COX Communications, the third largest cable provider in the nation, was launching a new educational app for kids called FastTrack. It enabled kids to practice math and English skills they needed more help on, as well as work ahead of their grade level for enrichment. It displayed results to parents, so they could keep track of their children’s progress, and could even be synched up with input from teachers and used by school systems.
All in all, it was a really exciting new tool for kids, parents, and educators alike, but it was also a departure from its traditional image and service model, and COX needed to simultaneously test the viability and build excitement for its new startup.
The Zen Mind team decided to use growth hacking techniques to conduct market research and reach COX Communications’ ambitious goal of attaining explosive growth in a new field.
First, a killer landing page with one simple conversion in mind – capturing people’s email addresses – was set up. The landing page was constructed to be laser-focused, with minimal text, a strong call to action, a design centered around the sign-up field, and a short demo video.
Next, social media accounts for the brand were set up, and an intensive campaign to spread brand awareness among the target audiences was kicked off. Paid ads were run on Facebook, targeting moms, in order to gain fans for the Facebook page, get FastTrack’s name in front of them, and drive them to the landing page.
The Zen Mind team also researched influential mommy bloggers and educational gurus, and followed them on Twitter, in order to encourage them to follow FastTrack in return, to make them aware of the emerging app’s existence, and to drive them to the landing page. Once it became clear who the influencers were, the Zen Mind team started an influencer outreach campaign, building strategic relationships with some of those mommy bloggers and influencers in the field of education, and offering to write guest blogs on their sites. Posts written for them reached their audiences and others, as they were also shared on Stumbleupon via paid ads. In fact, one post went viral on Stumbleupon, getting reblogged over and over again. In every guest post was a link to the landing page.
But that’s only where the campaign started. Every step of the way, Zen Mind kept one eye glued to the analytics. When it became clear that traffic was hitting the landing page, but not converting at the desired rates, the team tweaked the text and design and even added special offers in return for signing up, until what was created was a veritable conversion machine.
Nothing was taken for granted. Everything was susceptible to change and responded to with agility if the analytics so dictated.
And in the end, thanks to growth hacking tactics, the pre-launch campaign had built up a sizeable email subscriber list, and kept them excited through regular email updates, and continued activity on social media, and through outreach, so that even before the app launched, its momentum was already substantial.
The campaign was also able to convert an impressive 6% of the target audience, and Zen Mind was able to demonstrate to COX Communications that despite big names like Sylvan and Kaplan’s dominance in the education market, there was still room for an app that provided kids with a competitive edge and parents with control over their child’s progress and learning, especially if it could partner with reputable content creators.