Propellerhead is the ultimate Trailblazer. Founded in the early days of consumer computing, the company has been helping people turn their musical dreams into reality with affordable software since CDs ruled the scene. Unsurprisingly, it has a cult following of loyal super-fans.
“We have a mature product set and a great fan base,” said Tage Widsell, Creative Director of Marketing. “But with more competition on the market, we need to make sure we’re getting the most from digital sales channels and getting smarter about marketing to nurture our brand and culture.”
Propellerhead’s trailblazing digital studio software products are used by millions of musicians across the globe. To stay connected with each and every one of them, the company has been using Marketing Cloud since 2013.
“We first starting looking into marketing automation to meet a very specific need,” explained Anders Molander, VP of Sales and Marketing. “We recognised that lots of the people downloading our trial versions were likely to go on to buy the software, but without the ability to easily keep in touch with them, we were missing a trick.”
Just six weeks after purchasing Marketing Cloud, Propellerhead launched its first campaign, and it hasn’t stopped since. It now uses the solution to send more than 36 million automated emails a year.
Capturing customer and product data direct from Propellerhead’s central business platform, Marketing Cloud segments customers according to their stage in the sales lifecycle. The company’s five-strong marketing team can then focus on creating the right content.
“Creating campaigns in Marketing Cloud is easy: once we have the content, it’s up and running in just a few clicks,” said Molander. “Before Marketing Cloud, we’d have to manually set targeting, exclusion groups, and time zones, which left plenty of opportunity for human error!”
Setting up campaigns is so easy, in fact, that Propellerhead was able to set its end of year email campaign to run while the office was closed for Christmas, and arrived back in January to discover an influx of sales.
With the basics taken care of, the marketing team can concentrate on strategy and content. “We can look at sales by channel and see what’s working for us and what isn’t,” said Widsell. “We use AB testing to make sure we’re sending the most engaging subject lines to increase our open rates.”
Thanks to this visibility, Propellerhead is now averaging an open rate of around 20% among active subscribers. “With detailed reporting in Marketing Cloud, we know our sweet spots. If we send a mailout advertising a free download, we’ll get open rates of up to 45%,” said Widsell. “Salesforce helps us to be more predictive, so we know the best time to target customers and we’re not wasting money and effort on low-return campaigns.”
Since it began its digital transformation in 2013, Propellerhead has grown its revenues by 50%. But not content to rest on its laurels, the company’s continuing to improve its marketing communications with a more personalised approach.
“We want to use Journey Builder to set out a marketing plan for every single customer and prospect,” said Molander, “We’re supporting the onboarding process with emails including hints and tips to get people started making music, and have plans to provide personalised emails promoting specific products based on their previous purchases. That way, they’ll know we’re with them every step of the way.”
Traditionally, Propellerhead customers are desktop users, but the company is well prepared for the increasing move to mobile. “We’re looking at rolling out push messaging within Salesforce to help with onboarding and tutorials,” said Widsell.
With Salesforce, the company can keep its heritage of close customer relationships alive as new technologies and trends emerge. “Making music is a very emotive business,” said Molander. “With Salesforce, we can help our customers get the most from our products and inspire them to keep doing what they’re doing.”