Improving the performance of marketing spend
Feefo is a UK-based ratings and review company focused on collecting and processing genuine customer reviews. As well as collecting reviews, they offer powerful AI and review management tools to make strategic business decisions based on consumer feedback.
Feefo wanted to establish if there were efficiencies, cost savings, or changes of approach that could bring them more return for their media spend. Additionally, was it possible to grow a stronger quality of leads and find a better way to accommodate their SMB and Enterprise audiences. The contract was focused purely on performance marketing channels, predominantly search but also display and social ads.
No single source of truth for measurement
The number of quicker closing customer leads had been waning over time. These were usually driven by SMB audiences, but in the past few years, competitive pressures from Trustpilot, Google My Business and a raft of new competitors had meant it was harder (and more expensive) to compete.
During an audit of their ad accounts, we also identified that their data collection and processing was also an issue to understanding the true performance of digital marketing activity, and it was imperative we addressed this first. Feefo were using a combination of ad platform data, Google Analytics and Hubspot, but there wasn’t a single source of truth. The criteria for leads and MQLs had also changed over time thus making year on year comparisons and forecasting harder.
Like many B2B businesses, Feefo’s keyword themes attract not only business professionals, but also end users looking for company reviews and to submit their own reviews. We established that there were a lot of end users filling in demo request forms when in fact they wanted to leave a review. This behaviour was further skewing analysis of customer acquisition performance as just measuring form fills didn’t necessarily indicate success, sometimes the very opposite!
Marrying up data sources & establishing benchmarks to rely on
It was imperative we understood the real picture of performance which required extensive analysis into past as well as present data. We also had to establish a robust reporting methodology to bring the true results to life for senior stakeholders and educate them on the situation. This required access to CRM data which gave a better view of lead/MQL quality as well as true customer numbers.
To make analysis easier we introduced new campaign tracking parameters for Hubspot, and implemented additional goal tracking to identify end users and exclude them from inflating lead numbers. Additionally, we included lead quality data from the sales team into performance calculations.
To help with this, we:
- identified where media spend should be turned off on non-converting search terms;
- introduced commercially focused ad text to deter clicks from end users;
- experimented with landing pages to improve conversion rates;
- at times went bold with bid reductions to prevent overpaying when competitors attacked brand terms.
Some prospecting display activity was completely turned off as it was not shown to have any positive impact on lead volume, whether last action or assisted. This saved the business tens of thousands of pounds which was a great win. New display activity was introduced targeting high performing search segments, improved remarketing audiences and refreshed ad creative.
Social ads were updated in line with new content resources using lead generation forms to achieve low cost, top of funnel leads. We also created new campaigns which aligned sector specific content guides with sector targeted LinkedIn audiences for maximum relevancy and cost efficiency.
In this project we were particularly....
With our thorough approach and understanding of best practice data analysis, and reviewing their strategy from an objective perspective, we were able to report with confidence and candour the specific areas where Feefo’s strategy wasn’t working. The key challenges they faced were that historically the business had been working to the wrong numbers, and as a consequence were not necessarily making the best decisions on their media investment and keyword selection.
However difficult a conversation it was, we knew we had to share the results honestly with the client in order to steer their strategic decisions in the right direction, and to ensure improvements in their future performance. Ultimately, we had uncovered that prior to Adido working on the account, lead volumes had not been healthy, too many end users had been caught up in the analysis, and clicks had been bought at times when they shouldn’t, resulting in skewed conversions.
Through our expert ability to empower the client, Feefo were able to effectively revisit their marketing plans and change the course of their strategy based on our informed analysis and candid reporting. And although the change of plans has taken them in a different direction, we are proud to have been able to have such a notable impact towards their future performance.
Improved efficiencies and insights
Early on it was clear that the real challenge for this client was to calculate and evaluate the commercial reality of their media investment. Without this insight it was hard to scale performance marketing activities, and also assess whether it was worth it.
In a year, we had reduced the search media spend by 25%, improved the conversion rate on ‘better leads’ by 20% and lowered the cost per MQL by 12%. We also achieved a 13% reduction in cost per customer and got closer to their target CPA without significantly lowering the volume of customers.
The social ad activity regularly achieved CPLs below £30, whilst display campaigns started to actually generate leads, and for an acceptable CPL.
During the course of working with us it was clear that the business needed to invest in other areas of marketing more heavily to hit their ambitious goals. As a result of getting to grips with their data, the business is now better educated on the history of its data, and what can be achieved through paid search. More importantly, we have also given Feefo the confidence to set the right targets for the future, using the performance benchmarks we established.