Blog

Thursday, 14 February 2013 by Peter Bell

Love your leads

A timely reminder to always remember leads are real people requesting contact for information about your product or service. So, to that end, they deserve to be treated with respect in all marketing communications. The most appropriate way to communicate with tomorrows customer is largely due to a number of factors:

  • How expensive your product/service is
  • How complex your product/service is
  • How your brand is perceived
  • How your market sector is perceived
For example, when selling complex pension products is is of paramount importance to give as much information as possible at the beginning of the marketing purchase funnel backed by independent research and customer testimonies. Once trust is established, you can move the the next stage of giving specific advice and recommendations about how great your products are. The sale is a long-drawn out process which could take a matter of months.

Contrast this with a free trial for a magazine subscription and you can normally skip the first stage and move straight into the recommendation phase by focusing on the value of the offer. You can expect this level of sale to complete in a matter of hours.

To summarise - the marketing funnel for consumer purchases looks something like this:
  1. Give valid product information (build trust)
  2. Recommend product USPs (why youre the best)
  3. Close the deal
But above all, if you only need to remember one thing - Love your Leads - you wont go far wrong!

Thursday, 10 January 2013 by Peter Bell

Lead Generation - The Secret Recipe for Success

Photo Credit: Eddie Welker
To make the perfect lead generation campaign, you need to mix the following ingredients:
  • Generous helping of know-how - there is no substitute to direct experience, specialist skills and appetite for lead gen. knowledge
  • Layer of lead management software (in-house or outsourced) - in-house tech may be more customisable at first but can be a struggle to get internal resource without a service level agreement (SLA). Outsourcing may limit your options but you can often dictate terms much easier via an SLA.
  • Huge dollops of performance media publishers across multiple channels - the more options you have , the less reliant you are on any particular source. As a rule of thumb, its a good idea to never allow any publisher to represent more than 30% of the overall lead supply
  • Lastly, add secret sauce - YOU - Love, care and attention will get you everywhere in lead generation. All campaigns depend on tonnes of micro-decisions which continually influence potentially large campaign outcomes. This could range from updating email creative, follow-up call script, call to action, toggling validation filters to many more...

Even with all these magic ingredients added, blending the perfect lead generation campaign still requires battling with many external elements during the cooking process, including:
  • Daily changes in quality and volumes across multiple sources
  • Irregular patterns of data which could indicate fraudulent activity
  • Non-compliant formats of advertising copy being used
  • Hard-coding of variables meaning qualifying questions are not being submitted by consumer

To save your lead generation campaign from getting spoiled, employ the following tactics:
  • Pricing Tiers - Source volume capping according to quality and tiered based pricing to reward publishers who provide the best quality
  • Data checks - Automated processes can check foreign or repeat IP address submissions and invalid email address domains whilst manual eye-balling of leads from low quality data sources can reveal recurring name variations or gobbledegook which spam filters fail to pick up.
  • Policing - secret shopping sites and reviewing the adverts being used, is the only true way to enforce compliance
  • Analysis - Comparing average response of lead generation answer values against individual source stats can reveal patterns that are unlikely to be genuine volunteered responses. For example, if age of person is is a received variable and your average age split is 20-40 years old, a single source providing 100% 20-30s could be suspect and worth further investigation

Happy lead generation cooking for 2013!

Monday, 31 December 2012 by Peter Bell

2012 - Top Blog Posts of Performance Lead Marketing

Here is a little round-up to share of the most popular posts by page-view of PerformanceLeadMarketing.com:

  1. UK Exclusive - Google Affiliate Network is here - So far, its hard to tell what impact (if any) it has had on the affiliate market?
  2. Google Lead Generation - Sign-Ups from the search results page rather than click traffic - One to watch and was the inspiration for this Econsultancy article by Justin Rees asking Is Google selling Leads in the UK
  3. Lead Generation Marketing: Time for ROI to kill off CPA - Short-term CPA obsessions are clouding online marketers long-term ROI aspirations
  4. Dont Marry Your Leads - Get Engaged First - Dont sell to a prospect with one foot in the door!
  5. PPC Advertising is Dead... - Search is becoming more display, maps, video and data collection driven which means new search advertising models are springing up. Yahoo recently launched cost per lead (CPL) search
  6. Performance Agency vs Performance Network - Agencys do Networks, like Networks do Agencys. The lines are becoming blurred as network trading platforms and agency planning and media services become common to both sectors.
What a difference a year makes and wonder what digital delights 2013 will bring us.

Happy New Year

Friday, 21 December 2012 by Peter Bell

2012 - The End of Online

Online has heralded a golden age of new media over the past decade. But not any more - online as a marketing term has become redundant with the advent of mobile. Why? Because a mobile device is also online, so to eradicate confusion - Online (i.e. surfing via PC/laptop) has now been demoted to desktop.

Still confused? So lets try to nail down the terminology in a single sentence: Any internet enabled device that permits an application or site to use your location, is mobile and all other devices that are non-location specific are desktop. This is why ipads are mobile devices but laptops arent.

Desktop is actually a horribly fudged phrase to describe how the majority of people still use the internet for entertainment which is via a laptop in front of the TV. I dont know about you, but the laptop tends to follow me around the house so feels mobile enough for me.

The main issue here is convergence of technology which is forcing people and companies to think differently about what electronic products exist now and what may be adopted in the near future.

Take TV for example. Im pretty sure within 18 months, we will need to come up with a new word for TV. The phrase Television will look wholly inadequate to describe what will be Social Internet Video (SIV). SIV is the way everyone will consume TV media in the future. A few years on, it will impossible to think of how a football match could be watched at home without tweets and not having customised fan vision overlaying live football matches. Or, how about X-Factor (with or without Louie Walsh!), - imagine reading peoples ranting tweets tickertaping across the bottom of your screen. Forget the phone line, imagine how instant SIV voting will decide results in real-time.

Why doesnt it happen sooner? The only other factors that appear to hold back the tide of consumer demand is the way the TV market is currently structured by government and the dominant companies. Whilst the internet relentlessly innovates, TV appears thus far to be resistant to rapidly changing tastes in consumer media consumption.

The future of TV, Radio, Internet & Books, of course, will look nothing like it does today. Lets just hope whatever happens will help us to get information and entertainment faster and better than ever imagined before.

Lastly, in a case of art imitating life (a la The Social Network) and imitating art again, Facebook TV is coming... check out Facebooks secret plans here.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012 by Peter Bell

Content is King? No, Performance is the new King

Thats right, the concept of Performance Marketing may be as old as the hills, but only in the past year or so, has it become King elect. Paying by performance is now a staple on every advertisers marketing menu. Try dining out with a non-performance strategy and youll never make it to dessert course!

Performance to many in the search advertising world, means paying for clicks whereas in the display ad industry, means paying for impressions. Both give some level of reassurance that there is a performance element, but the money shot is - How many of these impressions/clicks turn into leads and sales?

Googles ad platform has come a long way in terms of making search a goal based advertising medium. A goal could be a lead, download, appointment or sale. Anonymous traffic generation was a gold rush going back a few years but in the modern targeting/re-targeting landscape coupled with the avalanche of consumer data on tap it is essential to optimise your campaign towards leads/actions and ultimately sales.

In online advertising, the unstoppable rise of RTB (real-time buying) illustrates a desire to get media to perform to a specific cost per action or acquisition. There is simply such a glut of online media inventory out there that it is now only worth what someone will pay for it. The online advertising ratecard just hit the shredder!

The so called King, Content has received alot of attention in the marketing press of late and rightly so. Having beautiful content on your site is not only engaging but can also win the hearts of your prospects and customers. But for it to be King, much more power must be leveraged to satisfy the demands of even an average commercially focused business enterprise.

Performance Marketing encapsulates all the elements that are great about marketing today - Great copy that sells; Flexible channels ; Compelling offer variants ; Discounted pricing models ; Ready to purchase consumers. Which is why, the crowning of Performance as King is likely to reign for a very long time... All rise...