A brand is more than just a logo and a business name. Find out why you need to consciously brand your clinic—and how to do it.
There’s no shortage of PPC marketing experts today who promise to bring in big results for your business. But in the new and constantly shifting world of online advertising, those claims can suddenly evaporate due to abrupt changes in the industry — expertise with the current Google Ads (AdWords) ranking algorithm becomes less valuable when Google changes its formula, after all.
For small-to-medium-sized businesses looking to sign up with a PPC marketing agency, there’s a great deal of comfort in knowing that your partner is a seasoned expert in their field with years of experience under their belt. When you’re going all-in on digital marketing, you don’t want a new recruit at your side; you want a battle-hardened veteran.
SalesX, a digital marketing agency based in the Bay-area tech hub of San Mateo, California, is one such expert in the field of online advertising. Founded in early 2010, just as the modern digital advertising world was taking shape, SalesX has risen to become an award-winning leader in their field by using the best available technology to plan and implement some truly forward-thinking marketing strategies.
And SalesX doesn’t just talk the talk — they also deliver superior results for their clients. In one case, they were able to leverage CallRail’s advanced call tracking tech to cut a client’s cost per lead by a staggering 90 percent.
Finding the best tech stack and tools for PPC marketing
“Our secret sauce is not exactly a big secret, because anyone who reads our website can find it out,” Joe Khoei says with a chuckle. Khoei is the founder and CEO of SalesX, and the chief evangelist for the company’s digital-first approach to boosting their clients’ marketing efforts.
Khoei continues: “We made this strategic decision when we brought [Ads creator] Frederick Vallaeys on board as our chief technology officer, and that’s why he’s still with us on our board of directors. That really helped us in rolling out all kinds of really cutting-edge scripts, which gave us an edge that we continue to enjoy today.”
Another area where SalesX has consistently been out in front of their competitors is their adoption of Bing Ads as part of the menu of options they present to clients. While it may not yet be as popular as its competitor Ads, Khoei and his team have seen real value in Bing Ads for businesses who are willing to go against the mainstream and try something different.
“For one thing, they usually cost a lot less than a comparable ad buy with Google,” Khoei says. “We’ve found that they make a great complement to most digital campaigns, and can deliver solid results for less money. We’re interested to see how things develop with Bing Ads, and we’re going to continue to recommend them to our clients.”
But most of SalesX’s clients don’t rely on PPC marketing alone — calls are also a crucial element of their strategy.
“We started using CallRail about 5 years ago, way before call tracking became quite as buzzy as it is today,” says SalesX SEM Manager Emmanuel McCoy. “For us, the technology was a critical part of our mission, because we want to be able to accurately track all sources of contact for our clients. And we found that for most of our clients, they were tracking form fills and web sessions and everything else, but not calls.”
The ability to track calls with pinpoint accuracy while also dynamically swapping in tracking numbers on their clients’ websites quickly proved invaluable for SalesX. And incorporating their CallRail analytics into their internal marketing database hasn’t just helped them improve their clients’ marketing efforts — they’ve also been able to streamline their operation and automate processes that would otherwise be tedious and time-consuming.
“The CallRail API is very robust, so we’ve been able to automate most of this process and we don’t need an army of people doing manual data-entry,” Khoei says. “Of course, there’s still a layer of human input at the very top of the decision-making process — we don’t want a fully automated system, because we’ve seen too many instances where fully automated ad buys can make terrible decisions.”
“Internally we call it the ‘Iron Man System‘ here, because it’s the latest and greatest technology, but still with a human at the core making the important decisions and tough calls.”
Call tracking for PPC and SEO makes the difference
As the SalesX team continued to hone their use of CallRail over the years, they found plenty of features that have made a big impact for both them and their clients.
“One feature that we’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of is call routing, which lets us automatically route incoming calls based on things like the channel they’re calling from, or the time of day,” McCoy says. “With so many of our clients working in a franchise where they might be managing dozens or hundreds of numbers each, having this routing in place is a huge boost to efficiency, and saves them a lot of time.”
CallRail’s ease-of-use has also yielded big dividends for SalesX, particularly when it comes to the simplicity of setting up new tracking numbers, or porting old ones.
One client was using a different call tracking service when they joined up with SalesX, and they were hesitant to make the switch to CallRail; their current provider was clunky and cumbersome to use, and they were afraid they’d encounter similar problems making the transition to CallRail.
He adds: “They were obviously thrilled, because we had just saved them potentially hundreds or thousands of work hours.”
And SalesX has found that experiences like this are actually the rule, rather than the exception: New clients are often quick to make the jump to CallRail after seeing just how easy it is to use.
“We often don’t have to pitch CallRail that hard to our clients, because when they see how simple it is to install and how easy it is to use, along with all the customization options, the platform kind of pitches itself,” McCoy says. “And CallRail is always adding new updates, which creates a lot of confidence in your users that we’ve made the right choice investing in a platform that will continue to grow and improve.”
Data-driven marketing achieves exceptional outcomes
SalesX prides themselves on consistently delivering great results for their clients. But for Khoei, McCoy, and the rest of the SalesX team, they’ll always remember one case in particular that illustrates how the value of their services intersects with the power of call tracking technology.
“We have a client in the debt-relief business, and they were spending about $100,000 a month on print ads, which was a pretty big spend for a business of their size,” Khoei explains. “They wanted to test out digital, so when they signed up with us, they thought that their ideal customers were big ones who had a high debt load, because then you’d get the best fees and commissions for assisting them, compared to a smaller customer.”
So SalesX conducted a complete, top-to-bottom audit of the company’s marketing efforts and sales funnel, and then deployed their patented combo of PPC sharpshooting with advanced call tracking. What they found surprised both them and the client: The high-debt-load demographic they were originally targeting was far more expensive to market to (and had a conversion rate far lower than) the customers who carried moderate to low levels of debt.
Armed with this full-spectrum view of their client’s marketing data, SalesX was able to deliver truly eye-popping results: Savings of more than 90 percent on the cost of bringing in a new lead. “When they started with us, their Cost Per Click was about $7, and their Cost Per Lead was around $700,” Khoei says. “After about a year of working with us, their Cost Per Click was about $25, but their Cost Per Lead was now at $60, with a conversion rate of about 35 percent.”
“That’s what a sharpshooter’s job is: You need to hit your target, and hit it effectively. And in order to do that, you need to know how your leads are finding you, and you need to know which ones are most likely to convert. For us, call tracking is an essential part of that equation.”
5 PPC Marketing tips from the pros:
- Clearly define your goals and intended outcomes. Setting definable and measurable goals is foundational to PPC optimization. Take the time to determine your number-one priority: More traffic? More leads? More conversions?
- When starting out, focus on the best-performing keywords. Initially, once you’ve determined which of your bids and keywords are performing best, focus your efforts on them. By making even minor changes to your bidding and placement strategy, you’ll quickly get a sense of what works and what doesn’t for your PPC optimization strategy.
- As you grow, create a ‘negative keyword’ list. Then, establish a list of negative (read: irrelevant) PPC keywords. This will save your business loads of money as you ensure that your ads aren’t served alongside irrelevant search queries.
- Take advantage of ad extensions. Ad extension features, like call extensions, will allow you to get even more bang for your buck out of your PPC budget.
- A/B test your PPC ads. The golden rule of digital marketing: Test, test, and test some more. Experiment with different bids and ad copy to see which versions perform best, and then double down.
The post With Bing, Google Ads, and call tracking, ‘PPC sharpshooters’ SalesX deliver superior results appeared first on CallRail.
Increased data collection, visualization, and analysis for your Partner Channel are about to get a whole lot easier….
The Allbound + Sisense partnership coming in the fall of 2019 will change the way Partner Channels visualize data; we’re bringing you analytics that are unimaginable in other PRM platforms. With Sisense capabilities integrated into Allbound’s already premier PRM tool, you will have capabilities to create customized dashboards with metrics that align to your overall business goals.
Your partner program greatly affects your annual revenue, so when are you going to start accurately measuring your partner success? Your partner program can seem like a wasteland when 80% of your revenue is coming from a mere 20% of your partners. Getting a gold rush within your partner program starts with analytics. That’s why Allbound has partnered with Sisense to bring you unmatched insight and analytics that go beyond what your CRM (or any other PRM) can give you. You can’t measure growth, success, or move the needle if you can’t delve deeper into the metrics that drive your business.
With the Allbound + Sisense partnership, you’ll be able to combine your CRM data with partner engagement insights to allow for a more refined correlation. Additionally, Allbound will be utilizing narratives to help your team analyzed and tell a story with your data. The narratives will have machine-learning insights that will identify data anomalies and will trigger alerts to team members. For example, it may read: “you had a spike in a specific product line in the month of January.”
We believe that you should have the capability to view all aspects of your data. Analytics will be included throughout all parts of Allbound, so you won’t be limited to your dashboards. When you’re looking at a piece of content you’ll be able to see deeper into its engagement, how it’s performing, and who’s using it, among other key insights. Within Allbound you won’t have to search for data; it will be right where you need it, when you need it.
In addition to just viewing the pipeline, which is typically what you’ll see in your CRM, Allbound will have information about all aspects of your partner program. We want you to be able to see what your highest performing piece of content is and how much it’s being used. Are partners sharing them? Are they adding content to prospect pages? What content are they adding into prospect pages? You can see what your most successful, highest producing partners are doing and try to get other users to take those actions. We believe that your PRM software should answer your questions and provide actionable insights.
If your goal is to identify areas of opportunity within your partner channel, benchmarking is a vital step. Within Allbound you’ll have the capability to create benchmarks that align with your company goals and identify trends. View your deals, as well as the size of your channel, and see how you compare to other companies in the same vertical and size. Combining your data into one tool is critical, but having the ability to set benchmarks will only help identify areas of opportunity and increase your partner channel metrics.
The dashboard is your home base where you can deep dive into your channel engagement and revenue metrics. Each Allbound user will have the ability to create a customized dashboard with opportunities to drill down into specific metrics. For example, if you’d like to identify which location your partners are closing the most deals you can separate by region which will take you to a scatter map. From here you can visualize where deals are closed most often and click into a location for further analysis. But because we believe you should be able to drill deeper than that you’ll be able to see closed won to closed lost ratio, win ratio, total deals registered, and more.
The Allbound + Sisense partnership is coming soon, and we couldn’t keep the secret any longer! Don’t just see your data, drill into your data and make informed decisions.
The post Pragmatic PRM Data Analysis: An Allbound + Sisense Partnership appeared first on Partner Relationship Management Software (PRM).
For many years — long before I was working at a tech company, or before I knew about marketing attribution or what ‘MarTech’ meant — my career was in the non-profit field.
I worked in a lot of different capacities from the time I was about 18 until I was 32, in roles that took me from the suburbs to the inner city. I lived in Spain and the United Kingdom. Kenya, Chile, and Mexico were cool places I got to visit, all in the service of the greater good.
Many times throughout my tenure I felt a deep sense of satisfaction about my contributions. Other times, I was emotionally removed from the lives I was supposed to be impacting. These highs and lows are all part of the job, and they vary based on the kind of work you’re doing.
When it comes to non-profit work, there are ultimately two great ‘death and taxes’-esque truisms: Non-profit isn’t about the money. Also, non-profit is all about the money. The name of it be damned, if you’re in this field of work (I still can’t bring myself to call it an ‘industry’), then you’re probably thinking about cash every single day.
The daily grind, and the question of time well spent
You got into this work because you wanted to help people, and that’s really cool of you. But if you’re anything like I was, you worked through your days with the Grim Reaper of cash flow trailing just behind you at all times.
Here’s how it usually goes down:
- Gosh, I really need to raise some money or we’ll be in trouble
- I’ll set aside a whole day two weeks from now to focus on it! I’ll write a big long email and make it look nice!
- [Day blocked for fundraising time arrives] Okay! I’m ready to do this. I’ve got my coffee and my email campaign editor up. And I’ve got ideas for stories to share with our donors!
- Someone on your staff pings you about a pressing issue related to the work you’re actually there to do. You dutifully put out the fire.
- Back to work! Ah, it’s time for a lunch appointment to meet with a potential intern for the next year.
- Repeat steps 3 and 4 until it’s almost the end of the day and then leave without completing more than about 20 percent of what you set out for.
- Leave the office, sad and dejected.
Now, this situation can apply to pretty much anyone who has any degree of autonomy to their daily schedule. But the worst part of the experience is this: No one got any value out of it. You raised no money, and your donors didn’t hear how their contributions are making a difference. No new person had the opportunity to hear what your organization does and how it matters, or how they can partner alongside you.
Despite the grand plan you set out at the beginning of the day, you just didn’t get anything in return, and no value was delivered to anyone. It’s a shame, because it doesn’t have to be that way.
Succeeding at big things means focusing on the small stuff
It was already too late by the time I learned a valuable lesson that changed my life, which has shaped my career ever since: It is better to deliver a very small thing that has value than to deliver nothing at all.
We often fall into the trap of thinking that what we need to do right now is the big thing. If it’s not a massive effort, or if the output of your tasks are not what you’d deem prolific, then it’s considered a failure.
During my time in the nonprofit world, I would make the mistake of trying to create a big, beautiful email campaign that I hoped would inspire certain feelings in the reader:
- The gratification of being recognized for their effort
- Sincere appreciation for all their hard work
- The joy of learning something new
- And the sudden urge to give more money
But the truth is, that’s a lot to ask from an impersonal email campaign to potential donors where the maximum personal tie-in is a digital mail-merge. Was there value? Yes. Was there an ROI? Sure, if I managed to ever get the thing done. Was it efficient? Absolutely not. (It was not a great way to pass the days, at least!)
I began to lean into the mindset of playing small ball. I started out with a pledge: Every day, I would set a timer for 15 minutes and I would write as many personal postcards to as many members of our donor base as I could. I learned I could knock out about seven in 15 minutes, once I got the rhythm down.
After I got through all of those postcards, I turned my attention to a prospect list that I’d been putting off. Everyday I’d see how many fresh invitations to connect over Skype I send. (I was living in England, and most of my donor base was North American.)
But really, a brief email that directly asked for a short conversation was all I needed. People who I never thought would respond did, and soon appointments were booking up. It wasn’t long before we were bringing in new donations again.
These were small moves, but they paid off over time. The key difference is that each handwritten postcard or personal email was a thin, vertical slice of value I could produce every day.
Making the unlikely, but gratifying, switch to a career in tech
Several years ago, I made a shift out of non-profit work and transitioned to my day job in tech. When I made that move, I’d never heard of an emerging field called Product Management. But as I grew in several roles at a couple of companies, I realized that product work was where I wanted to focus my energy in the coming years — here was a discipline that I wanted to master.
Why Product? Well, product management is about uniting technology, design, and business around a common empathy for people’s needs. In my work as a product manager, my number one goal is to deliver the most value to our customers in the most efficient way.
This means that we must ruthlessly protect our customers from ourselves — from our grand ideas, visions, and project plans. We have to simplify our work so that (when we’re doing it right), we’re delivering small, perhaps imperfect pieces of a product that is genuinely making their lives and work better.
The term we use for this in the tech industry is ‘vertical slicing.’ A vertical slice is a proof-of-concept that, from top to bottom, is complete enough that we can hand it over to a customer and see their eyes light up just little bit. Then we go back and do it again tomorrow, and the next day, and the next.
Approaching work this way when I was in nonprofit — and now in tech — has made all the difference, and it’s absolutely why I love what I do.
Interested in learning more about the company culture here at CallRail and joining our fast-growing team? We’re always hiring!
The post From non-profits to tech: How my career taught me to love ‘vertical slicing’ appeared first on CallRail.
Hello headlines my old friend: We’re back for another round of your favorite recurring series on the CallRail blog, News You Can Use.
In this ongoing series, we review the most recent headlines in technology and marketing, and explain what it all could mean for your business. As the old saying goes, staying on top of the news isn’t just good civics — it’s good for business.
Let’s get to the news.
1) Facebook users reeling after multi-day global outage (Reuters)
Facebook, and its subsidiary services like Instagram and WhatsApp, suffered intermittent downtime and outages for nearly 48 hours this week. Millions of accounts worldwide were inaccessible during this period, and unhappy users flooded social media with the #facebookdown and #instagramdown hashtags.
“[On Tuesday March 12], a server configuration issue made it difficult for people to access our apps and services. We are 100 percent back up and running and apologize for any inconvenience,” Facebook said in a statement. This week’s outage is reportedly the longest-ever downtime for the Facebook platform and its family of apps.
Digital marketers will no doubt want to press Facebook for a refund on any promotions and ad placements that ran during this downtime. Facebook would not commit to a refund, and only indicated it would continue “investigating the overall impact of this issue.”
If you’re a digital marketer who was affected by this outage, get in touch with Facebook’s support team to request a refund.
2) Spotify files lawsuit against Apple for ‘anticompetitive practices’ (New York Times)
Spotify has launched an antitrust lawsuit against Apple in court for alleged violations of European antitrust law. The music-streaming service announced on Wednesday it has filed a suit accusing Apple of using its proprietary App Store to crowd out competitors, including Spotify.
As one of Apple’s biggest competitors in the music space, Spotify has long been frustrated by the legendary walled garden of Apple’s App Store. Services listed on the App Store must abide by all of Apple’s rules and regulations — including around pricing and competition — or risk being shut off from tens of millions of Apple devices and users.
In their suit, Spotify calls for EU antitrust regulators to break up Apple and separate the App Store from its main services. This mirrors a similar call by US presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren, who recently proposed breaking up the biggest tech companies in order to check their quasi-monopolistic powers.
It remains to be seen whether the case will be escalated into a formal EU investigation of Apple. Nevertheless, it’s clear that in the UK — just like in the US — the push to regulate Big Tech is gaining momentum.
3) Verizon to offer first-ever 5G cellular service in Chicago, Minneapolis (CNN)
Starting on April 11 of this year, Verizon will become the world’s first major telecom to offer 5G cellular service to consumers. The company’s pilot 5G program will launch in Chicago and Minneapolis, and will be offered for free to Verizon customers for three months. After that, customers must pay an extra $10 a month to upgrade from 4G to 5G.
2019 is expected to be a big year for 5G wireless rollouts in the United States, and Verizon is looking to seize the opening advantage by being the first out of the gate with their 5G network. However, there are some caveats: The 5G service will only work with the company’s Moto Z3 mobile device, and will require a hardware add-on that attaches to the phone.
This announcement is something of a starting pistol for the 5G arms race, so mobile marketers should pay close attention to other networks and telecoms as they roll out their own 5G plans over the coming year.
4) China to overtake U.S. in AI, machine learning research (Allen Inst. for AI)
A new study by the Allen Institute for AI predicts that China will soon outstrip the US in the field of AI research. By 2020, Beijing is expected to surpass all other nations in terms of the influence and the quantity of their research into AI and machine learning
Citing the more than 2,000,000 papers on AI and machine learning published in China through 2018, the report asserts that Beijing is “poised to overtake the US in the most-cited 50 percent of papers this year, in the most-cited 10 percent of papers next year, and in the 1 percent of most-cited papers by 2025.”
The study points to China’s plans for massive government investment in both educational facilities and private industry as the key driver behind China’s growing AI dominance. In the absence of a similar and sustained push for national investment in technology and science, the US is expected to continue to lag behind.
As we’ve observed in this space before, AI is going to be key driver of future advances in marketing and technology. Digital marketers would do well to closely observe China’s moves in the coming years to zero in on future strategies.
5) U.S. eSports marketing to top $200 million by 2020 (Newzoo)
Competitive video game advertising in the US is expected to surpass $200 million in revenue by 2020, according to a new report by the video game analytics agency NewZoo.
The report predicts that eSports ad revenue will grow 25 percent to $178 million this year, and will top the $214 million mark in 2020. Global revenue around eSports is similarly expected to hit $1.1 billion this year, which amounts to a positively meteoric rate of 27 percent year-over-year growth.
If it seems like every brand under the sun is scrambling to advertise to the gaming audience, it’s because they most definitely are. Fans of eSports (and video games generally), tend to be young, affluent, and tech-savvy — in other words, the kind of demographic that makes digital marketers see visions of sky-high ROI dancing in their heads.
Maybe your brand or business should do the same?
Do you have thoughts about how current events have changed your marketing or business strategy, or guidance for others to share? Head to the CallRail Community to connect with other professionals and share your perspective.
The post News You Can Use: Facebook outage, 5G on the way, China to seize AI crown appeared first on CallRail.
While everyone loves March Madness, the last thing anyone needs is for their search for partners to be actual madness.
Just like winning the $1 Billion dollars that’s up for grabs, attaining a perfect partner bracket can seem impossible. However, picking your partner bracket doesn’t have to be a challenge when you have the right strategy and a hint of luck. These four key factors can guide you on better ways to build your perfect partner bracket.
Just like winning the $1 Billion dollars that’s up for grabs, attaining a perfect partner bracket can seem impossible.
Listen to Analysts
You have to admit that no matter if you’re an amateur or an expert, there’s always someone who knows more about the subject, or at the very least, has a different perspective than you. A difference of opinion is not a bad thing, especially in a partnership. Having a trusted resource to challenge your methods and push you towards innovating your thinking can significantly boost drive and overall success. Listen to analysts about which partnership will guide you to the sweet sixteen, elite eight, final four, and then become a champion.
Consider the Sleepers
Your partners should be trustworthy and dependable, but they don’t always need to be your number one seed as long as they are able to perform. Like it or not, it’s important to choose partners who have some major differences from you. Just because there are different plays, doesn’t mean we’re playing a different game.
If your partner is an identical match, there would be little value added to their customers with your product, making it a tough sell and a lousy partnership on both ends. Don’t get stuck in the “same old” strategies with the people you’ve known your whole life. Sometimes you have to let go of home-grown favorites and choose the best teams to represent you and your overall bracket success.
You Can’t Predict the Future
What can shatter your goals faster than a bracket buster in the first round? Picking a partner that is a horrible fit for your business model. While a partner’s track record may be outstanding, there’s no way to tell if they will choke when they are invited to do the dance. Do in-depth research about their product, sales process, strategy, and values to see if they could be a good fit.
Trust Your Gut
Things don’t usually go as planned—the past five March Madness tournament can make that perfectly clear. With history showing us that consistent upsets are a distinct possibility, it’s important to listen to your gut for when it tells you that something is truly wrong. Sometimes a situation can lead to strong analytics and an outstanding track record, but if something inside says that you should get out, it’s probably for good reason. So many strong teams make it to March Madness just to choke when it’s their time to shine. Don’t let your partner’s track record outweigh your gut feeling. It’s better to have missed out on a potential partnership rather than blow it all on a risky relationship that gets you into some locker room drama.
It takes work and diligence to put together your perfect partner bracket, but if you’re strategic and lucky enough, you just might be able to climb that ladder to cut down the net. Put these tips to work and let us know if they help you build your perfect partner bracket.
Are you going to win it all this year?