About Hostelworld.com: A Dublin based leading hostel booking website. It was launched in 1999 as a flagship brand of the parent company Web Reservations International (WRI). The company has evolved into a leading provider of online reservation, keeping in mind the travelers who have specific budgets.
Hostelworld.com’s Business Objectives: The company wanted to launch an effective email marketing strategy which generated higher response rates and Return of Investment (ROI) for the campaigns. The ultimate objective was to achieve the customer loyalty and thereby increase its revenue.
Approach Adopted By Hostelworld.com: Hostelworld worked with eCircle, the online marketing service provider to come up with an email marketing strategy. The approach involved an optimization process known as ‘Multivariate Testing’, where more than one component of the email are tested in real time scenario. This testing process is much effective than the traditional A: B testing process since it can come up with limitless combinations. For executing this, eCircle partnered with 8Seconds, an expert in Multivariate testing domain. The multivariate testing process involved the following approach:
- They designed four different header images for the email campaigns. The images contained catchy words with exciting offers and information which catered to all sections of the customers viz. ‘Free city guides’, ‘Three to watch this month’ etc.
- The testing process involved wherein 4000 readers of different geographical locations were send the emails with the 4 header images. This sample of readers was selected to attain 100 % statistical validity
- The winning image was based upon the highest number open rates and unique clicks on the image. The optimized email with the winning image was then send to the remaining customer database.
Results Achieved By Hostelworld.com: The results achieved were outstanding with an average increase in click through rates (CTR) of 209%. The campaign boosted the email open rates and campaign ROI of Hostelworld.
Learnings: Hostelworld earlier experienced a lower CTR when they only depended upon the A: B testing. But after employing the new multivariate testing process, they were able to understand what the customers liked the most and then optimize the emails accordingly. As a result they were able to boost their revenue several folds.