Marketers of all shapes and sizes want one thing: to better understand their customers. This is more complex than ever before. The customer journey is no longer a linear path. Instead, customers bounce from channel to channel on their path to conversion.
Each customer journey is unique and offers invaluable insights into marketing performance: what’s working, what isn’t, and what needs to change going forward.
We spoke to Maciej Turek, former Head of Performance Marketing at bunq, to get his thoughts on how marketers can focus on building a thriving customer journey at scale. He also reveals how bunq is saving the world one tree at a time and the crucial role of marketing attribution in it.
Maciej Turek’s career development
Maciej Turek started his career working in customer service for the telecommunications operator Orange and the banking service HSBC, before taking a position as Credit Controller for the renowned consultants Capgemini.
He then decided to pivot, blending his dual passions for website development and marketing. Following stints as an SEO specialist, SEM specialist, Performance Marketing Specialist, and Senior Traffic Specialist, and Head of Performance Marketing at bunq, a mobile-first bank that plants a tree every time you make a purchase.
The road to performance marketing
Building websites has always been my favorite hobby before it became my job. I started my career as a front-end developer building websites for local businesses like flower shops and attorneys.
I quickly realized that I could bring even more value to my clients by going one step further and learning about website marketing, so I started running AdWords campaigns. This gave me the experience to move into genuine marketing roles, so I joined a few startups, agencies, and eCommerce businesses before starting at bunq.
I worked at FindHotel, a hotel comparison website where I ran a large, successful AdWords campaign. From there I went to OneFit, where I built their paid marketing system. We scaled up the campaigns and expanded the team before OneFit merged with Urban Sports Club.
Until recently, I was at bunq, based in Amsterdam where I help establish and scale up the performance marketing team, building and refining the processes to help fuel growth.
Turning innovative ideas into reality with bunq
bunq is a fully licensed mobile-first bank, providing personal and business accounts throughout Europe. We go beyond just helping people with their finances.
We’re also committed to improving the world at large. Every time you pay for anything, we plant a tree on your behalf. We’re kind of like the Ecosia of finance. I love working here because bunq is filled with incredibly talented people. It’s an adventure working with people who are smarter than you.
The place is always buzzing with passion and creativity. There is a real sense of opportunity because we’re all committed to turning our innovative (and often crazy) ideas into reality.
bunq is fully owned by our founder and CEO. This means that we don’t have to report to investors. It’s so liberating. We feel like we can be dynamic and creative, instead of having to answer to investors focused only on the bottom line.
3 steps to building an effective marketing organization focused on the customer journey
There aren’t any easy solutions. It’s about asking the right questions, setting the right success measures, and remembering to keep the whole project orientated towards the customers’ needs.
1. Structure your team around the customer journey
At bunq we’re completely focused on the customer journey. These are our key questions when shaping our marketing strategies:
- What do we understand about our users?
- How do we acquire them?
- How do we convert them?
- How can we retain them?
We then assign specialist teams to each stage of the customer journey. I’m mostly focused on user acquisition. Once a user begins a trial, the CRM team works to nurture those customers throughout their relationship with us.
I’m a big fan of having specialist teams for each stage of the customer journey. It means we can take a deep dive into all areas.
For example, our acquisition-focused team can pour all their time and energy into mastering the process of acquiring new customers. They don’t have to worry about what happens once those customers come in the door. We have another team to handle that stage, and one to handle the stage after that, and so on.
2. Set the right success measures
This is a game-changer. We initially focused on app downloads, when we realized that roughly 60% of users would drop off without activating. This was a major red flag. We took a deep dive into how we could get customers regularly using the app as seamlessly as possible.
We found that some post-sign-up events, such as creating an account, were strongly correlated with long-term conversion and retention. Based on those elements, we optimized our campaigns rather than just download metrics alone.
The results were incredible: the number of users who didn’t activate after signing up went down from 60% to 5%. This shows the importance of looking beyond ‘vanity metrics’ like download numbers.
Downloads count for nothing if users never even use your app. By making the process of creating an account as seamless and simple as possible, we ensure that those who download our app end up using it.
3. Be customer-focused
Everyone knows the saying “The customer is always right”, but it’s more than that. You have to genuinely understand the customer by taking a holistic approach towards the customer lifecycle.
Brands can’t get away with picking their favorite channel and messaging strategy while ignoring all others.
The right approach to marketing attribution
Everyone approaches attribution differently. Here at bunq, Adjust is our attribution tool of choice. Given that we have specialist teams operating throughout different stages of the funnel, we all rely on multiple different attribution models within Adjust.
My role means keeping an eye on all touchpoints and directly linking any brand activation and PR efforts to conversions. I tend to take more of a birds-eye look at attribution, whereas the teams I work with are usually more granular.
By allowing these teams to hone in on what truly matters for them, they don’t have to worry about the interplay between each stage of the journey. That’s my responsibility.
There is one thing that I’d recommend to all marketers: ensure you always consider the promotions you’re running. I’ve worked in organizations where teams have had mini-meltdowns because their numbers aren’t making sense.
When we took a step back, we remembered running special discounted promotions where everything was muddled.
Avoid giving free stuff away altogether. You want people to use your product and service because of its inherent value, not because you temporarily caught their attention with a free goodie.
Meet your customers on their own terms: on the channels they prefer, the messaging that resonates with them, and specifically answering pain points they have as individuals and not what you think they probably have.
Maciej Turek, Performance Marketer