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Inbound vs Outbound marketing. Which is right for you?

These days I field a lot of questions about inbound vs outbound marketing, and which one is the “best” way to attract new customers. Let’s start with a simple definition of both.

Inbound marketing involves creating content to draw potential customers to your website, where they can read about the products and services that you offer (and hopefully buy from you). It’s “passive” in the sense that you are not bombarding people with solicitations, which are usually unwanted. Examples of inbound marketing include Google Ads and SEO (after all, someone has to search for your relevant keywords before they see your ad or listing appear in the search engines), blogging, and certain aspects of social media marketing.

On the other hand, outbound marketing involves sending out your message to potential customers, whether they want it or not. It’s “active” in the sense that you are reaching out to them, typically without their consent. Examples of outbound marketing include email blasts, cold calling, buying leads (usually worthless leads) and contacting them, trade shows, and certain aspects of social media marketing.

In truth, both can be effective ways of driving new business, though these days you’ll often hear that outbound marketing is old-school and less likely to succeed. To be fair, I do not think cold calling works one bit in 2019 (who wants to take a cold call anymore?), and my opinion of trade shows isn’t much better. Email marketing is effective if you are sending your messages to active customers, but it’s largely ineffective if you’re sending the emails to “cold” prospects who have never heard of you. However, paid Facebook and Instagram Ads can be very effective, and they almost always fall under the outbound marketing umbrella.

By contrast, inbound marketing is now almost universally hailed as a more effective means of getting your business in front of interested parties. And I would agree with that assessment. Pay Per Click (PPC) and SEO have the HUGE advantage of connecting your business with potential customers at the moment they are searching for the products and services that you offer. Guest blogging and organic social media marketing offer similar abilities to connect with people who are interested in your company’s offerings. So which channel is right for you?

Here at DanMatt Media, we very much believe in diversification of your marketing dollars. We do not advocate putting all your proverbial eggs in one basket, but in this case that means diversifying within the inbound marketing channel. Running properly designed and executed SEO and PPC campaigns, perhaps with an organic and a paid social media marketing component, is a great way to attract new customers who actually want to hear from you. When you’re ready to do that, we can help. Give us a call at 877-924-1543 to find out how easy and economical it is to get started.

And let someone else make those annoying cold calls.


What digital marketing success looks like (Part 2): A case study for a longtime local dental practice (client).

Client type: Local dentist (general dentistry services and Invisalign)

Age of partnership: 2.5 years and still going strong

Marketing channels used: Google PPC (Pay Per Click)

Budget: $2,000 per month (up from an initial $1,500 per month)

Traffic received: 90% of this client’s website traffic comes directly from their Google PPC campaign. 

Progress: Since we began running this campaign, this client has received a 10 fold increase in the number of website visits and booked appointments. As a result, they agreed to increase their initial monthly budget by 25%.

The take away: If your business has a need for more local customers, give us a call at 877-924-1543 or reach us at https://danmattmedia.com/contact/.

We can design, create, and implement a cost-effective and highly successful digital marketing strategy just for you!

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What digital marketing success looks like: A case study for a longtime local law firm (attorney) client.

Client type: Local law firm

Age of partnership: 3 years and still going strong

Marketing channels used: Google PPC (Pay Per Click) and SEO (organic search)

Budget: $20,000+ per month

Leads received: An average of 25 per week, or 100+ per month

ROI: This client has consistently informed us that they are receiving an average ROI of 5X + per month on their ad spend. They are very pleased with the results, which is why they continue to work with DanMatt Media year after year in such a competitive industry.

The take away: If your business has a need for more customers, give us a call at 877-924-1543. We can design, create, and implement a similarly successful digital marketing strategy for you!
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Running a Pay Per Click campaign on a shoestring budget

We offer many different types of marketing solutions here at DanMatt Media, but without a doubt one of our most important channels is Pay Per Click (PPC). It’s one of the the only digital solutions that provides immediate results to clients. They can expect phone calls and leads right away, and most other marketing channels cannot make that claim. But Google has very much become a pay-to-play operation, and while organic search (SEO) remains a cost-effective and important channel, the coveted spots at the top of page 1 still belong to the paid search side of things. If you want new business right away, you go with PPC.

Pay Per Click marketing is an especially attractive option for service-based companies. Lawyers, roofers, plumbers, electricians, dentists, and others excel with this type of digital solution, as searchers actively use Google to find their businesses. As such, there is a tremendous amount of traffic and potential new business that is available via paid search. But as the popularity of Pay Per Click has risen, so have the click prices. And that presents a very big challenge for many of our clients.

Let’s face it, even successful and somewhat larger businesses do not have unlimited marketing budgets. There is always a limit to the amount of money that a company is willing to invest in any one marketing channel. For clients in the legal and roofing professions, prices for the most competitive keywords can easily top $100 per click. Even a 5-figure monthly budget can quickly be consumed with click prices at these levels. So what to do?

You need to mitigate these high click prices by creating a robust bid and keyword strategy that takes advantage of a mix of highly-desirable (and expensive) keywords and somewhat less competitive (and cheaper) keywords. You need to create an ad schedule that maximizes traffic at the most important hours and days of the week and forgoes the less important hours and days of the week. And you need to formulate a comprehensive negative keyword strategy to block invalid searches so that your precious marketing budget isn’t eaten-up by searches that will never turn into paying customers. If this sounds too labor-intensive and out of your league, it probably is. But this is precisely why you hire an experienced agency to manage it for you.

If you’re looking for placement at the very top of page 1 of Google, and the immediate leads and phone calls that it provides, you should give our Pay Per Click solution a try. You’ll be happy you did.


Here is why we don’t buy “leads” (and you shouldn’t either)…

If you own a business, you’ve no doubt come across plenty of unsolicited emails asking if you’re interested in buying “leads”. I put leads into quotations here because they are not really leads (at least not in the way that we define leads), and they’re almost never a good idea for your business.

Typically, these emails come from an individual (rather than a corporation), usually with a personal Gmail or Yahoo address. That’s a red flag right off the bat. They usually claim that these are “hot leads” or that they represent companies that are dying to do business with you. Don’t believe it.

Most of the time, these are simply lists of companies, sometimes with an individual’s name and contact number, and sometimes without, that these people pulled off a simple Google or LinkedIn search. They’ve never heard of your company and they have never reached out to the provider of these leads begging (or even asking) for the services you offer. And more often than not, this provider is selling these “leads” to more than one company at a time, which means you’re not even the only one who has access to this list. You’re competing against someone else (or a lot of other companies) for the same business you just paid good money to contact. It’s a sham.

Think about it. If these “leads” that were that hot or that valuable, why would this provider be willing to sell them to you for a very inexpensive price (we see something like $10 to $20 per “lead” offered quite often). If these companies were indeed looking to spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on your services, don’t you think they’d be worth more than $10? And if the provider actually spent the time and effort required to cultivate these “leads” you’d think he or she would need to sell them for more than $10 to recoup that time and effort.

By now it should be clear that this is a scam, and that you should avoid it at all costs. So how should a business owner go about recruiting new customers? Well, the most cost-effective option is to mine your professional network on a regular basis and recruit new business that way. It’s free and you already have an “in”. But many business owners have neither the time nor the vast amount of contacts needed to support their companies. That’s where targeted advertising and marketing comes into play.

Unlike buying lists of garbage “leads”, a properly targeted and executed digital marketing campaign will bring you qualified customers who are interested in the products and services that you offer. Google search (whether paid or organic) connects these interested prospects with your company at the moment they are searching for businesses just like yours. These marketing campaigns aren’t “cheap” per se, but they are cost-effective, and you get what you pay for. So the next time you’re looking for new business, stay away from the crooks peddling garbage “leads”, and turn to a real marketing company to bring you new customers.

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Why you need diversification in your marketing plan…

Diversification. It’s something we all hear about from our financial advisors and nutritionists. Turns out, you need it for your company’s marketing plan as well.

Here at DanMatt Media we have a lot of clients. Big ones and small ones. Local ones and national ones. But one thing that many of them share in common is a lack of diversification in their approach to marketing.

We offer all kinds of solutions to help grow your business. Pay Per Click, SEO, Social Media, Print, Direct Mail, Radio, and TV advertising, to name a few. And though we always harp on our clients to use as many of these channels as possible, many of them choose to only focus on one of them in order to save on costs.

The problem with that approach is that you’re leaving too many sales on the table. You’re not reaching enough people to actively and aggressively promote your products or services. It’s like choosing to only eat grilled chicken for every single meal. Sure, it’s healthy, but you’re missing out on the valuable nutrients you’d receive with a balanced diet. The same is true in marketing. You might be doing really well on Google organic (via your SEO campaign) but you’re missing out on the paid search traffic (Pay Per Click) and the social media traffic, and that’s costing you a lot of new customers and the subsequent growth in revenue.

I know what you’re thinking. “Sure, I’d love to use all of these channels, but my budget doesn’t allow for it”. We get that, and it’s a reality we face with almost all of our clients. But that’s precisely why you hire an expert marketing team like us, so that we can do the research for you and apply our decades of experience to advise you on which channels make the most sense for your company, all while staying within your budget constraints. Typically, that will involve all or some combination of at least SEO, Pay Per Click, and social media marketing.

When you’re ready to get started with your diversified marketing approach in 2019, give us a call or send us a website inquiry. We’re here to help you grow!


Does SEO really work?

One of the questions I’m often asked by prospective clients is, “does SEO really work”? The answer is yes, but it depends on your expectations.

Unlike SEM (pay per click marketing) where you can outbid your competition for the coveted spots at the top of page 1 of Google, with SEO you can only outrank them if your site is deemed more relevant and worthy of that lofty ranking by the geniuses at Google. How Google goes about determining that formula is due in large part to their murky and mystical algorithms, and no one outside of the tech giant really seems to have the answer. But that doesn’t mean that SEO is a complete crap-shoot.

There are many tried and true methodologies for improving traffic and keyword rankings in Google organic. On-site SEO services like rewriting meta descriptions and title tags, and creating and optimizing relevant and keyword-rich content all have their place in SEO success. Off-site SEO work like back-linking and citation building are certainly critical to success as well.

But Google search, whether paid or organic, is a page 1 or bust operation. So while moving an important keyword from the number 100 position to the number 20 position is impressive, it’s not likely to result in any new business for the client. To get anything out of SEO, you really need to be on page 1, and ideally in the first few spots on Google. The problem is, there are only 10 organic spots on page 1, and typically half of those listings are taken-up by sites with enormous amounts of traffic that a small to medium sized business will never be able to outcompete. That only leaves a handful of page 1 slots available for all the competing businesses in a major city or metro region. So what to do?

We tell prospective clients that real SEO success doesn’t mean all of your keywords are at the very top of page 1. That’s laudable, but unlikely to happen unless you have almost no competition. In the real world, the way we measure success in the SEO channel is to obtain SOME page 1 rankings for SOME important keywords. The more the better, but the goal is to have at least a handful of page 1 rankings for keywords that drive new business. That’s a far more achievable goal, and if reached it usually produces a positive ROI for the client. In other words, they get enough business out of having some of their important keywords on page 1 of Google to easily justify the cost of running the SEO campaign.

In the hyper-competitive world that we live in, that’s what real success looks like in the SEO channel.


Sales: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

I recently purchased a new car. The process wasn’t too bad, but I didn’t like the sales person I dealt with, and that got me thinking about the nature of sales.

A big part of my job is to bring in new business. That’s sales. It’s not all I do, as I wear a lot of hats, but it’s one of the most important parts of my job. I can’t say that I love to sell, but I don’t hate it either. I enjoy helping people, and partnering with them to help grow their businesses certainly qualifies as that. I’m a people-person who enjoys creating and fostering relationships, and that’s a big part of sales too. And you can make a nice living if you can sell, and that’s a big plus too.

But there are aspects of sales that I don’t like. I hate cold-calling, and even though it can be an effective sales strategy I don’t do it much anymore. It’s rarely well-received these days. And I don’t like the inherent mistrust that is associated with salespeople. We’re not all crooks, liars, and thieves. Some of us are actually good people, and I’d like to think that’s me too.

One thing that I have learned in my decade-plus of sales is that people by and large do not like pushy salespeople. They don’t want to be bullied into buying something, whether they need it or not. As such, I don’t push. Either we’re a fit for you, or we’re not. From the sale side, my job is to present our marketing solutions to a prospective client and discuss how we can help him or her, and why we’re a better fit than our competition. It’s not to convince them to sign-up for something they neither want nor need, nor to push them into something that isn’t in their best interest. If it’s a fit; great. We’re excited to be your longterm marketing partner and we’ll work as hard as possible on your behalf to ensure that you receive the ROI you’re after. And if it’s not a fit; that’s fine, and I wish them the best of luck with their business.

If this sounds like the kind of partner you’re after for your marketing efforts, give us a call.

2018 US Open

The US Open. My favorite golf tournament.

This week is US Open week in the golf world. Since I began playing golf at 11 or 12 years old the US Open has always been my favorite golf tournament.

Aside from the fact that it’s my national championship, no other tournament provides for such a thorough examination of a player’s game. With deep rough and firm, slick greens, driving accuracy is at a premium, which is rare for professional golf these days. With the exception of the 2011 and 2017 events (when rains softened the courses), you simply cannot hold US Open greens when you’re playing out of the deep rough. You must keep the ball in play, which often necessitates taking less club off the tee and thinking your way around the course. The current “bomb and gouge” philosophy that is so prevalent on the PGA Tour each week is not a strategy that works during the US Open.

And then there is the typical US Open venue. Steeped in tradition and history, most US Opens are played at old, top-of-the-pinnacle clubs like Shinnecock Hills (this year’s venue), Oakmont, Winged Foot, and Olympic Club. Throw in world-renowned public venues like Pebble Beach (next year’s host) and Pinehurst No. 2 and you have the perfect canvas with which to paint a major championship. Recently the USGA (the organization that conducts the US Open) has ventured off the beaten path to public courses such as Chambers Bay and Erin Hills, and the results have been less-than-stellar. That has diminished some of the luster of the US Open, but now that we’re back to a world-class venue like Shinnecock Hills I expect the good times to roll once more.

If you have a little time this weekend, watch the best players in the world try and navigate what should be the toughest set-up they’ll face all year. If nothing else, watching them struggle will show you that golf is a tough game for everyone, even if you play it for a living.

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ROI (Return On Investment) is perhaps the single most important aspect of any marketing campaign.  It’s something that our clients track regularly, and unfortunately it’s one of the few facets of a campaign that we have no control over.

As an on-line and off-line advertising agency, our job is to design and implement marketing campaigns that place our clients in a position to be successful.  Typically, that means that we get their ads in front of interested buyers at the moment that they are searching for the products and services that our clients are offering.  That holds true whether a potential customer is running a Google search (SEO and SEM) or looking through an old-school yellow pages directory (print advertising).  It’s the same thing; we want searchers to see our client’s ads right when they’re looking to buy.

The problem is that once they see these ads, we have no control over their behavior.  We can’t force them to call the phone number in the Google ad or in the yellow page ad, and we certainly can’t force them to buy from our clients.  If we had that ability, I’d be writing this from my yacht in the South Pacific, and not from my office in Colorado.

Ultimately, the ROI that our clients receive (revenue earned minus revenue spent) is the ultimate litmus test for campaign success.  Fortunately, over the last 24 years we’ve gotten quite good at creating custom marketing campaigns (in both digital and traditional advertising mediums) that put our clients in a position to be successful, and to obtain the ROI they’re looking for.