Ajit Singh

Power user and aspiring marketer at WebEngage. Tweets @cycle_wallah
ajit May 10, 2018

[Conclusion] Ain’t no Marketing Automation is perfect, so what to do

None of the vendors in the market today can honestly check all the pointers mentioned in this guide. It’s just not possible. Had it been so, there would have been only one company with 90% of the customers. WebEngage wouldn’t have existed. (and also this guide) But the point is that although at the broader level we may assume that we would all need all the things mentioned here, in reality, we don’t. Or at least not to the same degree that somebody else would. For instance, a video-on-demand (VOD) app like Hotstar would need a solid ability to create […]

ajit May 10, 2018

Chapter 2- Audience segmentation

To ensure that the user clicks it is imperative that we are able to send him the message that makes sense to him. How do we manage that? By targeting the message to the exact user for whom the message is meant. Basically, analyze the behavioral and demographic data of all the users and identify the right audience. In this chapter, we are going to talk about how a marketing automation software should enable you to efficiently achieve this. This chapters covers following topics 1. Behavioral segmentation: What is it ? Use-case Key Questions/Considerations 2. Dynamic segmentation: What is it? […]

ajit May 10, 2018

Chapter 1- Event Tracking & Monitoring

In the context of marketing automation, ‘events’ are the actions performed by the user. Any kind of interaction of user with your app (web or mobile) can be captured as an event. The event also has additional data, called attributes. The attributes give context to the event which become useful while analyzing the event or while creating a targeted segment. Oftentimes you would also want to track action which isn’t done by the user but happens in the context of the system. For instance, user’s inactivity is not a definite action by the user but you would definitely want to […]

ajit May 9, 2018

How to choose Best-in-Class B2C Marketing Automation Software [Guide]

A brief history of Marketing Automation Marketing automation popped first into the B2B space, in the 90s. The first company to be able to create a mark was Unica. There were many other solutions born prior to and along with Unica but they were barely able to scratch the surface, except Eloqua. It technically pioneered the space by becoming the first to brand itself as a marketing automation software back in 1999. Both Unica and Eloqua, are still formidable players in the marketing automation space. Both of them were acquired by two behemoths- IBM and Oracle respectively, in 2010 and […]

ajit May 9, 2018

Chapter 7- Proof-of-concept (POC) & Support for Marketing Automation

We are in the final chapter of this guide. So far, we had covered the product-oriented capabilities of a marketing automation software. We talked about Analytics, Events, Segmentation etc. We talked about the capabilities that you should expect and questions you should ask the vendor. Finally, in this chapter, we would talk about the vendor-specific details. The kind of features that you should expect on the service front. 1. Validation Check if the platform has experience working for companies having data volume similar to yours for a decent amount of time. I have discussed in ‘Conclusion’ why you should take […]

ajit May 9, 2018

Chapter 6- Testing and Conversion Tracking

This chapter is the combination of two critical capabilities of a marketing automation platform: Testing The degree to which your marketing automation platform allows you to do hypothesis testing. The most important thing to consider is how the tests are reported. Nearly all platforms allow you to send split your audience into many to send them individual variations. (A/B test) But how reliable the testing results are? Were the results driven by randomness? Check how reliably the platform addresses these questions in its reporting. Conversion tracking You ran a push notification campaign and saw a jump in sales. Well, how […]

ajit May 9, 2018

Chapter 5- Omni-Channel Marketing & Engagement

Siloed engagement means running campaigns across multiple channels where sending rules of every campaign are independent of the other. This extends along the user lifecycle and naturally results in an inconsistent experience for users. When you aim to do omnichannel engagement then you would need a mean to connect these siloed campaigns so that they cohesively work to achieve a common goal. This brings us to ‘Customer Journey’ designer or simply ‘Journey’ designer- a new feature introduced in the marketing automation space that combines campaigns across multiple channels, to give an integrated experience. Every marketing automation vendor who provides this […]

ajit May 9, 2018

Chapter 4- Campaign Creation and Quality Assurance

In this chapter, we are going to look at the specifics of campaign creation and its quality assurance. You would be able to relate to this chapter if you are mostly into marketing operations. This chapters covers following topics 1. Channel: What is it ? Key Questions/Considerations 2. Templating: What is it ? Key Questions/Considerations 3. Content Personalization: What is it? Use-case 4. Organization: What is it? Key Questions/Considerations 5. Campaign preview: What is it? Use-case Key Questions/Considerations 6. Automation triggers: What is it? Use-case Key Questions/Considerations 7. IP warming and email filtering: What is it? 8. Day parting according […]

ajit April 27, 2018

Chapter 2- Analytics (Funnel, Cohort, Event trends)

Analyzing Cohorts, Funnels and Event trends are intrinsic to any MA solution meant for consumer businesses. They are the fundamental capability so they individually don’t stand out as a differentiator. The key leverage is in the granularities and the nuances that the platform is providing on top of these key features. Apart from the aforementioned ones, there are several other analytical methods like audience segmentation, Behavior, Flows etc. We would discuss some in upcoming chapters where they fit more appropriately. In this chapter we are going to evaluate Cohort, Funnel and Event trends under the following three headers: This chapters […]

ajit January 30, 2018

What is Geofencing? A no-BS comprehensive guide

In 2015, Whole Foods had partnered with the location-based marketing firm- Thinknear which helped them introduce geofencing in their mobile strategy. Here is what they did- whenever a Whole Foods user ended up in the close proximity of a Whole Foods store, he received a message that prompted him to visit the store. He would get the message even if he ended up in the proximity of a Whole Foods’ competitor. The whole campaign gave them a post click conversion rate of 4.69% which was “more than 3 times the industry average.” (Thinknear Case study) For a company like Whole […]

ajit January 29, 2018

Beginner’s Guide To Web Push Notifications (with Examples)

What is a Web Push Notification? Web Push notifications were first introduced by Chrome in early 2015 in its 42 version. The version included “two new APIs that together allow sites to push native notifications to their users even after the page is closed—provided the user has granted explicit permission.” The update allowed websites to send notifications just like apps could, so far. It was allegedly the most critical mobile feature that was missing from the web and thus upon release witnessed a tremendous adoption by web publishers. Here is a complete tutorial to what is web/browser push notification: 1. […]

ajit December 29, 2017

[Podcast] What is Growth Marketing? For Starters, It is not Scraping Email Lists

Guest Pierre Lechelle– Pierre is a B2B SaaS marketing consultant based out of Paris. He helps SaaS companies generate more revenue through growth marketing. So far he has helped 60+ companies achieve higher goals. Host Avlesh Singh- Avlesh is a co-founder and CEO of WebEngage Instead of adding the transcript like most people do I have instead added the summary of the conversation. I have intently listened to it and have dared to use my words where I thought the meaning would get clearer without getting altered. A- First thing first, what is Growth Marketing? P- Growth Marketing is basically […]

ajit December 20, 2017

Boost Up Your E-commerce Customer Retention

In e-commerce, a user completes the transaction on his own without intervention from any sales personnel or equivalent. There is no learning involved, like a B2B sale, and the purchase happens almost on impulse. Furthermore, to a user, there are plenty of choices, so he can just hop to another store and complete the transaction there. What it essentially entails is that in e-commerce, it is difficult to retain users. On the other hand, with numerous low-cost channels, facebook and retargeting platforms available, raking in users is relatively easier. That could partly be the reason behind marketer’s obsession with acquisition […]

ajit November 20, 2017

8 Powerful Targeted Email Marketing Campaigns (To Boost Open Rate & CTR)

Email has surpassed and has been surpassing all the marketing channels when you compare the revenue/expense ratio for each of them. Also, it is one of the preferred channels to receive marketing messages (source) and requires relatively lesser maintenance, skills, and cost, making even small businesses have the benefit of larger enterprises. However, not surprisingly, our tolerance level towards non-contextual emails is declining. Amid the technological advancement that makes capturing customer data and leveraging it for personalization easier than ever, this development is fairly understandable. For instance, DMnews had published this story in 2016 where it compiled the opinions of […]

ajit October 24, 2017

5 Push Notification Use-Cases for OTA (Online Travel Agency) with Examples

For the longest time, email marketing has been driving the success of most online businesses. With an ROI of 3,800%, it is understandable why email marketing holds the clout that it does. But strangely, OTA (Online Travel Agency) sits in the middle of the pack, when compared to other industries using different email marketing indicators. If you check the table in this report by Smart Insights and sort it on the basis of CTR, you would see that Travel figures close to the bottom. This is where push notification becomes relevant to OTAs. As a permission-based medium, it has an […]

ajit October 23, 2017

6 Easy Ways to Make Your Popups Look More Effective [With Examples]

Marketing overlays, website intercepts, web lightbox etc. more traditionally known as popups have been subjected to the superlative of hate by a large number of marketers and users alike. In fact, back in 2004, it was one of the most hated marketing techniques on the web. However, regardless of overlays blamed by multiple online communities for allegedly jeopardising user experience, there is something that nobody can claim to dispute- ‘overlays work’. Exit intent overlay is one of the widely used adaptation of an overlay. It is a form of an overlay which is flashed to the user right when it […]

ajit September 11, 2017

What is a Push Notification and How Exactly It Works?

What are Push Notification Messages that are pushed to the user’s device, not limiting to desktop and mobile, in a heads-up manner are called push notifications. To understand why push notification is called what it is called and how it functions, there is an important concept of push and pull protocols that we should be versed with. Push Notification Protocols – Pull vs Push Basically, there are two common ways in which the information is transferred in this world and over the internet: Receiver pull The first type is when you request for the information. In real life, consider scouting […]

ajit September 1, 2017

Easiest Guide to Cohort Analysis (With Popular Use-Cases)

Cohort is a group of users experiencing a common event within the same time period. An oft-repeated but very relevant example of a cohort is- a group of students joining in the same year. So the class of 2017 is a cohort and so is a class of 18, and so on and so forth. What is cohort analysis? Cohort analysis is an analytical modeling employed to study the cohorts characteristics over a period of time and the elements that influence change in those characteristics. It traces its roots to medical research where cohort studies are done to identify the […]

ajit May 29, 2017

3 Unique Push Notification Use-cases to Automate Customer Feedback

So far email had been the most sought-after medium among businesses to seek feedback, particularly NPS survey. It would nevertheless continue to be a potential choice. Following email popularity is in-app messages which are part of the UI of almost every mobile app. Publishers insert in-app messages within the user flow to run notifications and surveys of various kinds. The most popular use-case being triggering an in-app message before the nudge to rate the app on play store. Now did you know that you could use push notification as well for collecting feedback? Strangely, not many mobile marketers have explored […]

ajit May 26, 2017

Guilty of causing ‘Marketing Fatigue’? Fix it before it sabotages your business. Here’s how

When your marketing crosses a certain threshold it no more remains marketing. It becomes a headache to your customers. That’s marketing fatigue in a nutshell. The above snippet from the article by one Jessica Miller-Merrell in her blog summarises the communication fatigue that every wifi-connected soul is a victim of. The volume of marketing communication has anyway surpassed our attention zone whose size anyway would make us envious of goldfish. Marketing fatigue explained by Marginal Utility law The Law of diminishing marginal utility tells us that anything surplus, regardless of its utility loses its value. Do you recall water/diamond paradox? […]

ajit February 27, 2017

B2B vs B2C Marketing Automation Platform. What’s the Primary Difference?

Marketing Automation doesn’t have a unique or scientific definition that you can fall back on to qualify a certain marketing tool as a marketing automation solution. Most definitions over the internet that you may find would be either vague or molded to suit the interest of the company publishing it. For instance, without naming anybody, resource posts by ESPs would make you believe that marketing automation is all about creating automated email workflows which is a total misleading definition. Eventually, amid the clutter of definitions, I hit the one by Scott Brinker and found peace. Scott Brinker, Editor, ChiefMartec “I […]

ajit January 20, 2017

How e-commerce firms can automate customer lifecycle marketing with these 13 trigger events

On the face of millions of user triggered events on the website and app per hour, the only way to invariably provide value to every user is to automate your customer lifecycle marketing, which explains the flourishing marketing automation industry that it is today (we are one of them). The good thing is that marketing automation is no more the playground of large enterprises. With the onslaught of new companies which have transgressed into what was earlier the territory of Adobe and Oracle, marketing automation has become more affordable and easier to execute. In fact, the marketing bombardment has so […]

ajit December 19, 2016

Improve Web Push Subscriptions Using Targeted Opt-In Prompts

If you ask a room full of mobile marketers- what’s the most powerful engagement channel they have, the unanimous response would be- push notification. Yes, the ability to push messages to the user’s device when he is not actively using your app was a critical mobile feature that was missing from the web. So, when web push was first introduced by Google for Chrome in early 2015, it witnessed enormous adoption by marketers, especially from the publishing industry. What makes Web Push the new Retention Marketing favorite? We have covered this in detail in our blog on WebEngage Monk. I […]

ajit December 1, 2016

21 Free Mobile Apps that Every College Student Should Know About

Today, if there is anything that comes after food, water, and air, then it has to be apps, especially for the millennials who turn to Siri for their critical life questions like- “is Santa Claus real” or “which is better, Mac Pro or Air” or “how do I run the Siri app on my phone”.  However, as a student, although excessive mobile usage can be detrimental to your academics among other things, there are also lots of good apps which can make your life easier in the true sense and complement your academics, time management, and overall mobile behavior. In this […]

ajit October 20, 2016

Make Push Notification “Behaviorally Targeted” to Achieve Your Desired ROI

It is gating our engagement with the internet. For instance, just recall how until 2-3 years ago you used to scour all your content from just one source- Google. You determined what you need and then you pulled it out from Google- which is essentially just one app. But now, as the world is transitioning from desktop to mobile- which is swamped with gazillion apps, the data are determining what content may interest you and it is then pushed to you via mobile notification. The paradigm has changed from ‘pull’ to ‘push’, or perhaps changing rapidly.   Both iOS and […]

ajit October 19, 2016

8 Funny & Creative Push Notifications that Justify App Uninstall

It was the easiest post ever. That’s a sadistic statement perhaps. It shouldn’t be easy to find ‘worst’ push notifications. But unfortunately, our mobile devices are swamped with them. One look at the phone and you have countless notifications, in-waiting desperately begging your attention, more than often in the most ludicrous manner possible. Push notification as a channel has been so royally screwed by mobile marketers like there is no tomorrow. Why? It makes your messaging unavoidable. It doesn’t sink in the inbox like email or vanishes in the social media chaos, it’s on the face. A user has to […]

ajit October 7, 2016

What is Web Push Notification? & How to send it?

What is Web Push? What do my end users experience? How do I send these Web Push messages? Why does the world need this? To sum it up Web Push, What? In a nutshell, Web push is a channel to engage your website audience with actionable messages on desktop as well as mobile – even if your users aren’t presently on your website! Sweet? What do my end users experience? Here’s quick primer on how it works for your end users. When users visit your website on desktop or mobile, they’re shown an opt-in prompt requesting them to “Subscribe” to […]

ajit September 12, 2016

101 Push Notifications Best Practices (Increase CTR by 40%)

Push notification gave promising engagement to apps at its peak. But, driven by their nature to over-exploit anything that works for them, marketers have gradually reduced mobile push messaging to a trifle blast marketing medium. However, the omnipresence of mobile, and the increasing impetus by iOS and Android to make push notifications more feature-istic suggests that it is here for a long haul. To this day push offers higher engagement than email and CTR is as high as 40%, nearly 4x than that of the worst. But what is pushing push messaging down? 1. Anything tends to lose its significance […]

ajit July 25, 2016

6 Unique Push Notification Use-cases for E-commerce Apps

For e-commerce apps, push messaging has very reasonably assumed the role of session-magnet. The occasional and impulsive buying nature of users have made push messages the only resort to e-commerce apps to increase app sessions. This is evident by the very fact that e-commerce apps using push notification, to drive app opens, had 278% more launches than the ones who didn’t use it. Push notification gave bewildering conversions to publishers at its initial stage. But later on, it went on to become such a fad that an average user was getting 60 push messages on his phone per day. This […]

ajit June 22, 2016

10 Ultimate In-App Messages Best Practices for E-commerce Apps

In-app messaging has gradually become the favorite of marketers because Unlike push, an in-app message isn’t time-sensitive. So you won’t have to critically evaluate the right time to send an in-app message, as users see it whenever they are active on the app. There is no text limitation in it and you can also incorporate images, videos, forms or their combination.  There is a zero risk to sink in the spam folder or even promotions tab like email.  In-app message, unlike email and push, doesn’t require the user to opt-in. And most importantly, in the case of in-app message you don’t […]

ajit April 28, 2016

7 Tips For Effective Email Unsubscribe Pages (With Examples)

I come across some 3-5 emails every day in my inbox which I open only to scout for ‘unsubscribe’ link or mark as spam. But true to their reputation, they show up again the next day and I painfully repeat the same process. Marketers at large don’t give priority to creating an easy unsubscribe flow for their subscribers and the reason is fairly understandable- nobody bets money on a lame horse. A person unsubscribing you is adding negative value to your business, as there is a significant cost involved in acquiring a subscriber. Moreover, you would be least concerned about […]

ajit February 13, 2016

7 Valentine’s Day Social Media Campaign Ideas & Trends

Valentine’s day is gradually becoming more favorite to Amazon, Walmart, Archies than the folks who actually celebrate it. And why not, the total spending on Valentine’s day in the United States alone is estimated to surpass $19 billion. Yes, that’s more than the annual GDP of Mongolia which happens to be the 19th largest nation in the world in terms of size. Kudos America! Due to this spending spree, several of our e-commerce clients conducted surveys to understand the consumer behavior during Valentine’s season. The response was recorded over the period of Valentine’s week and hundreds of folks participated in […]