How has Trace Media Marketing performed so far?
Their work has been successful. In the first three to six months, there was a learning curve. They had to fix some of the previous mistakes that were done, so we didn’t see their efforts at that point. From the second half of the first year, we started to see some strong results, and then Google made a change in their algorithm after about 12 months.
We saw a significant drop-off, but the main thing that really pleased me about Trace Media, and the reason I stayed with them is that they changed their business plan. They hit the brakes and told me that Google made a change. They told me they needed to change their business model because SEO was different than it had been. I told them to take a month or two and return with a plan. They came back with a detailed plan for the next 12 months, created a new reporting source, and outlined what they would focus on each month. They became part of a full marketing plan, rather than just an SEO firm. They do the email blasting, helping with the Web design, landing pages, Google remarketing, and manage our pay-per-click. I agreed to the plan, and we’ve had more conversions in the last two months from the Internet than we’ve ever had in my eight years at A.G. Williams. I’ve been very happy with the most recent success.
Do you have any statistics or metrics to track improvement from the project?
We're getting 20 to 30 conversions per month. In years past, we would have five to 10 conversions. Conversions for me are people who submit an online request for an appointment for an estimate. That is a significant increase. The quality of the leads varies, and they can't control that. I try to analyze that at the end of the month. I usually throw away 30 or 40 percent of them. Many of those are things like a color request or things that we advertise on our website that are not bread-and-butter jobs for us. Any activity to our site is good. I don’t count sales pitches where someone submits a request, trying to sell us paint.
Is there anything unique about them that really makes them stand out, compared to other companies?
Yes, and this is important. Trace Media is the third SEO firm I've worked with. SEO firms have the reputation of taking your money and running. They are great in the beginning, but fall off. I’ve experienced it myself, I’ve researched it online, and I’ve seen other firms experience it. Trace Media came to a point where their work wasn’t as effective as before. Instead of abandoning us as a client, they stuck with it and stayed in communication with me. They are large enough to handle a client like myself, but small enough where I’m dealing with the owner. I get the personal touch from the company as well as constant communication and reporting. They’re a smart team of people that know what they’re talking about. For me, that was very important.
Looking back on the work so far, is there any area that you think they could improve upon or something that you might do differently?
I would have had a face-to-face meeting in the first month, rather than waiting. I didn’t have my first face-to-face meeting for six months, but that was just based on logistics. Looking back, I think I would have forced the issue and had a face-to-face meeting before signing off. That would be the only thing I can think of right now.