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“It has completely changed the way we operate”: The Power of Optimove’s Predictive Future Value

Varsity Tutors, a live online learning platform, uses Optimove to tap into hundreds of segments and optimizes messaging by setting super control groups. But it’s our predictive behavior modeling that made them fall in love with us

In a post-pandemic world, online learning platforms are more important than ever. The E-Learning market was valued at USD 315 billion in 2021 and is projected to grow by 20% from 2022 to 2028, as technological innovations enable more and more people to learn from a distance. 

The rise of remote education created chatter about the benefits and problems of E-Learning. The benefits were clear from the get-go: lowered costs, mobility, ease of access, and increased flexibility. The problems, on the other hand, were exposed as online learning became a global phenomenon; digital literacy, technical issues, lack of instant communication, lower engagement, and ineffective time management. 

While it’s good to see the evolving discourse on online learning, it’s still focusing exclusively on the perspectives of students and teachers. No one talks about the difficulties online learning companies face when trying to cater to the needs of an ever-growing, extremely diversified customer base. 

One of these companies is Varsity Tutors, an Optimove client. Varsity Tutors offers a live online learning platform benefiting learners and experts. It enables the delivery of scaled, high-quality expertise for learners of all ages across thousands of subjects and multiple learning formats. And by taking full advantage of Optimove’s technology suite, Varsity Tutors’ CRM marketing team can tackle the challenges of this unique industry.      

Testing thousands of combinations 

The first challenge of providing thousands of subjects to learners of all ages is micro-segmentation. The goal isn’t simply to create as many segments as possible but to find segments that improve results by delivering offers that precisely fit the needs of each group. Finding the subtle differences that generate increased response requires automated systems that test thousands of combinations to find the best approach – which is something Optimove’s system excels at.   

“With Optimove, we have been able to tap into hundreds of different segments,” said Sarah Varon, Senior Marketing Manager at Varsity Tutors. “I’m able to send a fifth-grader who loves space information about our next space camp. I’m able to send certification students information about our upcoming boot camp to help them prepare for their exams. It’s an invaluable tool to make sure that we are matching our customers with the right learning solution for their needs.” 

Another tool that helps Varsity Tutors deliver the right solution to each customer is Optimove’s Streams. This feature allows marketers to observe how a series of campaigns – a stream – perform together. Instead of analyzing a single recurring campaign, Streams allows marketers to compare multiple campaigns with alternative campaign streams or a static control group. 

Using a control group – a group identical to the test group, which is excluded from the campaign – creates a baseline to compare the performance of a campaign. Varsity Tutors decided to take it a step further and use super control groups, i.e., exclude control groups from entire streams to see the results if they avoided customer communication altogether. 

“With Optimove streams,” said Varon, “we are able to set super control groups on many different marketing strategies for hundreds of different targeting segments so that we can very quickly learn, optimize and scale strategies for all of our different customers.” 

“A north star for all of our marketing campaigns” 

The last piece of Varsity Tutors’ CRM marketing puzzle is Optimove’s predictive behavior modeling. Many methods attempt to accurately model customer behavior and predict it. Unfortunately, most of them are based on static data and metrics – i.e., information about the customer’s behavior now – and are therefore inaccurate in most circumstances. 

Optimove’s approach to predictive behavior modeling combines customer lifetime value forecasting, continual dynamic micro-segmentation, and a unique, mathematically intensive predictive behavior modeling system. At the end of it stands one metric – predictive future value – which Varsity Tutor swears by.  

“That metric alone has completely changed the way we operate,” said Varon. “It has helped us focus our campaigns, it has allowed us to measure impact over time, and it has given us a north star for all our marketing campaigns. CRM used to be very siloed with channel-specific metrics and opens and clicks, but with something like a future value metric, we’re able to orient the entire business around the value that we think is most important, which is: are we going to deliver value to our customers in the next year?” 

Judging by the financial impact of their CRM, Varsity Tutor is delivering incredible value to its customers. “In the last year alone, we have seen millions of dollars of incremental revenue from the campaigns that ran through Optimove,” said Varon. “Our company has grown and evolved at a tremendous pace. And we have been able to deliver high-quality CRM campaigns with the same size team. We would not have been able to do that without Optimove.” 

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Avi Sorenson

Avi, a seasoned writer-editor joined Optimove in 2022 after more than 6 years with Apester, where he served as a senior content manager and consultant. Prior to this, Avi, a Political Science graduate from Tel Aviv University, held multiple senior editorial positions within mass media outlets. And, whatever you do, don't talk to him about NBA scores from last night.