itCraft is a Polish software house that creates high-end mobile apps for innovation leaders in various industries. Thanks to their craftsmanship approach they set up a high bar of excellence on the global app market.
As a leader in the making, they realised that their plain marketing strategy could be perfected and elevated. It was then when they encountered MAN Digital and decided to upgrade their marketing playbook with our help. Since then, they noted a 600% increase in traffic, tripled the number of leads, and doubled the value of the contracts.
Sounds impressive right? So how did it all happen?
Getting ready for a marketing (r)evolution
As many great software houses, itCraft has always primarily focused on the product rather than sophisticated methods of selling it. What they offer is high-end style apps for innovators. They believed that it's enough to focus on the development and keep marketing strategy simple, yet effective.
To some extent, they were right.
They quickly found clients and extensively exceeded their expectations. Word of mouth was one of the foundations for their marketing growth. Going with 3rd party recommendation portals as the second step, they noticed moderate, yet steady growth.`
"Our whole marketing team was really a one-man army with some additional help from the content writer. Even though there was a lot of dedication to the subject, it wasn't nearly enough for what we really wanted to achieve" says Paulina – now, head of marketing at itCraft
The results provided by their 2-people marketing team made it clear that content and SEO optimisation brings traffic and helps them grow.
At the same time, they started to organise monthly and quarterly workshops.
Overall, we did some planning and got some results, but we were ready for something bigger. We knew we wanted to go more in-depth with our content marketing but we just couldn't really put a finger on what we really have to do. We needed clarity and specifics. Then we got in touch with MAN Digital.
Searching for the perfect marketing strategy
We started our cooperation by running a two-day internal design sprint workshop to demonstrate how to craft an in-depth marketing strategy.
So what does it mean “an in-depth marketing strategy”?
During the design sprint we discussed buyer personas, product messaging, and customer journey, so we could design funnels and processes in the next steps. Our biggest goal was to establish key growth areas and build scalable frameworks they could introduce to their marketing tactics in the next months.
We didn't have to wait long for the first 'a-ha!' moment; it quickly turned out that itCraft has more than one buyer persona, while their marketing strategy was clearly in the 'one-fits-all' style. This information changed the whole outlook on how the customer journey should be designed and how their whole marketing strategy should be approached.
The turning point
After the initial strategy sprint, we proceeded with SEO and content audits to create a cohesive action plan. Audits always unveil strengths and weaknesses of any company's strategy. In the case of itCraft, it revealed that the landing pages and blog posts bringing high-quality traffic were the ones that directly answer the questions and resolve the problems of their clients.
This information, combined with advanced traffic analysis, clearly indicated one important thing: that the members of itCraft team have to trust themselves enough to share their extraordinary knowledge with the customers, in various forms and in a more structured way. This was the turning point.
Without anticipating the facts… You already know that the outcome was astonishing...
Together, we set the milestones around the transformed, funnel-based content strategy. Enriched by newly hired content and SEO specialists, itCraft swiftly proceeded to the execution process.
Content marketing in the centre
Thanks to the workshop with MAN Digital we significantly increased the commitment to content creation and SEO optimisation. As our knowledge became the focal point of the content strategy, we implemented a Portfolio section on our website and started to regularly publish case studies. Next step was to create sales enablement content for each buyer persona and new presentations for entry point offers.
That's just the beginning! With new buyer personas, it was also time to refresh their digital presence. They re-edited the content and redesigned the website, implementing a chat so the customers could ask specific questions directly. On top of that, they started A/B testing.
The traffic grew faster than we expected and we had more and more inquiries, a lot of them from influential pioneers on the market. As we were in the process of creating new, elaborated entry point offers, we decided it was a good time to create an e-book.
They did exactly that; their e-book examining cross-platform vs. native development approaches to app creation became an instant success (and another milestone in a form of a lead magnet, from a content marketing strategy viewpoint). With their extended customer base, it was easier to redistribute the e-book by creating user segmentation and email automation. Thanks to the e-book, their blog was updated more often than ever and they quickly moved to backlinking to gain even more valuable traffic.
The itCraft team didn't stop there. Another three e-books about recruitment processes for developers followed right after and while we're writing this blog, another three e-books are in the making, each of them covering different app architecture.
The workshop magic
Another foundation of their new strategy was to create Educational Opportunity Programs by organising app development workshops with experts. While they already did organise workshops and webinars in the past, it was MAN Digital's initial design sprint that inspired them to reconsider how they approach workshops and webinars with potential clients.
Our goal for itCrafts was to increase the number of workshops as well as change the role they play in their customer acquisition process. As their customer base grew significantly, they used this chance to double and eventually triple the number of organised workshops.
We used workshops as a way of authentication of the clients. During the workshops we could gather the demand of the potential client and prepare the documentation, already making estimates. We thought that even if the potential clients didn't like the workshop, or simply didn't 'vibe' with us, they would still have the documentation and they could go to another software house to make an app. For us, the most important thing was to never leave the potential customer empty-handed. We never did.
The customer-oriented approach quickly started to bring impressive results. The demand for their workshop grew rapidly, and global clients started coming from all over the world, including New York and London. It's also great to mention that the majority of these clients continued the project development with itCrafts.
They went ham...
The team also decided to have a professional video company record the workshops and create a promo. We are sure that once the times of the pandemic are definitely over and organising workshops is possible again, it will help to bring even more valuable clients.
The future looks brighter than ever
Even though we live in a very uncertain times thanks to the pandemic, itCraft seems to keep on reaping the rewards from their dedication – currently, their capacity is at 100% and everyone is fully booked with projects until the end of the year. Looking at prospects, this trend will continue.
Their future plans look extraordinarily bright as they want to continue expanding their expert content and publishing more materials on the blog, including video. Customer-oriented as they are, they also started to plan organising a new series of webinars.
We have a lot of big plans for the rest of 2020. We've been creating new content and materials regularly and we have to find more ways to repurpose it, apart from the blog and newsletter. We are also looking for a growth specialist for our lead generation marketing campaigns. We hope to end this year with at least one addition to the team and even more opportunities to educate our clients and grow thanks to this – concludes Paulina.
We are glad we could help itCraft take a deep-dive into the customer-centered world of marketing. It was a fruitful cooperation!
We are sure we'll hear about them and their extraordinary journey many times in the future!
To see what high-end mobile app development looks like, visit itCraft here.⭐Or check our our Growth Marketing Ebook about the Top Software Houses in Poland.
Curious about our customised workshops? Drop us a line so we can write your success story together.🚀