Using Marin Software, we can now factor lifetime customer value into our bidding strategy; and with Marin’s bidding algorithm, we’ve seen tremendous results. Most importantly, Marin’s solution and global presence has given us the confidence to enter new markets to continue growing our business abroad.”
Director of Online Marketing, SurveyMonkey
With over a decade of experience in survey methodology and web technology, SurveyMonkey is the world’s leading provider of web-based survey solutions. Millions of companies, organizations and individuals trust Survey Monkey to provide quality data through a simple, yet powerful, solution for making smart, informed decisions. Easy enough for anyone to use and powerful enough for virtually all Fortune 500 companies, SurveyMonkey provides custom designs and logic, along with access to a panel of people who can answer surveys, if needed. Their products and services provide customers unparalleled access to business-critical information. In order to drive new customers and acquire more revenue, SurveyMonkey relies on a growing paid search program that operates globally across Google, Yahoo! Bing, and Yahoo! Japan.
SurveyMonkey generates revenue by driving signups for their three types of professional accounts (Select, Gold and Platinum). To measure the effectiveness of their paid search program in generating signups, they initially relied on a cost-per-acquisition (CPA) metric. However, this proved inadequate because all conversions were treated equally, regardless of which professional account signup was generated. Since pricing varies across these paid accounts, different signups result in varying customer lifetime values (LTV). SurveyMonkey needed a method of assigning revenue values to each of their three account signups. To optimize performance across geographies and business units which vary in LTV, they looked for a solution that could automatically calculate revenue maximizing bids.
As an established and trusted brand, SurveyMonkey looked to capitalize on additional revenue opportunities by expanding their business abroad. Language barriers and publisher reach limited the countries they could enter. Meanwhile, porting their paid search program, which spans three business units, into untested markets proved to be an impasse. SurveyMonkey wanted a management platform that not only has a global footprint, but is also integrated with international publishers. Combined, they needed both a platform and publisher integration to help them expand campaigns at scale and align their business units with local market needs.
To engage more customers and increase signups and upgrades, SurveyMonkey continuously tests their landing pages and creative. With over one million active creative assets, they struggled to keep track of changes and found it difficult to roll up performance data based on test type and geography. Calculating statistical significance was highly manual and was prioritized for top performing ad groups. In order to scale their reporting and optimization efforts, SurveyMonkey needed a way to segment and roll up performance data across publishers, geographies, and test types. Additionally, they required tools that could not only scale creative management, but automatically identify statistically significant test results.
By leveraging Marin’s custom revenue model, SurveyMonkey is able to assign LTVs to individual Select, Gold, and Platinum account signups. Geo-targeted campaigns are linked to bidding Folders where the assigned LTVs and margin targets align with goals by geography and business unit. These optimization criteria, coupled with Marin’s patented bidding algorithm, enable SurveyMonkey to maximize keyword revenue and confidently expand their paid search program abroad. Marin’s excluded dates functionality provides them with more control over the algorithm by excluding outlying performance data from bid calculations. The flexibility of Marin’s dynamic revenue model allows SurveyMonkey to adjust LTVs on-the-fly for calculating optimal bids, even as performance changes across local markets.
Marin’s global footprint gave SurveyMonkey the assurance to grow their spend into untested markets. Consistency in global services and platform integrations provides SurveyMonkey with a unified paid search program that is managed and optimized to achieve their overall business goal. Support for Yahoo! Japan opens the door to the Japanese paid search market at a low activation cost. Marin’s copy and replace features enable SurveyMonkey to quickly and easily replicate and align campaigns across geographies and between publishers, streamlining campaign expansion for their three business units.
SurveyMonkey leverages Marin Dimensions to roll up creative performance by test type and
geography. Within each of their landing page and AB tests, creative are tagged with a common identifier that allows data to be rolled up and reported on across accounts and publishers. Marin’s AB Testing tool continuously calculates statistical significance based on custom test criteria and automatically identifies top-performing creative, allowing SurveyMonkey to pause underperforming creative. Leveraging elements from the winning creative allows SurveyMonkey to continuously test new creative and optimize ad groups at scale.
Using Marin Software, SurveyMonkey was able to manage and optimize their paid search program with impressive results. Leveraging geo-specific LTVs and business goals, Marin’s automated bidding algorithm uncovered high-value keywords that were once bid down due to a high CPA. By identifying and optimizing for these keywords, SurveyMonkey increased their overall LTV by 150% for key international campaigns. With LTV driving their bidding strategy, SurveyMonkey successfully doubled their spend internationally. Dimensions and Marin’s AB Testing tool have reduced the amount of time spent on campaign management by 40%, allowing SurveyMonkey to invest more time testing new opportunities and growing their business.