How contact tracking tech can reconnect brands with former customers

You may have great clients, loyal to your product or service, but how do you stay in touch with them when they switch jobs?

That was the dilemma faced by Ellie von Reyn, Conductor’s Director of Demand Generation. “Our customers love our technology and our service team. We’ve got thousands of customers, but marketers switch companies every couple of years. We wanted to reach out to this loyal user base, but we didn’t have an easy way to do that.” Automated contact tracking turned out to be the answer.

Connecting with past users when they move on

Whether you call it “labor market fluidity” or “job hopping,” the trend is clear — people change jobs more frequently now than in the past. In 2016, LinkedIn data revealed that people who graduated between 2001 and 2010 (aka millennials) worked for an average of 3-4 companies in the first 5 years post-graduation.

For companies that sell goods and services to B2B clients, the high rate of job churn means that today’s contacts may have moved on by next week (or tomorrow.) This is inherently challenging when trying to maintain a long-term relationship with a customer. But it also presents an opportunity for B2B marketers, assuming they can reconnect with their existing contacts when they inevitably move on to different companies. 

Conductor, an enterprise SEO and content management platform, caters to marketers — meaning, they tend to switch jobs frequently.

Von Reyn saw an opportunity to connect with Conductor’s past users as they moved to new companies, but she also knew their approach for doing this was not ideal: her team looked for former contacts on LinkedIn or reached out on a one-to-one basis — a time consuming and manual process. She began researching tools that could help automate this process and ultimately found a solution.

“We found UserGems, a tool that essentially does the heavy lifting for us,” said von Reyn. “The technology identifies when contacts from our existing customers move to a new company. We’re now able to automate email campaigns that get in front of previous users — we call them our past-user campaigns.”

Von Reyn onboarded UserGems while working with Conductor’s VPs of revenue operations and marketing to get them on board with the new technology and approach. There wasn’t much training or implementation involved once they moved forward with the tool. 

“We connected UserGems to Salesforce,” said von Reyn, “We did some preliminary training with our revenue organization to get them up to speed about what we were doing and where these new contacts were coming from. They didn’t have to learn anything new because the information was in Salesforce, a tool they were already using.”

With UserGems, von Reyn’s team can orchestrate past user outreach using a more consistent, planned approach. When a contact switches jobs on LinkedIn, Conductor gets an alert that says the contact left X company and moved to Y company. Conductor’s past-user campaigns typically include a list of recent product updates and news that the contact might have missed during their transition.

“The entire process is automated. We can reach out via email to congratulate them on the new role and see if we can be of any help at their new company,” said von Reyn.

Conductor runs quarterly email campaigns to a list of past users with customized messaging that addresses this very specific audience.

“We include marketing messaging and communications from our revenue organization,” said von Reyn, “Typically we share new assets and creative content like invitations to webinars. This enables us to get our marketing materials in front of former users, but also leverage custom messaging acknowledging that the contact has worked with Conductor in their past role and offering to help them in their current role.”

Sales intelligence as a category

The UserGems solution seems fairly unique, but it does fall within the overall category of sales intelligence. We asked Michael Gigante, Senior Market Research Analyst at the business software review site G2, how he sees that category developing.

“Sales Intelligence software enables sales teams to find information and insights about prospects,” he said. “Sales intelligence software has become an invaluable tool for many revenue teams as it dramatically reduces the amount of time it takes to identify qualified leads.”

Traffic to the category page on G2 has almost tripled over the past three years and sales intelligence is now the third most visited of all G2’s sales categories.

“In terms of vendor presence in the category, the category has also experienced significant growth over the last three years,” said Gigante. years. The number of vendors in the sales intelligence category has almost doubled (to 108) since 2018. “As with any trending category on G2, I expect the total number of reviews in the category to steadily increase as well as the category page traffic,” he said.

Closed deals and increased ROI

Von Reyn and her team are extremely happy with the success of the past-user campaigns. Specific success metrics include:

  • They’ve closed 10 deals which were directly attributed to the past-user campaigns;
  • A 30X ROI for past-user campaigns versus other media campaigns; and
  • Past-user email campaigns have 3X higher conversion rates versus other email campaigns.

Von Reyn notes that a big reason for the high ROI with the past-user approach is that her team is careful to reach out only to contacts who move to similar organizations and roles compared with their former positions. For Conductor, that means enterprise companies rather than small agencies or smaller companies.

“It’s common for marketers to move to similar organizations and take on similar roles when they switch jobs. We probably wouldn’t see the same ROI if we reached out to past users who moved from a big enterprise company to a small agency because that’s not our target profile. We really shine in the enterprise space, so we make sure that we’re reaching out to the people who are in that target profile.”

For companies who want to use the past-user approach to marketing, von Reyn recommends making sure they reach out to people who move to similar roles within organizations that fall within their target profile.

“Make sure you think about your customer base,” said von Reyn, “We typically refine the list by industry and use data from Salesforce and other sources to filter out contacts that don’t fit our profile.” 

About The Author

Jacqueline Dooley is a freelance B2B content writer and journalist covering martech industry news and trends. Since 2018, she’s worked with B2B-focused agencies, publications, and direct clients to create articles, blog posts, whitepapers, and eBooks. Prior to that, Dooley founded Twelve Thousand, LLC where she worked with clients to create, manage, and optimize paid search and social campaigns.

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