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Lead Nurturing


& Social Ads

The Brief

The Sandbox Centre (SBX), is an Not-For Profit (NFP) entrepreneurial hub located in Barrie, Ontario. The SBX strives to help people create a better life through business. They provide agnostic business improvement services, professional development, and in-person events while serving various entrepreneurs and businesses at every stage. When SBX contacted MK Way, they were searching for a Paid Digital Media strategy with the ability to implement, execute and support them with holistic educational advice.

The Challenge

Our client did not have an overarching digital marketing strategy in place to guide their various marketing efforts in terms of advertising, content marketing, automation or reporting practices.

(i) Paid Advertising to generate memberships

It is a challenge to convert prospects to paying members of a program unless they fully understand the value that a Sandbox membership will bring to their lives.

Demonstrating this value is key to having website visitors become paying members. The strategy needed to go beyond bringing cold traffic to the website through paid campaigns and having them make the decision to convert after a few minutes of browsing the website on their own. Website conversions are dismally low 1-3%. That’s not because people don’t care about the offer necessarily, it’s just that most aren’t ready to convert quite yet.

Even for the best-designed websites out there, it is too much of an ask!

Project Sandbox - a map for paid ads 2

(ii) Inbound Marketing Expertise with Hubspot Automation

Our client was using Hubspot which is a CRM platform that contains marketing, sales, service, operations, and website-building software.

We noticed that the tool was being underused by our client for lack of understanding of features and lack of training.

(iii) Reporting

In addition to the above, we saw an opportunity to improve our clients’ reporting practices. They did not have a reporting dashboard to capture their most important KPIs and present their results to management and their stakeholders.

(IV) Buyer persona Definition and Content Marketing Insights

Our client did not have their buyer personas clearly defined nor did they have clearly defined S.M.A.R.T (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-based) goals for their content marketing strategy.

The Strategy

Our Solution

We kicked off the project by providing our client with a personalized Overarching Digital Marketing Strategy – a comprehensive 16 page document tailored to their specific challenges and business needs. The strategy covered the next 12-months and how to:

1. Use lead generation
2. Capture leads with paid advertising,
3. Optimize leads into inbound buyer personas
4. Develop a lead generation content marketing strategy; and
5. Improve their analytics and reporting.

(I). Paid Ads strategy for lead generation

Instead of serving paid ads promoting the core offer to a cold audience, we recommended building a sales funnel that starts with effective lead generation.
First, let’s define what a lead is – A lead is simply someone who has engaged with a business and shown interest. Because this person has engaged your business’ website and given you permission to contact them (typically through email, but sometimes over the phone), they’re now inside your sales funnel.

Building this sales funnel required the following three stages:

Stage 1 “Lead generation”

The goals of Stage 1 was:

1. To generate high quality leads that might later convert to paying members of Sandbox Centre.
2. Demonstrate the Sandbox Centre value-add – Prospects get to sample how Sandbox can create a better life for them through business.

Sandbox needed to prove itself to its audience before they were to make the commitment of becoming paying members.

Hooking leads: This was to be achieved through an IRRESISTIBLE FREE OFFER to get a cold audience through the door to become leads.

Project Sandbox - a map for paid ads

Every software company offers a free trial and most agencies offer an initial free consultation. The question we had to ask ourselves was:
“What can the Sandbox Centre offer that is unique, compelling, and offers real value to their targeted buyer Persona?”

We suggested:

  • To provide free access to quality content such as events/webinars (Most recommended!)
  • To offer a Free sign-up to a program (Either full program or up to a certain point).
  • To offer other Free quality ebooks, guides and Whitepapers to download

Stage 2 “Lead nurturing”

The goal of Stage 2 was to nurture the generated leads.

The question now became: “Now that we’re aware that prospects (generated leads) know the Sandbox Centre, how do we convince them to go further, and get them to change their status from qualified-lead to paying member?”

Our recommendation to the Sandbox Centre was to continually engage and nurture their leads through an automated high-value email drip campaign using Hubspot Marketing Pro, and via engaging social media efforts.

Stage 3 “Leads converting”

The goal of Stage 3 was to get the leads to convert to paying members.
This will be achieved through:

  • Remarketing paid Ads to promote the core offer of “memberships” – At this stage, the audience is no longer cold, It is warm and is familiar with SBX.
  • Pitching the membership at the end of a great free offer such as a webinar
  • Pitching the membership in a sales close email as part of an email drip campaign

(ii) Inbound Marketing Expertise with Hubspot Automation

We diagnosed the challenges our client was experiencing with Hubspot and determined it was from a lack of expertise which led to underutilization of features.

We proceeded as follows:

  1. We started by performing a complete detailed audit of their HubSpot account.
  2. We presented our findings to the team and provided them with our Insights and an exhaustive Hubspot Automation Strategy
  3. We provided our client with a 14-pager comprehensive document that contains an actionable step-by-step lead management strategy that covered the following:
  • Lead Generation with Inbound Marketing
  • Defining Lead Lifecycle Stages
  • Mapping Out Lead Progression
  • Lead Segmentation
  • Lead Nurturing
  • Lead Scoring
  • Lead Routing
  • Creating a custom SLA (Service Level Agreements) for the case of Sandbox specifically
  • Lead Management Success measurement

(iii) Reporting

We identified the most important micro & macro conversions for our client and defined the most relevant KPIs for measurement. We proceeded to create a bespoke report for Sandbox Centre that can be accessible 24×7, in real-time. We used the Google Looker Studio (previously Google Data Studio) tool that captures data from their advertising platforms, GA4 (Google Analytics) and Google Search Console (GSC) accounts to reflect these KPIs.

Sandbox Case Study - 8 rectangular boxes displaying total users, new users, views, active users, sessions, sessions per user, traffic trend over time and engagement rate
Sandbox Case Study showing 2 rectangular images of GA4 Monetization from Google Analytics monetization overview

(IV) Buyer persona Definition and Content Marketing Insights

We provided our client with guidance on how to clearly define their buyer personas complete with worksheets, templates and exercises to complete. We provided our client with key insights about how to set S.M.A.R.T goals for their content marketing strategy and how to make their content more “actionable” to transform it from simply “content” to “lead-generating content”.

The Results

(or we call it: The strategy in action)

The Campaign:

(i) Buyer persona definition: We worked closely with the client to clearly define their target audience for this campaign.

(ii) Setting up the ads: In order to reduce friction as much as possible, we’ve set up targeted lead generation ads that required minimal effort from leads to sign up or register. These ads work by leveraging forms that collect leads’ information without having to leave the meta ecosystem, thus eliminating the need for a landing page. The forms pre-populate with users’ information such as email addresses making it even easier for them to convert.

After the lead gen forms were submitted, we directed the leads to a strategic landing page of the website (the membership page so they start getting familiarized with the core offer).

(iii) Automating a Lead Nurture HubSpot Workflow:

  • We synced the Facebook/Meta leads to go directly into Hubspot.
  • We provided Digital Direction and coached our client on implementing Hubspot Marketing workflows that would deliver a lead-nurture email drip campaign.
  • We coached our client on how to enroll the leads into their relevant MQLs (marketing qualified leads) and SQLs (sales qualified leads) and what triggers should move them through the different lead nurture stages in Hubspot.
  • We coached our client on how to create a follow-up task with their sales rep once a lead reached the appropriate qualification stage that converted it from an MQL into an SQL.


Barrie, Ontario

Google Ads
Landing Page
Meta Ads

Sandbox Centre

Tech we used

Analytics & Measurement:

  • Google Tag Manager

Website Build & Design:

  • Typeform
  • Adobe XD
  • WordPress
  • Elementor Pro

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