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What Is Experience Optimization? EXO Explained — Interview with Ecesu Erol at Unless.com

27 July 2021

Welcome to the world of experience optimization (EXO). EXO casts a wide net over topics like ABM, personalization, and general marketing — all efforts that our website visitor identification software is pivotal in providing data around.

At Leadfeeder, customer experience is everything. So, we decided to interview Ecesu Erol, our friend at Unless.com. Her answers around experience optimization were so informative that we knew our audience would want the insight as well. Happy optimizing!

Note: Leadfeeder is a website visitor identification software. Our data can assist with EXO efforts. Try it out with our free 14-day trial.

Ecesu, please share a little bit about yourself, your experience, and any personal tidbits. 

“I’ve been at Unless for nearly 4 years, wearing many hats as is the custom of startups. Working with marketing, sales, and product has put me in a special spot. Every day I talk to people about their websites and businesses at large. I learn about their goals and roadblocks, come up with solutions and ideas for improvement. After all, optimization is a never-ending process!

I’m a coffee addict from Istanbul, living in and cycling my way around Amsterdam. I’m also a co-organizer at Ladies that UX Amsterdam, an inclusive community that aims to promote female talent, increasing visibility and opportunities.”

Can you give us the elevator pitch for Unless.com? What is it? What does it do? And, why should customers use it?

Unless is a no-code platform for user experience optimization. The drop-in service allows you to update and personalize existing website content, and even add entirely new features - without the help of developers and without impacting your existing infrastructure.

Many of our B2B customers use us to personalize the narratives on their websites to match the diverse background and interest of their detected audience. The idea is to phrase the content using relevant examples and social proof, then hide things that are less relevant based on data points such as industry, company size, and more. This type of personalization is very effective to explain complex storylines in for example the medical, financial or technology sectors.”

Are there any specific links or case studies you’d like to share?

Our latest customer case featuring Kruidvat from A.S. Watson Group has some great examples of how to release and test new personalized experiences at a super-fast pace.

And here's another customer case with one of my favorite use cases: self-segmentation, a very powerful tool for improving the experience of your visitors. This one is particularly interesting if you cater to multiple personas with different needs and interests that require different storylines and journeys.”

What is experience optimization?

Experience Optimization (EXO) is the continued process of understanding your customers and providing a seamless experience for them across your product/service — but heck, you know how to use Google. Let’s get more details from the pro herself.

Ecesu Erol — in your own words, what is experience optimization? How does this function at Unless? 

“Experience optimization is about understanding your audience, not just as a whole but as the individuals that they are, putting yourself in their shoes, and discovering any potential points of improvement in their journeys. It is about providing each of your visitors and customers with the best experience possible for them. This “best experience” will differ for each visitor as well as for a single visitor throughout their journey with your business.

Unless allows you to segment your visitors, whether they are known or anonymous, with CRM integrations, predictions, firmographic data, suggested audiences, and more. Using our no-code editor, you can optimize existing website content and images for each audience, through the entire funnel. These experiences will automatically be tested against a control group and you can also run multivariate tests (A/B/n) for each experience to find the one that performs the best.”

Here’s why EXO matters to your B2B organization

In a B2B org, experience optimization is usually about converting a higher number of visitors into leads. Companies work to improve the performance of their funnel and rapidly iterate through product development and enhancements. Often this results in account-based marketing campaigns and other efforts to personalize the experience for users. 

Ecesu Erol — why does EXO matter to B2B? 

“In a hypothetical B2C retail website a visitor could click on a campaign, land on the website, look at a couple of products, add to cart, and complete purchase all in one session. However, the B2B customer journey is very different.

To begin with, you’re not addressing a single customer but multiple decision-makers within an organization, possibly from different departments. This means your pitch has to offer value to every single one of them. Secondly, sales cycles are a lot longer, meaning you have to keep potential customers interested and engaged for a lot longer. And lastly, in a B2B context, the journey often doesn’t end with the purchase. You have to continue providing your customers with a great experience to keep them happy, achieve brand loyalty, and have them as your cheerleaders. After all, your customers are your best salespeople.

Jim Carry sales meme

There’s also great value in combining EXO with your account-based marketing (ABM) efforts. With experience optimization, you can go further than personalized emails and landing pages and instead ensure that the entire journey is personalized. You can highlight just the right logos, happy customer quotes, case studies relevant to their industry, and so on throughout the website (not just the landing page).

Here I can give an example from our own business where we have identified certain industries that our message resonates well with. We're also aware of the usual decision-makers and the different questions they tend to ask. And so our website highlights different USPs, logos, and case studies when addressing a head of marketing at a retail chain vs. an enterprise architect at a SaaS company. You can also check out our case study featuring Classtag where they implemented a self-segmentation add-on to cater to the significantly different journeys of their three personas.”

So, how do you optimize for the customer experience?

We’re going to shamelessly plug the Leadfeeder software here. Whether you’re specifically looking for help with an ABM campaign or diving deep into personalization, we've got your back. 

With our go-to visitor tracking software, you can reveal the behavior of the companies visiting your website. Further, you’ll be able to connect the typical anonymous website visitor with a company name; like magic, but possible.

So, how would you get started? Do you have any tips or tricks on optimizing for customer experience? Best practices? Tips for segmenting your audience using data?

Help the people out. 

“Start simple. When it comes to personalization and optimization it's easy to come up with lots and lots of ideas which makes it harder to get started. At Unless, we recommend starting with your goals in mind. What are the specific things you would like to improve? What are your KPIs? Here it is best to start with 2-3 bigger goals and add more granular ones over time.

Next, you need to look at your audience. Do you already have personas in place? What do you know about your customers and how can your existing data be used for segmentation? One of the easiest ways to get started is with campaigns you are already running. The segmentation in your emails and the targeting of your ads can all be carried onto the website.

Then, start thinking about the anonymous visitors. What data points are relevant about them and how can you turn them into leads? Here, diving into your analytics can help uncover some ideas. At Unless we will also analyze the traffic you have coming in and automatically suggest audiences you could set up.

Don’t start by changing the color of a button. Instead, take a step back, consider the complete user journey, and identify steps in the funnel that could use some optimization. And make sure to test so you know what is working and what needs improvement.”

Experience optimization is never over

Ecesu Erol — any last pieces of advice you’d like to share with people getting started in EXO? 

“Get your team involved. We’ve seen great success with brainstorming sessions where stakeholders from different departments come together as they all have valuable input about different steps of a customer’s journey.

Listen to the customer support team, the account managers, product team, and of course the marketers and UX people. There can be one person in charge of the project but make sure that different departments are involved in the ideation process. Your efforts and communication as a business should be well-coordinated.

And remember that experience optimization is never over but a continuous process instead. You will keep tinkering, testing, adjusting. We live in a fast-paced world where customer expectations are constantly changing and chances are so is your business and its messaging.

What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow so make sure you are continuously testing.”

Summing up experience optimization with Unless.com and Leadfeeder

Well everyone, spoiler alert — experience optimization is definitely not just the click of a button or running a single ABM campaign.

The hard truth is that B2B websites have to speak to multiple people within an organization and therefore, must provide a positive experience for all different types of people. And that’s not all — you have to actually keep up the good work

Take your learnings from Ecesu and put them into practice with your team.

And, you guessed it: we put this interview together with Unless because Leadfeeder is the perfect software to provide insights about the patterns of your current customers and website visitors. You can use this info to kick off your EXO journey — snag a free 14-day trial below.

Note: Leadfeeder is a website visitor tracker software — try our 14-day free trial to see what we’re all about.

Jessie Taylor
By Jessie Taylor

Jessie works in Content Marketing and Social Media for 6+ years and creates authentic, brand-led content that helps turn target audience into customers.

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