The Roland Corporation Increases Global Customer Engagement with ActiveCampaign’s CRM in 6 months





The Challenge

  • Limited ability to implement customer behavior automations
  • Challenges creating personalized, one-to-one conversations
  • Previous customer bucket structure created extremely manual processes to maintain

The Solution

  • Automating the tracking of customer behavior allowed Roland to automate personalized communication at scale
  • Combining data from customer behavior with different automation streams allows Roland to speak directly to customers’ specific interests
  • Sophisticated tagging and segmentation allows Roland to segment customers and automatically enter them into appropriate communication streams
We saw a 20% engagement rate growth over six months and we knew we were doing something right. There's no way we could have done that without everything that we use with Active Campaign.

Roland, the company known for its iconic synthesizers and a myriad of other music-oriented electronics, was founded in 1972 in...

United Kingdom
Company Size
500+ employees
ActiveCampaign Marketing + Sales

Roland, the company known for its iconic synthesizers and a myriad of other music-oriented electronics, was founded in 1972 in Osaka, Japan. It has come a long way since its early days and is now a globally recognized brand with a loyal customer base. Part of The Roland Corporation’s growth can be attributed to the work of Roland’s Global CRM Manager, Paul Smith, and ActiveCampaign’s personalized one-to-one CRM Software.

Paul joined Roland almost 10 years ago and has seen marketing platforms come and go throughout his tenure. When he started, Microsoft Dynamics was their CRM and Clickdimensions was their email marketing tool. These solutions didn’t provide the level of customer engagement Paul was aiming for. In addition to these struggles, the company’s global regions managed separate customer databases. “We wanted to make it a global company eventually. So the idea was to expand into a European business and then to a global business. As a global company, we had many different CRM or marketing systems, but we wanted a One Roland approach, which meant one CRM system. Globally. We came to the conclusion that ActiveCampaign was the way forward.”

Finding a CRM solution to support global expansion

As their old tech suite couldn’t keep up with the growth of the company, Roland launched a large-scale search for a new CRM solution. Paul wanted more personalized one-to-one interactions with customers. “It was a very manual process. All we really had was product interest groups, essentially. And the manual process of actually getting leads into those groups each time was an absolute nightmare.” With over 1,200 different products, speaking directly to customers about the products of interest was impossible without more sophisticated automation capabilities. “We could send transactional emails based on the updates in our customer portal. What we couldn’t do is make that personal because we didn’t have that direct link between our customer portal and our CRM database.”

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Using ActiveCampaign’s CRM to engage customers worldwide  

After thorough research, coupled with a  recommendation from a well-regarded consultant, Roland chose and implemented ActiveCampaign in mid-2020. Paul and his team wasted no time leveraging ActiveCampaign’s tagging and email automation capabilities. “The one thing that stands out for me was the intensive engagement campaign based on what I call ‘zombies,  ghosts and the unloved,’ which is based on activity if our customers haven’t engaged over a certain period of time. Our engagement rate was around 23-24%, and in the last 6 to 8 months it’s gone up to around 40%.” The campaign has transitioned to an evergreen process which has continued to improve Roland’s already impressive engagement. With new automations in place, Roland is seeing up to 56% engagement with their total contact database. [as high as 70-80% for some, more personable campaigns.]

In addition to customer engagement-focused automations and tags, lead scoring has been integral to Roland’s success. “Based on activity and customer behavior, contacts build up lead scoring points. 

Ten points if they’ve visited articles, web pages, or have engaged with an email. Those are the 4 main categories, and once they get the 50-point mark, they become a Roland VIP.” Roland VIPs are their highest engaged customers, allowing Roland to provide even more personalized content and increase the likelihood of repeat purchases. Using tags and lead scoring allows Roland to provide one-to-one, highly personalized communication with their customers, creating a better overall customer experience and increasing brand loyalty.

Using ActiveCampaign Deals CRM to bridge the gap between physical and digital

Roland has also bridged the gap between the online and in-person showrooms using ActiveCampaign Deals. “For any potential customer who comes into a store and chats with our product specialists, they can get entered, with permission of course,  into sales’ pipelines, so they can have a more 1-2-1 experience with our specialists to guide them through the buying or learning journey. Then we also have some automations based on what stage each customer is in within the sales journey. It automates tasks like callbacks and follow-up emails so they go directly to the customers.” Combining the power of deals and automations allows Roland to provide the same superior customer experience both online and in person.

Part of managing a global brand is learning how to engage with your customers differently based on where they’re located. Paul and his team have built “culture codes” to help differentiate how they engage with customers across their various markets. This segmentation gives them the ability to adjust their communication based on regional differences, providing yet another layer of personalization to their ultimate goal of having one-to-one conversations with each customer.

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Tracking customer engagement growth with robust reporting

A vital component of architecting all this change has been the ability to track and report progress. ActiveCampaign’s custom reporting capabilities have been key to Roland’s growth. “Custom reporting is an absolute game-changer. I love the flexibility of creating reports based on the custom fields of my choosing. Easily viewing the interaction and engagement rates on a daily basis has been a godsend for me.”

While they have already seen impressive results, Paul isn’t slowing down. The team’s next target is 75% overall engagement, and with the evergreen processes they’ve built with ActiveCampaign, it’s only a matter of time before they reach their goal. 

Experiencing a 20% increase in engagement and continuing to grow with ActiveCampaign

Ultimately, Paul and his team found the tools needed to support their strategic plans for Roland with ActiveCampaign. The powerful combination of automation, tagging, reporting, and a robust CRM has given Roland the technology to grow its audience and increase its overall engagement by almost 20%. “There’s no way we could have done that without Active Campaign.”

If you’d like to transform the way you engage your customers, get started with an ActiveCampaign CRM Free Trial today.

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