By Daniel Williams Published June 4, 2017
LEAP's approach to optimizing audience growth, engagement and monetization is driven by data - data that is transformed into actionable intelligence by world class technology and deep industry expertise. Our process of transforming data into actionable intelligence involves two complimentary approaches, one pertaining to the scoring and modeling of audience data (the "Targeted Growth Model") and the other involving the activation of that modeled data to drive timely, relevant marketing communications (the "Customer Lifecycle Management Curriculum").
This holistic, data-driven approach to audience management has now seen over four years of measurement and refinement. As LEAP nears its five-year anniversary, we are in a good place to articulate a reasonable set of expectations associated with the LEAP model.
Over the first 12 months of the LEAP relationship, data confirms that clients see a meaningful improvement in customer attrition when compared to the 12 months "pre-LEAP." This improvement assumes other variables - such as pricing actions, customer service, content, etc. - remain stable.
During this period, the attrition decline is largely attributable to LEAP's Customer Lifecycle Management (CLM) Curriculum, a comprehensive series of data-driven, event-triggered communications designed to activate, engage and manage relationships with customers across platforms. Depending on a publisher's version of a paid content model and business objectives, the CLM Curriculum can be appropriately adapted to maximize audience activation, engagement and monetization.
The CLM Curriculum has an immediate and pervasive impact on retention performance and value enhancement. These timely, relevant and pro-active communications with your most valued subscribers - not only during their renewal cycle, but throughout the entire customer relationship - supports engagement and long-term brand loyalty. The adherence to this approach manifests in an impressive reversal of Start/Stop ratios, as well as meaningful improvements for overall subscriber retention.
As evidence, consider The Augusta (Ga) Chronicle - a LEAP client since April, 2016. Over the first 12 months since of their relationship with LEAP, it has seen a 25% reduction in total permanent stops compared to the prior 12 month range, including a 22% decline in non-payment and pricing-related stops among renewal subscribers. The Chronicle has also seen its overall subscriber retention increase by over 20%.
During the subsequent years of the LEAP-client relationship, year-over-year attrition reduction is less pronounced as the CLM impact stabilizes. But while year-over-year improvements are more modest, current year performance versus the pre-LEAP baseline remains enormously positive. Moreover, the impact of LEAP's proprietary Targeted Growth Model (TGM) kicks in, driving incremental improvement in retention and Start/Stop ratios.
The TGM identifies the highest value potential customers in the market based on the demographics, lifestyle and media consumption characteristics they share in common with a publisher's most profitable existing customers. The model assigns a value to score to every household in a market, and then categorizes those households into one of five value segments. The TGM is incredibly meaningful because it consistently reveals that those customers identified as "High-Value" are up to 5X more likely to respond to marketing offers relative to the overall market, retain at significantly higher rates once acquired, and yield more revenue over their subscription lifetime.
Armed with this information, LEAP clients can invest their limited sales budgets toward those existing and potential customers that have the highest likelihood for conversion, retention and profitability. Although TGM is put to work on Day One, these investments truly begin to manifest late in the first year and contribute to continued improvement in attrition performance.
To illustrate the impact of the Targeted Growth Model, here is a chart (figure 1) that displays the increase in subscription acquisition among the "High-Value" TGM segment for the New Hampshire Union Leader (Manchester, NH) since 2015:
In 2016, the Union Leader increased its new subscription acquisition among High-Value segments by +11% and thus far from January through May, 2017 has increased new subscriptions by 45% versus the same period last year.
The chart is noteworthy not only due to the increase in new subscription activity among this audience segment, but because active subscriber households identified as "High Value" represent, on average $757.84 in Subscription Lifetime Value - which is 31% higher than the overall market average. Not only can the Union Leader distinguish and manage these precious existing customer relationships as strategic assets, but they can identify similar potential customers in the market - and then allocate their marketing investments toward them.
The Augusta Chronicle and the New Hampshire Union Leader are not alone in this performance, but instead are indicative of the expected performance improvements for LEAP clients who adopt and embrace our data-driven approach to audience growth, engagement and monetization. For more information on LEAP Media Solutions or to request an initial audience assessment, contact us via email at email@example.com.