Ai Media Group is a digital marketing agency that specializes in defining, managing, and executing online marketing strategies for brands. Their goal is to help clients see the real-time digital behavior of their customers and the underlying facts depicting the buyer’s journey in order to provide exponential growth in both their sales results and their customer engagement satisfaction. The agency prides itself on using cutting-edge technology to provide clients with real-time information and immediate results.
Since its inception, Ai Media has focused on tying together a user’s web journey and phone calls from click to conversions across networks and multiple touchpoints. “We have a slogan of ‘track leads not clicks’, and it’s been our lifeblood from the get-go,” said Joel Citron, vice president, advertising technologies at Ai Media Group. “There’s more data than just the click, and all that must be taken into consideration when we’re planning and optimizing marketing campaigns.”
In order to have a full view of the customer journey, they needed to get keyword-level attribution for phone calls, but the call tracking platform they were using could not provide that. Personal loan provider 1st Franklin Financial was using Invoca when it became an Ai Media client, and this became an opportunity for the agency to prove the value of Invoca in the real world.
There’s more data than just the click, and all that must be taken into consideration when we’re planning and optimizing marketing campaigns.
Joel Citron, Vice President, Advertising Technologies at Ai Media Group
Ai Media Group takes a math-based approach to measure full-funnel attribution, create cost efficiencies, and improve results for its clients. It is able to accomplish this with its patented, in-house technology that is integrated with commercially-available marketing technology. When Ai Media began working with 1st Franklin Financial, it was using a call tracking solution that could not provide the data required to get end-to-end attribution data for its clients. “We had program-level attribution for phone calls, but we did not know what phone numbers or even which ad was actually driving the calls,” said Citron. “It used statistical and probabilistic modeling for attribution, which isn’t really attribution, it’s an assumption. We needed real, deterministic, one-to-one attribution data to take marketing attribution to the next level for our clients.”
In addition to the limited attribution data, their previous call tracking platform also made setting up campaigns for clients with multiple physical locations an incredibly time-consuming process. In the case of 1st Franklin Financial, setting up the platform would have involved setting up thousands of extensions in the IVR in order to route the calls to the correct location and get attribution for the campaign that drove the call. “It was impossible to maintain and we had to involve support to make changes for us,” said Citron. “We have to be nimble and we can’t wait two weeks for customer support to make routing changes for us, we need to be able to do it ourselves and do it quickly.”
Since 1st Franklin Financial was already using Invoca and Ai Media was vetting the platform at the time, it was the perfect opportunity to see how Invoca would work. “Part of the transition process was that we had to make sure that Invoca would work for all of our clients. We decided to use 1st Franklin as one of our test cases because they were new to paid search, had minimal historical data, and call tracking and call-driven leads were the most important metrics for them.”
Choosing the right technology matters. Invoca’s data-driven platform makes all the difference in maximizing ROI for our clients.
Joel Citron, Vice President, Advertising Technologies at Ai Media Group
In its test case with 1st Franklin Financial, Ai Media needed to route calls to 319 branches across 6 states with no centralized call center, tie closed loans to the specific marketing channel that drove it, all while working within a budget that was smaller than most of 1st Franklin’s competitors. Working closely with Invoca and 1st Franklin, they produced record-breaking results.
Simplifying call routing and reporting with Invoca
One of the reasons companies like 1st Franklin Financial choose an agency is because they trust that the agency will partner with the best technologies available. When Ai Media took on 1st Franklin Financial it seemed like a simple ad buy. But when they brought up the complexities of routing and tracking calls to the different branches, Ai Media knew that they needed a call tracking partner that could provide the right data and make the process more efficient. “Luckily, we partnered with Invoca, and it allowed us to get more cost-effective buys to help 1st Franklin Financial stay competitive,” said Citron.
1st Franklin has over 300 locations in a relatively small geographic location and no call center. Working with Invoca and Ai Media, they were able to structure their campaigns to run efficiently, automatically route calls to the right branches, attribute marketing spend to each marketing channel, and tie closed loans back to each branch.
They had a marketing list that had over 4,000 Zip Codes that they marketed to, along with the branches that calls from those Zip Codes should be routed to. “We were just wowed when 1st Franklin told us all we had to do was upload the lookup table spreadsheet into Invoca and the platform would handle verifying the caller location and routing the calls.”
Optimizing client campaigns in real time
Now Ai Media not only knows that a phone call came in, but they’re also able to measure what Zip Code the caller entered, what branch got the phone call, what network the call came from, click IDs, ad IDs, and IP addresses of the users. They tied Invoca into their proprietary attribution platform where they track in-network ad spend and web data to put online and offline data in one cohesive view. “Because of this, we are able to roll everything up and structure our campaigns so they could perform best and then report granularly back to the client.”
With this data, Ai Media’s operations team can now optimize campaigns for branches that are getting the most phone calls in real time. “This kind of real-time optimization seems simple, but a lot of agencies out there aren’t doing it because they don't partner with a technology and company like Invoca,” said Citron. Invoca also allows them to see which keywords are driving leads so they can spend more on the right keywords and easily and accurately calculate return on ad spend.
Invoca delivers results for the client and the agency
“We had very little experience in digital marketing, so from the client perspective, all of this really blew our minds,” said Mary Roberts, senior director of marketing at 1st Franklin. “We were turning on the online channel for the first time and clearly underestimated what we were going to get out of it.” Using Invoca, Ai Media and 1st Franklin exceeded their campaign goals by 45% out of the gate. They were also able to lower their cost per lead by 150%. “It is very new and exciting to have tangible results to show to the branches and to deliver new leads while learning about who they are.”
During its digital transformation, 1st Franklin’s marketing team is bringing in a lot of new technology, and Ai Media and Invoca have shown the results that help them sell it up to the leadership team. “We are now able to prove the value of digital marketing and the things you can learn from it to leadership, and now they're more open to using things like YouTube and digital display, which seems like nuts and bolts, but believe me, this is a huge deal for us,” said Roberts.
Because of the results and ease of use that Ai Media experienced with Invoca and 1st Franklin, they have moved all of their call tracking and analytics off their old platform and onto Invoca. “It's now a well-oiled machine compared to our prior call tracking provider,” said Citron. Previously, just adding a new branch Zip Code into the platform could take weeks, and with Invoca, they are able to make changes in minutes.
“Choosing the right technology matters. Invoca’s data-driven platform makes all the difference in maximizing ROI for our clients.”
- 172% increase in leads
- 30% increase in online applications
- 150% decrease in overall cost-per-lead
- Exceeded campaign goals by 45%
We are bringing in a lot of new technology at 1st Franklin, and Ai Media and Invoca have shown the results that help us sell it to the leadership team.