Rebecca Heidgerd, Director of E-Commerce for TUI North American Education, joined TUI to develop a common e-commerce strategy and platform. The marketing teams of the business units she supported were using different marketing tools and systems. This created inefficiencies and the sales teams were receiving too few, unqualified leads. She implemented HubSpot’s software to help deliver an inbound marketing strategy and improve their lead generation and conversion.
y-o-y increase in monthly site traffic across brands
y-o-y increase in monthly leads for education brands
y-o-y increase in presales revenue for annual student gold pass/on-tour excursion campaign
TUI Travel is one of the world’s leading leisure travel groups, with over 220 trusted brands in 180 countries and more than 30 million customers. TUI’s seven student travel groups in North America offer educational and leisure experiences for students in the United States and Canada.
When Rebecca Heidgerd, Director of E-Commerce for TUI North American Education, joined TUI, the sales teams of the business units she supports were unhappy with the volume and quality of leads they received. Their websites and online marketing efforts were not generating the desired sales growth.
Most of the businesses relied solely on email to their existing databases for their online marketing campaigns. They were not generating sufficient new leads or nurturing existing customers for retention sales. “I knew right away I would be driving a lot of new marketing activities for them like blogging and social media - email alone wasn’t enough to compete in the marketplace,” says Rebecca.
Further, each business used different tools: from MailChimp to Constant Contact to emailing directly from a CRM system. They had different CMSs in place on their websites as well. Rebecca viewed this as a missed opportunity since the businesses could share best practices if they were on one platform. “I knew we needed a tool that everyone could use and would make the new activities easy to do... and I needed to do it on my own without IT support."
Rebecca had used HubSpot at a previous company but wanted to do her due diligence before selecting the right tool for TUI. She also had experience using Eloqua but ruled it out for TUI because it was not user friendly. “Eloqua was supposed to be marketing automation but it felt like a bad email tool. For example: there were no templates available and if you wanted to edit emails you had to work with long strings of HTML code that appeared in one single line.”
Her selections came down to HubSpot and Act-On. As she investigated Act-On further, she found, “It seemed like it was an email tool trying to retroactively provide more features... Overall it felt like you got less for more money and I wasn’t in love with the email tool.” In contrast, HubSpot provided a full marketing platform that could meet the needs of all the business units she supports.
Director of E-Commerce
TUI North American Education
By using HubSpot’s software, TUI was able to move beyond email and implement a complete inbound marketing strategy. Although all of their brands provide travel for students, the student is not always the decision maker. But Rebecca knew that parents and teachers also did their research online and needed to be reached effectively outside of email. “For everything we’ve been doing, one of our biggest goals is to improve organic search rankings and leads. We’re trying to push a lot of content entry like blogging, landing pages and social media.”
Before implementing HubSpot, two of the brands she worked with were blogging occasionally and the rest weren’t blogging at all. Now, all of them have adopted HubSpot’s Blogging Tools and are blogging at least once a week.
These activities have translated to more traffic and leads. In less than a year since TUI started to implement HubSpot, each applicable brand has increased social media traffic by a minimum of 213%. All have seen an increase in website visitors upwards of 20%. For Brightspark Canada, specifically, website traffic is up 25% and leads are up 128% year-over-year.
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