How call tracking helps smaller companies punch above their weight

How can smaller, growing businesses make the most of limited marketing budgets? Call tracking can provide the answer — with valuable insights you can use to generate high-quality leads and sales. It’s well worth exploring.

In the UK, marketing spending can eat up just over 9% of company revenue on average, according to research. For smaller and growing firms though, marketing spend can take on extra significance. It could be the key to a company’s breakthrough moment and rapid expansion.

And yet, the budget itself could represent a huge sacrifice. Incoming revenue may be limited, cash-flow unpredictable, and the company probably doesn’t have deep pockets. This puts huge pressure on maybe a handful of people in marketing to get it right — and fast.

Selecting the right strategy can feel bewildering though. Should you spend big on pay-per-click (PPC), use local radio, buy print advertising, push your message with ads on social media, or focus on delivering richer content for your own website? Which one will give you the greatest payoff?

What’s especially worrying is that some UK smaller businesses can invest in different areas and then struggle to figure out what’s worked. According to one study, business leaders at small firms could only average a score of 2.7 out of 5 when it came to measuring the return on investment (ROI) from their marketing. It seems as if a ‘hit and hope’ approach persists.

But that’s where call tracking can make the difference.

Call tracking: Is it for me?

If your products or services are personal or emotional, higher value, or complex or customisable in some way, then you’re more likely to receive calls. If that’s the case, call tracking should part of your marketing technology stack.

Call tracking is invaluable because it makes the direct connection between your marketing activities the calls and conversions you receive, and the revenue you generate. You don’t need to ask callers to remember how they found out about you and your products. Instead, the data reveals the back-story, tracing their calls to specific adverts, referral sites, web pages, pay-per-click activities and much more.

In reality, callers may have had multiple touch-points with your marketing channels and content before they picked up the phone. Call tracking can help you to see the whole journey — and the importance of all the marketing activities that played a part along the way.

Call tracking: How it works

The idea behind call tracking is simple. You use and track a different telephone number for each of your campaigns. These numbers are supplied by a call tracking provider, and they give you access to the online platform to see your results.

The platform records the number of calls you receive, the keywords used and PPC ads that result in a lead or sale. Using the dashboard, you can then compare and contrast how your campaigns are performing, day by day.

Because you’re operating in real-time, you can try out different marketing ideas quickly, see which ads garner the greatest response, and then double down on whichever approach works the best.

Call tracking doesn’t rely on big budgets either. You can deploy its powers in highly-effective ways with the marketing techniques you’re using already, such as organic search. Simply add a small piece of code to your website and landing pages — and make the connection with callers.

The same is true when you optimise your Google My Business listing, and offline marketing materials such as brochures and leaflets, with a static phone number. The phone number could be national rate, local area, or toll-free numbers, depending on which might appeal most to your target audience. When they call you, you’ll know exactly which piece of marketing they responded to.

Say goodbye to guesswork

Even though smaller companies usually have tighter marketing budgets, call tracking enables you to outperform expectations — and competitors.

Tiny teams can win big through call tracking innovation; discovering which activities deliver the most leads across each marketing channel. With powerful call intelligence, marketing attribution and reporting, you can see ROI clearly. The guesswork is gone. Your marketing becomes data-driven, whether it’s online or offline.

Dormy Care Communities is a great example of what’s possible. The company managed to build a brand marketing strategy from scratch with dynamic call tracking and lead intelligence being a key component. It’s given their team a deeper understanding of the customer journey and how to spend their marketing budget wisely.

Best ways to get started

Call tracking may seem like a mystery at first. But don’t be put off. The right partner will guide you through the process so you can find your feet quickly. Before long, you’ll have a much more in-depth understanding of your marketing response, and know how to dig deeper whenever you want.

As well as looking for a partner that provides personal on-boarding, also choose someone that will stay in touch, answer your questions, and keep adding new features to their service. Call tracking is a fast-moving area with exciting developments ahead, so it’s good to always stay one step ahead.

Finally, look for a call tracking service with a rolling contract rather than a long-term lock-in. This allows you to test the water with confidence, discover the ROI potential of call tracking, and then scale up the service as your business takes off.

About the author - Natalia Selby

Marketing coordinator at Mediahawk, with 20 years experience in analytics, content management and eCommerce.

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