Marketing Works Today

Integrated Digital Marketing & PR Consulting from Brown Ltd.

Be afraid, Madison Avenue. Be very afraid.

The best Super Bowl Ads were done in-house.

That seems to be the discovery “in the aftermath of the crowded, frenetic advertising bowl that took place inside Super Bowl XLIV on Sunday. Among those commercials consistently deemed most effective, memorable and talked-about, many were created or suggested by consumers — or produced internally by the sponsors — rather than the work of agency professionals.”  NY Times

I’ll never forget having lunch with George Lucas in the 1980’s and listening to him tell us that “everyone was going to become a producer” because of desktop multimedia.  He was right.

I had to put up with “In-house isn’t good enough” from a lot of naysayers at IBM, Motorola, DiVosta Homes, Pulte Homes, and Minto – where I ran in-house agencies. 

The silly charge never made any sense:

We launched multimedia and the Internet at IBM from our Boca studios, Nextel from Motorola in Ft. Lauderdale, a new DiVosta brand that has 86% brand awareness (a household name in its market), a $9.8 million savings in the first year of going in-house at Pulte Homes in Florida with an increase of 2,400% in qualified leads, and a jump in sales revenue from $8 million to over $71 million at Minto Communities – all done in-house during a real estate market disaster.

Our in-house Motorola agency even produced the campaign that helped win “Product of the Decade” from Business Week Magazine.
See the i1000 smartphone to the right and Click Here for “Since the Beginning of Time” media.

To see more YouTube examples of our work: Click Here

To see some examples of E-Marketing and print, see the portfolio on the right side of this blog.

In addition, the cost of running an in-house agency & studio, including people, equipment, and media buying vs. using agencies is about one-third.  The other two-thirds is either profit to the company or additional media buying flexibility to really penetrate a market or extend the brand.

In-house is thought of as a dirty little secret among marketing, PR, and advertising executives. Many times “in-house isn’t good enough” relates more to the failure of the executive not knowing how to run an agency or they really like all the free perks and lunches they get from agencies.

The work and results speaks for itself.  See the rest of the NY Times article here:  Do It Yourself Super Ads


Filed under: Advertising, Content Development, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

15 Minutes. That’s Your Response Time-Frame for Web Leads

When I first joined DiVosta Homes in Florida, they had a rudimentary website. They gathered webleads for their 15 new home communities around Florida via email, through the headquarters office, then sent the lead to the sales center, and the VP of Sales had a policy that a person from each sales center had 24 hours to answer each lead.

It sounded reasonable, for last century policy; but, they got poor results in converting those leads to sales.

If the lead happened on a Friday after 5 p.m., the sales person wouldn’t get the lead until Monday morning, and then had until Tuesday to answer.  The prospect was long gone by then.

I came from the Internet world at IBM (wired) and Motorola (wireless). Early on I realized that the web is open 24 hours a day.

When I re-launched the DiVosta brand and website, I made sure leads went right to the sales center 24 hours a day. In addition, a copy came to me. 

I gave the sales center 15 minutes to engage the prospect. Not just answer the weblead, but call (first choice if a number was offered) or email and help the prospect immediately. The sales conversion rate went through the roof.

After hours, I personally responded to each weblead telling them that the sales center was closed but I would have a person contact them from the sales center by 9:15 a.m. when it opened.  I also asked if they needed anything I could help them with immediately.  99% of the time they said they could wait.  I checked at 9:20 to make sure it happened. The reaction we got from customers was amazing.

Imagine how a customer feels when they are still on the Internet and they get a call or email about their request – from a human, anytime day or night. Your brand worth goes way up.

This is important for new home communities AND resales.

I check the sales process for clients now.

You would be shocked that even in this economy, with real estate crashing all around, webleads go unanswered, even though I provide my email, phone number, address, etc..

Recently, I made 30 inquires to web listings, between 2:00 and 3:30 a.m. on a Thursday.  I couldn’t believe that 21 did not respond at all. A total of 8 responded via email 1 to 7 days later. There must be plenty of business out there for all those agents not to answer my weblead.

One, yes I said one (1), responded at 3:30 a.m. that same morning and asked if she could call me that morning and when would be a convenient time.  She was my last inquiry of the night.  Imagine how impressed I was.

No other agent called on the phone at anytime.  What?!!!

When a customer provides that much personal information: name, phone number, email, and address… that’s a hot lead and should be treated like one.  Needless to say, the agent that contacted me within 15 minutes in the middle of the night got a bonus from her broker.  She was both helpful and hungry and it showed.

Technology can help. I wouldn’t suggest an automatic email response. That feels too much like “Customer Care” and humans know when machines answer. It feels fake.

Smart phones and business processes must be in place, and used, so a human can make contact.  After all, we’re talking about selling something that costs 6 figures or more.  Customers want immediate action. 

When you engage fast they feel important. Get those webleads turned into emails or text messages and send them to smart phones! And then get right with the prospect. Your business depends on it.

The sales staff that responds first, many times gets the sale – and even if they don’t, they get a brand reputation that is better than at least 29 others.

Filed under: Lead Generation, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Marketing Works Today

This blog is to help you learn how to connect with customers. The goal is to show you how to get the most qualified leads, traffic, relationships, and sales for the lowest cost/customer. I'll write and aggregate content that relates to the goal. You're welcome to subscribe, comment, and post. Send me your news tips!

What’s In A Title?

I've had a lot of titles [Director of Marketing, Communications Director, Advertising Director, Multimedia Producer, Managing Editor, Reporter, Copywriter]; but, I approach every project as a digital producer... what does the audience need and how can I deliver it most effectively and for the lowest cost?

Sometimes I write with pictures or video, sometimes with words. I always keep the goal in mind: sales, leads, traffic, a better brand image or awareness, or just a really good story, etc.

Yeah I create content for money. But you'll see from my background that I'm way better at making money for others than I am for myself.

I wish I had 1%. I'd be surfing with my kids all the time now.

Contact me and I'll make some for you.

Mike Brown

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I have 8 years experience setting up, writing, and managing small business and simple product campaigns ($100/week Google Adwords) and large business campaigns with multiple divisions and product lines (up to $20,000/week in Google Adwords – more than $1.1 billion in annual sales). Contact me to create your campaign!

R. Michael Brown
Marketing Consultant, Public Relations Consultant, Freelance Writer: West Palm Beach, Florida

"I help organizations increase sales, and pump up the value of their brand, using media, for the lowest cost per customer."

Digital Marketing and Public Relations consultant, writer, and producer with over 20 years experience launching brands like DiVosta Homes, IBM Multimedia, Nextel, Motorola business and government sector, and SunFest Jazz Festival.

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