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Marketing Director’s Guide to Traditional Advertising in 2020

Old School Media items

Many people are quick to assume that digital marketing is the ideal method to deliver their content and reach their customers, and they have a point—to a degree. 

Statistics show that 70% of consumers prefer to learn about products through content as opposed to conventional ads. Preferring content may be due to conventional-ad overload, or a simple desire to combine advertising with actionable information that you can find in marketing videos, blog posts, or other media.

However, this doesn’t mean that traditional advertising doesn’t have its perks. 79% of customers say that they read direct mail ads, which means the market penetration is still there. Also, a sizable chunk of customers still consider print advertising the most trustworthy type of advertising, and many will head to your company website after looking at traditional advertising. 

So, perhaps the best way to look at traditional advertising is by thinking about it not as something to be replaced, but rather, as something that can upgrade and integrate into other things while taking advantage of its pros and mitigating its cons.

How Is Traditional Advertising Purchased Today?
The greater traditional marketing umbrella includes the most common advertising methods that we’ve seen all our lives, including:

  • Print (newspaper, magazines)
  • Broadcast (TV, radio)
  • Direct Mail
  • Telemarketing
  • Billboards/Outdoor

How you go about purchasing advertising space is likely to vary depending on the medium. For example, if you were to look into advertising in a print magazine, you would generally reach out to the sales team there and discuss a package. In this case, a package may include the size of the ad you want, the frequency for running the ad, and the ideal placement for your ad. 

If you were looking to advertise your dietary supplement in a health magazine, you would likely place your ad in or near an article about supplements. Many magazines will give you a frequency benefit, where you buy ads over a given period for a discount or feature you in a special section.

However, this isn’t the same for every type of traditional media. If you were running a direct mail advertising campaign, for example, your price would be determined by how many mailers you wanted to send. The type of paper you wanted them printed on and the radius you were looking to see covered also play significant factors in total cost. 

For broadcast advertising on cable, you would make your ad buy based on the channels you want to appear on and your timing. Every traditional advertising method has a different purchasing style, which can be a shock to digital-only marketers who are typically using pay-per-click, impression, and programmatic buying techniques.

For those interested in using multiple methods or transitioning from digital-only to a digital/traditional hybrid, working with an agency is best. Agencies generally already have media partnerships with magazines, radio, and television, among others, and receive discounted rates. So, rather than doing the research and dealing with multiple media reps and processes, the agency does the work for you. If you want to handle it internally, be wary about bundled options that benefit the media companies more than you. Even with tracking, if you don’t have a strategic plan for capturing and converting leads, it can be difficult to determine success or failure.

Better Ways To Track Campaigns
Choosing the preferred marketing vehicle or vehicles is only the beginning of putting together a successful campaign. Strong marketing often ebbs and flows: you make shifts as your audience changes or responds to what you are putting out. The only way to do this effectively is by getting plenty of marketing data, understanding it, and capitalizing on it. Data is one area where traditional marketing has historically fallen short of digital. However, that’s changed. Integrated marketing strategies have made it a lot easier to track data through traditional marketing. Here are a few examples.

Vanity URLs
vanity URL is a branded web address for your pages, generally designed for easy memorability. However, these are also useful when it comes to traditional marketing integration. It’s a lot easier to put a vanity URL on a mailer or other physical piece of advertising than a traditional address. If you use a tracking cookie with the vanity URL, you can quickly determine how many customers are accessing your site, engaging, and converting.

Call Tracking Numbers
Call tracking entails putting a unique phone number on a piece of marketing. Adaptive for any form of messaging, call tracking can be used with traditional and digital. When a customer or client calls that number, you immediately see the engagement, and they can be put into the next stage of the sales funnel and credited to that particular piece of advertising. You can also record the phone conversation to determine if messaging is on point and help train your sales team. Split testing with two different numbers is a great way to see if one piece of advertising is helping more with conversions than others. For example, if you have two billboards on different sides of town, call tracking can help you determine which one is more effective.

Neighborhood-Specific Content
Customizing your content based on different neighborhoods can be useful for those looking into direct mail, but generally only for hyper-local businesses. However, it does enable you to test your messaging in real-time. If one style of content gets better traction in one neighborhood, you may want to make that the message you use for other neighborhoods also.

New Technology Across The Industry
There are also other pieces of new technology that are modernizing traditional marketing across the board. Many of these are focused on either better integration with digital marketing channels or trying to close the gap in areas where digital has an advantage. Customization is a good example of this. Here are some of the innovations we’ve noted in this area.

Informed Delivery
This unique service, currently being tested by the USPS, allows people to digitally preview the mail they are going to get before it’s delivered. Previewing means that customers will see your content far earlier in the process than usual and can allow them to build curiosity. It also means that your physical mail will be in the digital realm from the start and have the ability to be viewed on people’s computers or smartphones.

Digital Codes on Print Ads/Sales Flyers
Integrating both digital and traditional is a major goal for modern marketers. Utilizing Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality is a great way to integrate this approach along with QR coding. Adding one of these digital stamps allows users to activate a story or offer with smartphones that can instantly take them to a website or landing page to get them started in your sales funnel. 

Video Ads For Apps/Streaming Services
Cable advertising is more affordable than broadcast advertising, but it’s still has a high barrier to entry for many companies. Glintegration ReportingHowever, the advent of channels coming up with custom content on their streaming apps to try and retain audiences creates an opportunity for advertisers. By and large, apps and YouTube channels still put you in front of similar audiences as cable television, but for a lower cost per view. Thinking of video in this way will provide higher value by allowing you to take a traditional 30-second spot and chop and edit it into smaller segments for custom integration into any digital format. 

Even as digital marketing becomes the flagship of many company campaigns, the fact is that a multifaceted plan of attack is always going to be the ideal one. Traditional marketing is always going to have its uses, even if the way it’s purchased and utilized isn’t the same as it was in the past. 

If you need help integrating these new methods and technologies into classic strategies, a veteran marketing agency like Glint Advertising can help you figure out what options are best for you.

Highest ROI Marketing Platforms for Q1 2020

Many people assume that you need to have an annual marketing plan ready before the year even starts to see any success. This philosophy is great in theory (being prepared), but it is often rare that a marketing plan doesn’t alter based on business conditions and opportunities. However, for those who are still trying to put something together, keep in mind ROI (return on investment) should be the overarching focus with the plan. Here are some of the top platforms to consider in 2020.

How Does ROI In Marketing Work?
Before getting into the platforms themselves, let’s briefly talk about the importance of marketing ROI. Many marketers get lost in all the KPIs out there and lose sight of what’s most important. As an example, say that you put together a social media campaign utilizing a popular influencer, who isn’t necessarily related to your niche. The influencer does their job, leveraging their fanbase to try and visit your sites, but you don’t necessarily get many conversions. Conversion drop is probably happening because the fanbase the influencer reaches is less likely to buy your product or service. 

If the marketing team was focusing the tactic on web traffic, they might see this as a success. However, in terms of ROI, this is probably not an ideal tactic. With low conversions vs. paying for the influencer, you may even end up losing money when all is said and done. However, if this is a branding play and you’re looking to create the first touchpoint with this audience, then this could be very powerful, long-term.

So, how can you tell if a given platform has a successful ROI? The best way to measure this is by taking your sales growth from the venture, removing the marketing costs, then dividing by the marketing costs. If you saw a sales growth of $2,000 from a campaign that cost $200, you received a 900% ROI from it. There are other measurements worth looking out for, like branded queries or referrals, but that’s the base calculation you want to have in mind. Now, we can start getting into specific platforms.

Video Marketing
For many marketers, a successful video campaign is the crown jewel of their overall strategy. From increasing your traffic to growing revenue, a single successful set of videos can deliver a variety of different benefits. On top of this, when looking at ROI, this is one of the strongest options possible. Some marketers may be wary of video due to cost perception, but new technology has made it easier than ever to break in. In fact, some professional-grade videos can be created utilizing newer smartphones, smart lighting, and a little planning. Along with this, video tends to draw people in for longer periods than many other digital and traditional tactics. Thus it can allow you to tell a better story.

So, with that said, how do you guarantee video marketing success? As video marketing continues to grow, bad editing or poor audio isn’t going to cut it, so first, video quality matters. Another thing you want to make sure you’re doing is taking full advantage of the platform hosting your video. A video series about your services provides the opportunity to define facts while crafting a narrative. It may be worth working with outside help to create a true video script if you’re struggling in this area. 

CRM/Marketing Automation
Depending on whom you ask, these are two separate categories of software, and both play a vital role in marketing ROI. For example, a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) tool is generally associated more with the sales world, helping to chart all interactions with clients and prospects. Marketing automation is more about helping companies streamline some of their existing marketing tasks utilizing automated responses and drip campaigns. Since sales are uniquely tied to marketing and marketing typically needs a sales converter to close, Glint believes these categories should be combined and provides this type of blended platform for their clients. Learn more about the Glint platform here.

Most people assume ROI is mainly financial, and while that is true, it can also be evaluated through time involvement cost. Using the previous influencer example, it takes time to find the right influencer, negotiating, rolling out the campaign, and running the calculations to determine if the campaign was successful. Marketing Automation platforms help cut down on your time costs by automating and personalizing basic, but necessary tasks.

Social Advertising
Successful advertising is all about being where your audience is, and that means having a social media plan in place. These are great platforms to build marketing ROI because the cost of entry is relatively affordable, and there is an extensive audience available that can be segmented. With this in mind, let’s do a quick run-through of some actionable advice for marketing success on three of 2020’s most popular platforms.

Facebook

  • Have concrete goals in mind (driving traffic, conversions, adding value)
  • Use all of Facebook’s features to help determine who your ads/marketing target
  • Be proactive when it comes to creating engagement opportunities
  • Schedule content ahead for optimized timing

 

Instagram

  • Optimize your biography for a strong first impression
  • Ensure your visual content stays at a high quality
  • Optimize through smart use of hashtags
  • Maintain a regular pace of content

 

Linkedin

  • Remember you are targeting a business audience
  • Analyze competitor pages for advice
  • Use commenting and engagement to drive your content
  • Be sure to understand why people use Linkedin (connections, business development) when drafting content

 

Creating An Overarching Campaign Strategy
It’s also important to remember that you need an overall marketing strategy in place, not just a concept. Using only video marketing, or Marketing Automation, or social advertising isn’t likely to yield success. One major trend that we’re seeing is finding ways to link traditional and digital marketing together and ensuring you have at least three points of integration. An approach like this also allows companies using legacy approaches to leverage their expertise while competing in the digital age. 

An example of this in practice is vanity URLs. These are essentially URLs that make it easier for people to remember a web address, while also redirecting to a longer URL with tracking info. On one end, you’re increasing your brand presence by making it easier for people to remember your site/pages. On the other hand, you’re able to grab some vital tracking info to power your decision making. This is a great type of measurement to start tracking marketing ROI.

Call tracking operates on a similar principle. Many companies underestimate precisely how much of a role calls can play in lead generation, whether it’s cold calling or following up on other marketing efforts via a phone call. Call tracking allows you to tie campaigns to a single business number helping you determine which marketing tactics are delivering. It’s also important to note that the calls are recorded to help you better train your sales team on the way’s to handle and close inbound calls. Like other marketing tracking, this makes it easier to determine which methods are successful, and which need to be improved. 

2020 may be rolling along, but that doesn’t mean you have missed the boat in terms of your marketing strategy. Making some key adjustments throughout the year can contribute to better ROI and the impact of marketing. However, when you’re making shifts, a good starting point is to consider working with a veteran marketing agency, like Glint Advertising. By taking a look at your current goals and marketing plans, we can help you find the ideal platforms to grow your business.