In this episode of Subscription League, we sit down with Belen Caeiro, the VP of Product Management of Babbel Live, to talk about the bold decisions, attempts, and success along the journey of creating the latest business branch of Babbel, Babbel Live.
Belen shares the logic behind the brand’s unusual approach of not offering a free trial and tips on how Babbel Live differentiates itself from its competitors in the market.
Listen to the end to steal Belen’s predictions of the future of subscription apps, and her view on the benefit of pursuing product-led growth.
For noteworthy quotes and key takeaways from the episode, read the article - How to create and launch a success in a crowded market with Belen Caeiro.
Episode Topics at a Glance
- Three attempts, one success
- Product marketing
- Babbel’s unique selling proposition
- Start-up approach
- Why free-trial doesn’t work for every app
- Simplifying the acquisition flow
More about Belen Caeiro
Prior to Babbel, Belen led the international roll-out of SoundCloud’s monetization options. She was involved in the early-stage development of other online companies in the entertainment and ticketing industries. Now based in Berlin, Belen is originally from Argentina and lived in Spain, Singapore, the Philippines, the United States, and the Netherlands. She’s a firm believer that learning new languages helps us understand each other and integrate new perspectives into our way of thinking.
Belen Caeiro’s Links
[0:36] Belen is introduced on the show
[1:30] What is Babbel Live?
[1:56] Belen explains product marketing and the importance of product USPs
[3:19] How Babbel brought Babbel Live to market
[6:28] Managing a business strategy pivot within the Babbel team
[8:13] Why it was third time lucky for live language learning lessons
[9:35] How Babbel positioned itself against its competitors
[12:25] The strategies that Babbel deployed to roll out Babbel Live
[17:33] Experimenting with the subscription app model
[19:38] Ditching the free trial: An unusual way to end churn in subscription apps
[21:04] Babbel’s pricing models
[22:06] Belen’s tips on how to apply a subscription model to a premium price app
[24:56] Why a referral program might be the way forward in user acquisition
[25:33] Belen’s predictions for the future of subscription apps
[00:00:22.650] - Olivier Destrebecq
Welcome, everybody. Today I have the pleasure to interview Belen Caeiro, VP of Product at Babbel. And to help me today I have Jeff Grang, co-founder at Purchasely. Jeff, can you introduce Belen for us?
[00:00:35.740] - Jeff Grang
Yeah. I'm very pleased to welcome Belen in this Subscription League. Belen is the VP of Product at Babbel where she leads the product team, building new teacher-led products like Babbel Live that we're going to talk today about. Prior to Babbel, Belen led the international rollout of SoundCloud's monetization options. She was also involved in the early-stage development of other online companies in the entertainment and ticketing industries. Originally from Argentina, now based in Berlin, Belen will share with us today her amazing journey at Babbel, especially building a subscription product from scratch while it already failed twice. Welcome, Belen.
[00:01:15.350] - Belen Caeiro
Hi, everyone. Great to be here.
[00:01:17.330] - Olivier Destrebecq
Is there anything you want to add to this great intro from Jeff?
[00:01:20.070] - Belen Caeiro
No. I think if people just remember the name of Babbel, we're doing a great job.
[00:01:24.240] - Olivier Destrebecq
You're good to go. All right. Can you tell us a little bit about what Babbel Live actually is?
[00:01:28.900] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah, of course. Babbel Live is a virtual group classes service. So for us, it's a way to enhance our language learning ecosystem and give language learners the opportunity to get conversational and really practice their speaking as fast as possible.
[00:01:44.690] - Olivier Destrebecq
Cool. So if people google you today, they'll find a presentation of product marketing at the Product Marketing Summit. Can you tell us a bit more about what product marketing is and how you apply it?
[00:01:56.220] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. To me, product marketing is a discipline that is meant to enhance how more traditional product development has worked. The point here is to bring a product-market-fit angle to how we are filtering ideas and how those ideas are presented to the customer. So being very specific, a good product marketeer should bring competitive research knowledge that perhaps the product manager, the UX researchers don't fully have the time to dive into specifically, parts of the industry that might not be direct competitors, but players who are relevant and can be adjacent to what you're developing.
[00:02:29.640] - Belen Caeiro
The most important part for me in the ideation phase is a product marketer should ensure that you're not just choosing a solution to a problem that is effort impact, good to build, but that it also brings a product differentiation point so that when you're in the rollout phase and you're communicating about this new feature, you actually have something to use to make the user perceive the difference between you and your competitor, to drive that feature adoption much better.
[00:02:54.440] - Olivier Destrebecq
Awesome. The thing that really resonates with me here is having the marketing team present throughout the lifecycle and at the end, and being able to communicate on those new features because I've seen so many teams that don't do that. So it's really nice. Babbel's latest offering is Babbel Live, which is different from the offering that you had in the past and the traditional language learning app. Can you tell us more about the journey to create and launching this offering?
[00:03:19.070] - Belen Caeiro
It feels so far away; it's only been a year and a half or so. I think it was a combination of starting with the right talent, being very - I don't want to use the word brutal, but - serious about either figuring this out or failing as quickly as we could. And then I think there was also a combination of right place, right time because we were launching a live tutoring solution at the time of a global pandemic where we had the pleasure of having almost all of the world introduced to Zoom without having to do any onboarding, for example. So we were bringing the right talent, we were bringing the right mindset to how to build a product quickly, and we were in the right point in the market, which sometimes when you innovate, you can't really control.
[00:04:00.580] - Olivier Destrebecq
And from our last conversation, you said that was the third attempt at launching Babbel Live. Can you tell us what changed in that third attempt that really made a difference?
[00:04:09.510] - Belen Caeiro
Yes. Our first attempt was to try to build everything ourselves. We were trying to build a video call feature that both teachers and learners were using. We were trying to build a teacher interface where the teacher would find everything they needed, also the learner journey and how the learner was being recommended from place to place. And this ended up being a massive undertaking. It's not so much that we didn't have the right talent to do it or that this was difficult. It's just that it prevented us from getting to a first MVP quickly. And then it was also this big mammoth thing that it was hard to iterate on.
[00:04:41.030] - Belen Caeiro
So any one of those cycles of learning what was not working, and coming back to refining would take three to four months. And ultimately, it made us much slower at validating. The second time around, we were like, "Okay, this is not going to happen." Our much leaner product development approach, we're going to third-party integrate everything that's possible. Just build what we're expert on, that is content catalog and the learning journey with which we helped learners build a habit and stay motivated.
[00:05:07.680] - Belen Caeiro
But we chose the, I don't want to say the wrong, perhaps it's a challenging product proposition, which was private, one-on-one tutoring. There are companies out there doing this and doing it well, so it's certainly possible. It's just that for us at that time, given that the market of one-on-one classes is much smaller, our ability to validate purchase intent to create a critical mass of users was low and was slower. So we were finding a lot more challenges on the validation part which were not enabling us to move into the next step of what we were trying to build.
[00:05:38.920] - Belen Caeiro
And so comes the third time and we pivoted our proposition to group classes, which are cheaper for the consumer, leaner in the sense that they have better unit economics for us. The cost can be diluted by a number of students rather than one student bearing all of them. We were also very ready and I think more experienced with integrating out-of-the-shelf solutions for the video part, the scheduling part, the management of freelancers. And all of that enabled us to focus on creating an outstanding classroom experience, which is what has brought us to right now, tens of thousands of learners coming back on a monthly basis to use Babble Live.
[00:06:16.850] - Olivier Destrebecq
I'm curious. You said in the first attempt you guys tried to do everything yourself, and the second attempt you changed that approach. How difficult was that to get the team to go along with that change?
[00:06:28.440] - Belen Caeiro
I guess because, at this third time, it was very clear what we were doing. Those team members that we brought in were very much kept in the loop of what this approach was. I think also from a very cultural perspective, as a team, we said we kept a very frank dialogue with our engineers, with our designers, with our product managers in the sense of not promising that this was going to be something long-lasting forever and ever. But that we were here for nine months to either prove or disprove that we could do this.
[00:06:54.660] - Belen Caeiro
And so everyone was navigating without having to stress the role. Everyone was clear on we've got a short time to do this. We're going to sacrifice left, right, and center and say the more fancy side of designing or product development and all of that will come, but it will come if we're able to take this couple of milestones that we set for ourselves. So it was, I think, a way of carrot and stick, motivate people will be like, "If we're really good at this, if we actually get to a critical mass, then we're going to be gifted with more resources." An entire year of actually building the type of product that we are all dreaming about.
[00:07:28.080] - Olivier Destrebecq
It really sounds like you took a startup approach. It's not because we have tons of resources that we should reinvent the wheel and do everything. It's awesome.
[00:07:36.210] - Jeff Grang
I have a question about that. Because you failed or you attempted twice, what made you think that you could succeed the third time that you tried it? And if ever you had failed on that attempt, would you have tried another time? I mean, because you can keep on trying and trying and trying over and over again without succeeding. So we understood that the recipe that you chose was different and that the product marketing you were speaking in the very beginning of this interview probably made a huge difference in how you approach the problem. What was the initial thoughts on you keep on trying a third time on that topic that you already had covered twice?
[00:08:12.840] - Belen Caeiro
Yes, it's a good question. I think that the main difference was that we were observing a market that was evolving in the space of online tutoring. Back at that time, when I'm telling you about the first attempt, we were building a number of different products. We were doing a test certificate solution with Cambridge. We were doing some other spin-offs of products. We've built a traveling language solution where you can actually come in, book a language travel course with us, and perhaps go to Mexico and have everything in the package then.
[00:08:41.880] - Belen Caeiro
Those are products that we have paused for the moment because mainly we have understood that the market is not ready to receive them right now. We paused our travel products at the time of the pandemic where virtually everyone was at home. For this product, it was the opposite. We were seeing that we might have failed, but actually, more and more competitors were popping out in the market with a valid proposition and growing their market share.
[00:09:03.890] - Belen Caeiro
So it had to be about the approach we were taking to building and not about the service not being interesting for users. So then we came back to observe that and say, "Okay, this is not about the market. The market is actually hungry for such a solution. What have we done wrong in the past on our approach?" And that's why we came up with the type of proposition we're putting into the market and the type of execution that we were following.
[00:09:26.750] - Olivier Destrebecq
So when you came out with Babbel Live, I guess the third time around, you came in the market with some established competitors. How did that factor in the project?
[00:09:35.250] - Belen Caeiro
We took, I think, the positive side of that. And I think that being an established company, more than 12 years in the market, we were in a position to have easy access to resources to do that. Normally you have an idea, you started the competition and it's seen as a drawback that you have all of these people doing what you want to do. However, if you know how to play it, it can also be extremely valuable because it tells you exactly where you have to go and what not to do.
[00:10:03.460] - Belen Caeiro
It hints you what proposition work, it gives you a baseline for pricing, which is really good because then it's like playing poker. You're seeing the cards of the other one and you know your numbers, you know how low you can go. And then, you're coming later into that bet.
[00:10:16.910] - Olivier Destrebecq
I like the metaphor.
[00:10:18.490] - Belen Caeiro
It's like you have to position yourself, but you're coming at the time where you're seeing what everyone's game is. It happens the same thing with messaging. As a marketeer, we always look at what is the brand positioning and narrative of different competitors, and you can use that as a way to compare or differentiate yourself, which is also something that we did, right? We researched competitors, understood how they were messaging, what were their unique selling points. And we saw a lot of overlap.
[00:10:43.190] - Belen Caeiro
Most of them were talking about classes that feature schedule, do it in your own time and pace, qualified native teachers--the concept of a teacher is good when it's a native. And so we came to our site and we said, "Okay, let's make sure that we're building a product that has differentiators to this." What we say about our teachers, which is also something that I hope you can all try and validate when using it, is that our teachers are invested in your success. And we have built the tools to make sure that we train them consistently and we give them the resources to actually be the most engaging teachers in the class so that they can feel much more like a fitness instructor or someone like a fitness coach that is going to motivate you through it than just a language teacher.
[00:11:23.430] - Belen Caeiro
We give you access to the entire Babbel app, lessons, podcasts, games, things that are going to complement that language learning ecosystem to something that competitors don't have. And we make sure that our classes are about cultural immersion. You go always beyond grammar and vocab. You learn about the idiosyncrasies of a given country. You learn French, and you learn more than just how it's done in France. You learn about the Francophone countries around the world and how their culture has evolved. And so we now have a much more differentiated proposition on things that we've been able to validate. These are important for the people that use the product.
[00:11:59.660] - Olivier Destrebecq
I got to say I'm sold. I say I'm going to start learning Spanish again. I got to start that again.
[00:12:04.400] - Belen Caeiro
And we have great teachers. This is something that I always say. And then, people come back and they're in love with one or another.
[00:12:11.470] - Olivier Destrebecq
It's awesome. To come back to that third attempt, it was already also pretty fast, it was under a year, if I remember correctly. Can you share some of the tools and strategies you used to validate and get to market this fast?
[00:12:25.040] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. As a team, I really have to say we weren't sure that we could do this. People at a big company are always coming to the next project with a fancy set of lights and this feeling of like, "Look, there's a budget for it. I just need to proceed and execute." We were like, we've got no clue, actually, whether we're going to waste everyone's time for about ten months. So for us, the most important thing was that we had very clear predictors of failure. And we set ourselves to define what are the most important things that we need to answer before we go into market so that when we go into market, we don't completely fail.
[00:12:59.390] - Belen Caeiro
The other problem could have been having something that half works, has a mixed feedback. Qual was wrong, A/B testing was good, so you're like, "Meh," and you decide to go to market anyways, and then you have a disaster. So we're like, "Okay, that's not happening." We need to be able to answer: can we build this thing? Do people even want it? Should I have made this drawing? Does anyone want to look at my drawing? And then, are people willing to pay for it? Because it's very fun and easy when things are for free, right?
[00:13:29.530] - Belen Caeiro
And then we took this very [inaudible 00:13:31] approach to attaching a metric and a threshold to each and one of those questions and making sure from the beginning that we could measure those things. So data for us was very relevant at the start, even if we didn't have a lot of function. We started a team with a product analyst and a UX researcher from the get go, even when there wasn't a product manager and a designer just yet.
[00:13:51.590] - Olivier Destrebecq
Nice. You mentioned something very true. It's nice if your project can either completely fail or widely succeed. It's tough when you're in the middle and you don't really know which way it's going to go.
[00:14:03.530] - Jeff Grang
Speaking of which, which KPIs did you set to tell whether or not it was a success?
[00:14:07.960] - Belen Caeiro
So at the start, our ambition was to build a product that could both serve B2B and B2C audiences. There was a clear case for us of this becoming a B2B product. We had a bunch of companies working and using Babbel telling us, "Can you please give me classes?" So what greater place to be in when you're building something than having already the customers at your door? So we started with three B2B companies who we told them, "We're going to give you something for free. It's going to be ugly. You need to be patient with us. You need to let us have this ugly thing that we're going to give you for free and it's great quality in learning, but it might not look fancy."
[00:14:43.290] - Belen Caeiro
So then, can we build this thing with the first three-month phase of reaching at least 60 learners without having this product break, having about 60 learners, six different recurrent classes, and six teachers using the product ongoingly for a couple of months. Once we got to that, we said, or prior to that, what we had to find is, that's the minimum of having a prototype. We didn't even call it a product. It was like, "The prototype works."
[00:15:09.620] - Belen Caeiro
Second, we wanted to move it to a beta that we connect to our web app. And the point there was to start solving all of this integration questions. Sure, we had integrated some third-party solutions. Can this thing now that we're starting to create be connected to the Babbel infrastructure, our web app or mobile apps? Are things going to break in the process? Our metric there was to have at least 3000 Babbel subscribers using the product on a recurrent basis. So it wasn't just enough with having 3000 people coming in once, but we wanted at least 3000 people that were coming to study on a monthly basis for free.
[00:15:48.210] - Belen Caeiro
I think we got to about 5000 by the time that we said, "Okay, third point," which is: are people willing to pay for this? We agreed that a good conversion rate was what we could be seeing in the rest of our marketing channels, which was 2 to 3 percent of total traffic. So from everyone who's using this product monthly, we are validating that people want to pay this if we get 2 to 3 percent of them paying for it. So we did a payment test. At that time, we didn't develop our full subscription functionality, but we had a one-time payment where people who were getting four classes for free a month could have the option of buying a [inaudible 00:16:24] one for a certain amount of money.
[00:16:26.300] - Belen Caeiro
We got there too. And then, we got really scared because we were like, "Oh, damn, now we need to launch this thing and it's really half done." You need to imagine, we were dreaming about making this product better, adding filtering functionality, and an onboarding system, and visualization of the curriculum that would be much more intuitive. And yeah, we just been having to do that through our first year in market.
[00:16:50.360] - Jeff Grang
That's very interesting to see for such a big company with high-quality products et cetera that is settled in landscape for quite a while. You didn't fear of launching something that was dirty. This is really a small startup approach of things and it's great to see that you weren't afraid of adopting such behavior for that new product.
[00:17:11.010] - Belen Caeiro
For me, I've actually learned that this is the only way.
[00:17:14.490] - Olivier Destrebecq
So you've hinted a little bit in your answer to the previous question about how your subscriptions have evolved through your experimentations. Can you tell us a bit more from that first subscription or purchase, I guess that you mentioned earlier, all the way to your current offering today?
[00:17:32.610] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. I think two things stood out as learnings and I hope whoever has a subscription is taking notes because I certainly was like, "Oh, God. This is great learning I'm going to take whatever I go next." One was around simplifying the proposition for learners and the second was around not using free trial. And I know there's a lot of free trial fans out there, so I will contextualize that.
[00:17:55.910] - Belen Caeiro
The first one, we understood through qual interviews of people going through the entire acquisition flow. So a diary study of seven days where we put a number of learners going through the entire process of purchasing. And the first week of using the product, there was a huge cognitive overload when they were getting to the price page. They had to decide the intensity and duration of commitment to this new product for something that is actually not 10 euros, a bit more expensive.
[00:18:25.860] - Belen Caeiro
It's not expensive with regards to the value you get, obviously, but it's the bigger decision than if you are just buying a coffee in the street. And so at that time, our pricing structure was 5 classes a month, 10 classes a month, 20 classes a month for a given price. And people were having a hard time answering, "Well, how long do I need to be paying for this to get to my proficiency level?" And when we understood that blocker, we came back to and design a pricing positioning that would simplify the choice.
[00:18:54.360] - Belen Caeiro
We told our users, you have unlimited access to the product, you can use as much classes as you want, just commit to a duration. And so we simplified the choice there. And also we made it clear for them within the funnel and price page, how long do you need to do depending on the intensity that you commit to. So users will have that information in front. I had a very funny case in an interview to a user that I was listening to where this person was telling us, "Look, you think I'm just deciding about your product. But at the same time that I'm buying this, I'm choosing whether I'm putting this money on a present for my girlfriend, I've been meaning to buy a new yoga mat, and these are the things that I have in my head while I'm choosing for your product."
[00:19:31.200] - Belen Caeiro
I was like, "Of course, how are we going to convince you if you have all this information to parse through when you're buying?" And then, look about free trial, I hope that everyone working within a subscription B2C environment is going a bit deeper into whether this works for their industry or not. What I've learned, comparing SoundCloud where I was working versus Babbel, is that subscriptions work very well for short-term length subscriptions, one month or so, and also for this very recurrent, like implementing my life type of products.
[00:20:03.430] - Belen Caeiro
I think an Uber subscription would work fantastically, something like Spotify, something like Strava, or a running app that you use on an ongoing basis. For premium products, it actually often dilutes your conversion. It gives the user two moments to actually turn out of what they're doing. And the reason for this is not that we're trying to lock you into a payment and have you not leave, but it's simply that you cannot experience the full value of the service in just seven days or in just a free trial.
[00:20:31.360] - Belen Caeiro
For a language learner to get to the point of "oh, this is actually really helpful", they need a couple of weeks with the product. And we need to get them to a point of activation that just doesn't always happen in a free trial. So for us, it might actually mean that people use it, don't get convinced, and drop it before they've reached the point where this is actually interesting.
[00:20:50.080] - Olivier Destrebecq
Because the shortest offering is what, a month, two months on Babbel?
[00:20:54.190] - Belen Caeiro
[00:20:54.920] - Jeff Grang
We're scratching the surface right here about how it's different to sell Babbel Live subscription compared to what you are selling at Babbel. Just to give some information for our listeners that might not know the prices, I think Babbel Live is about $100 per month, right?
[00:21:09.900] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah, the monthly subscription. If you actually commit to a bit longer, three months, it amounts to $80 a month. If you go for six months, you're already paying $70 a month.
[00:21:20.210] - Jeff Grang
Okay. And the Babbel regular app subscription is a monthly fee of around $10-15, right?
[00:21:25.810] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. So it's $12 if you're paying monthly, and then it also goes down a couple of dollars per length of commitment.
[00:21:32.400] - Jeff Grang
So, yeah, we understand that the service is very different. It's a high value. It's really valuable to have a teacher, a real teacher speaking to you and learning a language with you, with a small group, et cetera. But still, it's a bigger commitment for any kind of users. And the same way that you are saying, "Well, free trial didn't apply to such a product." Can you share with us how it's different to sell, retain, in every KPIs that we follow on a daily basis on the subscription app, how is it different to sell a 15 or 10 or $15 subscription against a $100 subscription? Do you have anything to share in terms of KPIs about that?
[00:22:07.090] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah, I think that on that same angle of why we don't use free trial. I mean, the idea here is to convince a user to buy $100 product, you need to be sure that they understand the value. For a $10 or €10 product, you might be willing to do a leap of faith and first pay, and then if not, well, you lost $10. That doesn't happen in this kind of product. So what we have done is make sure that users have a way and a path towards activation that is as frictionless as we can.
[00:22:36.820] - Belen Caeiro
Specifically, we give two free classes to any Babbel lead or Babbel subscriber. Lead is how we call someone that's registered, you created an account, but it's not paying for a subscription just yet. And our point there is to say, if you have interest in this product, if you want to know more, check how booking a class looks like, how actually joining a class feels, what you get out of a class. You do it straight away. No commitments. We want you to get to a moment where you're like, "These teachers are actually really awesome," and that is where we need you to be--to look at the price.
[00:23:08.470] - Belen Caeiro
I actually would prefer much more that all of our potential customers would not get to the price page until they've joined a class, because then you're looking at that amount with the context of the value which before you don't have.
[00:23:20.800] - Jeff Grang
And how is the retention conversion compared to cheaper prices subscriptions?
[00:23:26.080] - Belen Caeiro
It's early for us to say. If I'm really honest, I would say that retention is something that to fully understand it you need one year or two years of historic data to know how your product is doing. We had a target of about 10 percent lower retention than our, let's say, self-study app subscription. Accounting for what you said, it's just simply a more expensive product and also one that you're very aware that you have and that you're committing to either using or not using.
[00:23:50.170] - Belen Caeiro
It was somewhat easy for us to reach that retention target of 10 percent less than our main app when we were a pricing which was credit base. So you just commit to 10 classes a month, 20 classes a month, 30 classes a month. I think this was not due to the fact that the product was just amazing or the pricing was perfect, but more because we were acquiring users who were Babbel subscribers. Our natural acquisition was already segmented to high intent customers. This is why I'm saying, I very honestly would want to see two years of data and tell you, where am I sitting on retention in month 24, where one of my levers to grow this to 100,000 learners is acquisition, and how are those retaining.
[00:24:32.720] - Jeff Grang
Of course, right now you're talking with your most engaged customers. So figures might change in the future.
[00:24:38.180] - Belen Caeiro
We're at a point where it's maybe 65 percent or 60 percent old Babbel customers, 40 percent new ones, and we see that retention is healthy, but I don't have it all with me.
[00:24:49.190] - Jeff Grang
Are you considering any referral program, like people that are very satisfied with everything that you provide might share with their friends?
[00:24:56.890] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. We've got a long list of ways to add here. In principle, yes. And the reason is because we want to make sure that our product growth and user acquisition is not just dependent on paid marketing. I think it's where everyone's going in terms of making sure that you create a healthier, more product-led growth, a growth that can compound on the free assets that you have, which is critical mass of users, the value of a product, and so on.
[00:25:22.070] - Olivier Destrebecq
Do you see any other trends around subscription? You just mentioned, like making sure to eventually cross-sell and that kind of stuff. Is there other things that you see coming on the horizon for subscriptions?
[00:25:32.160] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah. I mean, what I was mentioning, I think, is how the whole area of acquisition is going to evolve over the next five years. We're going to be looking at much more organic and product-led growth to make sure that we are balancing how expensive paid marketing channels are getting. I think anyone working on the performance marketing side is very aware that we are not getting the same conversions and value out of every euro you put in the market. Every new banner impression and click is getting more expensive.
[00:25:57.790] - Belen Caeiro
And so I think the companies who are succeeding the most right now are those who are investing in diversifying their acquisition approach and investing in product-led growth. When it comes to subscription, I think the attention is also shifting much more in the other two, right? So if a subscription model is composed by acquiring those users, monetizing them, and retaining them, I think we're all also waking up to the idea that there's also two other legs.
[00:26:23.630] - Belen Caeiro
We could be looking at monetizing better and we could be looking at retaining better. And these are accessible. I'm not going to say that it's easy to make them work well, but they are accessible. And marketing doesn't just have to look into acquisition as a way to generate revenue. On the monetizing side, you mentioned cross-sells. Anything that is a cross-sell, an upsell, or an add-on you've done already the difficult part of in the sea of universe of people out there, you've identified the one that's generally interested in your proposition.
[00:26:50.700] - Belen Caeiro
It's going to be easier for you to find adjacent propositions for that person, whether it's a one time payment on something that is relevant for them at a given time. Fitness apps do this all the time with meal plans or one-on-one coaches. It will be easier for us in the future to find the power learners who are doing a bunch of classes on a monthly basis and sell them a one-on-one tutoring solution.
[00:27:12.530] - Belen Caeiro
So this approach, I think is one that we're going to be taking much more because acquiring new users are getting much more expensive, and then retention strategies as well that are also proven to work across many industries. Term optimization is one of them. So moving your customers to longer-term subscriptions, which we know equates to lower cancellations. You see a bunch of companies, who for a long time were just a one-month subscription, moving into 6 months, 12 months.
[00:27:35.770] - Belen Caeiro
We reduce charge automatically when we do that. And yeah, win back, I think, it's also going to be a big part of... Again, you know that Jeff was interested in language learning at some point, maybe back last year. He turned for some reason. It is likely easier for me to win him back into my product. It's going to be to find another Jeff out there.
[00:27:53.540] - Olivier Destrebecq
Interesting. Those are all great points that you made today, and those are all the questions that we had for you. So I really want to thank you very much for coming on the podcast.
[00:28:01.780] - Jeff Grang
Thank you, Belen.
[00:28:02.680] - Belen Caeiro
Yeah, it was fun. Anytime.
[00:28:04.270] - Jeff Grang
Thank you. And we wish you the best for Babbel Live and all your initiatives at Babbel.
[00:28:08.450] - Belen Caeiro