MAZE Cord Blood Labs simplifies a tough decision for customers, and they respond

MAZE Cord Blood Laboratories is a private umbilical cord blood bank offering the long term storage of stem cells for the prevention and future treatment of potential diseases.

The company faced several challenges that stood in the way of growth. The category was growing, spurred by deep-pocketed competition and medical research. MAZE offered a great value, but expectant parents were still confused about the buying decision. Initial sales were built with traditional sales methods that worked locally, but were not scalable.

We refined MAZE's positioning by clarifying the customer's choice: the MAZE price advantage was conveyed as a simpler path to a complex decision at a poignant time of life. Content was carefully crafted to help the customer make the buying decision; video, blogging and inbound marketing drove site traffic and lead conversion. Strategic social media sent even more traffic.

Over 2 years, the leads database tripled, and unit sales grew. The business was back on track to achieve record revenues. 

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Components of this project:

  • Communications strategy and brand messaging
  • Website improvements
  • Inbound marketing: search engine optimization, content, lead conversion tactics
  • Content for expectant parents: information packets, whitepapers, blogs, videos, e-newsletters and more
  • Social outreach onparenting sites and social media platforms
  • Integrated CRM, database management, and analytics tools

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Key Results

Website Traffic
Grew 206%

Database Tripled
and Leads Grew +60%
Unit Sales
Grew +118%

Challenges

Pregnancy offers a narrow window to educate prospective parents about cord blood banking. During this time, prospects are bombarded with sales messages. In just 9 months, we needed to cut through the clutter, simplfy a complex and high stakes purchase decision, and create brand preference in a category with stiff competition.

The opportunity, then, was to combine cost-effective, Web-based marketing tools with persuasive communications to help buyers choose the MAZE brand.

Key Challenges:

  1. Category confusion -- Expectant parents confused and uncertain by the decision at hand
  2. Small brand with limited resources, facing deep-pocketed competitors driving sales with aggressive promotions
  3. Over-reliance on discount price message
  4. Stalled growth, profitability and budget challenges

Solution

Expectant parents spend hours scouring the Web for advice, information, cost comparisons and
personal experience. 

We created a strategy based on providing valuable information, not just about cord blood banking, but about parenting and pregnancy in general. In addition, communications and outreach was designed to demystify and clarify the decision, and build trust in the MAZE brand.

Their complete internet marketing strategy Included:

  1. Communications Strategy - We created a new brand-building message, evolving the company from simply talking about low-cost and price to helping an overwhelmed consumer make an easier and better informed decision.
  2. Demand Generation - The new strategy was applied to a full range of lead-generating inbound marketing tactics. Conversion elements -- offers for information, contests and more -- were added to each Web site page.

  3. Content Marketing - A wide range of content was created to educate expectant parents, help clarify their decision and differentiate the MAZE brand. Animated and testimonial videos engaged site visitors and boosted traffic, FAQ's answered latent questions; more frequent blogging, and stronger calls-to-action drove Web site traffic and leads.

  4. Web site Optimization - We made content easier to find and navigate, and added marketing analytics software to measure leads, conversions and revenue by tactic, for a more efficient use of resources.
  5. CRM and Database Management Tools - We built  a customer relationship and database management system to capture growing inbound inquiries, automate responses to requests for information, and followed up and nurtured prospects with monthly e-newsletters, coupons, white papers, contests, etc.

  6. Social Media - We developed a social marketing program to
 generate awareness and drive traffic via partnerships and engagement on relevant parenting sites, forums, blogs and social media platforms.

Results

The new marketing program became the source of renewed year-over-year momentum, and achieved powerful business results. Within two years, overall traffic to the MCBL Web site was up dramatically, and "contact us" conversions grew +60%. Two years out, sales were up 118%.

Key metrics:

  1. Web site traffic increased +206%, and site visitors spent more time engaging with site content.
  2. Pages visited grew +88%, and bounce rate decreased -64%.
  3. Traffic from social media grew to 21% of the total, and became an important source of leads.
  4. The database tripled, and "contact us" conversions grew +60%.
  5. Unit sales increased +118% after 2 years, and were up +149% after year three.

Why Client's Choose Us:

When we began working with MAZE, their compelling brand value proposition was quite a draw.  The problem was: there was no system available for nurturing inquirers through the sales process.

And, while MAZE had a meaningful positioning as the brand of cord blood bank that understands the massive decision-making that happens during a pregnancy, messaging was focused on price, not value.
We set up an auto-response system to provide high value content to site visitors and phone callers alike. The result: an increase in unit sales that allowed MAZE to reinvest in social media, online video and an electronic purchase system that offered immediate results to the consumer.  And when you're expecting a baby, immediate is a good thing! 

Click on the video to hear MAZE connect with prospective customers in a way that really counts. 
MCBVideo

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