Progressive profiling is a dynamic way to gather profile information for a contact over time. Each time a contact visits a form that has progressive profiling, they will see new questions. This slowly builds a contact profile over several visits.
Read on to learn more about progressive profiling and how to add it to a form in Act-On.
How to use Progressive Profiling
Progressive profiling is most effective when used in combination with Gated Content, as visitors must come to the form more than once to answer all of the questions on your form.
You can also information on implenting progressive profiling across multiple forms.
A common way to use progressive profiling would be to use multiple pieces of content, such as a series of whitepapers or reports, to attract leads who want to learn more about your product, service, or industry.
Here is the basic premise:
- On the first visit, you convert a lead from an anonymous web visitor to known and gain their consent so you can send them marketing information
- Use subsequent visits to gather information on their profile
- Eventually you can use the form to ask questions that qualify a lead, which you can then send over to your sales team to engage.
Visit 1 - Convert Anonymous to Known
A contact arrives on a landing page and decides to fill in a form to receive a valuable piece of content. The short form is easy to fill out and converts an anonymous visitor to known.
First, gather basic contact information and gain consent to contact them. This could include Name, Email Address, and Phone Number.
Visit 2 - Gather Additional Profile Data
When returning to the landing page, the form dynamically replaces the original questions with new ones.
This time, the form asks for their Company Name, Job Title, Industry, or other sales profiling questions.
Visit 3 - Ask Sales Qualifying Questions
On the third visit, the form displays another set of new questions that may qualify this contact as a sales lead.
By the third visit, your picture of the contact is complete. A contact that has filled out your form three times has demonstrated interest in your product with their behavior. Your sales team has enough information to know whether they are a decisionmaker, and what target market they fall into.
This time, the form might ask for the contact's phone number whether they have a time frame in mind for purchasing your product.
You have effectlvely gathered enough information to funnel a sales qualified lead from your web marketing over to your sales team usoing progressive profiling and gated content.
You may wish to use an automated program to send these sales qualified leads to alert your sales team when they meet a particular lead score, or meet certain criteria with their behavior and/or profile data. This will take your marketing program full circle to bring new leads generated from your marketing campaigns into your sales cycle.
How to add Progressive Profiling to a Form
First, decide what information to collect for your contact's profile, what information has the highest priority, and how you want to stage your forms for each visit.
Add a Progressive Profiling block
- Navigate to Content > Forms
- Click the blue (+) button
- Choose between creating a New Form or starting from a Template Form
- Add any desired Properties to your form
- Navigate to Design > Section
- Drag and drop the Progressive Profiling block into your form
Form blocks placed inside of Progressive Profiling sections are used for repeat visitors.
Blocks placed outside of these sections will be shown on every visit.
Customize Your Progressive Profiling Fields
- Drag and drop a New Section or Saved Section into your form
- Add at least one visible input field to the section
- Visible input fields can include the Text Box, Paragraph, Combo Box, or Date, but not Hidden Field
- Adding a visible input field ensures that your visitor won’t be shown a form without any fields after completing the questions in the profiling section
- Drag and drop a Progressive Profiling Section into your form
- In the Edit Progressive Profiling Settings slideout, select the number of empty fields you want showing in that section on each visit
- This setting is specific to each progressive profiling section and will display different sets of fields simultaneously if multiple sections are present
- An empty field will be shown by default if the number of empty fields is not specified
- Click Ok
- Add form fields to your Progressive Profiling section in the order you’d like them to appear
- Visible input fields could include the Text Box, Paragraph, Combo Box, or Date, but not Hidden Field
- Multiple columns cannot be used in these sections, so these fields will be shown in a single column
Visitors that skip a progressive profiling field will be shown that field on subsequent visits until they provide a value. To avoid this, you can make each field required.
Preview the Form Behavior
Once you’ve finished creating your form, go to the Review tab to test how your form will behave when filled out.
- In the left side menu, click on the section you want to test
- Check the boxes corresponding to the fields shown on the form
- When you’ve completed the specified number of Empty Fields for that section (e.g. 2 fields out of 5 total) you’ll see the fields that will display on the next visit
Progression Across Multiple Forms
This allows you to track submissions from different form sources while still including the same progressive behavior.
- Every form in your account that uses progressive profiling must have identical fields
- Progressive forms must use the same Form Submission List, and "always append" must not be checked in the form settings.
- The _FORM and _CAMPAIGN values for any contact in this list will always update to the most recent form that was submitted.
If you need multiple forms to share progressive profiling, contact Act-On Support to enable this feature.