A Quick, Easy, and Proven Way to Use Existing Data to Acquire New Superfans

July 13, 2023

At DELVE, we’re privileged to work with digital marketers at organizations of all sizes across a wide range of industries.

One thing they all have in common is their organization’s expectation of them to bring in net-new consumers during the Q4 “spending season”. Shortage on annual plans and the finance team saying to “cover 40% of the revenue gap with 25% of the time left to spare” doesn’t help either. And there is more that gets into play:

Everything above becomes overwhelming quite quickly, especially if digital is not the only or even the main source of revenue yet and is less mature as a function.

Sound familiar?

I have good news. The solution is already at your fingertips in the form of data about your current best consumers. It’s just a bit hidden in a slew of reports in your web analytics, data lake / warehouse, and e-commerce platforms.

Just a few simple reports may be the only things necessary to translate that data into powerful insights – and unlock the next generation of your brand Superfans, blasting past competition.

Here’s a simple way to get into it:

First, understand who already cares about your brand enough to buy again.

In my experience, successful digital marketing is a “matchmaking system” between your potential buyers and products they simply wouldn’t be able to resist buying.

The goal of identifying your most popular offerings and top consumers is not revolutionary, but when executed well it can have enormous positive impact on short-term performance and lead to greater budgets for future initiatives, regardless of how advanced your marketing campaigns structure is currently.

And it gets especially powerful when paired with excluding the bottom consumers, the so-called “Anti-Heroes” or “Anti-Fans”.

To get started, you can use any version of any web analytics tool you already have to address these four questions:

  1. Which of your website pages have the highest and lowest conversion rates? (Which offerings are your consumers buying the most or which pages they visit right before pulling the trigger?). I am usually suggesting to aim for 10% each side.
  2. Which of your website pages are generating the highest and lowest returns post first purchase? (Which offerings are consumers coming back for the most?)
  3. What are the affinity and in-market segments that characterize your buying consumers the most? Are these segments different between products and offerings? What about those that never seem to buy after browsing? (what do your Superfan and Anti-fan look like, are there common patterns?)
  4. In what metro areas and zip codes do your best and worst consumers live? Urban or rural?  Are they buying from mobile or desktop browsers? Internet Explorer or Safari? (What else is to be learned about the environment in which and time at which your core consumers are most and least likely to buy?)

By answering these questions and then combining them together – even in an Excel spreadsheet – to create “cohorts”, most marketing teams I have worked with have been able to identify between 20 to 100 unique combinations of core existing consumer profiles that make the most sense to target heavily and proactively exclude.

Focus is crucial here. It is vital to rank these consumer cohorts so that you can dedicate your efforts to engaging only with as many that you have a budget for – not less than $10,000 per every ending cohort per month. I usually recommend using a “capacity system” that sorts these segments top to bottom in terms of total number of purchases, average order value rate, and average conversion rate. If consumer segments themselves help identify Affinity, the mental “desire” to purchase (or lack thereof) – this ranking system helps to understand the Capacity to buy. Together, these 2 define the “Superfan” that not only wants to buy, but has capacity to do so immediately and more than others.

Second, use these segments directly – and create their look-alikes

There are four more steps here:

  1. Create Audiences in your web analytics tool based on these cohorts. Do so both for the top and bottom segments you’ve identified – the Superfans and the “Anti-Fans”.

2. Push those definitions to your media buying system (it helps if it is Google Analytics and Google Ads or DV360 respectively).

3. Duplicate these campaigns and set them up as Direct Targeting vs Look-a-Likes.

4. For the Top ones, produce appropriate creatives using the insights about the best-performing pages identified above.

Let me stress this out once again – it’s critical to not only obsess about the Superfans, but exclude the “Anti-Fans” – and their look-alikes. While controversial, excluding your lowest-profit buying consumers is exactly the right thing to do to maximize the ROAS of a limited budget.

Done! You will immediately increase your profit. It’s worth it.

team member image
Anton Lipkanou

President & COO