When your website draws thousands of visitors every day from all around the world, how can you make each visitor feel like a VIP?
When your organization generates page after page of valuable content (in multiple languages) targeting every stage in the buyer’s journey, how can you ensure the right content gets to the right people without confusing the wrong people?
These are challenges that call for a conversational solution. Conversational Marketing brings order to content chaos, helpfully guiding visitors toward information and solutions tailored to address their specific concerns.
Naturally, I thought of Molly Duggan, head of Molly Duggan Associates, a full-service creative technology agency based in San Francisco and one of the first and most accomplished Certified Drift Solutions Partners. The agency counts several industry leaders among its clients. Molly and her counterpart Erik Cochran (CTO) sat down with me to talk about their unique approach.
Editor’s note: The following has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Nick Salvatoriello: What are the pain points that typically trigger companies to contact your agency? Are they around conversions?
Molly Duggan: It certainly could be around conversion, but they may not know that yet. Usually, clients come to us because they’re looking to make improvements. We help organizations develop digital ecosystems that improve real-time interactions with visitors and continuously inspire existing customers with innovative content.
Often clients come to us saying, “We want some operational efficiencies to be reflected on our website,” “We have some KPIs we’re trying to meet,” or “We need some help identifying those KPIs.”
And so we’ll work with them on identifying their true north, building consensus in the organization to make sure that we have the right support and champions and alliances, as well as accountability to achieve those initiatives that will then help them meet their KPIs.
Drift is a great way to do that because as we’re looking at the ways to guide the customer through the website, the Drift playbooks help deliver contextual information along the way to get them to that next step in the funnel. Ideally, it’s creating an automated AI concierge that helps the customer move through an educational funnel that drives them to say, “I’ve got to work with this company. I’ve got to talk to them.”
If you do that right, and you have empathy with where the customer’s coming from, you can build loyalty and an affinity for your brand.
Nick: So, you’re solving for the ultimate goal: creating a remarkable experience that generates brand loyalty.
Molly: We want to inspire our clients’ customers. When a customer lands on their particular touchpoint, whether it’s a landing page or a conversation with a Drift Bot, we want them to feel confident. Because if the customer feels confident they’re in the right place, and their needs are met, they will develop loyalty and feel comfortable with conversion.
Nick: Tell me about your work with ClearSale. I know they already had a pretty substantial online marketing funnel before your agency came along.
Erik Cochran: That’s putting it mildly. ClearSale has been an industry leader in ecommerce fraud protection for over two decades. They have over 4,000 clients worldwide. ClearSale is a very high-growth company with a ton of web content. But it was easy for new website visitors to get lost amid all that information.
ClearSale needed a way to help new visitors get where they needed to be faster — via sophisticated segmentation and data — with a higher likelihood of converting.
The ClearSale team had already experimented with chatbots internally but found them cumbersome to optimize. So, they reached out to Drift, and Drift recommended us.
Nick: You’ve branded your Conversational Marketing services as a Conversation Orchestrator. Is that what you offered ClearSale?
Erik: Exactly. We started by performing a comprehensive Conversational Marketing audit to understand their website funnel deeply. Then we set out to repair pages with high bounce rates and optimize the visitor engagement playbooks to align with each visitor’s journey through the site, increasing conversions.
For example, one previous setback had been in the pre-qualification process. Visitors were making it to sales reps without being properly segmented by need, size, or solution.
Our breakthrough solution was to assign questions and answers based on the conversation, which helped send pre-qualified visitors to the right destination at the right moment in their journey. ClearSale had instant access to Drift intelligence for every visitor who booked a meeting or demo.
Nick: Do you have any results you can share around the implementation? I’d love to hear how it’s going.
Molly: Yes, of course. We published a case study about this recently. In it, David Fletcher, SVP of Sales at ClearSale, said:
“The conversion rate that jumps out ahead of all others for us is that 25% of visitors that interact with our Intelligent Selling Assistants convert to a booked meeting. We are seeing 20 to 25 more clients per month after only three months, and I believe that number will only continue to grow.”
Molly: That’s not all. Three months after we optimized ClearSale’s strategies and playbooks, the number of meetings booked increased 30% in just 60 days. That’s a pivotal precursor to conversions.
ClearSale’s Chief Marketing Officer, Sarah Elizabeth Zilenovski, told us, “The near immediacy of the results and how clearly attributable they were to the chat optimizations was impressive. We didn’t realize the power of these targeted playbooks until we started working with someone who knew how to leverage them effectively.”
Critically for a large company that has invested significantly in its website, the increased bookings through Drift did not hurt traditional form submissions. We also created a form-pages bot inviting visitors to schedule a demo rather than complete a form. The engagement rate was 54%!
Nick: I think any company would love those numbers. It makes me wonder why other companies aren’t using Drift this way already. What do you think is missing when you first talk to companies like ClearSale?
Molly: I think Conversational Marketing is an integrated art and science. You have to think creatively about applying the brand across the whole experience of becoming a customer. And we want to make it easy for people to answer their own questions, optimize the website, and take some of the struggles out of the customer’s experience.
So for us, we have this big-picture holistic view. We bring the brand perspective together with key themes and messages, align those with the business strategy and goals, and then apply it throughout different departments, merge it, integrate it, and then create the playbooks.
Nick: Hence, why it’s a good idea to work with a Certified Drift Solutions Partner like Molly Duggan Associates that can help with both the creative and technical sides of Conversational Marketing. Okay, so it’s a new year, which means looking ahead. What are you excited about as you look into 2022 and where your agency is headed?
Molly: I think it comes back to something as simple as being human-centric, and not just using that as a buzzword, but looking at things from a place of humility. What do the people that are going to land on your website need?
When it really comes down to it, that’s really what I’m excited about: That we have tools and technology like Drift that can help us deliver a more human experience.
And my goal, as the leader of my organization, is to make sure that we find that perfect balance between technology and humanity, and Drift helps us do that.
Nick: Now that’s a resolution I can get behind. Thanks for your time, and happy New Year!
Molly: Thanks Nick, you too.