Mindful ad spend and engagement with David Lambert

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In this last part of our discussion with David Lambert, David reveals the best rule of thumb for thinking about ad spend and how to identify an ad budget. 

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Jill McKenna: Hello, everybody. Thanks for joining us today. I am Jill McKenna. I’m the Campaign Marketing Manager here at Ruby, and I am truly delighted today to be speaking with my friend and colleague David Lambert, who works with us at Ruby. David, can you say a little bit about what you do for us and your background?

David Lambert:
Hi, Jill. I take on all of the paid media here at Ruby. So I do all of our digital advertising spend, Google Analytics, Google ads, Facebook ads.

So mostly anything that we do from a paid perspective, I’m involved in one way or the other when it involves marketing, and then really trying to tie that into long-term goals and optimization and efficiency. So that’s where I spend the majority of my time, as well as helping some of our systems connect and talk to each other.

Jill McKenna:
When you’re meeting with new clients, are there one or two or three things that even if they’re not going to work with you, you want to impart upon them? Like, “Hey, these are the things you really need to be doing, even if you don’t work with me?” What would those things be?

David Lambert:
It is always finding your hub. You need to have a dedicated space for people to look at you and look at the services you do. Whether that’s your website, whether that is your social profile, you have to understand if I’m telling people to check me out, see how I can help you, you need to be sending them somewhere and then that needs to be the hub of your operations or your marketing.

Generally it’s your website. You want to have your campaigns funnel into this one spot, so that you’re really proud of that one spot that you’re sending the vast majority of people that you interact with. And it’s a really good starting place for a lot of companies because they don’t necessarily think of it in that manner. But you know, your emails are all being driven to one spot. Your social networks are being driven to one spot. Your advertising is being brought to one spot.

And then getting that messaging right. I think that the five second rule is really helpful to people understanding you need to communicate something very, very quickly or else they could be lost in the shuffle, which is fine, but you really want to put that best foot forward: This is who I am. This is what I do. This is how I help you. And generally you only get a sentence, a couple of words, and maybe a little context paragraph underneath, but it might be two sentences. As much as you can whittle down your value proposition, what you do and what you want to help people be doing, boil that down to one or two sentences and then showcase that. That’s where you stand, so that’s super important because if I’m a potential customer and I hit your site and I don’t know exactly what you do, if I’m confused, that might be the only chance that I had eyes on you and I might never come back.

The likelihood of me coming back or digging into your website more is if I understand what you do and how that could help me specifically. And then you kind of build out the rest of this stuff to fortify that and help prop that up. But having those, if you have one customer, what’s the two sentences you would tell them now? I think that is super powerful and then creating, starting to think about your operations as a hub, like your website is generally that, because we don’t have as much especially now brick and mortar experiences. You want to turn your website into your store.

Jill McKenna:
That makes sense. For people just starting out or tracking their ads and their marketing spend, do you have favorite programs or software or what do you recommend for maintaining and monitoring your ad efforts?

David Lambert:
So when you’re first starting out, you’re going to be utilizing the native dashboards. So you’re going to be utilizing Google does a really good job of showing you everything that’s going on. They’ve improved vastly in the last eight years that I’ve been using them.

Once you get up to the system, it’s easy to dig into a lot of insights there. Same with Facebook. Unless you’re doing a lot of advertising, you’re just going to be utilizing those platforms and hopefully you have something on your website where you’re able to track web traffic or these other programs. It’s very common to have Google Analytics on your website where you’re able to see where people are coming from, but as you get more refined, you’ll generally want a customer relationship management software, CRM, where you’re putting all these leads into a database and attributing them to certain efforts, but it gets more refined and it’s definitely a lift from a software management perspective.

For a small business, I wouldn’t say that that they may or may not have a CRM. They may not have a person with that aptitude. It’d be really utilizing the dashboards and relying on that information and as you mature, and these are successful, then you’ll want to have more analytics set up on your website, whether you pay for someone to set it up for you so you can easily read dashboards. But to have that insight and that feedback, it does become important, especially as you start to invest more and more into your business and into advertising.

Jill McKenna:
Great. Is there anything else you’d like to impart on people who are so wondering how to go about advertising before we finish up today?

David Lambert:
I’d say I find advertising these super exciting. It’s also, nerve-wracking when you’re first starting out because you know, you worked hard for that hundred dollars. So I would take it seriously when you’re deciding to spend money for someone to look at your site. So, that’s always the test I try to give someone when they’re talking. They say, “Hey, I want to run Google ads, or I want to run Facebook ads, or I need to be all over Twitter.” So, I like to come with them with the anecdote of, how much would you spend for someone to look at your website?

That really puts it in a good lens of, “Oh, I haven’t thought about it that way.” Like, I don’t want to spend a dollar for someone to look at my website. I don’t think it’s ready. I don’t think me giving someone a dollar to visit it, would end up in a sale or a lead.

When you start to put it in that perspective, I think you get much more critical about what you want to say about the look. If you’re set, if you’re willing to spend 50 bucks for someone to click, it’s been five seconds on your site, make that five seconds impactful and really try to look at it in that lens and how am I communicating to this person? Who is this person? What are they really looking for?

Jill McKenna:
And of course you don’t want to spend $50 to get somebody on your site if your average sale or your average service is $65.

David Lambert:
Exactly.

Jill McKenna:
It’s probably not going to be your best effort. But like you said, like just monitoring it and dialing it in, it does become a puzzle. I think that one thing I see is people launch efforts, and then they feel intimidated and they don’t follow up with how it’s actually doing and then they call it a failure. But really it just needs a little bit of babysitting and tending and tweaking.

David Lambert:
Yeah, so know your numbers. That’s a great point. If it might not make sense for the $50 person to visit, if your sales aren’t there, but knowing if you sell to your customer one time or five times, if you know, most people buy five products. They come back to you several times—use the first sale. Like, you break even on the first sale. They spend 50 bucks on your site, spend 50 bucks to get in there and then they’ll, as you kind of push them to buy more, then that becomes a profitable customer for you, that’s a really good way to offset it or to think about your funnel and your numbers. And then, yeah, it’s off to the races.

Jill McKenna:
It is. I find it exciting too. Thank you so much, David. Thank you for your time and all of your thoughts and your energy and you can reach out to us at the marketing team at Ruby, if you’d like to hear more thoughts or hear more from David. We are more than willing to help out with ideas and experiences that we’ve been through. Thank you.

David Lambert:
Of course. It was a pleasure. Reach out if you have any questions. We’re happy to help in any capacities. Hopefully this was helpful to all you.

Jill McKenna:
That’s marketing@ruby.com—and one of us will field it and get back to you all. Thank you so much, David. Thanks for your time.

David Lambert:
Great. Thank you.

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