Finding The Muse in Email Marketing

Recent statistics have often led brands to believe that social media is the best place to reach a young audience. However, social media networks are not the only avenue of marketing. As The Muse found out, the greatest way to spread its products is directly to the individual.

Career Resource Seeks Personalized Resources

Founded by Kathryn Minshew and Alex Cavoulacos, The Muse is an online career resource that offers a behind-the-scenes look at job opportunities with hundreds of companies. The resource has also established sections for career advice with experts and access to coaches to get personalized and private career help.

The Muse, over the years, achieved international recognition through a variety of publications. Most recently and most notably, in June, Forbes covered how the career resource raised $16 million in a Series B funding round led by Icon Ventures, with current investors Aspect Ventures, DBL Partners and QED Investors participating.

The goal for the founders then, according to Forbes, was to develop a personalized marketing strategy.

“People don’t necessarily want to do the most obvious thing based on what they did last,” said Minshew to Forbes. “How do you help them see what options are out there based on their skill set?”

To accomplish this, using the money raised, The Muse doubled the size of its data science and business intelligence teams…and partnered with Blueshift.

The Blue Period

The initial meeting between The Muse and Blueshift occurred in March.

“Immediately, we noticed the main issue with targeting a company like The Muse, a career resource company, is the nature of the different interactions,” said Vijay Chittoor, CEO of Blueshift. “We believe each interaction is a verb, and because of that, we use the “database of verbs” approach.”

The approach allows everything to be measured – from the most innocuous to the most complex – all data is stored and analyzed.

“We established a system that analyzed location, browsing history, resumes, etc,” Chittoor said. “Once we had that system in place, we were able to better create a personalized campaign for The Muse and its customers.”

Blueshift launched four different campaigns and activations:

  • Complex Multi-Triggered Campaigns: Launched ten complex triggered email campaigns targeting different user interactions across multiple sections of the site and their multiple catalogs.

  • Daily & Best-of-the-Week Newsletters: Regular sends to users based both on their implicit and explicit communication preferences.

  • Rich Segmentations: Create complex, actionable segments based on each user’s behavior in combination with location and topic preferences.

  • Location-Specific Emails: Deliver emails containing articles, company recommendations, and job postings to each individual user’s location.

The implementation of these campaigns and activations took an estimated three months, and in the process gave The Muse a better understanding of how to structure data.

“One of today’s biggest industry challenges is how to structure the data,” said Kevin Jan, email marketing manager at The Muse. “It’s tricky to know what a customer wants, but the data can inform us of those things.”

The Muse in Email

Months following the partnership, the campaigns built predictive recommendations into their emails that spared readers to click through and visit targeted sections on its site two times as often as previous campaigns.

The personalization technology also added a 200 percent increase in visits to The Muse’s job section by 59 percent in email open rates.

“The interactions on The Muse are unique,” Chittoor said, “so we had to develop algorithms and strategies that could adapt to that specific nature.

In recognition of this unique process, The Muse pinpointed specific takeaways to guide future marketing campaigns and projects.

  • Personalizing the job-seeker experience is key to driving increased on-site engagement by applicants

  • Millennial job-seekers need a more personalized experience with relevant job postings custom matched to their skills, location, and company affinities

  • With predictive recommendations built into their emails, The Muse created engaging messaging that sparked readers to click thru and visit targeted sections on their site twice as often as previous campaigns.

The Muse, now understanding the importance of personalized marketing campaigns, intends to focus metadata and data collection algorithms, while maintaining a keen eye on the learned principles from the Blueshift campaign.

“It’s clear the more personalized the marketing and the targeting, the better the results,” said Jan “That’s why it’s so important to partner with the right company, like Blueshift.”

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