Look After My Bills are the UK’s largest auto-switching service. They have disrupted the energy market and in a matter of 2 years have acquired 500,000 customers. Find out how their marketing team made it happen!
Meet Polly Holden, Marketing Manager at Look After My Bills
Polly has been a crucial part of Look After My Bills’ (LAMB) marketing team since 2018. She joined the company right after their record-breaking Dragon’s Den fundraise.
Since then she’s risen up the ranks and is leading LAMB’s acquisition marketing effort. She currently manages several marketing channels including PPC, email marketing and TV.
Marketing Methodology: From 0 to 500,000 customers
Initially, PR and Affiliate marketing was key – they had a lot of buzz from the Dragons Den fundraise and capitalised on that. The key to their meteoric growth since has been Facebook marketing:
- Paid Media: Targeted PPC advertising paired with strong incentives has been the key.
- With Facebook ads, it was a journey of discovery through trial and error. Rather than making dangerous assumptions about what will and won’t work, they tested various different messages and ads paired with landing pages to see what their audience responded to.
- They describe themselves as ‘scrappy marketers’ which meant that they wouldn’t hesitate about trying something just because it wasn’t perfect. They got the ball rolling and used the data to guide their campaigns
In God we trust, everything else we AB test
- With media buying there is a significant cost – you need to work out your target CPA’s and Volumes to make sure your paid media is working for you, and not the other way around.
How incentive marketing fits in their marketing mix
Incentive Marketing is about giving your prospects an upfront reward to sign up. This can take the form of physical gifts, or digital gift cards. LAMB use both kinds of incentives in their customer acquisition campaigns. The digital gift card route is the one that’s easiest to set up and scale as delivery and fulfilment costs are much lower.
LAMB don’t see incentive marketing as another channel – it is a way to differentiate their product offering and improve conversions across all channels.
Incentive marketing is not a channel, it is complementary to all channels – Email, PPC and beyond
If you are new to incentive marketing, you might be thinking, “The energy business has tight margins as it is – so isn’t doing incentive marketing just adding another cost?”
LAMB think about it in the context of their broader goals – Acquisition Volume and Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA).
- Lower CPA: Incentive marketing lowers CPA – that’s including the cost of the incentive! As it is often paired with paid media costs, the drastic improvement in the conversion rates reduces the overall CPA.
- Scalability and Flexibility: LAMB’s CPA’s and Volume targets are set and measured on a monthly basis. They usually front end the marketing effort, so they can then adjust and balance out their incentive marketing activity (and spend) later in the month to meet their goals. Using Runa, ordering and fulfilling the incentives is extremely easy and flexible.
“We wouldn’t be getting the customer acquisition volumes without incentives.”
Incentive Marketing: Direct vs Platform
When LAMB started with incentive marketing in 2018, they went direct to one brand and used their gift card in their campaign – and it worked! So then they thought about broadening their offering of incentives and getting the best commercial deal.
- Customer Insights: With a platform, you can get a history of what incentives worked with each customer and this can be integrated with their CRM. LAMB is looking to make the move to full API integration. This will give them a granular view of each customer and can be used to segment their target market to make their incentive marketing more effective.
Quick Tips: How to optimize your incentive marketing campaigns
- Finding the right Incentive: There is a danger with going with one brand – offering a basket of brands work well when trying to figure out what people will respond to. That way you can see which incentives customers like and double down on them in future campaigns.
- For LAMB, there were a few surprises – Body Shop and Sports Direct have done really well. It is a broad audience, and you can think you know them and have a ‘persona’ for them. But the tests with incentives can show you that there is more to learn about your target audience.
- How long to run a campaign: One interesting thing is figuring out how long an incentive can last – what is the rate of promotional decay. LAMB found that it is similar to what you see with Facebook ads, where you have to refresh your offering with new images after a period of time – in this case, you have to refresh the incentive offering – try out a new brand.
- Timing and retargeting: If someone didn’t convert on an incentive offer – it’s not as simple as ‘they didn’t like the offer’. You might have caught them at the wrong time. It is worth following up with those prospects a few weeks later to see if they engage.