that the system would function properly in all situations and reduce the probability that the wrong type of email would be sent to a user. Given the privacy and sensitivity of the industry, there was no room for error.

Marketing Automation Development

Next, we setup, configured and programmed the automations, tagging protocol and the lead scoring system within ActiveCampaign, our preferred email marketing automation platform. We designed a responsive email template and developed email copy with the Strainprint team in order to ensure all communications were on-brand and fit their tone-of-voice.

Quality Assurance & Functional Verification

We then tested the system using our software quality assurance plan and test procedures on both iPhone and Android devices. Additionally, we used independent testers who were absent from the automation design and test procedure development. Doing so allowed us to ensure that test results were unbiased. Each step of the test procedure was evaluated using pass/fail criteria. Our testing procedure was so detailed that we actually identified a user workflow bug in the app which our client had not previously noticed.

Quality Assurance & Functional Verification

We then tested the system using our software quality assurance plan and test procedures on both iPhone and Android devices. Additionally, we used independent testers who were absent from the automation design and test procedure development. Doing so allowed us to ensure that test results were unbiased. Each step of the test procedure was evaluated using pass/fail criteria. Our testing procedure was so detailed that we actually identified a user workflow bug in the app which our client had not previously noticed.

GO-LIVE LAUNCH

Last but not least, we pushed the system live. This was the challenging part: to simultaneously implement an automation system while properly categorizing the existing user base. We worked hand-in-hand with our client’s IT team to integrate the system using ActiveCampaigns custom API. Our team literally worked through the night to push the system live and ensure that all existing users migrated into our system without a hitch.

“We engaged 44 North Digital Marketing to design, develop and integrate a custom email marketing automation system with our mobile application. Due to many regulatory and privacy considerations within the industry we serve it was very important that we worked with a company who had a track record of success in formal quality assurance testing and functionality verification. The 44 North staff worked hand-in-hand with our in-house development team and delivered an exceptional product, on time and on budget. The system continues to function very well to this day and has become a core component to the growth of our community. I highly recommend 44 North Digital Marketing if you are considering using marketing automation to grow your business
– Andrew Muroff, Chief Executive Officer, Strainprint