Disrupting the hunting travel business
Rainsford Hunting is one of world’s largest marketing platforms for hunters and outfitters. Rainsfordhunting.com connects hunters and outfitters in the hunting industry’s counterpart to Airbnb. Hundreds of hunting trips in more than 40 countries are offered to hunters from all over the world at prices that reflect the core of the concept: cutting out expensive intermediaries and facilitating easy direct bookings without the need of a travel agency. Alongside this, Rainsford is working to establish their social channels among the most popular international communities for hunters.
Although hunting is a purely analogue undertaking, Rainsford Hunting is 100% digital. The website Rainsfordhunting.com is where all activities gravitate toward, but social media, blogs and other external marketing play an essential part in both the communication of hunting trips at offer and in establishing the unique community that is quickly becoming an important component of the ”Rainsford Clan” – a community that presently counts more than 150.000 Facebook followers. Hence, the performance of the business depends of many factors relating to several different user types, e.g. outfitters, members, newsletter subscribers and social media followers.
Two purposes, two dashboards
All dashboard design should start by considering the purpose. What are we going to use the dashboard for? What exactly are we trying to achieve? And who will the users be? Some dashboards are designed to create a high-level overview of a set of KPI’s, others are centered around underlying, detailed data within a specific field. Some dashboards have speedometer character and show the current performance while others are used for displaying developments over time. Some dashboard are designed to highlight areas of best and worst performance or most significant changes – and others yet again are structured by organizational units, markets or technical matters.
Given the needs Rainsford wanted to cover, it was clear from the beginning that one dashboard could not do the job, despite most of the data sources being the same. After discussing these needs in further detail, it was decided to create two different dashboards, each with its own purpose and intended user group.
Both dashboards are based on Klipfolio, a platform upon which Blue Visuals is an official development partner. For integration and aggregation we used Blue Visuals API Connector Platform. The API Connector collects data from all source systems and stores it in one unified database to make all raw data and calculated values accessible for the dashboard application from a single source.
The purpose of the KPI-board is to make sure that the status of the most central business KPI’s is always known and top of mind for all employees. Regardless of inividual areas of responsibility, the targets in the dashboard express what all activities should support and act as the measuring tool for overall performance. The dashboard contains data from WordPress, Google Analytics, social media, MailChimp and various calculated financial key metrics – along with targets for all of them.
The KPI-board is designed for easy overview containing relatively few metrics and is displayed on a wallboard. It serves to ensure an overview of performance, but is also an effective communication of the common agenda everyone works toward. Everyone knows exactly what we are working toward and how well we are doing – at all times. In a result oriented and data-driven company like Rainsford this in fact makes up a very efficient motivational tool.
As the name suggests this dashboard is intended to provide a deeper understanding of the achieved results. In short, it has to explain the overall performance as opposed to the KPI-board that simply states the top-level KPI’s. We have done that by including a large number of underlying metrics organized into various topics. The dashboard is divided into eight tabs, each containing in-depth information about one topic, e.g. financials, user behavior and marketing ROI to name only a few.
The analysis dashboard is primarily intended for Rainsford’s management and sales function who need to be able to access crucial business information from a single tool, not having to seek this information in the many marketing and tracking tools Rainsford uses.
Both dashboards are updated frequently and automatically by the Blue Visuals API Connector and can be accessed from mobile devices using a web-browser or the Klipfolio app.
More to come
Rainsford Hunting is convinced that intelligent use of data should be an integral part of business development. As a natural consequence of this, plans are being made to use data externally toward the users of the platform thereby exibiting the advantages both outfitters and hunters gain from using Rainsfordhunting.com. The first new feature of this kind will be a dashboard solution integrated into the website that allows outfitters to easily get an overview of what Rainsford has delivered in terms of visibillty, leads, shares etc.
“Understanding and developing our business is crucially based on intelligent use of data. Our dashboards ensure that we always have the relevant and updated data at hand. We don’t guess and we don’t have to go back from meetings to check what the numbers say – we have them, literaly, in our pockets all the time.”
Frederik Bülow, CEO Rainsford Hunting