Just Call Me?

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by John Sullivan

JGSullivan Interactive

We ran a test with one of our clients where we were trying to track the effectiveness of a Google Local AdWord campaign. We tested in several different markets with different promotions and the results were much better than expected. Suffice it to say that a dollar spent on Google Local Search is the best dollar a brand can spend.

Of course, we learned a few unexpected things along the way and the most surprising was how the dealers handled (or didn’t handle) telephone calls.

On our landing pages we put a tracking phone number that rang into the local dealership but allowed us to count the attempts and even record the telephone calls.

The number of calls that went unanswered was the most surprising, not to even mention what the dealers said once they started talking to the consumers. Now, this was one test in one industry and may be too much to take beyond our test, but I don’t think so.

I think brand sites shouldn’t take much comfort in working with a consumer online and then giving them via the dealer locator the address and phone number of a local dealer.

The takeaway we gathered from our test was it’s in the brands best interest to keep a consumer online for as long as possible giving them as much good information as possible before turning them over to a local dealer.

Practically speaking that means to tell the consumer as much about your product and the dealership as possible online. Most brands are good about product information but fall way short about dealer information. Simple things like address and phone are done but what about hours, credit cards and the most important information of all, local services and promotions?

The more you leave unanswered in the consumers mind the less likely you are to close the deal.

And, Google Local Search really works. We are in the midst of a local advertising revolution where the old tried and true newspaper ad just isn’t working like the good old days.

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