Lessons from SIGNAL Conference: How Vista doubled new customer conversions using Twilio Segment

At SIGNAL 2022, our annual customer and developer conference, we heard from Drew Forster, Director of Omnichannel Analytics at Vista, about how Segment enabled the company to double its customer conversion rate.

By Cynthia Goldsworthy

Vista’s North Star is to become the design and marketing partner for the world’s small businesses. However, two years ago the company faced some serious headwinds:

  • known only as a business card printing business

  • legacy infrastructure

  • inefficient marketing spend

To combat these challenges Vista pivoted from a single-product transactional business to instead focus on recurring long-term customer relationships.

Powered by Twilio Segment, Vista built new, efficient acquisition and retention strategies, fostered a culture of experimentation, and empowered marketing teams to make more data-driven decisions. The result: their new customer conversion rate doubled.

At SIGNAL 2022, our annual customer and developer conference, Drew Forster, Director of Omnichannel Analytics, shared how Segment helped Vista move beyond its transactional approach to customer engagement and develop deeper, ongoing relationships with customers.

With first-party data, the omnichannel analytics team was able to centralize its customer data, create personalized experiences, and embed a culture of experimentation within the company to increase customer retention and lifetime value.

Drew Forster
SIGNAL speaker Drew Forster from Vista.

You can watch the full session here, or read on to learn key lessons shared by Vista at SIGNAL.

Lesson 1: Employing an Omnichannel Marketing Strategy

Vista first made a name for itself as a business card printing business. But the re-imagined company needed to introduce a more sophisticated data strategy to deliver personalized experiences across channels and platforms to become trusted partners to customers.

The first step was to rebuild its data infrastructure around Segment, seeing the CDP as the heart of its customer engagement platform. By connecting destinations from the integration catalog, Vista reaches customers at various points through its website, email, and Google and Facebook ads.

By deploying Segment across its entire business, Vista’s technology teams can track customer interactions while remaining compliant with industry standards around security and privacy.

“Working with Segment has enabled us to develop a better understanding of our customers and provide them with personalized experiences which genuinely help them to grow their businesses.” - Drew Forster, Director of Omnichannel Analytics at Vista

Lesson 2: Adopting a Culture of Experimentation

For Vista, knowing how to optimize its homepage required A/B testing. Its previous monolithic infrastructure was efficient, but it was slow to drive change by experimentation.

After creating a new web platform and implementing Twilio Segment, Vista now tracks 100% of user activity. With access to centralized, high-quality data, running experiments is significantly easier, while fixes are implemented more quickly.

One experiment involved testing two versions of Vista’s homepage. Making the website feel more personalized would make it easier for returning customers to restart a previous project, get ideas for new projects, and find relevant products that inspire them to start something new.

Analyzing data from Twilio Segment and implementing changes boosted the site’s homepage performance, and drove a shift in strategy. Rather than concentrating so heavily on rapid customer acquisition, they also focus on building long-term customer retention and lifetime value.

Example of A/B test Vista ran on homepage.

Lesson 3: Evaluating a New Approach to Marketing Spend

Vista’s marketing spend was too focused on measurable lower-funnel media such as PPC and retargeting. After analyzing customer tracking data from Twilio Segment, Vista redirected some of its media spend toward acquisition in mid-funnel channels and witnessed immediate results.

Shifting marketing dollars from lower-funnel to mid-funnel strategies across social and display channels resulted in 2X the number of new customer conversions and a 1.8 decrease in days to conversion.

But what Vista didn’t see was a particular drop-off in terms of their overall sales. The company was able to successfully capture new customers (typically more expensive) without losing overall conversions.

They were still converting lower-funnel customers while spending less. In the end, Vista saw a decrease in conversion time for lower-funnel customers because they already had a strong belief in the brand (by virtue of being exposed to marketing messaging earlier in the customer lifecycle).

With data-driven insights powered by Twilio Segment, Vista now invests more heavily in communicating with customers and sharing its business proposition with them while converting them through a more personalized website built on experimentation.

Interested in more customer stories from SIGNAL?

On November 2-3, Twilio Segment hosted its annual customer and developer conference, featuring 30,000 attendees and 50+ customer studies and thought leadership sessions.

If you found these lessons from Vista’s session at SIGNAL insightful, you can register here to watch on-demand and learn more about how our customers harness and activate customer data.

You can also check out our recap of the entire conference here.

The state of personalization 2023

The State of Personalization 2023

Our annual look at how attitudes, preferences, and experiences with personalization have evolved over the past year.

Recommended articles


Want to keep updated on Segment launches, events, and updates?