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Unless you avoided the news for the past few days, then you’ll be aware that Rory McIlroy won the Open Championship yesterday. 

Here are some notes from his success.

1. Planning

Rory’s plan for the Open championship was simple.  Attack the Par 5’s.  This was a strategy that was successfully applied in the past by Tiger Woods.  Everyone knew his plan, it was mentioned pretty regularly in the commentary.


2. Application

The first round went to plan and he raced into the lead.  However in Golf it is a marathon not a sprint and it is pretty rare for the first round leader to win at the end.  In the last few tournaments, Rory has started really well and then had a shocker the next day.

His solution, focus on small targets and keep to the plan.  So if his score was 6 under, his immediate target was 7 under.  And wait for the par 5’s.

3. Measurement

Despite massive LED scoreboards all over the course, his measurement of success was based purely on his score and not the field.   This kept him focused on performing to the plan.

Applying these principles to email marketing

The same principles applied by Rory in his success can be applied successfully by you when applying email marketing.

1. Planning

What is the outcome you want from your email marketing?  Is it long term, is it short term? 

Creating a measure of success before you start will really help you understand the outcomes later.

Also - remember to make sure that you can collecting the data you need to measure success.

2. Application

You know what you want as the outcome.  He is a check list to make sure you get as close as possible to achieving the plan.

a) Who is the audience you need to connect with? 

Are they existing customers?  Should they have certain behaviour or meet a certain criteria?

b) When do you need to connect with them? 

Is it after they have done a certain activity?  Is it before a specific date? 

c) What do you want them to do?

You’ve got the right audience, at the right time - what do you want them to do next.   Make sure this is as easy as possible to do. 

d) How do you need to connect with them? 

What do you need to say or offer to the target audience to get them to do what you want them to do?

Make sure the context of your message is as relevant as possible.  Which is a technical way of saying use your common sense.

3. Measure

Testing is a key part of measurement.  Wherever possible use tests and A/B testing to define what is working and what is not.  Use these tests against small samples of your target audience (10%) to make sure you are on the right track. 

Golden rule is Test. Measure. Refine.

Remember Rory didn’t just walk off the street and start smashing it down the fairway.  He had an awful lot of practice, to help him figure out how to get the best result.

Finally, even Champions can get it wrong, mentioning Man Utd In your victory speech when the Championship was held at Royal Hoylake Liverpool. An ideal example of the wrong message, to the wrong people, at the wrong time.   Not that it mattered, after all he was holding the world famous Open trophy the Claret Jug at the time.

Think about what little changes could make your email marketing really successful. Set a measure of success and give it a try.



To find out how we can help you to increase your email marketing performance by 50% through ‘clever communication’ get in touch.  Visit or contact us by email at


Boyhood is being raved about as the film of the year.  It’s got a load of five star reviews, 99% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, and will be a contender at the Oscars.  Now that it’s been labelled as a great thing, it has social proof.  People will go and see it. 

I haven’t seen it (yet), so at the moment for me, the most compelling thing about Boyhood is how it was made. 

It was made over 39 days, however these days were spread out across 13 years.  So the Actors are growing with the story, and met over 39 days across 13 years.  From what I read the script evolved through the 39 days of shooting, I guess that is the only way they could do it?

It’s usually the little things that make significant differences, I’d imagine that will be the underlying message of ‘Boyhood’.

In our business, Websand, we provide a marketing platform that allows users to find and label the key touch points between them and their customers.  Then used those points in time to communicate marketing messages to strengthen the customer relationship.

Have a think about which ‘moments’ you could influence customer behaviour, set a measure of success and give it a try.  Let me know how you get on. 



For more info about us or to arrange a demo of how we can help you to create ‘clever communication’ to grow your business.  Visit or contact us by email at


Last Friday we registered for #pitch10, as a result on Tuesday we ended up in the Tsunami of noise that followed as a result of the now infamous email to all entrants that didn’t make it.

My email inbox was flooded with noise at the rate of around 100 emails per hour for the remainder of the day.  We were catapulted into a new community of 600.  The majority of which were excited start-ups and entrepreneurs who immediately took to ‘that’ email to pitch their wares.  

It was an opportunity, we grabbed it too.  Who knows perhaps we will be helping No10 with future email marketing strategies?  

Overall, some decent things have come out from this experience, we are now in a few more ‘founder’ groups, we will increase our network as a result and we are busy sifting through the noise to identify potential leads.

However, the email excitement became a rolling SPAM attack and the subject line soon became an email that would be avoided.  I have one email from someone begging for everyone else to STOP.  Very few people changed behavoiur as a result as everyone was using the email rather than reading anything.

It was another lesson in the importance of relevance when applying email communication.  

When using email marketing, consider the relevance of the message to the audience.  You will have created the message of the email with someone in mind.  So make sure you manage your customer data before you hit the send button.  You will find your results will improve…quickly.

If you don’t have the tools, we can provide them so get in touch at

Saul, founder of Websand (

The winning formula: data analytics and football (Wired UK)

Read this article. A potent mix of data and football. I am in heaven!

Hyper Island MVP Deck // Speaker Deck

Alright here are some resolutions to try 

Focus on people not page views - no customers = no revenue

Engagement - but driven around relevance

Support your team - at work or at play

Don’t give up - keep looking, twisting and experimenting and you will find a way

FYI - borrowed/inspired from Ryan Foster’s Hyper Island MVP deck (sort of)



Brain activity helps predict which Beatles track you're listening to (Wired UK)

Noticed loads of clever stuff around today.  This is clever, but could it distinguish between a Maya Jane Cole vs a Julio Bashmore?  That is music worth checking out if you don’t already know that.

Saul / @websand


I launched this idea as part of a talk at a Lean North East on Monday night.  This also included historic footage of Lisa Simpson creating the Lean Start Up - but that is for another post.

The idea for the 4c’s is to suggest a framework to apply for the creation of marketing processes with any business. 

The rationale around that in my experience few smaller businesses create a marketing process. The 4cs also helps move a mindset away from Lean methodologies simply being applied to software, after all it emerged from a smash up between Japanese processes commonly applied in manufacturing.

So the four C’s….


Targeting the audience of your marketing message, and the behaviour change you want to influence (aka your marketing objective).

This sets your hypothesis


I recall Doug Richard’s referring to ‘marketing as code’ in one of his marketing themed school for start ups.

So which code relates to your target audience.  This can be existing data, webpages or social media. Anything that needs help from a techie fits here.


Here is your core brief. What elements with your control are you going to change.

Here at Websand HQ we believe that time is a key factor in finding the sweet spot on marketing messages. The emotion involved in buying decisions make timing really important. 

This can also be the basis for your A/B test so remember to test one change at a time wherever possible.


A lot of Lean methodology is considered to be common sense.

If it ain’t broken don’t try and fix it.

This is your measurement and consideration step.

If the results work, then look to apply the process consistently if that is relevant.

If not then make sure you document your learning for future reference,  then (if relevant) pivot within the earlier process and repeat.

We are big believers in this stuff and at Websand we are helping ecommerce businesses to create, measure and learn the results from marketing processes for their businesses.

Hope this makes sense to you and is useful.  Any questions or feedback please get in touch.

Saul (@websand)

Netflix looks at pirate sites to decide which shows to buy - Telegraph

Clever Clever Netflix! Squeezing value from the pirates #aarrr

Better call Saul! AMC announce Breaking Bad spin-off prequel centred around criminal lawyer Goodman | Mail Online

I’d better call Saul to protect my image rights! 

A launch story from Tray - How a single person can make a huge difference to your startup in 24 hours


There are some days in a startup you will never forget, the startup roller coaster has been widely publicised.

Sunday September 9th 2012 won’t be forgotten by us @tray. One of our super early users (we love you @Joelambert) had kindly replied to a smashing magazine tweet letting them…

Source: trayapp