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In this case study, we’re going to give an overview of how we joined one amazing dog trainer’s journey and transformed her business to the next level. We are going to get into details about how ScalingLocals helped her small dog training business to become one of the fastest growing online dog training platforms in the USA. Within 6 months we managed to grow SpiritDog’s growth 5400%, compared to the previous year.

Small preview about the client where they were, and where they are now.

SpiritDog, at the beginning of 2020 had already established a strong social media presence with 25k followers on Facebook @SpiritDogTrain, and 13k Followers on Instagram @thespiritdogs. They approached ScalingLocals, to help them with increasing their conversion rates. SpiritDog’s online strategy has been simple and effective, by providing great value about dog training and dog behavior via pictures and graphics.
What made our work simple and fun was, the company already had an amazing product, that needed to be made easily accessible for dog owners. Within 6 Months their Facebook page has grown to 35K followers, and some posts have reached even 2.2M people organically on Facebook. The revenue growth percentage since the beginning of January has grown by 5488%. compared to the previous year same time period.

Since January 2020, they have grown 5488% in Gross Revenue. Actual revenue has been hidden, due to respect for the privacy of the company.

Growth between 1 January to 1 July 2020.

  • Within 6 months we have already increased subscribers from 2000 to 14 000 people.
  • Average Increase for email subscription conversion from 2% to 30%
  • We have acquired over 1000 New paying customers
  • Increase of the conversion rate for paying customers: from 0.1% to 5%
  • Ad Spent has been around 1-3k per month, with 20% monthly increase

Strategy:

Summary of strategies we used to grow SpiritDog:

  • Lead Generation
  • Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)
  • Facebook & Instagram Ads
  • Extra Business Verticals

Lead Generation

When we partnered up with SpiritDog, we conducted thorough research about the target market, competitors, and previous platform (previous, because we also developed a new platform for them), we came up with a gameplan on how to increase the conversion rates and get more people into taking action towards the KPI-s.

We created multiple lead generation funnels and product sales funnels tailored for each customer journey stage. We love to keep things simple and effective, therefore we segmented people into 4 groups

  • Discovery/Awareness – dog owners who haven’t heard about the SpiritDog training
  • Consideration – People who have heard about SpiritDog, followed the Facebook page, joined email list, or other Social Media channels
  • Purchase – People who have purchased
  • Raving Fans/ Remarketing – People who have gone through courses, are constantly communicating with SpiritDog through different mediums, and are sharing it with their friends.

Discovery / Awareness Phase

Due to the relatively large social following, and great SEO already established by the founder, it decreased our needed marketing budget dramatically. Instead of spending $5-10k per month, we could start off with only $1000 in the ad budget. The main part for the client was, how can we take all those visitors and get them to opt-in. Therefore we created multiple lead generation forms and a 14-day email course.

Creation of Lead Generation Funnels, that turns people from the discovery phase to consideration and purchasing

14-Day free email course.

The idea behind a 14-day course was to give dog owners a great preview of what SpiritDog is all about, and also provide practical tips to become a better dog owner.

As the main product for SpiritDog is Lifetime access for SpiritDog’s Masterclass, which contains around 400 lessons. This introduction course was a great segway to get people from the discovery phase to the consideration and purchase phase. And on top of that when we launch a new course, they will be among first to get the notification about the product launch.

Link: https://spiritdogtraining.com/14-day-free-course/

Within 6 months, we have signed up more than 10 000 dog owners for the free course. Our average signup rate for our lead generation pages has been around 40%.

Besides the full campaign page, for the 14-day course, we implemented different popups and other forms across the platform, to get people to join our 14-day free course.

Popups – Do they work?

The short answer is yes, but it depends on the timing. Ofcourse all of us dislike sites, where you want to read a blog post, but you simply can’t because within 5 seconds you have already something disturbing your discovery phase. But when timed correctly popups can be a very effective way to get more people into your funnels. We used mainly exit popups, that showed only when the person was about to close the tab or exit the site, or they had reached a certain point at some specific pages.

Within the first two weeks of implementing the popup, we already received around 2000 new people who signed up for our 14-day free course. With an average signup rate of 20%.

Ad strategy in discovery phase

Facebook & Instagram Ads

After conducting thorough research of the target market. Within the resarch phase, we analyzed largest dog training platforms and other educational platforms, to get a better understanding what already works in this segment and what we could do even better.

We also set up Facebook pixels. With a highly visited website, it’s always easier, to teach the pixel, as it collects more data points in a shorter period of time, and gets a better understanding of how the user interacts with the platform.

Launching the ad campaign for discovery phase.

After conducting various test campaigns with a smaller budget, to find out winning ad sets and target audiences.
We scaled up the budget for 2 main campaigns for the discovery phase, which included between 5-10 ad sets each, and each ad set containing different creatives. We also developed look-alike audiences in different countries.

1. Promoting the free 14-day course

Example of ad creative used

2. Promoting packaged bundle

Example of ad creative used

Sidenote: We have seen so many companies who are running ads on social media, not answering comments under their ads. Key to successful campaign is also answering comments. By doing so, it increases trustworthiness of the brand and also probability of person becoming the customer along the way.

Targeting Strategy.

After thorough research, we created multiple audiences that we used in our ad sets. As we get confirmation with each project. If the Facebook pixel has enough data, the look-alike audiences are usually outperforming most of the ad sets, with higher ROAs with lower CPM/CPC/CPA costs.

Consideration Phase

In this phase, we targeted people who have heard about SpiritDog, followed the Facebook page, joined the email list, or other Social Media channels

The main focus here was on setting up a retargeting strategy that would help people who’re still on the fence to join online classes.

Facebook / Instagram retargeting

We set up multiple various retargeting audiences, to find the adset that was delivering most results towards our KPI-s. We created various ad creatives and videos towards following target groups

  • Retargeting visitors who have visited the website
  • Retargeting visitors, who haven’t signed up yet.
  • Retargeting FB/IG fans
  • And segmenting them further into different ad sets by location (mainly countries)

Conversion Rate Optimization (CRO)

As mentioned before, when we first partnered up with SpiritDog. They had great traffic, but low amount of sales, therefore their conversion average month to month conversion rate was below 1%. We saw the true potential, vision in the product, and founder behind the SpiritDog. And also huge growth potential, that wasn’t properly used yet. By creating sales pages for products and packaging different products together, we managed to increase conversion rates dramatically.

  • Average Increase for email subscription conversion from 2% to 30%
  • Increase of the conversion rate for paying customers: from 0.1 to 5%
  • With some campaign pages, we even managed to increase the conversion rate to 10%.
Link: https://spiritdogtraining.com/perfect-dog-obedience-bundle/

Conclusion

To scale a business, product, or service, it’s always essential to have a great foundation. Although there has been a saying in Silicon Valley, just build a great product and people will come. It isn’t necessarily true. To make a great product into a successful one, we need to have a strategic approach in marketing, communication and sales funnels.

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