Building a business from a tropical paradise is a fantasy many entertain but few actually live. But this is the reality of GeniusU founder and serial entrepreneur Roger Hamilton, who runs the world’s most successful entrepreneur education platform from his adopted home, Bali.
So what’s the secret to building a successful company that inspires and educates hundreds-of-thousands of budding entrepreneurs around the globe? Create a new conceptual space (in his case, personalised wealth creation) and deliver it on a global scale.
However, to GeniusU, that’s only half the story. “You’ve got to design customer journeys in a very intelligent way to deliver personalised services. And you’ve got to automate as much as possible in the background,” according Group CTO Suraj Naik.
And that’s where Salesforce delivers.
When Naik took charge of the technology in 2008, customers were flocking to new online services and events. In 2015 things got really crazy when GeniusU launched Genius Test – an app designed to help people discover their special talent. When it launched on Facebook, 10,000 people took the test in the first month alone.
Suddenly GeniusU had 150,000 customers on its hands and new customers were signing up at a rate of 10,000 a week. The sheer scale of GeniusU’s success threatened to blow its systems apart.
“It was clear our CRM couldn’t cope with the volume of data or provide useful reporting tools,” said Naik. “So we decided to work with the number one provider in the category – Salesforce. Imagine sketching a design for your business on a whiteboard. With Salesforce we designed a system that worked for our business and scaled as business boomed.”
Naik got down to work with Sales Cloud, migrating the customer database and creating customer profiles based on information captured from online testing. Immediately the company’s salespeople were geared up to chase leads and opportunities, working with flags and triggers to manage customers, promote the right combination learning services, and close deals.
It was a watershed moment that laid the foundations for GeniusU’s core proposition – personalised wealth creation.
Adding Marketing Cloud’s Journey Builder to the mix introduced targeted email promotion and broader campaign management that takes customers on a one-to-one journey across channels and devices, through every phase of the marketing lifecycle.
Rich customer data drives smarter segmentation and targeting that pinpoints specific customer interests and preferences, right down to individual styles of learning.
“That’s the beauty of Journey Builder – we design customer journeys in a very intelligent way to gauge individual responses, tweaking things as we go,” said Naik.
Now, with everything running in Salesforce, customer numbers are going through the roof. In the past year 450,000 people have taken the Wealth Dynamics and Genius Test, boosting overall customers to 800,000-plus, with 5,000 more joining every week. And the growth curve is set to steepen as GeniusU expands its affiliate programme, which at this early stage already attracts 4,000 advisers, who are busy building their own business empires selling GeniusU products and services.
The Company is making waves in social media, too, notching up over 700,000 fans and followers across various channels, with thousands tuning in to Roger Hamilton’s weekly episode on Youtube.
Salesforce also reaches critical moments that drive attendance to GeniusU events hosted in cities around the world. On this front, text messages provide a timely prompt. An in-house ticketing app delivers another useful reminder, issuing a PDF event ticket, complete with QR code, to everyone who registers online. Onsite venue scanning maps records back to Salesforce.
“And that’s the other great thing about Salesforce – almost everything happens automatically in the background. We don’t have a room full of people updating customer details. In any case, they couldn’t cope with the 5,000 new customers we process every week,” said Naik.