An Example of When it Works
Anyone who knows me knows that will not shut up about how awesome Wistia is. If you want video SEO to be part of your strategy then look no further. I am now a paying customer ($200 or so a year) that uses them as my video hosting provider. So how did I choose them? How did I go through the sales funnel? I can tell you it was through non measurable and measureable actions. These non measurable actions are what we call serendipity. Serendipitous methods should be part of every business if they want to succeed. See how it went down!
Before we start, check out this video from Wistia to learn a little about them.
Questions and Answers on How I became a Paying Customer
Question: Did I Google them to first find them?
Answer: Nope, I never heard of them and had no idea there was something like video SEO. I figured it was just a YouTube world
Question: How did you find out about them?
Answer: Ironically from YouTube. I was working late one night on one of my old client’s website at Wakefly and I could not work and listen to music at the same time. I went to YouTube and searched for Rank Fishkin (from Moz) and was listening to this video while working. Skip ahead to minute 9:20 to listen to Rand talk about Wistia. When Rand started to talk about this company I stopped working to really listen to what he had to say as this was something new to me.
Rand for me is an influence.
Hearing him talk about this company about video marketing made me go directly to their website to check it out. So in terms of how I found out about them it was this. Wistia being a great company got the attention of a very powerful influencer. An influence so powerful (who does not even work for them) made me stop what I was working on to type in Wistia directly into my browser to go there. In terms of Analytics it would come up as a direct visit. However, in terms of the non measurable effect, it actually came from listening to Rank speak on a video where he briefly mentioned them.
Question: Ok so you found out about Wistia, what happened next?
Answer: I did not buy anything because I was still trying to figure out this company. I went to their twitter and I wanted to see who they were. I could tell right away this was a company that cared about their product and also their team members. Also, I was not interested in how many followers they had but how they responded to their customers. I think this is something that is missed when people talk about social media. People forget that social media is to be SOCIAL and not just a place to talk about yourself or your product.
So then I searched for their website on Bing and I watched almost all of their videos to understand their company culture a bit more. I watched Chris Savage, Brendan Shwartz, Mercer Smith Looper, Jeff Vincent, Chris Lavigne, and many more.
So in terms of the funnel, it would show. Direct–>Organic
In reality it was so far YouTube (watched a video that mentioned Wistia) –>Direct (first visit to the website) –>Social (went to their Twitter but did not click on the link to go back to their site) –>Organic (second visit to the website to watch more videos)
Question: Oh ok cool, so then you just bought the $200 dollar yearly plan?
Answer: Nope. I waited longer. I started to do my research about Wistia and to understand more about video SEO and what it was all about. I found that Moz (the company all SEO’s adore) used Wistia and so did Phil Nottingham from Distilled. So in my mind, I saw Rand Fishkin and Phil Nottingham both use this service. These are two of the industry experts that use this platform. For me it became clearer.
Below is Phil Nottingham
Question: Ok, so then you signed up and you became a paying customer?
Answer: At this time I signed up, but only for the free version.
So in terms of the funnel it would look like this in analytics as
Direct–>Organic–>Organic (Free Sign Up)
Marketers would just say it took two previous steps for this person to convert to a free trial.
In reality it was very different.
YouTube (video that I watched that mentioned the company) –>Direct (First visit to the site) –>Social (viewed their Twitter, but then went to Bing to search VIDEO SEO –>Organic (second visit and watched a few videos) –>Research on other websites–>Organic (Third visit to the actual website and then signed up for free)
I loved how Wistia allows customers to try this out for free. This was something that was really new to me and I was timid as to how it would work. My big fear was that I was going to have to pay a lot of money to find out the platform was not good or that it was limited. The free version allowed myself to really test out the platform for 3 different videos. Along the way I tweeted out constantly to Wistia for help. Not only did they respond to my tweets, they actually had me contact their service desk to allow them to look into my issues. Keep in mind, I am a free trial customer yet they took the time to work on my questions and to show me how it to fix the problems.
Question: Wow, that is really strange. Do you think they lose potential paying customers just because they only want to do the 3 for free?
Answer: I think so, but I think by having this business plan they are able to keep people like me as longer paying customers rather than just a one month customer who gives up. For me, I was so convinced that this company and service was working I signed up for the yearly fee.
Another thing about them is how many videos they create for users for free. This one below was the video that I sent around to everyone at work and to my clients to get excited about video marketing.
Question: Do you ever think you will drop the service?
Answer: Unless the rates somehow jumped to a crazy amount I can’t see myself doing that. I feel like I have a personal connection with them. I love that they respond to my tweets, but what made it more was Wistia Fest. I went to their summer outing in 2014 and I met the CEO and a few others. It was so much fun!
Seeing how down to earth everyone was there was amazing. Sometimes businesses have this front that they show that quickly is seen through once you meet them. I can honestly say meeting them and hearing from them was and still is the highlight of my summer. Another awesome benefit is that I ordered a free t shirt from them, which I can’t wait to get.
So Let’s Recap
I am now a paying customer, but I did not Google anything about their service to first find out about them. I did not convert on my first visit and I did not immediately sign up for the paying platform for over 1 month. I was influenced by people in the industry who liked this service and I was amazed at their company culture. I loved how much time and effort they took to respond to my tweets and fully look into my questions on the support line even when I was a free customer.
I also talk about them a lot. I was able to get a working partnership with them and my old job at Wakefly which helps Wakefly introduce this platform to their new clients. I even got my roommate to get a free shirt from them even though he has never used their service!
So in the end Wistia could of just looked at their business model truly just for a data conversion setting. If they were truly only interested in the money they would of never allowed the 3 free video trial. If Wistia only cared about the money they would of never responded to my tweets. If they only cared about the money they would of said our customer help service is ONLY for paying customers. If Wistia only cared about the money they would of put a price to attend their summer outing to eat their food and drink their beer. If Wistia only cared about the money they would of asked me to pay for one of their shirts.
All in All
It is like how we all go to our favorite coffee shop. There are many coffee shops around that all sell the same thing.. The difference is that we have a connection with that place or brand and we choose to go there instead of the others.
When you create that atmosphere and connection with your audience you truly built something that can’t be measured. When you can’t measure that value, that value is called serendipity which in my opinion means just as much as a measurable statistic.