The Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) is an international, non-profit scientific society serving professionals in food science, technology, and related fields across academia, government, and industry. IFT has long been focused on building a vibrant community and offering valuable resources to its more than 11,000 members. 

IFT leverages Hum's first-party data capabilities to collect and unify incoming behavioral data into connected profiles, providing a complete view of how members are engaging with content and resources and unlocking deep audience and content insights that help IFT deliver experiences that their members love.

However, Lori Conley, Senior Director of Digital Experiences, knew that to maintain and grow IFT's membership, the team also needed to focus on building relationships with a broader audience of non-member readers.

In Hum, she could see that over 90% of IFT’s total audience was anonymous - meaning there was a large pool of visitors who had recently accessed the IFT website or engaged with content, but that IFT couldn’t identify or contact. 

"We're constantly receiving valuable clues about what readers are interested in, but it becomes much easier to use that information to actually improve their experience when we have a clear idea of who an individual reader is," said Lori.

"The ability to recognize a reader is fundamental to building a relationship and to personalizing the marketing and content we send to them."

In order to build relationships and fuel future membership growth initiatives, IFT needed a way to transform its most engaged anonymous readers into connected profiles.

How They Did It: Gated Materials in Exchange for Identifying Data

To encourage readers to voluntarily identify themselves, IFT launched a series of four Live Engagement campaigns. Each campaign ran for a few weeks, offering up a valuable whitepaper or packaged collections of members-only articles in exchange for a reader’s name, email address, organization, and job title. 

These campaigns were precisely targeted using Hum to show only to anonymous reader profiles as they were actively visiting the IFT website.

Hum uses IP addresses, device IDs, and other identifiers to recognize individual anonymous profiles. As interested anonymous readers provided an email address in exchange for the materials, Hum automatically merged or updated each reader’s profile, connecting past and present data into one record.  

Results: A 10% Increase in Connected Profiles

Across the four campaigns, IFT accumulated nearly 1,170 newly identified reader profiles - increasing the size of its total connected audience by 10%.

"We're thrilled that these value exchange campaigns turned more than 1,000 passing visitors into connected readers," said Bill McDowell, IFT's Editor-in-Chief and Vice President of Content Strategy. "The IFT team is going to continue exploring ways to connect with our larger audience, and we're looking forward to learning how we can better serve future members on their professional journeys."

With deeper insights into non-member reader interests, behaviors, and engagement patterns, IFT can now personalize outreach, recommend tailored content journeys, and nurture those connections towards event attendance or membership in a more seamless, impactful way.


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