In-house Marketing Initiative

digital strategy

Testing and exploring the opportunities for setting up internal marketing efforts

Within the framework of an internal marketing initiative, our team carried out an investigation to reveal the efficiency of in-house marketing and affiliate marketing.

Launch of Internal Marketing Initiative

Problem statement

Relying on affiliate marketing can sometimes be very effective. Still, it can also turn out to be more expensive for the business, drying out the potential future budgets for in-house marketing initiatives. One of our clients in the lead-gen business wanted to investigate if having in-house marketing can be more cost-efficient rather than re-selling traffic generated from the affiliates.

 

The biggest challenge of this initiative is to build stable in-house marketing traffic through different platforms to overpass the already functioning affiliate traffic while making the internal efforts more cost-efficient.

 

We started the work with the client and, in the first  2 months set up the initial 2 platforms – Gemini Native and Google Search - as the beginning of an internal marketing initiative. 

Planning

In-house marketing efforts can bring results only in the case of a complete understanding of business and its needs. Hence, our team dug into all available and related business aspects and took into consideration all the requirements of our client.

 

A full-dive initial input data analysis aimed to reveal any insights that could be gathered on such aspects as target audience, publishers, prior tests, and their results, as well as rough ballparks for the expected outcomes on the upcoming tests.

 

Having analyzed all the provided data and identified the potential directions for the client, our main outcome in this stage was the creation of an extensive test backlog to keep our focus on the most important items on each test per each platform integration stage.

 

The test backlog includes all the possible directions, such as:

  • audience targeting tests (email retargeting, MRT, SRT, pixel, lookalike, predictive, 3P integrations, location, etc.),
  • content tests (landing pages, landing page A/B test, flow A/B test),
  • creative tests (copies and visuals).

Execution

Step 1 – Market trends, competitor, and keyword analysis

A complete market trend and competitor analysis have been performed to identify where our client’s business/product can fit, what are our strong and weak points, who do we compete with, etc. using tools such as Semrush, Ubersuggest, Mangools, ahrefs, Google Analytics, Adbeat, Moat, Adplexity, Google Keyword Planner, etc.

Deep-dive keyword analysis has been performed to identify what the “language” of our potential clients is, as well as get an understanding of our target keywords' difficulty and popularity.

Step 2 – Account, conversion, and tracking setup

After gathering all the data needed, we proceeded with the account and conversion rules setups. For further reporting and optimizations, it is essential to have all the conversion pixels firing correctly, giving the platform a precise understanding of your desired conversion.

No less important is to precisely identify all the tracking parameters needed for the further reporting process and have them correctly set up.

Step 3 – Copies and visuals 

We all know that to-the-point copies and visuals drastically affect CTR and - why not – conversion rates. Addressing the target audience’s needs in the most personalized way increases the chances of converting a user into a lead.

So, keeping in mind the test backlog and findings from the analysis, we came up with the requirements and recommendations of copies and visuals for the client’s creative team.

Step 4 – Launch, optimizations, and reporting

After gathering all the data needed, we launched the first tests on the Yahoo Native and Google Search platforms.

Letting the systems learn on our conversions for a couple of weeks, we started the continuous optimization process, aiming to have more efficient advertising by decreasing the CPCs through increasing CTRs, decreasing the CPLs through increasing the CTLs, getting to the breakeven point, and finally aiming for the highest profitability.

All this couldn’t be performed without having a proper reporting set up from the very beginning of the tests. Matching the cost and lead data on the most granular level available through the platform allowed us to deep dive into the performance of each campaign, ad, or keyword. The goal of the reporting was to identify the most profitable tests for the company and cut the underperformers to maximize the final margin.

Conclusion

Setting up an in-house marketing initiative is a huge process full of challenges, trial, and error, back-and-forth communications, etc. It takes time to establish and maintain a profitable lead-gen cycle through finding the correct niche and messaging and, afterward, to reach the desired profitability levels.

Though the results were not fully meeting the expectations, they were satisfying enough that the client decided to continue testing and exploring the opportunities for setting up internal marketing efforts that would be sustainable and serve as a basis to scale up - all this being done in close cooperation with the data team to ensure data-driven planning of marketing campaigns for further tests and correct evaluation of test results.

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