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Babbel: Using the Right Words to Win Customers Over?

Welcome back to PostFunnel’s 41st episode of the 7 CRM Commandment Series. 

Today, we get to Babbel – the “language for life” comprehensive learning platform founded in 2007 in Germany. 

For the purpose of this analysis, we rated the brand’s web platform (and not the app.) 

So, how will they score and rank against the rest of the brands? 

1. Be Transparent 7/10

A recent press release on Lesson Nine, Babbel’s parent company, announced that it plans to list Babbel on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The press release also mentions that Lesson Nine expects it to be valued at more than €1 Billion. 

Though Lesson Nine admitted to searching for ways to finance its growth, the company said, “There is neither a decision for a particular (financing) option nor a timeline.” 

This alone is worth a few points. But to get a better score here, a brand must be talking more about the people behind it. 

2. Incentives and Perks 3/10

Babbel has both an app subscription and live subscription that offers the following:

Asides from the discounted offers for getting started (shown in the image below), we couldn’t find any main incentives or perks for customers to join this language learning platform and continue using it in the long run. 

Finally, although presented with the ability to enter a coupon code in order to save, we have no idea how to gain access to the voucher as a new customer! 

3. Be Relevant 3/10

For this commandment, we usually check whether brands are acknowledging issues that customers are definitely expecting from them: COVID updates, D&I, mental health, social equality, monthly events like Black History or Women’s History month, etc. 

Unfortunately, both on the news and on their website – we couldn’t find any form of relevancy when it comes to corporate social responsibility or simply mentioning any of the aforementioned issues. 

We gave Babbel a few points here because we noticed them post a Tweet that aims to fight gender inequality and combat sexism (as well as on other social media accounts.) 

4. Be Helpful 8/10

Esports Insider reported  that Babbel had partnered with Berlin International Gaming (BIG) to create social media campaigns and promote content meant to be educational on the BIG broadcasting channels. 

“It’s essential to work with teams very closely and resolve conflicts diplomatically. If you can get a grip on language barriers, communication becomes easier and multinational teams can start developing to their full potential. If you can’t break down those language barriers in the long term, it’s unlikely your team will succeed,” said Daniel Finkler, CEO of BIG.  

The idea is to give players access to Babbel in order to polish their language skills, reduce communication misunderstandings and noise, improve games between international teams, and overall team performance. 

“Babbel is a renowned brand with a very helpful product, helping millions worldwide. It’s the right tool for anyone motivated to work on their language skills every day, which is a good thing we’re happy to support,” Finkler added. 

We deducted a couple of points here simply because being helpful also has to do with giving back to the community and society, especially this past year, in more prominent ways like making a donation or supporting a cause or charity, etc. 

5. Realtime Personalization 9/10

The e-learning language platform asks tons of questions (more details on that in the next commandment) to set the customer up with a personalized goal of learning the language when and how they want: 

According to the answers you fill in, you get personalized messages on when to come in for the next course, too: 

Finally, we noticed that the brand used retargeting methods in realtime by showing us Babbel ads on Facebook:

And on IG:

The next step should now be to use all that intel about the user to provide them with a personalized, seamless, cross-channel journey that would encourage them to come back for more. 

6. Master UX 4/10

We tried to sign up to the Babbel platform to find out how easy the experience would be as a user. We were asked questions like why we want to learn the language of choice, how much time we want to commit to learning it, our learning style, age, etc. 

The entire process was smooth, quick, and easy. 

Once we successfully created our account, however, we were surprised to see that there’s no trial period and that we’d immediately have to subscribe and make a payment to try the platform. 

This was especially disappointing knowing that other language learning apps (not mentioning names) allow for free introductory courses and trial periods. 

Oh, and we kept receiving this popup – which was a bit invasive: 

7. Leverage Social Media 10/10

On Twitter, Babbel has almost 32K Followers, on Facebook, they have 1.5M Likes, and on Instagram, Babbel boasts 148k followers. 

On the face of it, it seems like they engage with customers frequently on all three platforms – and try to educate their community who’s interested in languages (obviously) in fun and interesting ways. 

They use the platforms to share photos, educate and provide tips, inspiration, and even humorous videos on cultural differences, for instance: 

On Instagram, this past month, Babbel posted 7 of their favorite language heroines in light of International Women’s Day:


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Babbel (@babbel)

Well done!


Overall, Babbel is getting a 44/70 here (63%), placing them in 34rd place in a tie with Next. 

We actually do not recall another brand that was so advanced on personalization, and social media – but so far behind on other, more traditional aspects of CRM. 

Here are the full rankings of all the brands we analyzed to date: 

  1. Pets at Home 91% 
  2. Lowe’s 90% 
  3. Petco 90% 
  4. Target 87% 
  5. Uniqlo 86% 
  6. Paul Smith 84% 
  7. Vrbo 83% 
  8. N Brown Group 81% 
  9. West Elm 81% 
  10. The North Face 81% 
  11. Holland and Barret 80% 
  12. lululemon 80% 
  13. JD Sports 79% 
  14. Brooks Running 79% 
  15. Best Buy 78% 
  16. Angie’s List 77% 
  17. Nando’s 75% 
  18. Etsy 76% 
  19. The Body Shop 74% 
  20. Gymshark 73% 
  21. William Hill 73% 
  22. Essence 72% 
  23. Inditex 71% 
  24. Iceland Foods 71% 
  25. Total Wine & More 70% 
  26. Tommy Hilfiger 70% 
  27. Walgreens 70% 
  28. Kohl’s 70% 
  29. The White Company 69% 
  30. United Colors of Benetton 69% 
  31. Buy Buy Baby 68% 
  32. Fiverr 67% 
  33. Next 63% 
  34. Babbel 63% 
  35. Patagonia 61% 
  36. Express 60% 
  37. Burberry 60% 
  38. Zara 59% 
  39. Treatwell 58% 
  40. COS 57% 
  41. Dream11 53% 

We publish a new analysis every week, so watch this space for more brand analyses coming your way! 

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