The Virtual CMO

How to Improve Online Lead Generation with Alex Oliveira

August 26, 2021 Eric Dickmann, Alex Oliveira Season 6 Episode 5
The Virtual CMO
How to Improve Online Lead Generation with Alex Oliveira
Show Notes Transcript

In episode 86, host Eric Dickmann interviews Alex Oliveira. Alex is an entrepreneur, marketing innovator, and Host of Dadpreneur Podcast. Throughout his career, Alex has helped generate millions of leads for SMB's and Fortune 500 companies. With his expertise in digital marketing, he also teaches an MBA program at FAU to train Marketing Directors at global corporations. Oliveira’s passion is to help businesses and brands increase leads and sales by building a sustainable marketing strategy that grows revenues for his clients.

The Dadpreneur Podcast is all about transforming challenges into opportunities. As host, Alex aims to help businesses discover what's new and what works in the digital marketing space.  The show tackles the dynamics of family and business and exposes the reality of the digital world to help its viewers show up big.

For show notes and a  list of resources mentioned in this episode, please visit:
https://fiveechelon.com/how-to-improve-online-lead-generation-s6ep5/


A fractional CMO can help build out a comprehensive marketing strategy and execute targeted campaigns designed to increase awareness and generate demand for your business...without the expense of a full-time hire.

The Five Echelon Group - Fractional CMO and strategic marketing advisory services designed for SMBs looking to grow. Learn more at: 

https://fiveechelon.com


Eric Dickmann:

Welcome to The Virtual CMO podcast. I'm your host, Eric Dickmann. In this podcast, we have conversations with marketing professionals who share the strategies, tactics, and mindset you can use to improve the effectiveness of your marketing activities and grow your business. Alex. Hey, welcome to The Virtual CMO Podcast. I'm really glad you could join us today.

Alex Oliveira:

Thanks for having me. I'm excited.

Eric Dickmann:

You know, online, they do that room rater thing where they look at everybody's backward drops and you know, rate it and see how it compares to others. I think yours is going to score pretty highly. That's a nice backdrop you've got there.

Alex Oliveira:

Well the artist is actually my mom. She's an artist, so our house is covered in her art, and the little hearts, we must have like 20 of these, you know, it's like pop art. And then the backdrop is just an actual drop cloth, right? That I got an eBay, so.

Eric Dickmann:

It makes such a difference when you have a background, I'm actually building a studio in a room next to here. Because you know, I've got to up my game there as well. But great to have you on the show today. And I'm excited because we're going to be talking about the topic of lead generation. At which obviously as marketers, lead generation is super important, right? You sort of have those two camps of brand awareness and lead generation, and kind of go together. But I'm curious just as we kind of start out today, what do you see as the state of online marketing right now? Especially as we're coming out of COVID, where companies are starting to spend again. Do you really see people ramping up their investments in lead generation activities?

Alex Oliveira:

I do. Absolutely. You know, but I've seen a shift to more and more calls rather than the sort of evolution of communication in digital marketing and lead gen, especially for many years. Everyone was building the chatbots and leaving it to AI to have those conversations and to bring them down to funnel. And now I'm sort of seeing that bloomerang come back to, we have call centers with people ready to answer phone calls, especially the Fortune 500s and the companies that are running big call centers to sell their products or for customer service, they want calls. That's what they want.

Eric Dickmann:

I think you're absolutely right. I think that there is a lot of great technology that is being introduced that helps with things, but in some ways it pushes you further away from that prospect, right? You're giving them an extra layer to go through almost to qualify them. That may be efficient in some ways, but its not the most personal thing.

Alex Oliveira:

So if you have a chat,, most of the clients that I've worked with, I've always pushed them to do real people chat, right? Not a chat bot. Sure, you can have a chat bot when the business is closed, closing hours, but operational hours, you should have someone on your staff, a customer success manager, an account executive, someone manning that chat, because people have real questions about your products and services. You pay so much to acquire that traffic, they get to your website and then they get these real time lightning fast cookie cutter responses. And it just feels like a knowledge base, which is fine, but that's not a chat, right? So.

Eric Dickmann:

I think there's oftentimes this feeling that you get as a customer prospect that the last thing this company wants to do is actually talk to you. They want you to go through every automated tool that they have instead of engaging with a person. And oftentimes that's the thing you really want to do. You just want to engage with somebody to really ask some questions that only a person can answer. That's right. So a great recent example is my headphones. I won't mention the brand, but I didn't have a good experience, but I had one before, so I said, I liked this headphone. German headphones. I like it. I'm going to buy it. I go to the website. I didn't want to go through a distributor. So I order a directly from them. I understand like supply chain has been disrupted, so it was on back order. So it took like a month, which is fine. The communication was poor. So I finally said, Look, it's been past a month. I'm tracking this thing and it's not getting here, what's going on?

Alex Oliveira:

Three days before they can return an email, just an email. So I call, I call, I get the 800 number. I can't get somebody on the phone, so I tweet them, and I go on their LinkedIn, and do what all of us do these days. And I'm trying to give them every opportunity to talk to a paying customer. You already took my money, I like your product, why won't you talk to me? And of course I had to go deep down into the bottom of the footer to find that other customer service phone number. Why are you making it so hard to talk to me? And I didn't want to return them, so I wanted the had phones, but it's an exception. But will I buy from them again? Probably not, right? Because they're leaving it to this automated process that Amazon is so good at, but Amazon is Amazon. You sort of understand that you're not going to get the best customer service and maybe you don't really need to because their platform is designed for massive amounts of merchandise to move without the need of humans processing it, right?

Eric Dickmann:

I'm so glad you brought that up because as we're talking about lead generation, you know, on this podcast, we talk often about the buyer's journey and people coming in at different points and needing different content to support them in that journey. And one of the things that I see happening often, Is that many companies treat every lead just as a lead. It's not a lead that is an early stage lead or mid stage lead, and oftentimes if there's sales teams that get involved, you know, there's a temptation to push leads over to the sales teams too quickly. And so they look at them and they say, well, this doesn't look like a buyer ready lead. I'm not going to work on that. You've wasted all this money generating leads that then just get lost somewhere in the shuffle. And I think there's a lot of communication that's involved there in terms of how you help these leads at different stages move along that buyer's journey to the next stage. When you're working with clients and talking with people, how do you sort of get that buyer's journey involved and talk to them about the need for different content for different stages?

Alex Oliveira:

Sure. So I go directly to the CFO because that's the guy who cares about the bottom line. And I use the analogy of finance, which I do with my kids. And I do when I mentor high school and middle school kids. Finance is the key to every business. And I know because the first 10 years in a previous business that I had as an entrepreneur, I made all the mistakes, right? I didn't care about my balance sheets or EBITDA, or all of this. And then you realize that that is very important, right? And so you become better at it. And I still lean on my, of course, CPA and bookkeeper, and all the professionals to do it right. But I know how to read those statements. And in digital marketing, people need to do a better job across the company in being able to read that buyer's journey, right? No one is better or more qualified to do that than the CFO who understands the need for data that has a dollar sign next to it. So when I look at the lead, I explain to them it's like money that goes in and money that comes out. So even if you're not thinking about the customer itself, but you're thinking of them as an opportunity to grow revenue, right? That's a number that you should care about. So if I've spent $50 worth of clicks to acquire this one customer, it's a lead, it's a phone call, and a web link inquiry, $50. What are you doing to nurture that $50? Because if I was investing the money in the market right now, I would care about that $50 and I would nurture it right? So if you speak to the CFOs, they typically care, the CEOs they care. But you're right, marketing and sales and customer service, it's sort of like, they live in their own silos. And you definitely have to reverse engineer that follow and say like, look, here's what needs to happen every step of the way. And it's different for every audience. And a good example of that. Eric is meeting your customers where they want to be met. So my example recently was my water heater crapped out. Everyone can relate. You relate to all the things that happened in the house. But it was a week that I was absolutely swamped. We homeschool four kids, my wife was swamped. We're going, you know, I just need to go on one of the marketplaces and find two, three contractors that will come out. And we did that. None of them would come out. Um, Partly because it was COVID, this was about October of last year. But we did find a local contractor on next door who not only was willing to engage the conversation with me during off hours, this was like seven, eight o'clock at night, but via text. So here I am calling these people, they're not getting back to me. I finally find that not only talks to me outside of their business hours, but engaged me in a conversation via text. To the point that installation manager who was talking to me via text was saying, Send me a picture of the water heater, here's what you do, take a picture of

this, that. She was analyzing and troubleshooting the problem, and saying, Oh yeah you need a new water heater. We'll get our guy out there tomorrow. I'll send you a contract right now. We know exactly what you need. And if we get there and it's not the right water heater, of course we'll talk then. Rather than put you off, like others that says a week, two weeks, I'm saying we're not taking

Alex Oliveira:

showers for a week or two weeks guys. And I did try to big box like Lowe's and the others, and that was even harder. Well, my point is here's a small company, and they have about 10 installers, and they get it. Hey, this guy wants to talk to us at 7:00 PM via text everything electronically. And I literally wrote a thank you note to the owner of the company and talked about the lady who, Helen, who we, we, um, um, talked with. I said like, you guys got it right. I'm a marketing guy. And I just got to applaud you. Keep doing that and you're going to grow because your competitors weren't willing to do that. They were saying, I first I got to come out, and I got to do this, then I got to do that, and you're making my life harder. And right now, I just want a replacement water heater.

Eric Dickmann:

I love the way you say that sort of meeting the buyer where they are. I had a very similar experience to what you're talking about. Only it was my AC that went out and I had a contractor come out and they put up an estimate and everything, and it was fine, but they just couldn't get it, they were out of stock, there's a lot of supply chain problems, right? And so, um, I tried two others and the second one that came, he was so insistent upon following his sales process. He didn't want to know what I already knew, I was trying to jumpstart the conversation. This is what I want, this is what I need, this is what I'm looking for. And he wanted to take everything back to the beginning and start his sales process. And when he finally got around to sort of quoting numbers, he was wildly off. And so I just stopped him, and then he got mad. Then he started to sort of bad mouth the other competition, and in fact, bad mouth me, because I wasn't allowing him to sell the way he wanted to sell to me. So fast forward and I call out a third contractor, I do the same thing. I tell the guy, Hey, look, I've had a few people out here. I know exactly what I'm looking for. He's like, let me see if we've got it in stock. He went and saw. And let me see if I can match the price of the other one. He called the boss, let me match the price. Literally within 10 minutes of him being here, we had negotiated the deal. He had found the unit and he had scheduled it for installation the next day. But he listened. And I think that's, what's so important is you have to know where these prospects are in their buying journey and meet them where they are.

Alex Oliveira:

After COVID things have changed for everyone, I just read an article on CNBC, or I think it was Bloomberg actually, in April of this year, 4 million plus people quit their jobs. So we hear about the job market and how terrible it is, but really people are quitting their jobs and it's not just millennials or Gen Zs, it's everyone. Gen X, Boomers, you name it. Because COVID what it did for people who had to work from home remotely, it showed them that they could be efficient, they could deliver over, I mean really perform at their best while still having more time to do the things they love in life, right? Of course, that's not the truth everyone. Some people love the comradery. But I heard a guy on a podcast a couple of days ago on The Journal, I believe. And he said, look, I'm a guy who I get a big rise out of relationships, being there in the war culture, but. As soon as, you know, six around six months of being outside of the office came around and he says, I noticed that. While I missed the comradery. I had more time to do the things that I love doing, right? Not time in traffic or this or that. And so when you look at the 4 million people that quit their jobs, this has a huge impact in the marketplace In every department in every company. But CEOs and leaders today, they have to listen to what their employees are asking for. And the same goes for customers. I can take that same thing that's happening in the workforce and say it's happening to customers because aren't, we all customers and consumers to begin with? Our behavior has changed. And if you don't take the time to ask the questions. It's really asking the question. So I met with a guy early this morning and I said, look, he's a vendor of mine. I said, here's the top four ways I want to be communicated with, text number one, phone call number two, email number three, and then Zoom. Zoom is the last resort. Well, I really prefer to do is face to face when things come back. But for right now, that's where you start. If you email me first or if you send me a message on LinkedIn, don't be upset with me. I don't answer back right away. Now I'm communicating it with you, he didn't ask me, but I just told it to him because I I've gotten used to asking people to accommodate me. And I do the same for my business, I tell clients, how do you want us to work with you? You tell us. And then we're going to do it that way. Now my ask from you is do the same for your customers and your leads.

Eric Dickmann:

Hey, it's Eric here and we'll be right back to the podcast. But first, are you ready to grow, scale, and take your marketing to the next level? If so, The Five Echelon Group's Virtual CMO consulting service may be a great fit for you. We can help build a strategic marketing plan for your business and manage its execution, step-by-step. We'll focus on areas like how to attract more leads. How to create compelling messaging that resonates with your ideal customers. How to strategically package and position your products and services. How to increase lead conversion, improve your margins, and scale your business. To find out more about our consulting offerings and schedule a consultation, go to fiveechelon.com and click on Services. Now back to the podcast. Well, I think that's so important because it's getting that understanding. And when you're communicating to people, the way they want to be communicated to, they're obviously going to be more receptive to hearing from you, but that sort of leads us into another challenge, sort of in this digital marketing world, right? Everybody wants to collect your information right away. And there's this ongoing debate about how much content should you have gated? How much should you not have gated? But it seems like it's hard to go to any website now without the you know, two minutes on the site, you're getting pop-ups, you know, subscribe to our newsletter, do this, you know, join our VIP club, or whatever. People want that contact information and it feels very invasive at times because maybe I haven't raised my hand yet to want to be contacted. How do you advise clients on that in terms of the steps that they should consider before being overly aggressive about asking for contact details?

Alex Oliveira:

Oh, that's such a great question, you know? There's two ways to do it, right? If I think of it in the terms of brick and mortar, I think of going to Lowe's and walking in, and air conditioning or cabinet guy, Hey, come over here. Do I look like I needed cabinets? I came in of her paint. Now you want to stop me asking me about cabinets? So that's one way. Invasive, agree with you. Popups, here's my guide, download it., Give me your information, right? Join my webinar. But then there's the other way, which is I just heard yesterday, Kirkland, which is the private brand for Costco, they've surpassed Coca-Cola, they're like something like 70 plus billion dollars in sales. So they're a huge brand. But they said they're excited that people in their marketing, they're excited because now that COVID is sort of, I mean, we're not out of the gates yet, but things are getting back to normal. They're excited to be working with all the brands that they sell to give away free samples. One of the marketing guys said, well, you know, we give somebody a piece of ham, next thing you know, they're walking out with a couch. Now that's not invasive, right? Who doesn't want a you know. You're walking around the mall, the guy sticks a falafel in your face. You're like, Oh okay, sure.

Eric Dickmann:

Let me give it a try.

Alex Oliveira:

I don't look hungry. but okay. So I think it depends on the type of offer or content. And I think that if you create websites that are dynamic enough, which we do for our clients, And it's harder to do it for small businesses because you need the tools to deploy, and it takes a lot more. But for the businesses that can afford to create a sort of path that is customized to the right audience. So if I know if it's someone this age group using an iPhone from this location, I can kind of customize that journey and give them an offer that data is telling me that they should more likely be okay with it, right? Sort of like when you're running ads on Facebook or Google., And they'll tell you, do you want us to find people who are likely to click to your website or download this same thing, they have that data, which is why it works. On your website, it's the same. It's just most small to medium-sized businesses don't have those tools to be able to do that. And so even us, I mean our company, I mean if you go to the website, I have no pop-ups, but I do ask, look, if you want a free website audit or an evaluation, you can doubt. But I do ask you for your email. If you're going to download my ebook. I don't put you in my newsletter, I will ask you if you want to be in the newsletter. And yeah, I think every customer is different. I have a customer that we just put up a guide on his website. It's an online education platform. So we spent six weeks to create this guide, this 12 page guide, the ultimate guide, it's beautiful. The content was I mean, really well-written, so we're all proud of it. Got this great piece of content, let's put it up on the website. He puts it up. I think they're getting maybe like five or six downloads a month based on tens and thousands of clicks. He's not happy with it, right? Cause he's saying, well, this lead magnet doesn't work. Oh, I said, well here's the deal, your marketing team has set it to like five seconds. Like I'm on your website and five seconds into it, I'm presented with this gray box, light box, that is like, download your guide. And on top of that, you're not only asking for email, you're asking for first name, last name, and phone number. You have to be careful with that. So AB test it. That guide should be on the page that is relevant to the information. Not on the home page. Let me go to that page first and then give me a guide because if I'm on the page about online courses, that guide is absolutely useful to me. So yeah.

Eric Dickmann:

I think you're getting to something that I think is very important here. When a user is presented with an opt-in form, like right upon arriving at the website. You know, you're obviously collecting that because you want to communicate further with them. But what would you say? You don't know anything about them. They just arrived at the homepage and this is the the point that I think I get frustrated with, sometimes with companies is because they're so eager to get that information because they want to communicate with that customer directly, but what are you going to communicate to them about? Because you don't know anything about their interests, what they're there for? Maybe if you were just a brand that sold one single product, and that's all you did. You had a very simple website, there's nothing else for them to do. Okay, maybe that's okay then. But you know what I'm saying? It's we want to have these conversations. We want to help people as they go down the buyer's journey, but you have to get some intense signals before you really even know what's the next phase of conversation. Sure, if you have the data deployed, For example, if I'm on a Airbnb site and it says, you know, 18 people just purchased this right, or 25 people rated this product. Those things are useful, not invasive. And I could still click on that link to learn more. But I am being presented with things that are going to shape my decision. That's a little bit different than if I walk into a supermarket and someone follows me around and says, what are you looking forward to? Turkey? Ham? Where do you want to go? I'm like, sleep, leave me a little, let me buy what I came to buy. So I think you could always draw a comparison between brick and mortar customer behavior and online customer behavior. And it isn't really that different, right? Unless you're on a mobile device. If you're a mobile device, it's a little bit different. And I would venture to say, If it's product versus service, then there's a huge difference. Because with our e-commerce clients, It's people are there, they're buying low ticket items. But if you're about to purchase a 20,000 dollar piece of software, it's very different. Yeah, very different. And we're talking about organic content here or organic leads, you know, coming into your website, finding you. But there are obviously things you can do around paid, where you can narrow down people pretty easily into their interest areas and the kinds of things that they might be. So pushing some of that content out to those people in very segmented groups is a little safer because while they might not have shown intent with you, they may have shown intent in other ways.

Alex Oliveira:

Or even if it is services, right Eric? You can create tools that are truly useful to every single one of your buyers. For example, mortgage industry, right? We create calculators for these websites that are really useful. We just ask for the emails so that we can send you the PDF with the, you know, calculations and all of that. People love that, and they don't complain. Actually, when they see that popup with like, Hey, you calculate your payment here for that customer's mortgage product, people engage, they like that. They already understand how the mortgage process works, they don't need another guide. I mean, I can have the guide living there, but it's having things that are on your website tools that are truly resourceful. So if it's a window company, give me an interactive tool where I can upload the picture of my house, and then I can put those windows up. Like there's different things that you can do to help the customer immerse themselves into your brand and go, Wow, that was a difference between Company A and Company B.

Eric Dickmann:

Do you see that in the world that we're in now, obviously there's a lot of talk about privacy, new filters that are going into iOS, and some of the Mac products. And it's certainly going to be followed by others, but do you see things really changing in the effectiveness of advertising to draw leads into a company?

Alex Oliveira:

I don't, I don't, I think it's more has been made about IDFA and Apple, and Facebook, and Facebook has tried to spin it in a way that it's bad for small businesses. But we know it has nothing to do with small businesses. It's mostly about apps, right? So what I've told every small business is like, listen, the pixel, you can still collect information and communicate it from your website to Facebook, and then Facebook and target those people that the cookies, yes. It's changing. Chrome is getting rid of it by next year. I think it's a great thing not only for consumers, but I think for overall, for the industry itself, right? Obviously, Congress has been after them. And so if they don't make this change at some point, you know, they're just going to end up with a lot of lawsuits. I saw it happen in the area of SMS, like back in 2010, 11. When we were doing a lot of lead generation with companies like lending tree and AutoNation, and a couple of others. You know, there was this rise of mobile phones, right? I think 2006 on, and the big thing was text messaging. And the overuse of marketers and what they were doing with SMS, which was really spamming. The FCC FTC, they all cracked down. And instead of trying to create regulations around that with TCPA and all these other things that have been around for a long time, they just cracked down on it. And so today, there's very little marketing advertising directly to someone via text because it's so risky for marketers. So companies just stay away from it. You have to find other ways to do mobile. So I think for the Facebooks, the Googles, they understand that they don't need all the data to begin with, Eric, because what I know about Facebook and Google and the other platforms, Oh, I'm sorry, my phone. It's one of those spam texts coming through. It's probably, yeah. He's probably calling me right now. So I'll keep talking either way. But the thing about the IDFA in what's happening there is that Facebook and Google still purchased. They still purchase data from companies like core logic from companies like Experian, right? So if I want to target a consumer who has a high credit score, I can do that. Facebook will still be able to do that. So me as an advertiser, I'm not so worried, right? Because I'll still be able to target the right people with the right criteria. And, but they try to spin it in a different way to say, No, we need to know everything that the users are doing on your website, which is really not true. You're still going to be able to generate leads, drive calls, get web inquiries. It's just you're not going to have as much of that data for free.

Eric Dickmann:

Yes.

Alex Oliveira:

It'll cost a little bit more and I'm sure Facebook and Google are baking in the cost of acquiring the data from third-party companies. So. It'll be fine.

Eric Dickmann:

For most of the businesses you work with, do you advocate both a paid and an organic strategy for leads, or do you really see for some businesses that you know, simply building out good content, focusing on an inbound marketing strategy that has a long runway. It's a lot of good evergreen content that you're creating is sufficient for them, or do you think that most businesses need to have an element of paid?

Alex Oliveira:

Certain verticals are too costly to compete with the big boys, right? So take like law firms, we work with law firms and you could be paying a couple hundred dollars for a certain keyword for a click. And so if your law firm, isn't a hundred million dollar law firm, you're not going to compete with that. Are you really going to spend $5,000 a day for a few phone calls? No. So you have to lean heavy on the organic own media. For me, the conversation starts and ends with own media. It's your website, your content, and your email. Those three tools have the least amount of friction between me and my customer. I control most of it. There's very little that the AI and the algorithm is controlling, it's mostly me and the customer. And so I advocate for that, but understanding that you still need to have an element of paid, whether it be five, 10 or 50%. Based on the fact that if not for competitive, for doing it because you want to compete with your market, at least for your brand. You have to let your customers know that you're there. So to me, a company that doesn't bid on their branded keywords, you're leaving money on the table because the reality is your competitors, especially on Google, on Google ads, they're bidding on your company's name, on your branded keyword.

Eric Dickmann:

So true.

Alex Oliveira:

You're leaving that money on the table. And by the ways those clicks are probably costing a dollar, $2, $3. So there is no reason that every time someone clicks on my searches, my company name, that I should be the first one that comes up, period. And from time to time, not only our customers, but our own, I'll find a competitor who's bidding on our company keyword and I'll reach out to them, and ask for them to see Cindy says, sometimes they do. Sometimes they don't sometimes they'll say, oh, well, we kind of just allowed Google to do it. And there is truth to that, right? But I've been on the receiving end as well, where we allowed Google to optimize it, and then my client's competitors sending them a letter saying, Hey, you're bidding on our branded keyword, stopped doing that, so it happens. So an element of paid is important, especially display. YouTube ads are amazing. I'm not a fan of YouTube itself, like the actual platform. There's so much poor quality content.

Eric Dickmann:

There is. yeah.

Alex Oliveira:

And I never find what I want because there's always eight other suggestions here that have nothing to do with what I'm doing, because Google just wants to make money on the platform. So they're going to suggest whatever they want to suggest. But from a display advertising perspective, for a 1, 2, 3 cents cost per view, you can beat that. And you could put out a very nice video, perhaps a video of this podcast here, spend 50 bucks, and get thousands of views. That's great branding! That you really can't do in other formats, like let's say with programmatic. You know, so there's opportunity there.

Eric Dickmann:

I think it's such an excellent point. And you know companies do need to consider this because I talked to companies a lot about the fact that, especially when you're doing an inbound marketing strategy, you're building that organic content, you're working on your SEO, that doesn't happen overnight, right? And it's also not a faucet that you can turn on and turn off. It's something that grows over time. And if you do it well, you'll see some good results from it. But paid is different. Paid is a little bit more of a faucet. If you have a good campaign, you can turn it up or turn it down as needed, as long as all the elements are there. But so often I see companies, you know, invest in a strategy and then just kind of put it on autopilot, and waste a ton of money because they're not actually seeing what's working and what's not.

Alex Oliveira:

Correct. And I would add the third piece of that for us has always been for 10 years. Email marketing. Two ways with email marketing, both what we do. In-house with our client's data, so we'll look at their database, and we'll create a really nice program, automated drip campaigns, that's one. The second way is for us to go out there in our publisher network, we have these networks that we work with direct email publishers, so email only. Who have databases of 50, 60, a 100 million people, right? In different categories, right? If their target audience are Christian females, that they have that database and they have a nice newsletter to that audience. Great! Let's go out there and create an offer, put it in front of them, and then negotiate on a cost per lead or cost per acquisition cost per call. I mean for the insurance industry, we do cost per policy, right? I know that the life insurance vertical, most agents or agencies are willing to pay $150 cost per policy, so depending on how many leads they're going to get for that, I can do that email. Now that's still considered affiliate marketing, right? Because it's third party, someone is actually putting it with their brand, my offer. But it removes the need to compete at the highest level, the most expensive a level, which is Google, and Facebook, and LinkedIn, and all the you know run of the. mill digital ad platforms.

Eric Dickmann:

I had a guest on the show the the other day, who's a big fan of doing radio ads because they're incredibly inexpensive, you know in just a local market radio ad or something like that. And you can still reach quite a few people with it. There are ways to reach people that don't have to be these most expensive keywords and other tools online. There's a wealth of things that still work, even direct mail works. It's been especially successful during COVID because there was so little of it.

Alex Oliveira:

I was just going to say that They launched a direct mail campaign in October, it's been really successful. Now, its hard to measure because without having all the other elements of content and organic, you wouldn't be able to reach those levels anyways. But it's sort of ancillary and it does help kind of create an ecosystem where people understand that your brand is there and ready to do business with these people? So.

Eric Dickmann:

Welll, that's a great point. The beauty of digital marketing is that you can track things pretty well. You know you can see the effectiveness of the campaigns that you run for the most part. But once you use some of these older forms of advertisement that get away from that digital medium, it becomes a little less easy to track and see how all the dots are connected. But that doesn't mean it's not effective.

Alex Oliveira:

That's right. One thing I've been saying for 10 years in digital marketing, and specifically as it pertains to generating leads out of paid ads, right? And I still see even mid-size, actually even large size companies make this mistake. They will launch an ad campaign and I see their ad and I click on it. And when I go to that next page, it's not an optimized landing page, and it just drives me nuts. Because I'm going, you know, you're sending someone to your big website, and they came because the offer said you were selling. A B or C and the discount offer was X, but they get to an entire website where you believe they're going to spend time navigating it to the right page with the right product. It drives me crazy. So my lead gen one oh one for anyone who's listening and doing paid ads is make sure that your marketing agencies or your marketing team is creating landing pages really optimized for conversion, right? Very simple. I always think of a landing page, Eric, like a flyer. I miss conferences. I miss being at the booth, I miss talking to people.

Eric Dickmann:

Right. That one-on-one interaction.Yep,

Alex Oliveira:

Ah, the exhibit floor, it's like the hustle and bustle. Your feet hurt at the end of the day, right? I really miss it. But it's like that, I walk up to a booth or when we have a booth, if Eric walks up to my booth, and I give you my elevator pitch, you give me yours, I give you my business card maybe. And then I give you a flyer for that specific product that you just spoke to me about, Hey Alex, I need this solution, so I give you that. Now if I say, oh, no. Hey, Eric, you need that solution. Here's a booklet, here's a booklet, you'd be like, wait, what? No, I don't need a booklet. So the same thing with the website, when someone comes to your website, because they came from an offer that they just saw. Why are you sending them to this huge website and leaving it up to them? Or at least if you're going to do that, have a good search feature on your website. so people can search and find their way, but really it's landing pages. My 101 for lead gen is make sure you have landing pages for every product.

Eric Dickmann:

Yeah. So again we come in full circle here, talking about communication, the way customers want to be communicated to, and certainly if they respond to an offer, you want to have information that's very specific to that offer that they just clicked on, not something generic. I think that's great. You've shared a lot of great tips with us today, but as a fellow podcaster, I can't let you go before I hear a little bit about your podcast, you know, being a father, you said four kids. I love sort of the focus of what you're doing on your podcast. Tell us a little bit about it.

Alex Oliveira:

Yeah, sure. I actually just had an interview with a newspaper in Dubai and they were covering the topic of dadpreneurs because around the world, people have no mom pillars for a long time, right? And so the journalist was asking me about what is a dadpreneur? And I said, well, it was, I was sitting in an audience years ago when a guy on the stage was being asked about being a dad and an entrepreneur. And he was saying, he's an entrepreneur first because he wants to leave a legacy for his kids. And it's fine, I didn't identify with it, but it was at that moment, Eric, that I thought you know, when I leave this world, I want to be known for being a dad first, like my performance as a dad .And I'm pretty sure that's the case for most dads, right? So it's not unique in that way. But because I've spent so much time in my life, the last 20 plus years being an entrepreneur, I've owned many businesses, a few did very well, and a bunch went south. That's the nature of being an entrepreneur. It's hard because they're your babies, right? Your businesses, you grow, then you hire people, and then sometimes they don't work out. So there's that kind of like commonality, right? It's your baby, and then your babies are babies. But ultimately when I get up every day and when I go to bed, I want to make sure that I did my job as a dad first, as an entrepreneur second, because early in my career, I had these dreams of like, I'm going to be on the cover of this magazine, I'm going to have thousands of employees and then I'm going to exit big. After I had kids, little by little, that evolved into being well, that's not my why. And why would I even care about that? It was enjoying life with my kids, and being able to still build a business that can scale and exit at some point. And most importantly just help other businesses, but that comes second. And that tells my clients something as well, even though my company is predic and we have clients there, I've been getting the question well, Dadpreneur, you're talking about lead generation on this podcast and entrepreneurship. A little bit about family, right? Not a lot, just a little bit. And I said, you know, yeah, because I want my clients to know that I'm not the agency, we're a boutique agency, right? I'm not the agency that's going to work 24 hours a day and work my employees 24 hours a day. There's a ton of agencies that can do that, that's not us. But one thing is for sure, which I'm sure is a lot like you. you guarantee your results, you'll put your best foot forward, and I only take on clients that I know for sure I can get onboard with their mission, and I can do everything humanly possible to sell more of their products. And yes, sometimes it doesn't work perfectly. But it's my job to kind of pull back and forth. So I talk a lot about that in the podcast and little by little, I'm getting more comfortable bringing the topic of family. But it's a balance, right? For obviously so many reasons.

Eric Dickmann:

Oh I love it. There are lots of podcasts out there about entrepreneutrship, and you've got a unique spin on it. So I love that. Where can people find the podcast? Where do you want to send them?

Alex Oliveira:

Sure. They can just go to dadpreneur.co, and from there can they find it on the website, or Spotify or Apple, and yeah I'm having a lot of fun doing it.

Eric Dickmann:

Well, that great. I don't want to let you go without hearing more about your company. Where can people find you if they're interested in your digital marketing services?

Alex Oliveira:

Sure, yeah. prediq.io. P R E D I Q.io. But we've had clients around the globe, companies like Ford, Netlife, Auto Nation. My passion though is working with small to medium businesses, and my team as well. They are all experienced people. We just get energized working with companies that want to scale and solve big problems. And that's very different than Fortune 500s. You came from Oracle, so you probably understand what it's like to have a massive budget. It's not to say that it's easier to solve problems because it's not. Actually, sometimes it's harder because of the bureaucracy, right? So there's pros and cons, but working directly with the SMBs, working directly with the business owners, it takes the mission to a whole new level than when I'm just another agency on someone's list. So.

Eric Dickmann:

Couldn't agree more. I mean the corporate world was fun, we got to do some big things with big budgets, but watching a business grow and seeing them succeed is really rewarding. And that's my sweet spot too. We love to work with small and mid-sized businesses, they're great people. Alex, this has been a fun conversation, love talking about lead generation, obviously so important for companies. I think you've shared a lot of great insights here, so I really appreciate you being on the show here today.

Alex Oliveira:

Thanks for having me.

Eric Dickmann:

Thank you for joining us on this episode of The Virtual CMO podcast. For more episodes, go to fiveechelon.com/podcast to subscribe through your podcast player of choice. And if you'd like to develop consistent lead flow and a highly effective marketing strategy, visit fiveechelon.com to learn more about our Virtual CMO consulting services.