Tapas Increases Retention by 100% With Braze and Amplitude
100% Increase in new user retention


Tapas needed a tech stack that would give them insight into their wealth of data and allow them to act on that data to encourage new users to make a habit of engaging.


By leveraging Braze Alloys technology partner Amplitude with Canvas, the Braze customer journey builder, Tapas evolved their onboarding process based on customer insights.


The new onboarding campaign drove a 100% increase in new user retention.

Founded in 2012, headquartered in Los Angeles with key global operations in Seoul, Tapas Entertainment is one of the fastest growing digital publishing platforms of webcomics and novels in North America. Over the past ten years of operation, Tapas has amassed over 9 million monthly active users and boasts 9.5 billion total page views, hosting content from over 68,000 creators. Notably, 63% of the site’s top 30 most popular comics are produced by female creators, which is unusual for the industry. Tapas Media partnered with Kakao Entertainment in 2021 to expand its impact on the world of digital storytelling.

Before signing on with Braze, the marketing team at Tapas struggled with several aspects of measuring onboarding data. It was difficult to track information such as click-through rates (CTR) for outgoing messages; in addition, they lacked clear data surrounding retention. Their customer data lived in various, siloed tools, which affected their ability to send out relevant messages such as recommendations. With users checking out Tapas content across the globe, the team also needed to be able to localize messaging to provide a relevant experience.

So they turned to Braze. Tapas had two primary goals in mind when making the decision to adopt Braze:

  1. Boosting user retention

  2. Leveraging data to make informed, strategic decisions surrounding customer communication

Leveraging Insights to Up Retention

Operating on a freemium model, most content on the Tapas Entertainment site is free to start, with users having the option to wait 24 hours for the next chapter. They can also immediately unlock the next piece of content by buying “Ink,” Tapas’ form of currency. Because “Ink” is Tapas’ most important source of revenue, it’s critical to capture a new reader’s attention and take action to convert them from a free user to a paid one.

To better convert users during the onboarding experience, Tapas leveraged Braze Canvas, our customer journey orchestration tool, to create a personalized experience based on user behavior from the moment they sign up. With this first-party data, they are able to send push notifications based on action-based triggers as well as recommend relevant content to each recipient.

Tapas also optimized messaging at every step. During onboarding, they track the drop-off rates at each stage of the funnel. The Marketing team develops and tests messaging hypotheses by looking at conversion data and separating the control group from the experimental group. When they find an event with a low conversion rate, they iterate the hypothesis verification process with new A/B testing on a continual basis. Initial results have been outstanding—Tapas discovered that the users who make their way through an entire onboarding campaign are twice as likely to be retained.

Channels Utilized

Alloys Partnerships

Tapas has also designed a campaign in which they send ‘Ink’ to users based on triggering events—usually related to the volume of content a user has read. Before using Braze, Tapas exported this user data to CSV files, uploaded it to their internal database, and then manually sent out messages at a specific time. Naturally, that consumed a lot of resources and left them unable to incorporate real-time data or trigger messaging automatically. With the Braze platform’s messaging automation capabilities, Tapas saves time with an extremely efficient process.

They also implemented Braze Alloys technology partner Amplitude to provide a better window into their audience’s behavior. Now Tapas identifies the percentage of users who have read some free content and purchased “Ink” to read more content within seven days. Then, using Amplitude, they calculate the average percentage of users across the titles to decide what titles to promote. This process provides valuable data surrounding what content is seeing the most success in real time, allowing them to further promote it to users who haven’t accessed it yet and increasing the likelihood of additional purchases.

After sending each sales promotion from Braze, every team gathers to have a tight retrospective meeting. This is a chance for Tapas to look at the data from Amplitude and Braze and check what it did well, what can be improved later, and their churn rate. If a specific sales promotion didn’t contribute to raising Daily Active Users (DAU), Tapas conducts a comprehensive assessment of users’ reactions, promotion timing, and opening date and time to support better results in the future.

"Braze is playing a role as a data control tower of Tapas for its comprehensive CRM marketing. For the next step of growth, it needs to build the CRM system based on reliable data. Tapas now can effectively automate the new user’s onboarding and other various campaigns and have better insights based on the data to improve user retention."

Seohyun (Sienna) Kim
Head of Growth Team at Tapas Media

Tapas Results: Robust Onboarding Retains Readers

Since overhauling their onboarding process using Braze Canvas and Amplitude, Tapas has made more data-driven decisions when connecting with new users, causing their retention rate to double. They’ve also been able to drive a 28% increase in “Ink” purchases, a 10% increase in their episode read funnel, and a 30% increase in email open rates.

100% Increase in new user retention
28% Increase in “Ink” Purchases
10% Increase in episode read funnel

Key Takeaways

  1. First impressions are everything. Speak to your customers in a way that’s tailored for them and they’re more likely to stick around.

  2. Efficiency is key to data utilization. Don’t waste time with manual solutions when there are automated processes that you can lean on.