Whilst watching a recent episode of Modern Family it dawned on us that it seemed to perfectly encapsulate the tussle that is still so often present in the minds of some of the clients we encounter when they come to our digital marketing agency Birmingham, at the start of their digital marketing journey.
At AIM Internet, we work with the full spectrum of client industries but, being based in the West Midlands, we naturally work with many more “traditional” businesses from the manufacturing and engineering sectors.
In our experience as a digital marketing agency Birmingham…
More often than not, we find that these sorts of companies, have little or no experience of the powers of digital marketing. This is not a criticism. They’ve either just traditionally relied on repeat orders from their contracts and perhaps had one other salesperson out on the road bringing in new business.
To them, they’ve never needed a website, let alone weighed up the pros and cons of Pay-Per-Click adverts vs Remarketing adverts, or looked into all the other sorts of digital marketing on offer!
Online Marketing is “Out There” Marketing:
The whole concept of this “out there” notion of “online marketing” has an intangibility to them which puts them off.
They are more familiar with Lean Manufacturing theories and working with concrete, logical and logistical processes such as Six Sigma. Coming from this way of working, the power of the internet to drive sales, increase profits and reach more customers, can all seem a bit pie-in-the-sky.
They prefer practical, cost-effective, and straightforward methods of growing their businesses.
None of this abstract internet fluff!
In the new Modern Family episode in question, the Phil/Haley story line sees Phil Dunphy and a “Real Estate Agent” unable to sell a house because someone died in it. At the same time, his daughter Hayley has set up her own social media company working on commission. Phil decries her for doing this, so to prove a point she gets her friends to circulate the ‘weird house for sale’ across their network and gets lots of visitors, using a ‘flash mob’ principle with ‘rich’ people making money online using a variety of models viewing the house.
The episode basically showcased affiliate marketing vs traditional sales models.
It showed that they are basically the same.
Affiliate marketing used effectively is just commission based selling using digital techniques. It’s a technique we use to great success here at our digital marketing agency Birmingham.
Making it work online
The key to the success of this model is the gross margin in the product being sold. Provided the digital marketer can sell the products by buying relevant traffic for less than the gross margin available, a profit is made:
- A £100 product at 50% Gross Margin leaves a £50 per product budget for the Digital Marketer to sell to break even.
- The more effective the digital marketing, the more money he or she makes.
At our digital marketing agency Birmingham, we find this method to work really well for our clients. And, what’s more, the online world makes the process transparent – and therefore straightforward – because the website provides analytics and conversion data.
By identifying products with enough margin and combining those with an audience who wants to purchase that product, the affiliate marketer can make lots of money online.
Translating this process offline is actually harder than you might expect
In our experience as a digital marketing agency Birmingham, we find that large corporates have sales models that are too complex and small businesses simply don’t measure where their leads and sales are coming from.
From our work with hundreds of clients over the years, we would estimate that as much as 90% of businesses don’t measure where their business comes from!
Seems crazy, yes?
We think so too. Which is why, as part of our proven test-and-measure approach, it’s the first thing we implement when working with a client.
By back fitting data into the sales cycle, we are basically replicating the affiliate marketing model.
At AIM Internet, we identify the value of your leads, the value of your sales, the source of those sales, and then apply a gross margin figure.
That model not only gives us a budget to work with online but is a really tangible way of explaining to clients how to make the online marketing model work to grow sales.
Over time clients realise that if a £10,000 spend generates £100,000 in sales, at a 50% gross margin, this delivers a 5 to 1 return on investment.
The client is then able to continue to invest until capacity or critical mass are reached, all the while safe in the knowledge that a profit is being made.
And, it’s a much more cost effective way of doing things.
This results driven approach is what we do best. And we know it works. If you want to read for yourself some of the feedback from our clients, please feel free to visit our Testimonials page.
AIM Internet are experts at helping SMEs succeed at digital marketing, website design, and social media. We’re a friendly and knowledgeable team. We’ve been doing this for over 20 years, so rest assured we’ll take the fear out of online marketing and leave the jargon at the door. If you’d like your website to become a selling machine, please call us on 0870 062 8760 or visit our contact us page.
You may also like to read our previous blog post on how we use a smart organic search strategy to get our clients on page one of Google.
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