This case study illustrates how Snopes.com increased email engagement and website pageviews using Boomtrain’s AI-powered marketing automation platform.

With Boomtrain, Snopes.com achieved 49% open rate and 28% click-to-open rate (CTOR) for emails, and more than twice the number of pageviews generated from its content recommendation section.

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About Snopes.com

Snopes.com is an independent fact-checking website with a longstanding reputation as one of the most trusted information sources on the Internet. With the amplification of “Fake News” around the globe, fact-checking has never been more important in an era where trust is the main currency.

Via painstaking research, scholarly investigation, and boots-on-the-ground reporting, Snopes.com’s editorial staff strives to provide objective, reliable analysis of subject matter ranging from science to politics to accuracy in media.

Here is a screenshot from their homepage:

screenshot of Snopes.com homepage

The Challenge

Snopes.com wanted to increase readership and reduce reliance on social platforms by capturing direct and highly engaged readers. While Snopes.com had success acquiring traffic from Facebook and search, it had a much harder time acquiring and retaining a direct readership through newsletter marketing — a more predictable revenue stream immune from algorithmic changes. Hence, Snopes.com decided to optimize their email distribution channel.

The following were the major challenges that Snopes.com faced:

  • Attaining a high engagement and retention rate through email
  • Scarce editorial resources, limited campaign frequency, and email personalization
  • Poor delivery and campaign completions rates because of technical limitations
  • Limited reporting of email performance with no ability to A/B test

Vinny Green, Co-Owner at Snopes.com and one of Forbes’ 30 under 30, further says, “Stringing together piecemeal solutions for reporting, testing, and executing email campaigns was costly and difficult to maintain.”

Also, email distribution without Boomtrain’s personalized content was extremely time consuming and took resources away from the editorial team to craft our newsletters.”

The Solution

Snopes.com chose Boomtrain as its partner to optimize their email and content recommendations on its website.

Vinny shares, “Boomtrain offered an affordable solution that included robust reporting, effortless campaign creation and distribution, and a Litmus integration to confirm email deliverability.”

With Boomtrain’s powerful AI engine, Snopes.com was able to create tailored email content for each user.

Vinny adds, “The personalized recommendations loaded in the email allowed us to provide custom and engaging content with minimal time curating each newsletter campaign.”

Here is an example of Snopes.com’s newsletter, personalized using Boomtrain:

Snopes.com's personalized email newsletter created using Boomtrain

Standard introduction

Snopes.com's personalized email newsletter created using Boomtrain

Recommendations personalized for each subscriber

Snopes.com also used Boomtrain’s On-site Recommendations on the website to motivate users that visited via Facebook to stay engaged and read more. Vinny says, “The added bonus of on-site recommendations allowed us to maximize strategic web page real estate that was difficult to optimize using rudimentary database queries.”

Here is how the website looks with dynamically populated recommended content:

Snopes.com recommended articles using AI

The Results

With Boomtrain, Snopes.com sent more than 1.6 million emails in just a few months, and was able to achieve significantly higher engagement rates.

Snopes.com increased their email open rate to 49% from 30% previously. The click-to-open rate (CTOR), too, was a stupendous 28% across all emails.

Additionally, Snopes.com achieved a higher email deliverability, consistent and timely delivery, and less effort spent overall.

Snopes.com boosted email and website engagement using Boomtrain

Moreover, using Boomtrain’s On-site Recommendations on the website led to a dramatic two-fold increase in page views generated from “Related articles” section.

Vinny says, “On-site recommendations dramatically increased user engagement in a key piece of real estate on the site, handedly beating our in-house related articles query.”

The below chart clearly shows the higher number of pageviews achieved by Snopes.com using Boomtrain:

Snopes.com achieved twice the number of pageviews using Boomtrain's AI-powered content recommendations

Experience Using Boomtrain

Vinny shares Snopes.com’s experience of working with Boomtrain, “Boomtrain has allowed for our lean team to actively engage our user base through email-marketing while consuming minimal editorial and development resources. The ease of implementation and use are aspects critical to our success as publications, and Boomtrain allows us to maximize our direct marketing efforts with ease.”

On asking about the support that the Boomtrain team provides, Vinny says, “The Boomtrain team is extremely supportive and provided timely service. The onboarding team was easy to work with and very accommodating. They ensured we had a seamless integration and flawless execution of our first campaign. It is clear that our continued success with the product matters to everyone on the Boomtrain team.”

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