“Our relationship with Permission goes back a long way because it works. They offer both a dependable service for online campaign management and a challenging perspective to help guide our strategy online.”

– Reece Zondag CEO Les Mills New Zealand

Les Mills New Zealand started working with Permission back in November 2004. They initially contacted the company looking for some advice on further developing a project they had running to automatically communicate with members via email. A previous solution had come across some unexpected problems and some independent advice was now required to find a new vendor and assist in getting the project back on track.

Permission was engaged and assisted with the selection of a new supplier. Work then followed to help support the project implementation and the post-go-live phase. This project was successfully completed and the solution is still working well and in operation today.

Subsequent to the success of this engagement, Permission was asked to provide advice and support on the supply of services for the ongoing ad hoc member email communication process. To start with, a ‘member get member’ campaign was chosen to trial Permission’s capabilities. Permission provided consulting on the strategy of the campaign, the design of the email and the necessary deployment services to successfully deliver the campaign.

All went well and later on in 2005 a regular member email communication strategy was settled upon and the highly successful Les Mills member newsletter was released. Initially called BodyLines, this campaign has passed through various iterations as the Les Mills brand developed. Throughout all this, it has continued to be one of the most actively read email newsletter campaigns that Permission manages.

Permission’s involvement with the company then moved from email to the highly popular website: www. lesmills.co.nz. This was re-launched mid-way through 2007 and Permission was tasked with installing and configuring Google Analytics to improve the site’s reporting capabilities. Les Mills head office staff were then trained by Permission on the use of the tool and are still supported in its use.

After running Google Analytics on the site for a few months it was noted that the site’s search engine rankings, while good, could do with some improvement. Permission was called upon to provide advice in this area too. They worked with the site’s web developer and the marketing manager at the time, making the necessary content structure changes, which produced a significant increase in rankings and subsequent search engine traffic.

Throughout this website work, email distribution carried on for both member and prospect communications. The content design and creation was supplied by a selection of suppliers – with Permission being able to accept creative input in a range of formats, converting all of these into an ISP – and email-friendly format.

As the growth in digital communications increased so did the marketing team at Les Mills to support its production and management. Permission was tasked with provided coaching support to these new staff, so much so that they took a more active role in managing their own Google AdWords campaign and ongoing Google Analytics reporting.

To provide some strategic balance to all this highly tactical work, Permission and the Les Mills marketing team meet on a quarterly and annual basis to a) review overall progress and b) map out the strategic focus points for the period ahead.