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How Thnx! created a revenue-positive marketing campaign with 100% conversion rates

How Thnx! created a revenue-positive marketing campaign with 100% conversion rates

Gratitude technology company Thnx! faced the typical challenge of being relatively unknown and having no significant budget with which to change that. They used the ADORE ProcessTM to create a 100% conversion rate marketing activation

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The challenge

Gratitude technology company Thnx! faced the typical challenge of being relatively unknown and having no significant budget with which to change that. The Thnx! app allowed you to send a token of your gratitude digitally, which the recipient was able to exchange for a real cup of coffee. Thnx! captured the perfect way to acknowledge extra efforts by team members at work, without the typical awkwardness of a bunch of flowers or the jealousy associated with more significant gestures such as bonuses. The start-up knew that to get scale, they would need an approach that did not rely on adwords.

Fortunately, the team recognised that their association with gratitude was both timely and newsworthy. As one of their early investors noted, “You would have to be an ass to say no to gratitude”. Thnx! leveraged this to create two remarkable launch activations that generated revenue and had perfect conversion rates.


The approach

The team leveraged research linking gratitude with increased staff performance and used that to create a corporate good news story. The strategies for launching Thnx! achieved site traffic at scale with no financial outlay, generated revenue, and achieved 100% conversion rates – unheard of results in most marketing departments.

The marketing strategy consisted of two parts:

  1. Thnx! approached a local and well-known coffee brand with a pitch for cross-promotion: would they sponsor 5,000 free coffees in exchange for an association with “gratitude” and a slot on early morning TV? The opportunity gave the coffee brand an easy way to align with gratitude and drive traffic to their stores. For the TV network, the segment provided fresh and interesting coverage with no effort on their part. Win-Win-Win. Thnx! had over 5,000 downloads in the two days after the piece was aired on morning TV.

  2. The launch caught the attention of Microsoft, who, as it turned out, had a vested interest to deliver a token of gratitude to their loyal partner network to smooth over a few bumps from the previous year. Microsoft used our technology to open their annual conference in Last Vegas to a live audience of 35,000 people, with a further 2 million watching the live stream. In the opening 3 minutes, Gavriella Schuster, the former VP of Partnerships at Microsoft, sent 10,000 Thnx! to partners in the audience. The coffees were all redeemed within 72 hours.


Why it worked

The strategies which drove thousands of Thnx! app downloads and delivered 100% conversion rates worked because:

  1. The team had extreme clarity around what they needed to do to “make life better” for the launch partners. The TV needed fresh and exciting content; the coffee brand needed an interesting and socially responsible marketing hook; Microsoft needed a gesture of positivity to turn their partner vibe back to positive

  2. The limited coffee giveaways activated both the scarcity and free decision short-cuts

  3. Instead of promoting their app on their own, Thnx! leaned on the advocacy of others activating the credibility decision short-cut

  4. The combination of activating social proof, credibility and the power of free, coupled with the low resistance of deep linking to pre-load coffee vouchers into the Thnx! app significantly shortened the buying process, effectively removing all obstacles and making the decision to download Thnx! an easy choice


Apply it in your business

We found that the companies with best-in-class partnership programs generate a greater share of their revenue from the partnership channel, drive faster revenue growth within the channel and at the overall company level, and are more likely to exceed stakeholder expectations on business metrics than companies with less mature partnership programs — Forrester Research, 2021

To drive traffic to your website using a strategy other than Google Adwords, look for opportunities to:

  1. Reach your target audience at scale. Instead of marketing in single units, are there ways to get in front of potential buyers at scale through associations, adjacent businesses, businesses that aggregate your target audience?

  2. Establish a partnership with a node by solving their problems. For example, associations often need to remain relevant to their members, banks need to align with social good initiatives, mining companies with renewables. Solve for their needs – make their life better.

  3. Create an offer that will activate a number of the decision short-cuts described in Part I of Digital Brand Romance. A powerful combo is a one-click activation that is limited, promoted by a credible partner node, and offers a discount or free sample