20:1

incremental return on ad spend (online & offline)

8%+

of measured conversions were incremental

83%

of conversions seen on different device or offline


Road Scholar needed a partner that could expand its retargeting capabilities to accurately find and recognize customers and prospects—even those who have never visited the website—and engage them with deeply personalized messages, at scale. Conversant was the perfect guide.


The Challenge

As the nation’s largest educational travel organization for adults, Road Scholar needed to speak to each of their on-the-go customers as individuals, across all their devices, to drive higher enrollment in their programs. By working with a basic retargeter with only a site and cookie-based approach, they were running into many issues:

  • Only reaching recent site visitors—a fraction of their customer base.
  • Delivering the same ad over and over again—leading to a poor customer experience and complaints.
  • Focusing on clicks rather than incremental sales.
  • No visibility into cross-device and offline sales.

It was time to upgrade from a basic site-retargeting vendor to a partner who could recognize recent and lapsed customers and efficiently attract new customers, while engaging them all throughout the purchase cycle.

Our Solution

Working with ten years of customer data, Conversant expanded Road Scholar’s target audience beyond the typical recent visitors by also including historical site visitors, as well as recent and lapsed customers who had never visited the website. We created unique, individualized messages that rendered accurately regardless of device, and then optimized delivery to maximize incremental sales. 

Road Scholar could see both online and offline results for themselves, with the transparent measurement Conversant provided.

“Conversant fundamentally revamped our retargeting strategy so we could reach an audience we couldn’t find or reach before. And with the cross-device and cross-channel measurement Conversant provided, we have the comprehensive view into our performance for the first time.”  

–Steve August, Associate VP of Marketing and Analytics at Road Scholar

The Results

Our success started at the top of the chain, by accurately matching 71% of Road Scholar’s verified customers and inquirers to online profiles—which was particularly difficult due to the age of the customer file.  

With our cross-device identification capabilities, Conversant was able to quantify that 83% of conversions from the program occurred offline (55%) or on a different device than the one where the messages were delivered (28%).  And through our personalized messaging to all their target consumers, over 8% of conversions were incremental, generating greater than 20:1 incremental return on ad spend. Granular, transparent reporting data allowed Road Scholar to independently validate the results.

AMONG THE NUMBERS WE’VE DRIVEN:

8%+

incremental conversons

55%

messaged conversions occurred offline

28%

messaged conversions occurred on a different device

ROAD SCHOLAR

ABOUT ROAD SCHOLAR

Road Scholar is the nation's largest educational travel organization for adults – a true university of the world. This not-for-profit educational organization offers 5,500 extraordinary learning adventures in 150 countries and 50 states. Road Scholars are immersed in a variety of educational activities, enlisting renowned faculty and experts who offer insider access not available to most individuals. Dedicated to making educational travel available to everyone, Road Scholar offers financial aid for those who otherwise could not participate in its programs. Road Scholar educational adventures are created by Elderhostel, the not-for-profit world leader in educational travel for adults since 1975. To learn more, please visit the website at press.roadscholar.org.