Postmates’ Tips for Analytics-Driven Growth in the On-Demand & Ecommerce Vertical

By John Koetsier October 5, 2017

Singular sat down with Patrick Witham, Director of User Acquisition at Postmates, to get a few of his tips on analytics-driven marketing in the on-demand and ecommerce vertical. Thus far in 2017, Witham and his team have aggressively scaled Postmates’ marketing efforts while achieving dramatic cost savings on new user acquisition.      

Spending & Cost Management

Postmates is a double-sided marketplace and manages user acquisition with separate portals for fleet drivers and for consumers. These portals help Postmates grow both sides of the market and maintain a state of equilibrium between supply and demand.

User Targeting

Test aggressively on Facebook in terms of your demographic. Once you have identified it, you can start optimizing your spend to make it more efficient. Postmates has a well-defined view of what our customers look like. Many live in high-density urban areas, which makes targeting easier but also requires more granularity. In verticals like gaming, you can think of a country as a geo. You don’t have that luxury with on-demand, which forces you to get a lot more specific. 

We’ve been very successful in large urban areas. Of course, moving forward we are considering smaller cities (there are only so many cities like New York or Los Angeles).

Data Enrichment 

Having clean data is imperative — which is achieved through consistent naming conventions for campaigns and ad-groups that make sense for your business.


Postmates relentlessly tests creative and targeting tactics. At any given time, we’re running at least a few dozen experiments to test out hypotheses the team has come up with. A piece of advice is to make sure you set up learning experiments properly. When you enter a new market that you don’t necessarily know, you should test as many hypotheses as possible. However, a lot of companies do not take the time to set a proper control group or make sure they achieve statistical significance on these experiments.

Always test new channels and be at the forefront, otherwise you’ll get left behind. Of course, there is a tradeoff between going deep into a few channels and testing everything with a shotgun approach. We set 20% of our time (including BD, relationship management, media buying, experimentation) to new partners that we think could be promising.

Singular has been instrumental in helping us better understand our strategy and help us be more efficient. Getting out of Excel with our reporting and into an automated platform was magic.

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