When setting up your marketing plan there are obviously different channels to advertise on, including one or a variety of online, print, radio, T.V., etc. Many ask how you can actually track the calls made to your company through your advertising efforts.
Call tracking is a great way to do this. Through call tracking, you are able to tie incoming calls to where they are coming from, whether that is a radio or TV spot or even an ad online. Call tracking companies usually charge a monthly fee for each number you use for your campaigns; plus a small fee per minute. The call tracking companies also provide extensive reporting to the advertiser such as unique callers, length of call, leads per day, voicemails, etc. They may also include features so that when a customer calls from one of the lines, the advertiser will be notified before they actually begin speaking with the person on the other end of the line. An advertiser also has the ability to set up a recording feature that starts every time the incoming phone calls are answered.
An advertiser can pick out one number for simplicity or multiple numbers channels where they are advertising. Below are a few scenarios of how you may want to use call tracking when you are running multiple ads in a variety of channels, such as newspapers and magazines, online ads, and radio ads on various stations.
Scenario 1 — Purchase one phone number and use it across all of your marketing channels. This will be a measure of potential customers that have actually seen or heard your paid advertisements
Scenario 2 — Purchase different lines, one for print ads, one for online ads, one for radio, etc. Through reporting you could see how your potential target clients are responding to the marketing channel or advertisement being presented.
Scenario 3 — Purchasing multiple lines for each marketing channel. In print for example, you might have one line for the newspaper and one for magazines, or more than one line if you are advertising in a number of newspapers. The same goes for magazines, sponsored online ads and multiple radio stations.
Call tracking is a very unique service to measure your ROI based on where and when the advertisements are running and receiving a better return on your overall investment.
Recently, most people made the switch to digital TV. It was either, buy a converter box, a new TV or switch to some form of cable television. However, for those who have a quality computer and a good internet connection, the switch may not have been necessary. Websites like Hulu and YouTube allow users to watch TV shows and movies online and I’m sure there will be more websites in the near future that will provide these same offerings.
Hulu launched last year in March. According to Wikipedia, “Hulu is a website that offers commercial-supported streaming video of TV shows and movies from NBC, Fox and many other networks and studios.” They were one of the first sites dedicated to showing full movies and TV shows. Hulu is becoming increasingly popular and it won’t be long before the technology comes out for people to view Hulu on their cell phone. People who own an iphone are already watching YouTube.
YouTube continues to add more offerings. Originally, it was a place to upload funny home videos as well as music videos. Now, companies can have their own YouTube channel and promote their products online. In fact, YouTube may be giving Hulu a run for its money because YouTube now offers a movie and a TV show channel.
Both YouTube and Hulu manage to have commercial(s) play at some point during your movie or TV show watching. At present, the YouTube movies seem to have the least amount of commercials. So far, YouTube only has 1 forced commercial (no option to skip or fast forward past the commercial) at the beginning of a movie. Hulu on the other hand has several forced commercials that play throughout the movie. Either way advertisers are incorporated.
Hulu and YouTube are only the beginning of TV watching on the internet. For big time advertisers and companies, this means that more TV advertising dollars will start shifting toward the internet. For smaller advertisers and companies, now is a good time to learn about video ads and participate while the price is low. Eventually, I think people will watch shows via the internet instead of on a television. It might sound strange, but one day our grandchildren may say, “What is a television?” Don’t laugh, I’ve asked people,” What’s an 8 track player?”
Recently I was reading a blog that confirmed a concept I had believed on the subject of marketing, and how the channels of media have been interacting with each other. The article was geared toward teenagers and their behavior in utilizing various media channels.
Teenagers are still watching TV, but that isn’t the only thing they are doing. Approximately 65% of youth aged nine through seventeen are splitting their TV time with the internet. They are actively engaged in online polls, contests and posting opinions on their favorite TV shows in forums. One statistic I found very interesting in the Search Engine Watch blog was, “once a kid is online, the Internet begins to dominate their attention: 47 percent said that the Internet becomes the primary focus, while 42 percent said their attention is split equally between the Internet and TV.”
This conjures up another statistic I found a few months ago that addressed the transition of TV viewers watching their shows on the Internet rather than on the tube. More and more people are watching their shows on You Tube and the like. So, in some cases TV viewers have already made the switch from the old school tube to the new school tube- the internet. While they are there…bring them to your website!
The data is compelling. It is certainly advantageous for advertisers who use TV to reach your audience to further that engagement by driving your audience to your website. The longer you engage them the more likely will recognize your product or service versus someone else’s. So, add creative activities to website, whether it is a contest, or just a fun activity. Give your audience another way to interact with you.
There are other benefits to adding such features to your website. If the activities you create are innovative and fun enough, visitors to your website will talk about it, share it, and in turn drive even more visitors to your site.
The channels of marketing have been in a state of transition since the emergence of the internet and it is very important for advertisers to recognize and utilize the power of this blended media. By incorporating Internet Marketing into your advertising repertoire you’ll create a stronger image and capture an audience you might already be missing. This trend is going to continue as teenagers become adults with greater spending capabilities. No matter who your audience is… it’s time to look at the other tube!