A user's view: Adjust chats with Blinkist CEO Holger Seim
Senior Content Manager
Posted Feb 13, 2017
We can talk all day about up-and-coming features, broadcast new changes, and provide you with as much content as we can type, but sometimes it’s better for the user to tell the story, and explain how the product works for them.
So, we’re launching a blog series to do just that, talking to those who use Adjust every day. We’ll look at how their individual challenges have been solved by the product, and why they maintain us as their attribution provider.
In the first of our interviews, we spoke with Holger Seim, Co-Founder and CEO of Blinkist, a Berlin startup and app development company. We found out more about particular use cases and favorite features that Blinkist use every day to help build on their success.
Could you give us some background on what Blinkist does, and who it’s for?
Holger: We deliver key insights from non-fiction books in a format that you can easily read or listen to on-the-go, in any spare moment. We call the format “books-in-blinks” because you can find a key insight from a book in the blink of an eye.
Blinkist is for a lot of different people, but our users tend to be two types of learners. One is the knowledge hunter. This is a person who really wants to learn, and who wants to become a better person—and they want to do it all efficiently. A knowledge hunter is really focused on self-help content and business content. They’re also the classical reader of blogs, a listener of podcasts and a life-hacker if you will.
The second kind of user is the genuine explorer. This is a person who loves to read, and not always for a specific goal, but just to learn for the sake of learning. They’re curious, they have a thirst for broadening their horizons, and they want to get new perspectives. They’re someone that wants to read a lot, and who is generally interested in all kinds of different things.
We want to inspire those people to keep learning and give them an easier starting point by helping them dip into new knowledge at moments when they can’t read anything long form. We do this by giving them a format which they can easily read or listen to whenever they have a minute or two. Then, they can figure out where they want to dig deeper or pick up a book in full.
How do you find your most valuable users?
Our most valuable users tend to come from word-of-mouth because it’s natural for Blinkist users to talk about what they learned on Blinkist and share it with friends. But apart from that, we also acquire very valuable users through performance and content marketing. When it comes to performance marketing our biggest channels are Facebook and Instagram. We do a lot of paid campaigns through these channels that work really well due to Facebook’s strong targeting features such as lookalike targeting and specific interest targeting.
Our content marketing efforts are currently focused on our digital magazine where we publish book-related content to acquire leads through SEO, social shares and paid content distribution platforms such as Outbrain.
What were the reasons behind going with Adjust, and also why continue to work with us?
When we started we quickly began looking for a mobile attribution provider to get some transparency on where our users on mobile are coming from. It became especially relevant for us when we started paid acquisition via Facebook, so we could learn which campaigns drive valuable users and which don’t. In order to learn that we researched the tools out there and Adjust seemed to offer the best features. We decided to go with it and the longer we’ve been with you guys the deeper we’ve integrated Adjust and now we couldn’t live without it.
Which Adjust features does the Blinkist team make use of most?
The biggest feature we’re using is easy data exporting to S3 buckets. With it, we can easily get all the attribution data from Adjust to our database and relate it to post-signup user data from different systems. When we started out, we worked within the Adjust dashboard, but as we grew and added more tracking from different applications, we worked towards getting all the data into one system in order to be able to do more comprehensive analyses.
Another great thing that we really appreciate about Adjust is the easy setup of new partners. The marketing team doesn’t need any technical support for anything once partners are integrated: they can set up every new advertiser that we want to test, they can easily set up new trackers, then get dashboards based on those trackers. It’s a key solution for marketers.
Which datasets does Blinkist keep its eyes on the most?
We look at the main dashboard which shows the key events in a campaign, ad group and ad level to see which campaign are driving good or bad traffic. Much of our deeper data analysis is done on our own dashboards, which we connect with Adjust’s attribution data. This is where we can connect even more datasets so we can have a deeper understanding of how valuable a certain campaign is.
What kind of insight have you been able to gather from using our platform that you may not have without us? Were there any surprising insights you were able to find?
We’ve gathered a lot of insights throughout our partnership. In basic terms, you see which campaign is working and which campaign isn’t. Just seeing this so easily helps you to save money and quickly generate important insights.
You can look deeper and see what patterns for campaigns are working and what patterns are not working. For example, we found out that using book titles in our advertising works really well because people relate to those book titles; they’ve heard about them and then they get interested in Blinkist. We found out patterns like that through Adjust.
Are there any extra areas we’ve been able to help with?
The ability to add a lot of information to Adjust trackers has been very powerful for us. It helps us to track even longer funnels that are not just direct app installs but have a website experience first before being forwarded to the App Store.
For instance, on our magazine we differentiate between mobile and desktop traffic. On desktop we drive traffic to our web app to try to get web sign-ups. Meanwhile, paid mobile traffic is forwarded to the app store, and we’ve set up the tracker in a way to dynamically add UTM-parameters. So if a user comes through an Outbrain link to that site and then moves on to the App Store we include the user’s UTM tags through the Adjust tracker link dynamically, and can then get the full picture in Adjust of where that user initially came from.
A big thank you to Holger and everyone at Blinkist who’s been involved! For more interviews, keep an eye on the blog.