Customer acquisition has long been at the forefront of marketing priorities across industries. With acquisition costs rising faster every year and the approaching deprecation of third-party identifiers, brands are eager to discover smarter ways to leverage the insights they have available to gird against soaring marketing costs.
We spoke to Grant Germano, Martech Strategy Lead at Bloomberg Media, to discuss strategies the media brand is putting into play to adapt to shifts in privacy, harness first-party data to power its acquisition efforts and future-proof customer experience against market shifts long-term. This begins with recruiting the right technology to hit the ground running.
How Bloomberg Slashed Acquisition Costs Within Months With a CDP
The Fate of Bloomberg’s Acquisition Strategy in a Cookieless World
The anticipated loss of third-party identifiers is putting the pressure on marketers — especially those who have historically relied on cookies as the foundation of an effective targeting strategy. Finding new ways to continue meeting aggressive acquisition goals while maintaining cost efficiency is at the top of mind. As a result, brands are doubling down on investments in first-party data initiatives.
“At Bloomberg, we aren’t waiting for broader industry solves on the issue. We are instead investing in our own users and data,” Germano explained. “There is a lot brands can do to get ahead of the curve.”
Traditionally a free content site that monetized via ads, Bloomberg is gearing up for the cookieless future with a laser focus on growing its subscription business to protect against revenue loss — starting with investing in a bulletproof acquisition marketing toolset.
“We’re focused not only on growing our first-party data but also deploying it through CDP server-side integrations and making sure that our data lake is communicating with each of the platforms we’re advertising on. We’re investing in our own users and data through efforts like registration, value exchange and machine learning,” Germano explained.
The brand sought out a solution that would optimize targeting to reduce customer acquisition costs and enable expansion across numerous additional channels beyond just Facebook and Google Analytics.
Creating a Bulletproof Acquisition Strategy with a CDP
Bloomberg went about upleveling its acquisition strategy with three key priorities in mind:
- Create a value exchange with customers
- Increase omnichannel personalization to create deeper relationships and higher customer lifetime value
- Convert registered users to paid subscribers through omnichannel journeys
In order to efficiently nurture a user toward a subscriber, Bloomberg planned to leverage all insights available to deliver a meaningful, cohesive experience. Customers experience brands, not channels, so the ability to reach them wherever they are with relevant meaningful messaging is imperative.
The media brand invested in a customer data platform to execute on the goals above while driving marketing efficiency and maximizing first-party data.
“First-party data is the most valuable asset for an organization. It’s the foundation for every customer relationship and it’s key to future proofing your marketing efforts. But your first party data is only useful if you’re able to leverage it effectively,” Germano said. “Our investment in a CDP has allowed us to build audiences that are more intelligent so we can activate our first-party data with precision.”
With its CDP, Bloomberg was not only able to expand access to multiple acquisition channels, but also create an audience layer with anonymous web visitors, registered users and paying subscribers in one central hub accessible to the company’s business users.
“For us, the right CDP had to provide a single source of truth across our customer data and make that available for things like segmentation, activation and analysis. More tactically, though, also supporting integrations with all our current or potential future platforms. Those integrations are critical to truly unlocking omnichannel marketing.”
Impact on Growth Metrics & Acquisition Cost Efficiency
The key outcomes of importance for the media brand spanned across three pillars: media efficiency, increased conversions and future-proofing with first-party data.
According to Germano, “since implementing the CDP, [the brand] saw significant improvements in audience match rates, conversion rates and acquisition costs – all driven by more relevant and timely experiences powered by first-party data.”
“In the first six months of being live with our CDP, we saw audience sizes and match rates increase upwards of 500%,” Germano said. “We also saw Bloomberg subscriptions being driven from paid social increase over 59% while seeing the breakout of an annual versus monthly subscription increase by 53%.”
In addition to powering increased subscriber conversions, the CDP enabled the brand to optimize its marketing spend in the process.
“We saw a 76% lower cost to acquire a new Bloomberg customer within those first six months as well. We’ve been thrilled with these initial results and it’s exciting to see the power of first-party data,” he noted.
It’s a long road ahead for Bloomberg with ambitious goals to continue harnessing customer data to forge deeper relationships with customers, deliver innovative offerings and grow its subscription business. But it’s impossible to create runway for sustainable growth and future-proof against an ever-changing market without implementing a bulletproof martech toolset.
“Rather than get stuck in a constant state of reaction, by establishing an evergreen strategy that prioritizes first-party data, you can mitigate the impact of future macro-factors and maintain brand awareness at a time when many others are quick to pull back on spend,” Germano added.
Check out the full webinar featuring Bloomberg to learn more about how the brand is elevating its customer experience strategy to power subscriber growth while optimizing acquisition costs.
Learn More About How to Harness First-Party Data to Optimize Customer Acquisition
Download the Enterprise Guide to Acquisition Marketing Powered by First-Party Data to learn how you can pivot your strategy to a first-party data approach to ensure growth and scalability.
We also invite you to contact us directly to get your questions answered.