When it comes to Quality Lead Generation, Television still Leads the Way!
With the ability to stream live television across multiple devices, a recent 2017 Nielsen study shows that television consumption overall is up. At the same time, we all know that digital advertising is growing at a rapid pace. So we jumped in and started to supplement many of our successful direct response, pay-per-call television campaigns with calls generated through digital advertising. For several months, after starting our first digital campaigns, everything seemed like an amazing success. Our client’s phones were ringing off the hook. The stream of calls was steadily growing with every passing week.
The conversations between our advertisers and callers were flowing like Veuve Cliquot on New Years. Everyone was in high spirits: our clients and, seemingly, the prospective consumers.
When the true ROI data started coming in, the realization hit, that the sales conversions on digital were far below expectations, we needed to pull our digital campaigns and regroup.
As it turned out the digital calls received were not all that prosperous. Although there was a volume of calls, they were just not converting at nearly the rate as our TV campaigns.
The digital campaign was like watching a hot air balloon that’s had the plug pulled out.
How could that be? Digital Marketing is the Wave of the Future!
As a leader in the television industry for over 20 years, I found myself asking the same question. TV has always been my lifelong passion. However, I am open and eager to explore new ways of reaching people through the magic of digital media.
Thus, we jumped headfirst into creating consumer-driven digital campaigns to enhance our direct response pay-per-call TV advertising. I quickly found that the view looks very different from that angle than I ever could have imagined.
What Went Wrong?
Here’s where things get interesting. Conversations with callers appeared to be promising. They seemed interested in buying from our clients, yet…hardly any of them actually made a purchase. This naturally begs the question, why? In some cases, it may have been that the messaging on the banners, landing pages, and other digital materials that weren’t resonating, leaving callers confused about what our clients offered.
Next, callers were not educated enough about what our clients offered, having only spent approximately 2 seconds with the digital creative vs. the .30 to .60 seconds with the spots we were running on TV.
Many online publishers create their own ads, which can inspire some very creative and effective approaches, but also increases the chance that the message will get diluted.
With direct response TV advertising, this scenario is prevented by the fact that all callers are responding to a single creative advertisement, which can be used by all of our media partners.
One client’s experience can be examined as a case study of how this pans out in real terms. When the client attempted to use digital marketing to promote their service, roughly 50% of their calls progressed to the interview.
The digital percentage was consistent with all of their other media advertising campaigns, including television. However, of the 50% that were interviewed, only a very small percentage—approximately one-tenth of those enrolled. Again and again, this pattern was observed in other campaigns we examined. Calls seemed good, yet sales were weak. Why?
Television Is an Up Front Medium
What’s the biggest difference between someone seeing a product or service online compared to seeing it on television?
Consider the process when a viewer responds to a TV commercial – by actively calling the toll free number. The product already gets credibility because it’s been on television.
Most importantly with DRTV, the viewer is engaged on the phone with the advertiser directly, in real time. This is live TV inbound lead generation, in action.
People didn’t plan to buy anything when they began watching television, but the commercial compelled them to call. They are interested. They are motivated. They are an inbound lead to the advertiser.
After all, they are speaking exclusively with the advertiser, who has an opportunity to present the product’s or service’s benefits and get a sale before the consumer speaks with a competitor. These factors play a pivotal role in conversions, and the proof has been undeniable in our case.
Online, they are likely to be actively shopping. Once they look at one product, they will inevitably start surfing and shopping around for competitors. Then they’ll begin comparing prices, reviews, aesthetics and other elements that factor into their purchasing decision. We’ve found that, even when these leads convert, the client’s profit margins are lower due to this “price shopping.”
All products start on a level playing field unless they’ve been featured on television, which creates awareness, greater credibility, leading to an advantage over digital.
Television Advertising Continues to Lead the Way
In my late teens, I took a job selling Electrolux vacuum cleaners door-to-door. Yes, I’m admitting it here—I was that kid knocking on your door trying to sell you something right when you were in the middle of dinner! It was hard work but also a lot of fun.
One thing became rapidly apparent–the biggest obstacle was getting in the door. Once I was allowed into a home to showcase a machine or to shampoo a carpet, 70% of the battle had already been won. Inviting me into their home, meant that:
- a) they trusted me
- b) they liked me
- c) they were open to the possibility of a purchase
The same rules apply with inbound television calls. Consumers view an ad in the comfort of their home, they’ve shown their interest by responding, and they’ve clearly demonstrated a tendency to make an impulse purchase by calling in response to a television commercial. So when you get a call in response from a TV commercial, you have a pretty ideal buyer on the phone. This holds even truer for long-form, or infomercial calls.
At National Media Connection
We will continue to create digital campaigns to accompany our television campaigns, and the digital world will continue to evolve.
Yet we know outside of the television industry, few are aware of the persisting power of television advertising.
This is quietly underscored by the many advertisers who are moving their budgets away from digital and back to television.
Digital marketing may be the wave of the future, but for the highest ROI TV advertising still wins.
National Media connection is a full service nationwide direct response advertising agency. At NMC we deliver live TV lead generation on a pay per call basis. We are RESULTS Driven!