Churn is one of the biggest issues we hear about from other community builders. Many of us come to accept it as a normal part of running a community. But there are simple tools and strategies that can increase engagement and retention in powerful ways.
That's part of what we explore today in this interview with Casey Hill. He's the Head of Growth at Bonjoro, where they help brands create personalized videos for their leads and customers to help them stand out, build trust, and make more sales.
This is going to be a game-changing chat for a lot of listeners. (And because we know you'll want to dive in deeper with Casey, be sure to check out his appearance on episode 601 of Smart Passive Income as well!)
So how do you leverage quick, personal videos within your community? How do you avoid “churn cliffs” and create a welcoming experience? When are the specific times when reaching out to individual members makes all the difference?
We discuss all of that in this episode, so listen in to get the tactics you need to create meaningful connections and reduce churn in your community. Enjoy!
Casey is a growth veteran, with over a decade of experience in helping software companies scale fast. Whether it’s garnering millions of views on Quora and LinkedIn, or pioneering new growth levers (like booking his team on hundreds of podcasts in 2020), Casey is always looking for creative and value-led ways to grab attention and break from the mold.
In his current role as Head of Growth at Bonjoro, Casey helps brands convert more sales and retain more customers with video emails.
Besides his day job in software, Casey also launched a tabletop gaming business in 2015 that went on to create a game, Arkon, that was 800 percent funded on Kickstarter and sold thousands of copies worldwide.
In 2020, Casey launched a course business, Amplified Masterclass, educating people about how to monetize channels like being on podcasts and Quora. Casey is looking to cross 6 figures in sales for this business by 2023.
On the consulting side, Casey consults with some of the world’s biggest firms including places like McKinsey, Blackrock, Colemans, GLG, Guidepoint, etc., where he provides institutional guidance around topics such as: SMB marketing vendor selection, SaaS pricing, SaaS marketing/CRM tool differentiation, inbound marketing, and marketing automation.
- Find out more about Bonjoro [Affiliate link]
- Listen in on Casey's podcast, CLTV University
- Connect with Casey on LinkedIn
In This Episode
- Leveraging Bonjoro and personal videos to increase engagement and retention
- The best moments to reach out to individual members of your community
- Why simple videos perform better than overly produced content
- The important components of any great Bonjoro video
- Why creative Bonjoro users are seeing massive retention rate increases
- Avoiding “churn cliffs” and creating a welcoming community experience
- The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss [Amazon affiliate link]
- A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles [Amazon affiliate link]
- The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles [Amazon affiliate link]
- Connect with @TeamSPI on Twitter
- Scroll down to watch the hat-stacking video Casey mentions:
The CX 070: Casey Hill and the Simple Way to Make Big Impact
Casey Hill: When I'm looking at communities, sometimes what we find is that they have, what I coin, "churn cliffs." Meaning that when they look at their audience they say, "Look, we get people really good through two months and then they fall off after two months."
And so I think that one of the really clever ways to use this is to try to look at your data, try to understand your customers. And start making sure that you're providing, you're interacting, you're getting them engaged. And then using a video as a opportunity to make that especially personal.
Jillian Benbow: Welcome to this week's episode of the Community Experience Podcast. I'm your hostess with the mostest, Jillian Benbow. And today, I'm talking to Casey Hill of Bonjoro, which is a very fun app where you can create very personalized experiences for customers, community members et cetera.
And we're just going to talk about the benefits of that. And the nice thing is most people don't bother. So if you want to try, whether it's Bonjoro or just a similar tactic, I think you'll really stand out from the crowd. So don't let me get in the way of a good time, let's get right into this week's episode.
Welcome to this episode of the Community Experience Podcast. And today, I am here with none other than Casey Hill from Bonjoro, which I love to say incorrectly. Casey, welcome to the show.
Casey Hill: Thanks for having me, Jillian.
Jillian Benbow: Let's just hop right in. Tell our audience, if they don't already know, what is Bonjoro? And am I saying it right?
Casey Hill: Bonjoro is very often mispronounced, as you said. And I think it's the "bonjour" that pulls people a lot. But Bonjoro, which is B-O-N-J-O-R-O, is basically a personal video tool as well as a video testimonial gathering tool. So it's in that space of personalization tools.
Jillian Benbow: I always want to throw an N in. I want to say "buongiorno."
Casey Hill: Yeah. That's also a common one.
Jillian Benbow: It's just hello. It's hello in whatever B word.
Casey Hill: Yeah, exactly.
Jillian Benbow: Casey, walk us through just your involvement. How did this all come to be for you?
Casey Hill: It's kind of a cool story, actually. So I was working in a tech company before I came to work on Bonjoro. I was running a sales team, actually. And we were having a problem with demo no-shows. I think it was roughly 30% to 40% of our calls booked and didn't show up.
And obviously, it's a big drag on my team. We just wasted time. So we started doing some research, and we came across some tool called Bonjoro that said it could help. And so basically, the way that Bonjoro works is it creates a task for you to record a video often based on something happening.
So in this example, something happening was someone books a call. We decided we're going to send that person a personal video, put a face behind the name, and hopefully that would allow us to tap in and reduce that demo no-show rate. It went really well.
We cut no-show rate basically in half off the basis of that kind of strategy. And we learned some things along the way. One big takeaway for anyone who wants to try that specific use case is send the video as close as possible to the actual booking, not to the meeting.
Now, that sounds maybe a little bit weird. But if someone books on Monday for Friday, they're already going to get the regular reminders. But what you really want to do is you want to create that connection while they're still in that headspace, "I just booked. I'm thinking about this thing." That's the best time to deliver that video while you're still top of mind, and you kind of create that expectation.
So anyhow, that's kind of how I found out about it. And then they were partners of ours, the Bonjoro team. So they came over. They're headquartered in Sydney. And I met a whole bunch of the people. I actually ended up going on a camping trip with the Bonjoro team out in Santa Barbara where we were located.
And they said, "Hey, do you want to come and run growth for us?" Which basically, I know growth is a nebulous term in the world today. But for us, it was kind of a combination of organic marketing and sales-related stuff. And I said, "That sounds amazing." And I came over a little bit more than three years ago, and have been loving the ride ever since. That's kind of my journey with Bonjoro.
Jillian Benbow: This is very important. How long did you know the team before you went camping with them?
Casey Hill: Not that long. In terms of personally, it was when they came out for that trip. So it was just a couple days. We had chatted previously because they were partners. So Bonjoro, we have all these integration partners.
Because again, we're plugged into someone's CRM or their point of sale or their email automation tool. So I had chatted with them. But it was that meeting, I met them at a conference. And then everyone was like, "We're going camping." And I was like, "Let's do it."
Jillian Benbow: That's high trust right there.
Casey Hill: It was good. But it was a lot of fun.
Jillian Benbow: As someone who's constantly trying to avoid getting murdered, I'm not sure I would do that. But it worked out.
Casey Hill: Yeah, that's fair. I made it through.
Jillian Benbow: Also, if you want to get to know someone, go camping with them. You'll know immediately if you vibe. So I guess, in a way, it's a kismet as they say. It was meant to be because you all got along, you had the same level of diva or not diva.
Casey Hill: Yeah, exactly. Came together.
Jillian Benbow: It's always fun to go camping with someone and then realize like, "Oh, they don't camp. They don't have any idea what this is. They brought a gallon of water." Well, thank you for going down that very important journey with me.
I just had to make sure. So we use Bonjoro, and that's a part of how we've gotten to know each other. And when I'm thinking about community in particular, there's just this piece, this touchpoint is so much more personable to get a quick customized "to me" video message.
And I know how it feels because I signed up for Bonjoro to test it out even though we have a paid account. But I had just created a trial account just to poke around and be nosy, as one does. As you'd expect, I got a Bonjoro from somebody on your team, and it was just nice.
I feel special, in a way. And I think that piece of it is that surprise and delight, which I know we all hate saying that term now. It's gross. But until we come up with a better one, it was. Maybe it's shame on me because I wasn't expecting a company to do that to me.
But it was just like, "Oh." And to your point, immediately, top of mind like, "This is cool." So talk us through just what kind of findings do you have when people use something like this to say hello? And just even just using someone's name in a video, what have you seen?
Casey Hill: Yeah, totally. I think that video is a really fun medium because it has all of these pieces. You have expression and body language and tone, and just all these things that create that more memorable experience. And I think when we think about what goes into trust, how do you trust something?
I think there's a really powerful part of video. Because when you see someone, I think all of us, to intuitively feel like we can gauge like, "This is a trustworthy person," or like, "Whoa, that was not good vibes." And so I think that's a way that you can expedite that relationship in with customers and people you interact with by showing there's a real human on the other end of it.
So basically, the first and most common, I would say, of all the use cases, probably the most common use case is interacting as a first touchpoint. And whether that's a first touchpoint with a lead or whether it first touchpoint with a customer or a member, the idea there is to: A, I think show that person that they're valued at a core level. That's one of the really... You're calling them by their name. You're taking time out of your busy day to do this thing.
And that's why I think it's especially so powerful when someone, say, Pat Flynn, who has a lot of name recognition, when he takes time out of his day to say, "Hey, you're important enough to us that I'm going to record this video," that's a really special experience.
And so I think that in that world of creators especially, there's this really powerful point where this person feels very seen. But the other side of it that I think can be really powerful too is that opportunity to open up a relationship.
I think that when you have people join in, a lot of times, people will ask a question as part of an email onboarding or whatever. But we're so used to those automations that they very often get a low reply rate. If you look at the reply rate of onboarding emails, in general, they're not great.
But if you see a human face, and someone's talking to you and welcoming you and then asks you a specific pointed question, whether that's about your goals, or we've even seen lots of people that just do fun personal questions like, "What's your favorite movie?" Or we have a guy who runs a course, teaching piano and has amazing engagement, 95-plus percent open and watch rates, which is bonkers.
And that's what he does. He basically asks people on an intake form. So initially, it's on a form and he says, "What is your favorite movie?" or whatever. And then, when he records the video, he'll reference that. So he'll be like, "Oh, my God. I love that movie," or "I've never seen it."
He'll have that individual touchpoint. Because one of the cool parts about Bonjoro is any information you have in your CRM or your database or that you collect on a form can show up right below your actual video. So if you ask a quick question, when you go to record that video, you can have context.
So for example, when people sign up for Bonjoro, we have a little thing that says, "What's your first use case? What are you looking to use Bonjoro for?" And we'll also get things like their industry and things like that. And that all allows us to provide that even deeper personalized experience.
So I'd say as a starting point, saying people's name, allowing them to be seen, as well as opening up a dialogue and a conversation. One other kind of data point, because I'm a data nerd on this stuff, and I do lots of comparative tests just to share with people. I thought this was really interesting.
So everyone who joins Bonjoro, we send them a video. And so I looked at three cohorts of users. I looked at people who we sent a Bonjoro, no reply. I looked at people who we sent a Bonjoro, and they had one reply. And then I looked at people who we sent a Bonjoro, and they had at least three responses. So it actually became a back and forth thread.
So what happened was when they had one reply, you saw a bump, but it wasn't a crazy bump. I believe it was 14%. So we had a bump, and then what happened that was crazy is at three touchpoints, it was 70% increase in conversion for that person coming through. Massive.
So what I took away from that, personally, was that by the time there's three back and forths, it's an actual conversation. Because one comment could just be like, "Thanks for the video," which is cool. You send a video, they say thanks. That's great. But by the time you get to three, there was actually a dialogue that started to occur.
And so I just wanted to say that I think there's some magic by the time you get an actual conversation, that's the start of an actual relationship. A relationship is always two-way. It has to be reciprocal, otherwise it's just you're saying things.
In order to be a relationship, it has to be reciprocal. So there's a lot of pieces to cover. But for that first use case, those are some of the things that I think about as the important components.
Jillian Benbow: How many back and forths do you think is appropriate before you go camping with them though?
Casey Hill: That is a good question. I'm trying to think. I've definitely not gone camping yet with my customers. I have hung out with quite a few though in different venues, at different mutual events and stuff, we meet up with a lot of fun and neat folks.
Jillian Benbow: That's the dream.
Casey Hill: Yeah. We'll have to add camping to a few of them.
Jillian Benbow: All kidding aside, I want to go back to something you said earlier. And I think it's so important, especially in community work in particular, which is creating that human connection. But also showing the trust. There's a level of legitimacy to this thing that maybe wasn't clear before. Hopefully, it was clear before. But I think there's something really important for community builders when talking about this to really consider this, because there's a lot of email. So standing out from the crowd in such a authentic way, it's just a no-brainer.
Casey Hill: Totally. And I think another thing too is just funny. We're kind of joking about it, but I think personality, letting your personality come through. One of the things that is really interesting is when I first joined Bonjoro, I was like, "Okay. I got to get the perfect studio set up, I'm going to record my videos."
And they were like, "No. Just go do them wherever you're comfortable." I was like, "Okay. Outside?" Because we have a mobile app. They're like, "Yeah. Just go for a walk." And for me, I'm an outdoors person and that became my lane. I like to go for walks outside, and I recorded my videos. And sometimes a dog is barking, and sometimes a car's pulling through.
But I think that one of the beautiful parts about personal videos, specifically, is that because the focus is relational instead of aspirational, and I want to make that differentiation for people. When you see a produced video, very often it's aspirational.
You see that, and you're like, "Oh, I want to be like that." But that's very different from personal video, because personal video is more about just saying, "There's a human on the other end that has traits like me." And so they relate. And it's funny that the videos that have imperfections where you trip or where I have a new baby. So when my baby's yelling, I'll hold up the baby in the background.
Jillian Benbow: You sent me the Bonjoro. Did you cut your hair? Did you used to have long hair?
Casey Hill: I did not. I had longer hair, but not long hair.
Jillian Benbow: Oh, okay. In my memory, you had a ponytail. Yeah, you were walking your baby outside. It was you.
Casey Hill: That was indeed me then.
Jillian Benbow: Go ahead. I got very excited there.
Casey Hill: No. That's an example. I'll go out with my baby, and I'll be like, "Hey, this is what's going on in my life." I think that it's one of those things that takes off a little bit of stress. Because I think when it comes to video, the biggest hurdle... I've been in this space for a long time and I totally get it, is people, they don't feel comfortable.
We're so used to that perfect polished image we're going to put on Instagram, and it's got the perfect lighting and it has all the variables. So people feel like that's this big daunting barrier. But that's the beauty of personal video is that you flip it on and you record it.
And if you mess up, if you stumble... I can't tell you guys, I've done so many videos where I cough or I hiccup or there's some interruption, countless. And I just keep rolling because that's the beauty of personal video. And so I think it's something that takes a little bit of the weight off, actually.
And that you don't have to be perfect, you don't have to have this perfect veneer. And if you joke, and you have personality and you let it be a little bit fun. The very first video that I ever got from Bonjoro, when I first got it from the Bonjoro team, they were joking about the weather.
They were like, "Oh, you live in California. The weather must be so horrible." They were going through this thing because California, famously, has great weather. And I was just so surprised. I was like, "Whoa, I've never experienced anything like that." I think that's kind of the emotion that you want to tip people off with.
Jillian Benbow: Well, I can give you live feedback right now, other than thinking you had a ponytail.
Casey Hill: Yeah, it's funny. I did not have a ponytail. I just want to clarify for the listeners here.
Jillian Benbow: I don't know where that came from. I guess you just have a face that needs a ponytail. But it was. It was refreshing because it was so real. And to your point, it was like, "Hey, I'm just trying to get outside, taking the baby out for some air. Welcome, let me know if you have questions."
I was one of the people that did not respond, but also being a lurker on purpose because I was snooping. I would say it almost kind of accelerates the natural relationship that, say, you were welcoming me to the Bonjoro community or whatever. And now, we're at this more advanced level, which as someone coming into a community in particular. But I would argue for most use cases, for using something like this, creating that rapport early, you're setting up just a much better experience, and then probably a longer member lifetime value, if you will.
I can relate. I'm sure people listening... I keep trying to start a TikTok account for community stuff, and I never do it because I'm like, "Hmm, I don't want to clean off the counter."
And then, obviously, nothing has happened. And let's be honest, nothing probably will. Because it's TikTok and it's scary. But to your point, it's absolutely doable. And the less produced it is, the better, the more authentic. Because I think we're all sick of the Instagram lens of life. It's like, "Girl, pan over, because that's where your pile of laundry is. We all know it, secret's out."
Casey Hill: Yeah, absolutely. I think about some of our top users and use cases around the membership community, and I think that they really embrace that. One of them is a woman named Joan Garry, and she has a 96% annual retention rate with 3,000-plus members, which, for anyone who knows the stats in this industry, that's insane.
Again, that's not monthly; that's an annual level. So super impressive. And what she does is she has a community coordinator, who basically picks out milestones. So people share stuff like, "Hey, my kid just got into Harvard." Or they share stuff like, "I just got this big grant," because it's a nonprofit community.
"So I just got this big grant." Or even bad things, "I just missed this big grant." She then takes 10 to 15, so it's not a crazy big number. But 10 to 15 each week and she sends them videos. "Hey, I remember when you joined four years ago when Sarah," their daughter, who now is going to Harvard, was just starting in high school. And how fast things change.
It's a minute of Joan's time, but the people are like, "Wow, that level of connection is huge." So it's pretty remarkable in my eyes that you could have someone like Joan who takes, say, 30 minutes a week. 30 minutes a week, it's not a huge time block, but it's really making people feel seen. And also empathizing.
One of the things I thought was special about her use case is it wasn't only the positive stuff. She was also reaching out to people that had bad things that were going on. They worked really hard on this grant and they didn't get it. And it's like, "Hey, it's cool. These are the next steps. This is the next thing you're going to look for."
And being that point person. And she would do those videos just wherever, around her house, just cruising around, videos in the car. Not driving, of course. But once you're parked, just wherever was convenient at the time. And so I've seen that model. And then, another one that comes to mind, her name is Tracy Phillips.
She's a video coach, and she does the funnest videos. She has some where she is in a lawn chair with her beach hat on and she's chilling out like, "Oh, I'm drinking wine in the evening. Just wanted to say hello." And just very fun. She'll sing a little song at the beginning for people, rhyming off their name. Just having fun with it.
And it's such an incredible memorable personality. And her use case was really cool. So she was running Facebook ads, Facebook lead ads, getting opt-ins. And her pipeline was she wanted to move people into her community. And then members of her community tended to have a pretty good conversion rate, because they got exposed to a lot of the core value into the network.
But it was kind of hard to get people in. She only had 7% of those leads coming in actually joining the community. And then she started to send these personal videos. She went from 7% to 55% of those people joining the community. That's pretty huge, from 7% to 55%.
Jillian Benbow: Explain to me like I'm five. So people would come in through a lead magnet from Facebook, and so she'd get that information?
Casey Hill: Yeah. So you get a Facebook. So Facebook lead ads will provide you the actual contact information. She'd get someone who came in from Facebook lead ads that would automatically create a Bonjoro task. She'd send that quirky funny video to those people inviting them.
So with Bonjoro, you can have calls to action, you can have a little button or you can even embed a little asset below. And so her focus was, "I want you to come join this community. There's all these really valuable resources for you." And that was the next step on that journey. So she went from 7% of those leads to 55% of those leads joining her community, which then obviously had a big downstream impact on revenue.
Jillian Benbow: That is cool.
Casey Hill: Yeah. There's a lot of use cases. But I see that commonality in those interviews and in those conversations with people. And just one more, sorry, just while they're fresh. I'm the one who does the use cases.
Jillian Benbow: I'm seriously taking notes.
Casey Hill: Yeah. I'm the one who does the use case interviews, so these are top of mind. But there was a company that sold coffee, they were a coffee roastery. And their focus was they wanted to turn one-time buyers into people that joined their subscription option.
A lot of e-commerce companies are starting to think about that transition. So whenever someone bought a cup of coffee, one of the founders actually... And this is kind of crazy, it was one of the founders, but that's what it was. He would do these videos. And what he would do is he would show them, because he actually had the machines in the shop.
He'd be like, "Hey, I'm roasting up your fresh Nicaraguan coffee. I'm putting it in." And he would be showing them the mixer. And the whole thing was just to connect them to the brand. And then at the very end, he's like, "Oh, and by the way, if you're ever interested," almost as an aside. But the positioning of it was so good where it was all about the value. And, "Hey, this is this cool thing you're getting." It felt super immersive and personal.
And then, "Oh, and by the way, if you want to get this on a regular basis, here's how you opt in." And they added 75K in recurring revenue, which is bonkers from subscriptions specifically through that. And so all of these use cases I'm picking out from Joan, to Tracy, to Joe, who is the coffee guy, all of them had these creative approaches of showing the brand or letting some personality come through or doing it in a casual setting where they felt comfortable.
So all these businesses are different styles of businesses. But I think that's a common thread is be authentic, have fun with it, try to get a little personality across. And if you have the ability to, and I know this doesn't apply to everyone, but because of the fact that you can show any information that you collect below your Bonjoro, give that some thought.
Because that can really help if you ask any initial intake questions, you can use those to increase that personalization. That can really help, especially at the beginning, where you might not have met them, you don't have as much of that actual interaction context yet.
Jillian Benbow: That's great. And the coffee example, it's genius because you're capturing someone's attention. Because again, it's just different. It's like, "Oh, what's this?" And then you realize, "Oh, it's customized." So you're going to watch the whole thing, because it's about me. That's human nature.
And then to add in, basically, you're providing information to a very engaged human or engaged audience. So the discoverability, being able to highlight the thing you wish everyone knew, that they're not necessarily going to pick up in the email and whatnot. I think that's really cool.
I'm curious, thinking about accessibility. And because it is video, I'm trying to think about people that maybe have visual impairments, things like that. Or if there's closed captioning for people with audio impairments.
And sorry to put you on the spot. It just popped in my head. But do you have things to solve for that? Because I know a lot of people building community... In your community, you'll have someone that will feel left out inevitably if they have a barrier. I'm just curious if that's-
Casey Hill: No, it's a totally valuable question. Captioning is something we really want to do. We're not quite there yet. Part of the complexities too is that we want to make sure not only to have captioning, but Bonjoro, we serve all over the world, and so there's a lot of language inclusion that's part of that equation.
But it's definitely on the roadmap, definitely something we want to do. Right now, what people do have the ability to do is, anytime you do a video for someone, you can always upload a video as well. So if you record a video and you have any kind of software that can run those captions, you can then take that and quickly upload it, send it through the system, still have that branded landing page and that whole experience. Obviously, it is an extra step at this stage, but it is something you can do.
Jillian Benbow: ... But it's doable. Yeah.
Casey Hill: And it's definitely something on our roadmap that we think is an important piece. Again, like you're saying, to have this as well as SMS and text messaging comes up, as well as additional medium to connect with people. These are all things that we're definitely planning to continue to roll out.
Jillian Benbow: That's the thing with products like this. There's a lot of things. There's only so many engineers and developers that can create these things that sound simple but are actually quite complex. Pat has recently started doing videos for people who apply to our SPI Pro community and are accepted. Instead of getting an email you're in, we're trying to send the first thing, being the video.
And in fact, he was so good about doing them, he was actually doing them too far ahead of the email. And then people were like, "But how do I join?" So that was a lesson learned from us. But it's amazing. The conversion rates are just amazing because you're making someone feel special, and it's these 15-second videos.
And for existing members, I think I'm going to send basically holiday messages. I've blocked out a bulk of my day on Thursday to just start going.
But I'm curious, what advice do you have for someone who's doing community and maybe they don't have a CRM or a lot of datasets to look at? What would you recommend people pick as some easy to pick milestones maybe that they could try this with?
Casey Hill: Yeah, for sure. So I think that every kind of membership or community is a little bit different. Your example you highlighted I think is great for anyone that has award certifications, anything that has that type of hard... it has a quiz, it has a certification, has a whatever. Those are great ways to have that interaction.
The initial touchpoint when people first come in is a great time to have the interaction. So when I'm looking at communities, sometimes what we find is that they have, what I coin, "churn cliffs." Meaning that when they look at their audience they say, "Look, we get people really good through two months and then they fall off after two months."
And so I think that one of the really clever ways to use this is to try to look at your data, try to understand your customers. And maybe you have a lot of really good content, but you don't have enough dynamic content to keep people continuing on. That's almost a whole other conversation.
But where you can use video here is start just to do those outreaches in advance. So don't wait until two months when the churn cliff is, but wait until, say, month one. And start making sure that you're providing, you're interacting, you're getting that person either attending your webinar or your workshop or whatever kind of stuff you're doing. Or you're tagging them in specific comments that they're doing.
Getting them engaged. And then using a video as a opportunity to make that especially personal. And when I talk about video in the context of Bonjoro, I want to make one clarification, which is a lot of the video we've been talking about thus far is this idea of a triggered video. Something happens, someone gets added to your database or tagged, you create that.
But we also have, what we call, a Chrome recorder. A Chrome recorder is a video that you record. And it plops it into a library, and it just gives you a link. So if you wanted to send a video to someone on social media and you didn't have an email, you wanted to send them a thing on Messenger, you could do that.
Or on LinkedIn, or on Instagram, and you wanted to send that video, your video will pop up. You can brand it, you can have your call to action, you can have your calendar embedded, all of those pieces that a Bonjoro includes. But you don't have an email address, that's an application, 100% of where you can plug in and use that Chrome recorder to speak for that.
And another thing I just want to add on that is one thing that I see that's used really effectively here is commonly asked questions. So actually, the most recent use case, one we just published last week, is from this company called The Art Of Lutherie. Basically, this really cool guy that teaches people how to make guitars. He teaches them how to handcraft guitars.
Jillian Benbow: What?
Casey Hill: Seriously, check it out. It's super rad.
Jillian Benbow: That's cool.
Casey Hill: And this guy has actually, I think, the highest. I always say like, "Oh, crazy engagement." I think he has the highest. He showed me his dashboard, and you can see it when we publish it, a 98% open rate and 99% watch rate, which is unheard of.
Jillian Benbow: Wow.
Casey Hill: And what this guy does, is he has all these questions that come in. And he decided long ago that versus writing these long descriptions, he started recording a video with his tool wall. So someone asked a question and he would say, "Actually it's a bevel, whatever saw. This is what you want to do."
And he'd show that. And now he has a library of all these videos. And when these questions come in, he can service this really easily. He can connect into their specific question all of this content he's built. So that Chrome recorder where the videos are saved, right?
Because remember with a one-to-one video, if you say, "Hey, Sarah," or whatever, you can look at that result. But we're not storing that. But if you have something that you wanted to reuse, that Chrome recorder is a great application to fulfill that side of things as well.
Jillian Benbow: That is blowing my mind as far as just possibilities. You know what I mean?
Casey Hill: Yeah.
Jillian Benbow: You could really set up some cool, cool stuff. The gears are turning, the rust is coming off because just thinking about onboarding. And I know an experience we know, a pain point for our community members is just overwhelm because our communities are big and there's a lot going on.
And just getting your bearings sometimes is honestly, the hardest challenge to staying because you're just like, "What? I don't even know where to begin." And so I'm envisioning this whole... You could even create a semi-custom path for people with like, "I'm going to send you a series." You could incorporate video into onboarding in a way that's covering the questions people have, but is more engaging than just an email, right?
Casey Hill: Yeah, for sure. And I think the other thing, and this isn't applicable for every use case, but remember I think too that with this, you also have that ability when they go to that page, they're right there at that spot to have some sort of call to action as well.
So for those experiences where you want them to digest something, sometimes it's just like, "Oh, I have a question." You answer the question. That's cool. You don't need to have any call to action, you can just toggle that off.
But if you wanted to have one, it's also a really cool opportunity to allow people to take that next step where they see something, they're like, "Oh, that's really cool." And then they can go get the thing, or try out something, or register for a certain event, or insert that next step. And you're trying to make that seamless as part of the process.
And so a lot of times that's come up before in conversations where I'm talking with someone and they're like, "Okay. This video thing sounds super cool, but for a Chrome recorder, specifically, why wouldn't I just use YouTube? Why wouldn't I just use some sort of private video?"
And I'm like, "In some cases you should." If it's a general video, you want everyone to see it, it can totally make sense. But if you wanted them to do something next, that's not really what YouTube is designed for. And so that's that unique opportunity where it might make sense to use something like this.
Jillian Benbow: Yeah. I can see a lot of really fun ways to use it and just make an experience. Again, you could do YouTube, you could have all sorts of things. But you could also, if you got a little creative, get a little scrappy, you could just create a very unique experience that it's like, "Choose your own adventure," right?
You watch the one video and then there's different options called to action, and that takes you to the next. I don't know. I will not bore you with my sudden mania of all the things that you could possibly do. But it's exciting.
Casey Hill: And one thing that just popped to mind as we were talking is, so with those pre-recorded videos you can also attach those as a template to your actual personal touch videos. So another use case we did, woman sells basically a high ticket item. She has a high ticket item and then she also has a do-it-yourself course.
So one of the things that she liked to do, which I thought was really smart, is she would send that personal touchpoint and she would basically, below her video that would say, "Hey, Casey. Thank you so much for your interest, your inquiry," or whatever that first thing was. She would actually attach a tour the course.
So she'd say, "Hey, one of the problems with courses is they're really opaque a lot of times. So let me actually show you." And with the screen record, you can have it be just you, or you can have it be your screen, or you can have it be you plus your screen. So she's a little bobble in the corner, and she's basically walking them through the first couple modules of the course.
So she's taking away some of that skepticism, and connecting that to the personal touchpoint at the top. But the cool part about it is she can have a five-minute video, walking someone through, but then just a quick 10-second intro where she calls them by name. And she adds that little personal touch, "Hey, Casey. Super excited to have you here. I made a little walkthrough of everything right down below. Go check this out and let me know if you have questions."
She gets the best of both worlds. Very time-efficient because the longer asset is prerecorded. But she gets that first intro. And so just to throw that out there for anyone that runs courses, I thought that was a really clever way to reduce that trepidation of, "Okay, but how good is this content?" She's like, "Let me show you." I don't know, I thought that was clever.
Jillian Benbow: I think that's really clever. And I can also see that for communities that have a paywall or some sort of barrier to entry, that'd be a great way to show community. Because I know something we constantly face is you create all these videos, and then the product is updated or you change things because it's community and you clean things up.
And now, whatever you're showing, there comes a point where you need to rerecord things. And this way it just seems like less pressure as far as it'd be easier to update as things change. Or to your point, even using the templates, you could even maybe break it up further.
But ultimately, being able to give someone a, "Hey, you're thinking about joining the community, let me just give you a quick tour." And it feels just more personal than watching the video on the website, right?
Casey Hill: Totally.
Jillian Benbow: Jeez, so many things. I'm curious. I think the benefits of doing these personalized videos are pretty obvious to anybody listening. It's just this unique experience, it feels much more customized, much more personal. It helps with the relationship building.
I don't feel like we need to harp on it because it's kind of a "no duh," which is great. But I am curious, just for funsies. So you've given us so many good examples, and I'm going to put you on the spot again. But in a fun way, what's the wildest way a person has used Bonjoro? I love the lady in the lounge chair being like, "Well, hello." But is there any really zany things people have done that you've heard of?
Casey Hill: Yeah, that's definitely a fun question. I'm trying to think. So there's two dimensions to that question. One is zany videos. And oh, man, we've tried so many different things. We've had ones where we started a video, we're doing pushups or something or just crazy stuff that's going on in the video.
So there's that. And then there's use cases or applications or unusual spots we've seen it used. So I think that there's probably quite few on both. One that came up recently I thought was cool, I don't know if it's totally crazy, but it was unique. I hadn't seen it before, was scholarships.
So we actually had schools, they would basically reach out with a Bonjoro and be like, "Congratulations, you got the scholarship." And instead of that email, we all know, get an email that's, "Congratulations."
But it's crazy when you actually have the director or head of the program or someone who you might be working directly with who's like, "Congratulations." And this is both in the context of academic scholarships as well as sports scholarships as well. So I was looking at that, I was like, "Huh, that's pretty-
Jillian Benbow: That's cool.
Casey Hill: ... That's pretty creative and pretty cool." And I also thought the application... So much of Bonjoro's applications happen on the sales and onboarding side. It wasn't as common that we saw people using it for support. But that last thing I talked about, that guy, Art Of Lutherie, that's one of his applications. And he's finding a ton of success with that.
So I thought that was cool. And one of the things I took away from that, which I thought was an interesting point to note to people is I was like, "Why is this guy's engagement so crazy good?" Because that's next level good. Nobody gets 100% open rates. But what I realized is one of the things he has going for him is there's very high intent. People are coming to him with very high intent.
If you ask a question... Same thing as if you fill out an application for something and someone responds to your application, you're probably going to get a really high open rate to the response to an application. So I think just as another note, thinking about what are times where there's high intent that you can tap into and help amplify, if you will.
But there's all sorts of crazy Bonjoros. I'll say one fun one is everyone on the team recorded, and we had a competition for how crazy your Bonjoro profile of yourself is. So I can share mine if you guys want for the notes. But basically, there's a video of me putting on... I'm talking about how I wear a lot of hats. And I do the entire video stacking hats and I think I get to 12 hats.
So I'm talking about all the things I do at Bonjoro, it's my own personal. I'm like, "Oh, and I'm doing this stuff and this stuff." And the whole time I'm stacking hats, and I'm wearing a fluffy bear suit because our mascot at Bonjoro is a bear. So I'm wearing a full blue bear suit with massive puffy white ears and stacking 12 hats on top of my head. That is probably a fairly unusual or unique application for Bonjoro.
Jillian Benbow: Did you win the competition?
Casey Hill: I don't think I did win the competition, sadly. There were some people that had a better... There were some very comedic ones. We might need to share just a whole bunch of team videos for this to allow the audience here to assess. But I gave it an honest effort.
Jillian Benbow: I feel like you all need to do a rematch. How long ago was this?
Casey Hill: This was quite some time ago. This was years ago. So it does seem like a rematch, a rematch might be in order. But I just want to make one other thing... You talked about the holiday ones. I love sending holiday Bonjoros. They're so well-received, they get amazing engagement. And our holiday Bonjoros are always nothing but just wishing people well.
And so I think that there's just this amazing thing with there's not a specific push, I'm not trying to sell them something. I'm like, "Hey, I appreciate you." And I think people just received that, and they're like, "Whoa, that's really cool. There's no agenda here, it's just genuine appreciation."
And so those are really fun. And we actually have a bunch of backgrounds for all sorts of different... We have stuff for Hanukkah and Christmas. We have, I think, it's 16 different templates that we have pre set up. So you can put those around your little video as a frame on your template.
Jillian Benbow: Oh, my gosh. Yes.
Casey Hill: To make it easy for people.
Jillian Benbow: That's great. I have one more question about your contest video. Does everyone on your team have a bear suit? Is that part of the welcome? They sent you a whole-
Casey Hill: It is. Yeah.
Jillian Benbow: ... I was joking.
Casey Hill: No. You do have to have a bear suit. That is required. And in the early days, people would record their videos actually in their bear suits.
Jillian Benbow: Oh, my gosh.
Casey Hill: So it was quite the thing. And we've slacked off a little bit in our dedication to recording all videos in bear suits. But yeah, it definitely leaves an impression, I'll tell you that.
I had an idea because outside of my work at Bonjoro, I'm also a consultant. And so I thought I have this brilliant idea, I'm going to do a website. Our mascot's called Joro. So I was like, "I'm going to create a website called Ask Joro." And the entire premise is I'm just going to answer business growth questions in a bear suit.
And so people are going to come in, post any question, I'm going to answer it in a bear suit. Now, full disclosure, it was a dismal failure. People did not want to opt in to receive the insights. And it was actually really interesting, just as an aside here, about framing and value. Because basically, the idea was answer questions, try to get people into Bonjoro. That was the pipeline. Show them Bonjoro, showcase the product, people would see it.
But I was doing them for free. So the whole pitch was, "Normally, I charge $300 an hour to consult, and I'm going to do this for free." But I think that people are skeptical of free. And so there's this reservation where people are like, "Oh, how good is it?" Anyways, without going off on a long digression here, that didn't pan out. But yes, we've done many experiments that include bears in various capacities.
Jillian Benbow: I think the whole experiment was worth it just so we could hear about it. Because it's amazing. Also, I triple dog dare you to wear your bear suit to your next meeting. Just show up in it, no comment to see what you-
Casey Hill: Okay.
Jillian Benbow: ... Yeah.
Casey Hill: All right. I like it, I like it. I can take a triple dog dare.
Jillian Benbow: Nice. I love a costume. I love costumes. So I just think that's great. What a wonderful team culture, fun thing to have.
Casey Hill: Yeah, for sure.
Jillian Benbow: I can just imagine this bear suit arriving at your house. And depending on your personality, I would see this and I'd be like, "This is the best company ever." I'm like, "Yeah, I'm putting on my bear suit." Other people would be like, "Oh."
Casey Hill: The one that people really loved is we got kids bear suits and kids onesies.
Jillian Benbow: Oh, my gosh.
Casey Hill: And oh, man, customers getting the bear suit, that was cool. But when you get people's kids the bear suit, that was an instant-
Jillian Benbow: That's next level.
Casey Hill: ... always feel to [inaudible] .
Jillian Benbow: You can't compete with that.
Casey Hill: Yeah.
Jillian Benbow: That's adorable. Well, Casey, I have a rapid-fire list of questions to ask you that are very hard and mathematically based. But before we challenge your noodle with those, so you have your own podcast and Matt and I were recently on it. And I think our audience is... The Venn diagram is almost just a circle. So I would love you to tell people about it because I think they would find it super valuable.
Casey Hill: Yeah, absolutely.
Jillian Benbow: So please tell us about your podcast.
Casey Hill: Yeah, absolutely. So it's called CLTV, Customer Lifetime Value University. And basically, the idea is it's quick actionable episodes, about 20 minutes long, teaching you specific ways to increase your customer lifetime value. So I think today, in this world where acquisition is getting more and more expensive, there's a lot of conversation around how can we really drive a lot of value from our core customers.
And so you have episodes that are talking about how to reduce churn, you have episodes that are talking about the upsell motion. So how can you have more different payment opportunities moving forward? The recent episode with Matt and Jillian was talking about community-led growth, which was amazing.
So it's just a bunch of very tactical things that you can take out and try to apply to your business to increase that customer lifetime value. So again, that's CLTV University. And the little diagram is our mascot, a bear. It's funny because we're talking about a bear, so it fits perfectly. And is pointing on a chalkboard to a lesson. So if you see that icon, you've come to the right spot. But we've had some amazing guests on it.
Jillian Benbow: Yeah, it's a great show. And it was so fun to be on. So I'm glad that then you agreed to come on our show.
Casey Hill: Absolutely.
Jillian Benbow: But now, for the hardest part of the whole thing, which it's very grueling rapid-fire questions. I always try to preface with the intent here is I will ask you a question, and the answer is just a one-word, one-sentence response, whatever comes to mind. And then I'll move on to the next question.
I will also preface with, I'm really bad about following that because I often want to ask follow-up questions. So I do my best not to ask follow-up questions. But sometimes you just throw something out there, like you went camping with strangers or you're wearing a bear suit. So I can't help myself. So let's get started. Casey Hill, are you ready?
Casey Hill: I am ready as I'm going to be.
Jillian Benbow: All right, here we go. Loosen up. Casey, when you were a young child, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Casey Hill: A writer. Wanted to write books, which is still, by the way, on the docket. I still do a lot of fiction writing in my spare time. So hopefully, someday I'll be able to show you guys an output here.
Jillian Benbow: That would be amazing. Casey, how do you define community?
Casey Hill: To me, community is a place where you can come and you can have conversation and you know people's names. And gosh, I'm horribly, violating your one-word, one-sentence definition. But I think it's a hub of people that have some sort of shared common interests or values that come to share about those topics and things.
Jillian Benbow: Proverbial bucket list. What is something on your life list, bucket list that you have done?
Casey Hill: Something that I have done. Gosh, there's probably a lot of these that are somewhat travel-oriented. One thing that I always wanted to do was to go on a crazy kayak journey. And I did a 40 mile cross-channel kayak journey from Catalina Island back to the mainland. So that was one bucket list item for me to check off.
Jillian Benbow: That's awesome, 40 miles. I did, I think it was 17 mile in Kauai. You can kayak the Napali Coast. That's the longest. And a hurricane was kind of in the area, so it was choppy. I've never been more nauseous. But it was worth it. It was beautiful.
Casey Hill: Oh, gosh. That's crazy.
Jillian Benbow: See, I already broke my own rule. So that's what's nice when they're your rules. It's like, "Is it a rule?" And on the flip side of that, what is something on your bucket list that you have not done?
Casey Hill: I think that a lot of bucket list items that are things that I haven't done include: travel, food, cultural items. I'd love to go to Turkey, Istanbul, explore that area. I've always thought that'd be really fun. As well as Japan, that's another area that I think would be really fun.
So there's a lot of, I think, travel-oriented ones that I haven't completed on the bucket list. And then the other bucket list thing I think would really be around getting a book, a fiction piece out into the world. That's another definite aspiration of mine to do someday.
Jillian Benbow: I love it. I feel like those could be combined. You need to go do the travel to get inspiration for the book and then you get them both.
Casey Hill: Yeah, that is actually a very solid... I did think quite a bit about doing a book that chronicled specific crazy travel adventures. My dad is a crazy traveler. He was one of the first people to transnavigate the Caribbean in a Prindle catamaran over four months.
And so I remember sitting down with him, this was a couple years back, and I wrote out this huge, I don't know what it was, 50-page piece, chronicling that whole journey. And I was like, "Oh, man. It'd be kind of fun to get 10 to 20 of these less known stories that are not really high profile but kind of compile them." So maybe that will be a possibility.
Jillian Benbow: There you go. This is going to be a good one because you, I'm guessing, are a big reader if you are writing fiction. What is just one of your all-time favorite books?
Casey Hill: Name of the Wind, by Patrick Rothfuss is a fiction piece that I really like. That's the first one that comes to mind, off the bat. One that I just read recently, called A Gentleman in Moscow, really, really cool. I'm part of a book club. And the author, Amor Towles, I think his last name is pronounced, has written quite a few award-winning books.
And so another one that just got a bunch of accolades last year was called The Lincoln Highway, also quite good. So those are some off the top of my head. Whenever I think about books, there's almost two categories because I read a lot of fiction, but I also read a lot of business books. So on the business front, there's this whole other world. But for just relaxing and having fun, those are some good reads.
Jillian Benbow: Sometimes you just need a good escape, right?
Casey Hill: Yeah, totally.
Jillian Benbow: So you are in the San Diego area where the weather is between 70 and 79 degrees at all times. Just kidding. But if you could live anywhere else in the world, where would you live?
Casey Hill: Great question. Completely uninformed answer, because I don't really know that much. But New Zealand just feels like the kind of place that would be amazing to live. I don't know why. Maybe it's the pictures I've seen of New Zealand mountains and these verdant fields and stuff. But that's the first thing that jumps to my mind when you ask that.
Jillian Benbow: That's my answer too. And I've never been there.
Casey Hill: So we're in the same boat.
Jillian Benbow: Been to Australia. I'm like, "It was close enough." Because they have everything. And I think if the world's going to implode, I feel like New Zealand's not going to be on the list of places that get messed with, at least at the beginning. Plus, you have oceans and mountains. The people are very nice and chill. It's not that populated, which is appealing to me. It's got it all.
Casey Hill: It's got a lot of winning characteristics.
Jillian Benbow: I know. So many people though, agree. So it's like, "We better go now," before they're like, "Hey, we're going to close that border. Too many of you."
Casey Hill: Too many people have the same idea.
Jillian Benbow: All right. Final question. Thank you for your patience. Casey, how do you want to be remembered?
Casey Hill: That is a really good question. I think that for me, the biggest factor, I think the end of my life is around impact. And so I think that that's really what I would think as how many lives have I hopefully impacted in a profound way. And so I think that to me, is probably the biggest component of legacy.
If I think about the word, legacy, is really just my direct impact on other people, and how much I've helped accelerate them in a meaningful way. I think when we get to the end of our lives, people don't remember the car that you drive or the house that you have. I think they remember how you were to them.
So that's something that I grew up in a really close-knit family, and definitely having that close-knit relationship with family and close friends, and keeping that as my north star going through life. I think that we have all these things that tug on us and you see all this aspirational stuff, content out there that always makes you feel like you're not quite going fast enough.
But I think that if you have that anchor of treating people around you well, and being just a good, honest, high character person, who has the back of your friends and family. I don't know. For me, when I get to the end, that that's what I would hope to be remembered for.
Jillian Benbow: I think that's lovely. And that's a perfect way to end today's episode. So before I let you go, let people know where on the internet can they find you, whether if there's social media you're active in, or you have a website? Obviously, at Bonjoro. But where can people learn more about you?
Casey Hill: Yeah, for sure. So I think that for me personally, the platform I'm most active on is LinkedIn. So that's just /caseyhill, C-A-S-E-Y H-I-L-L. So if people want to connect over there, I post a lot of business growth, insight type of content.
And then we got Bonjoro.com, B-O-N-J-O-R-O.com, if you want to check out some of the video stuff we've been chatting about. And if anyone wants to contact me directly, my email is just my name at Bonjoro. So [email protected] So if you want to reach out, if you have any questions, happy to help.
Jillian Benbow: Oh, boy. Here come the emails. Awesome. Well, Casey, thank you so much for being here today. I think there's just so much valuable information about just creating these touchpoints and key experiences for our community members and customers. Really appreciate it.
Casey Hill: Yeah, thanks so much. It was a pleasure.
Jillian Benbow: And that's the episode with Casey from Bonjoro. So be sure to go check out Bonjoro if that's something you find intriguing. And if you're enjoying the show, we'd love you to write a review wherever you're listening, Apple, Spotify. I don't know. Where do the cool kids listen to podcasts anymore? I don't even know.
So wherever that is, if you'd love to give a five-star review, I would love to say thank you. And on that note, go check out Bonjoro. Check out Casey's podcast, and I'll see you next Tuesday.
You can learn more about Casey's work right on the Bonjoro website, which is Bonjoro.com. You can also check out Casey's podcast, CLTV University podcast, which stands for Customer Lifetime Value University podcast. And learn all sorts of things about acquisition, retention et cetera. And maybe catch the episode with Matt and I.
Your lead host for the Community Experience is me, Jillian Benbow. Our executive producer is Matt Gartland. Our senior producer is David Grabowski and our editor is Paul Grigoras. Sound editing by Duncan Brown. Theme music by David Grabowski. See you next Tuesday.