Digital advertising strategies can vary greatly depending on the vertical and target audience. For B2B marketers looking to reach decision-makers at companies, this year has offered up some changes to targeting strategies and best practices.
We sat down with Lisa Salvatore, Senior Manager of Paid Media at CallTrackingMetrics, to better understand how they put together digital advertising strategies for their company and how it has changed in the last year.
Q: Let’s start with an explanation of your role at CallTrackingMetrics.
Lisa Salvatore, Senior Manager of Paid Media: At CallTrackingMetrics, I am responsible for strategizing and executing our paid advertising efforts across multiple channels to drive new leads and customers by targeting business decision-makers in the market for an all-in-one call tracking and contact center automation solution, backed by marketing attribution, to align with their team and to deliver a personalized customer experience.
Q: From your perspective, what is the benefit of having an in-house digital advertising solution at CallTrackingMetrics?
LS: There are many benefits, including having a direct line to all departments within the company, which allows me to make better ad buying and targeting decisions. For example, I can get feedback from our Sales team to understand what product features are most important to our prospects and what attracted them to CallTrackingMetrics. When Marketing and Sales teams are aligned, especially in B2B, conversion rates increase, and so does overall revenue.
Additionally, I use our product in much the same way as many of our customers, especially for lead source tracking and attribution. This also has many benefits for being in-house, such as being able to share feedback as a user with our product team.
Q: For CallTrackingMetrics, what kind of strategies and tactics do you use?
LS: I utilize strategies and tactics to capture the customer at every step along their journey, and what is great about Choozle is I can do so much of that within the platform, from targeting relevant third-party data segments to utilizing our own first-party data, to search retargeting and site retargeting, as well as serving different creative by audience and/or targeting tactics. Coupling my Choozle campaigns with my paid media efforts on other channels like paid search & social, and more helps connect all the dots and effectively reach potential customers. As we head into 2021, I am excited to tap into even more opportunities with Choozle, including ABM, native, audio, and connected TV.
Q: How have your strategies for CallTrackingMetrics changed in 2020 as more employees are working from home?
LS: CallTrackingMetrics, a cloud-based platform, was already perfectly suited to support remote teams, but we have crafted our messaging to be sure we are promoting that effectively and to let prospective customers know how CallTrackingMetrics can help them achieve their business goals and navigate through the challenges brought on by 2020.
Q: Were there any surprises you had throughout the year?
LS: I did notice a few differences this year as it relates to my ad campaigns. I’m not sure I would call them surprises because pretty much everything was a surprise in 2020! I was surprised to see little to no seasonality impacts from our ad traffic and leads and to see qualified leads during what would typically be “off” hours (evenings and weekends).
But it makes sense, and I was prepared because nothing happened as it should have in 2020. We didn’t all head off to summer vacations at the same time, not all children went back to the classroom in September, tens of millions didn’t travel over Thanksgiving, and so many of us are working remotely. It will be interesting to see how this trend continues and the new “normal” in 2021 and beyond.
Q: What are some of the benefits of being able to target specific B2B audiences?
LS: At CallTrackingMetrics, we are pretty much industry agnostic and available in more than 80 countries. There is a use case for almost every type of business in any industry. From an ad targeting perspective, this can be a challenge because casting such a wide net would consume budget very quickly and not provide insightful audience insights. Being able to target specific B2B audiences allows me to narrow our targeting when and how I choose and gain a better understanding of which audiences perform the best.
Q: What are some of the challenges you face when implementing digital advertising for CallTrackingMetrics?
LS: As I mentioned, our targeting options are endless in most cases, making it a challenge to find the right lead at the right time on the right channel. Also, as a growing B2B SaaS product, our first-party data can sometimes be limited in volume. I am always testing new channels and refining the ones that deliver to really find that sweet spot of generating awareness and driving qualified leads for the business.
Q: Do you have any words of wisdom for someone just getting started with digital advertising for B2B?
LS: Yes! First, identify your target audience. You want to spend your budget wisely and effectively by targeting the right users.
Next, as you are evaluating ad channels, consider Choozle. It is great for B2B advertisers, especially if you are just getting started as it does not require lengthy contracts or large spend minimums, and it gives you a lot of control. There is so much you can do and test with Choozle, such as reaching prospective customers where they are across the web. You will gain valuable insights that you can use to optimize your Choozle campaigns and help guide decisions on your other paid channels.
If possible, do not operate your digital advertising strategies in a silo. Instead, surround them with other important tactics, including content marketing, SEO, a strong website, a social media presence, and more. Better landing pages lead to higher conversion rates. With great content, you can build your first-party data from content downloads. Often in B2B, an in-market lead may not know about your company, but is looking for what you offer, and will find you through your content.
Also, get creative with your ad design and use it as an opportunity to tell your brand’s story. Video ads are great for this. And, if your ad reach is low, refresh your ads every few weeks and not every few months. Again, you can accomplish all of this with Choozle!
Lastly: Test, test, test. A channel or ad format you may not have thought would make sense for your business could turn out to be surprisingly effective, sometimes with minimal investment. Yes, business decision-makers are on Facebook, too 🙂
Q: Any final thoughts?
LS: I will admit, when I first launched our Choozle campaigns, I did not know what kind of results to expect. But it didn’t take long to see the impact: Quarter-over-quarter in 2020, our CTR for data and contextual targeting increased 20 percent, and our Retargeting CPA decreased almost 30 percent.
As I test new products and targeting offerings from Choozle and continue to optimize our campaigns, I see performance improvements, and I am excited to see where this takes us in 2021.
I encourage all B2B advertisers to consider adding Choozle to their paid channel mix because, let’s be honest, after 2020, we can all use a performance boost in 2021!