If you asked clients where their leads came from or which marketing initiatives provided the best return on investment, many would have no idea. Even those who had set up website analytics, or asked prospective callers how they found their contact, the information was mostly incomplete. No one could provide an accurate measure of detailed lead or sale generation metrics.
If someone contacted you by phone instead of through your online contact form, you would logically assume that the caller was not a referral from your website. Failing to recognize the potentially effective web lead or more specifically SEO, SEM/PPC Advertising, email, etc., credit would likely go to another marketing initiative.
After years of working on many Internet marketing projects and running into this particular issue, the Toronto based web design and SEO company, 9th sphere, decide to find a solution that would help their clients get a better sense of where to spend their marketing budgets.
So here’s a sample scenario. A prospect reads an online news article about you, clicks onto your website link in the article, then visits your site briefly. Since you are also optimizing your website for search engine ranking, a few days later the prospect searches on Google for your keywords and sees your company name again. They read a few pages of your website and then call you to learn more about your services. The sales representative asks the prospect where they heard about the company. The prospect may mention the initial article or the search on Google. As a marketer you’d want to know every touch point the prospect had with your brand. This would include the article, web pages on your site and why they decided to call instead of filling out a web form or purchasing your product online. Because the prospect decided to make the call by phone instead of fill out a web form, the tracking of their encounter with your brand becomes much more challenging.
What 9th sphere did to resolve this challenge is build a system that tracks the entire experience of the prospect caller; from first finding you in the article, to making the call, as well as any interaction with the website thereafter. 9th sphere’s solution is REF:CODE Analytics, which works similarly to Google Analytics in the background. When a prospect calls, the sale representative simply asks them for the reference code that is found next to the company phone number on the website. This reference code has been tracking the entire online experience of the prospect caller. Once the unique code is referenced by the caller the sales representative can connect the action to that particular lead. In this way you can keep track of your leads as well as the effectiveness of your website and Internet marketing initiatives, like SEO and PPC campaigns.
If your lead comes from an online source, next time you will know. And you’ll be able to confidently give your hard working online marketer the credit they’ve no doubt earned.