Creating a winning mentality

The Rao Institute’s “Creativity and Personal Mastery” (CPM) program teaches executives and entrepreneurs how to achieve deep meaning in their lives and realize quantum leaps in personal and professional effectiveness. As part of a strategic digital roadmap instituted by Ayantek, The Rao Institute had successfully launched a content-rich website, a thought-leadership blog, and an online collaboration space for the CPM community all incorporating a new brand experience. With the strong digital foundation now in place, The Institute wanted to engage their core audience of entrepreneurs and business executives by offering an online version for those who could not travel to Long Island, NY to physically attend the full program.

Serving up incredible content

A four-step content marketing plan was established to achieve the above goals.

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The Rao Institute’s first step was to re-engage their core audience who had previously expressed interest in CPM material. The first step of the campaign was a series of seven e-mails providing rich, valuable, and free content to the audience. Users were asked to re-confirm their interest in receiving free content by entering their email addresses on a landing page.

Results: The series of seven emails saw an Open Rate of 38% (16% above the industry average) and a Click-Through Rate (CTR) of 8% (5% above the industry average)1 establishing an organic user base of 1,000+ contacts.

1http://mailchimp.com/resources/research/email-marketing-benchmarks/

The next step was a series of ten emails providing valuable, free content to those users who reconfirmed their interest in Step 1. This time, the calls-to-action encouraged contacts to provide their perspective and share comments on the website and on social media.

Results: The ten e-mails saw an average open rate of 46% (24% above the industry average) .

Once trust was established, the next step was to build awareness of the online version of the CPM program. While the online program required a lower price and time commitment than the offline program, it was unclear whether the audience would be interested in such an offer since it had never been tried before. A series of four emails with free content were sent over a two week period with details about the online CPM program. Interested users could learn more about the online program and were offered early access to the program content.

Results: The four emails saw an open rate of 52% (30% above the industry average) with a CTR of 26% (23% above the industry average).

Finally, users expressing interest in Step 3 were asked to submit an application as part of registering for the online program. The emails provided three different value propositions to join the CPM Online program. This series of e-mails brought the content marketing strategy full circle. With strong open and CTRs across all the steps contacts were presented with an attractive offer that was in line with the content they received.

Results: The three CPM Sales e-mails saw an average open rate of 48% (26% above the industry average) with an average CTR of 14% (11% above the industry average).

More trophies on the horizon

TRI now has a content marketing program to maximize the effectiveness of each stage of the funnel. As a result of the initiative, TRI has built their contact database from zero to 3,000+ with an average e-mail open rate of 48% relative to an industry average of 22%. The Rao Institute’s e-mail content is not “another e-mail” in your inbox. People value the content in these e-mails. With a strong foundation of engaged users, The Rao Institute is poised for fantastic success with their content marketing goals.

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