13 Digital Advertising and marketing Consultants Share Their Advertising and marketing Dwelling Run of 2019

Michelle Barnum Smith

If you are having trouble resuming the end of 2019, we welcome you to the club.

This year flew by and a lot has happened in the marketing world. Conversation marketing, the takeover of chat bots and endless changes to algorithms shook our world of digital marketing.

And it was a great time.

At the end of the year, we traditionally show you the marketing home runs of other digital marketers so you can apply their tactics to your strategies.

So, without further ado, here are 13 marketing home runs from 2019 by some of our favorite digital marketing experts.

Winning on Amazon for private sellers is getting harder every day. This year, chat marketing gave marketers the opportunity to launch new products and help sellers classify their offers, follow-up, and request ratings. This balanced out the competitive conditions and gave private sellers greater chances of success.

Last year I helped over 1,000 Amazon sellers launch their products. These high quality product sellers stood out from their competition and won the algorithm game against Amazon.

Amazon Seller improves SKU from 3 stars to 4.2 stars

Here is a simple example:

  1. Set up a ManyChat flow that gives you a 75% discount on one-time voucher codes
  2. Connect the flow to Facebook ads
  3. Send subscribers on a "treasure hunt" to find the new product in Amazon search results (typically called a search, search, and purchase campaign). This mimics organic search behavior and leads to a higher ranking of these purchases
  4. Pro tip: If you have a warm appealing list instead of coupon offers, send them a discount offer – full price purchases will result in the best possible ranking advantage and you can request full price reviews from buyers

Screenshot with 81% CTR for a voucher code sent in a ManyChat flow

Chat marketing with ManyChat makes it easy for sellers and subscribers to automate this whole experience!

Tara Robertson, director of customer marketing at Sprout Social

Tara Robertson

One of the most successful digital marketing campaigns we've run this year has been our annual data report, the Sprout Social Index. The aim of the index was to better understand consumer motivation, social trends and the way marketers approach social issues overall. This report is one of our main efforts to raise awareness and generate leads throughout the year. Not only were we recognized as a finalist for the Brandweek Constellation Awards, we also had great success with our distribution methods, which used ads for Facebook lead generation, community advertising and networking with our co-marketing partners.

In addition to the 2019 index, our team hosted our biggest digital customer event of the year, the Sprout Agency Workshop: Rise and Grind. We have brought agency clients around the world together to provide tactical advice on how to make their roles more efficient and effective. The event was a huge success with over 1,300 customers joining in to discuss their unique opportunities, challenges and how to overcome them. This was a great opportunity for us not only to incorporate product training and customer engagement into the marketing mix, but also to find new ways to connect our agency community and promote their learning and growth.

Logan Fletcher

Testing and developing a strong LinkedIn marketing strategy was a very scalable success for our agency. It not only has 4x our website traffic and doubled our sales funnelHowever, it is a strategy that we have been able to apply to customers to improve their online presence and increase sales.

This includes the following (at a high level): creating engaging videos that appeal to our viewers, regularly publishing value-added content and articles, using account-based marketing to send targeted messages, adding high-quality connections and engaging with the LinkedIn community for posts and Groups and more.

Benton Crane

Our marketing “Home Run” from 2019 was this original story campaign for Lumē.

It combines a heartfelt origin story with all the elements of direct sales that make all Harmon Brothers campaigns successful.

Our previous campaign has already helped Lume increase the cost 10 times from $ 1.5 million a year to $ 15 million a year. Starting the Origin Story campaign again helped them more than twice ($ 30 + million / year).

Nathalie Lussier, founder of AccessAlly

Nathalie Lussier

As Jay Abraham famously explained, there are 3 main ways to make more money in your business:

  • Increase the number of clients
  • Increase the average transaction
  • Increase the frequency with which the average customer buys from you

As a small software company, we already offer a recurring monthly schedule, so we know that the frequency will not change.

We are constantly marketing to increase the number of our customers and to improve our customer retention rates.

That's why we decided in 2019 to increase our prices. However, we have not decided to raise or lower the prices.

We did some research and we knew our software could save our customers hundreds of dollars a month as we added so many features over the past 5 years.

In the past few years, we have tended to revise our marketing campaigns and spend months creating pre-launch videos, creating beautiful Facebook ad graphics, winning our partners and writing tons of emails.

This time we had a deadline (I wanted to have a baby!), So we kept the campaign simple with:

  • A series of 4 emails to our warm leads
  • A series of 4 emails to our partners
  • 2 emails to our existing customers
  • 4 retargeting FB ads for everyone who has been on our website or email list in the past 90 days
  • A small notification bar for price increases at the top of our website

A layout of an email marketing campaign with 4 emails to prospects, 4 emails to affiliates, 2 emails to existing customers, 4 retargeting FB ads, and a price increase notification bar at the top of the website

The price increase took place over 20 days, so we had the opportunity to book live demos and answer customers' questions before signing up.

Thanks to this price increase campaign, we saw customer growth of 8% in May (compared to our usual monthly growth of 2-3%). Above all, it helped us to retain customers.

A chart with earnings from March to August

The way we structured the price increase meant that existing customers (and anyone who signed up before the deadline) had to keep their prices indefinitely. This "fixed" price prevented our existing customers from canceling when they knew they wanted to come back later.

We were expecting a lot of refunds from people who just wanted to check us out if they liked the tool at a lower price … and we had a few, but not nearly as many, as we imagined.

Ultimately, we raised our Essentials Plan prices from $ 79 / month to $ 99 / month and added over $ 200,000 in annual sales to our business.

It was also one of our simplest marketing campaigns, where we spent less than $ 1,500 on Facebook ads and really focused on the people in our email list who were on the fence.

Jody Milward

In the coaching and digital product niche, we saw that strategic Facebook ad retargeting campaigns increased the number of leads by 244% compared to traditional campaigns where leads or webinar registrations for a week or two after the first conversions were realigned.

Through the combination of "pre-targeting" strategies, in which we advertise a video magnet, a content magnet, a reading magnet and a lead magnet, we reach a larger target group of our ideal customers than if we were only interested in immediate -Opt-ins would focus.

Our retargeting campaigns consist of three levels that serve to promote, convert and close potential customers. So they go through a customer journey in their Facebook newsfeed.

These campaigns target audiences over 90 days (or longer) with content that increases awareness, authority, and affinity, making you the obvious choice when you're ready to buy or book a call ,

Here we see 3 times the leads recorded compared to a short 21-day retargeting window. And if someone watches you on their newsfeed for 3 months and goes to your sales page or books a call, they're ready to buy.

(NOTE: Do you need support in your digital marketing efforts? Or do you just want to implement proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics and templates in your company? Find out about the latest offerings from DigitalMarketer and you're on your way to helping your business grow.)

Ash Roy

The biggest home runs in digital marketing came from talking to my customers. I have had personal conversations with them using a special diagnostic framework in which we have worked to gain a deep understanding of the following:

IDEAL CUSTOMER AVATAR: We understood the demographic and psychographic profiles of their ideal customers.

EMPATHY MAPPING: We got clarity about what their customers were thinking, feeling, seeing, hearing and doing. before purchasing the product, during the purchase of the product and after completing the purchase. This gave us a good insight into the transformation the customer has experienced – from the customer's point of view – and showed us how we can offer the customer an even better experience.

CURRENT CUSTOMER ACQUISITION STRATEGY: We looked at what is currently working and what is not. So we could double the work and then work to improve the work that didn't work.

KEY METRICS: Understand the customer lifetime value, cost per lead, and lead-to-customer conversion rate that brought us the customer acquisition costs.

CUSTOMER PROBLEM DEFINITION: Clarifying the customer issue and, more importantly, the customer's undisclosed problem was very important to gain deep insight into how we can help the customer.

PRODUCT STRATEGY: A look at the current and future offers and how we can summarize these offers to create complementary products has helped us to increase the "stickiness".

Shannon Goodell, Social Media Manager at DigitalMarketer

Shannon Goodell

One of our big home runs on DigitalMarketer's social media marketing site was one of the easiest to implement: "Mini Marketing Whiteboard Workshop" videos.

Two things happened that started this initiative:

  1. Decline in organic views and engagement for our AMA series ("Ask Me Anything" videos)
  2. Facebook is about videos in a longer form.

We also wanted to test how little produced videos work – simple landscape videos with no fancy graphics or banners at the top or bottom. We decided to give it a try and start with two of our core tenets: the before and after grid and the customer value journey.

Of course we had to put Ryan Deiss in front of the camera for these two. He is the expert and has an incredible camera presence. I thought the shoot was going well, but I was concerned about the length. One of the videos ran for 17 minutes. But they did occur!

Analysis of overall video performance for Ryan's CVJ video

People were interested because they learned something super valuable and actionable. You could use the video to map the customer value journey with your teams or to fill in the before and after grid.

We have since filmed more whiteboards with internal team members and external team members like Chris Mercer and Natasha Takahashi, and they were all of different lengths (but all longer than 3 minutes).

The performance of the video ad for Natasha Takahashi's chatbot video

You have consistently achieved good results on both Facebook and IGTV. Our audience really finds value in such a simple approach: to put an expert with a marker in front of a whiteboard and say "GO!"

Due to the success of the whiteboards at Organic Social, we are now trying them at Paid Social. This only confirms that organic social issues are at stake. So be ready to try something that stands out from the crowd.

Don't worry about suggested video times or the lack of a video budget. Stand in front of the camera and teach. Your audience may just love it.

Sherry Bonelli

One of the most effective digital marketing strategies for local businesses in 2019 was adopting and optimizing Google My Business (GMB) profiles. Google offers qualified local businesses the opportunity to get a FREE listing that increases the likelihood of their business appearing in Google's Local 3-Pack when users search on Google:

An example of local business listings from Google

The results can be dramatic – and fast! Within the first month, one of my customers said they had noticed a dramatic increase in the number of calls their small business credit company received. So much so that my agency should start tweaking Google My Business profiles for three other locations in the state of California.

For a local company, website visits, calls, and customers visiting their store front are REAL money for that company. Google My Business Insights allows you to track the activity of your Google My Business knowledge panel by week, month, or quarter. This allows you to see direct results of your profile's performance (and see how it helps your business grow!).

Customer action analysis from a Google listing

Any company that qualifies for a GMB profile should claim its listing and continually optimize it to stay one step ahead of the competition. It can help them be at the top on Google and attract more customers. If not, miss a HUGE opportunity!

Josh Turner, founder and CEO of LinkedSelling

Josh Turner

Be wherever we could be.

Our goal for 2019 was not to place too much emphasis on an ad placement, strategy or platform. Let's take a look at a platform: LinkedIn ads.

In recent years, we’ve noticed that sponsored content ads (placed in the LinkedIn newsfeed) generate the majority of our lead generation. You also get our highest click rate, engagement and reach.

But the word is out.

In the past 6 to 8 months, bigger and bigger players have taken the opportunity with LinkedIn ads and it has become a more competitive landscape.

To attract attention, we integrated campaigns into a variety of other placements that LinkedIn offers (dynamic ads, text ads, sponsored InMail messages), and wondered how we could meet our potential customers at the level they were most likely to respond to. We have seen significant cost savings by targeting our audience across multiple placements at once.

Now, it’s not a new idea to provide your potential customers with as many channels as possible.

In times of big data and real-time optimization, however, we have found that the more we present ourselves to our target group (even if not every single placement or marketing channel achieves a top return) on advertising expenditure, the better our overall return.

So our big home run for the year was simply meeting our audience on as many channels as possible. This enabled us to increase our qualified booked appointments by 63% while maintaining the entire ad budget.

Eva Gutierrez

My biggest home run in 2019 was overlooked quite often – testimonials from my customers' clients about how much they liked the content we created.

Content strategies can be difficult because you cannot always track exactly what effects your content has in the awareness phase of the customer value journey. You're on a prospect's path so early that subscriptions and product purchases are still a few weeks away.

When a customer's customers give us such feedback, we know that we 1) created the right content, 2) delivered it in the right way, and 3) said it with the right voice.

This trifecta is what makes content work. The DigitalMarketer customer avatar worksheet is always the starting point to find out what content I'm going to create. Here you can transform your customers into helpful content that will make them think: "Wait, who wrote that?".

Once you know what topics you want to create content for, you can find out how your customers want their content (quick blog posts, long blog posts, weekly newsletters like DM Insider, etc.).

Finally, you can find out who should receive this information and improve your brand voice. I use spectra that alternate between playful and authoritarian, friendly and mature, and for the masses or for a niche to find out what that voice sounds like.

Ralph Burns, founder of Tier 11

Ralph Burns

Have you ever been in this situation

They run Facebook ads. You have an ad group that is performing well overall. However, if you look IN the ad set, you will see a discrepancy. A few ads seem to do most of the work and generate a lot of conversions … while other ads are underperforming.

As an intelligent marketer, you choose to stop all poorly performing ads. You logically assume that the overall performance of the ad set should improve if you pause the bad ads.

So you do it … and suddenly the overall performance of the ad set goes down!

It doesn't make sense, but for some reason your conversions are starting to go south. And you scratch your head and ask yourself: what the hell just happened?

If you find this familiar, you don't feel bad. At Tier 11 we live and breathe Facebook and Instagram advertising. But we still experienced this strange phenomenon and were confused about it.

But in 2019, we made a big breakthrough that helped us avoid this problem while revolutionizing the way we structure our Facebook ad sets.

We call it "ad grouping".

In short, we've found that we can perform better by creating a GROUP of ads that work together synergistically, rather than just trying to create a great ad.

Why does ad grouping work?

The reason this strategy works so well is that your ads won't show in a vacuum at the end of the day. Instead, multiple ads can reinforce each other. You can work together.

Because of this, stopping your low-performing ads can slow your ad sets down. While these ads weren't directly responsible for generating conversions, they may have indirectly contributed to users converting your other ads.

And something else to think about:

Different people react to different hooks and deal differently with different ad types.

Some people prefer videos. Other people's videos may be completely disabled (especially if they don't use WiFi). Others are more likely to respond to carousel ads.

To target all of these different segments, you need different ad types and hooks in each ad set.

How to use ad grouping in 3 easy steps

How do you actually do that? Here are some quick rules of thumb:

1) Make sure that each ad set contains at least 1 image ad and 1 video ad

This is the absolute minimum requirement. There should ALWAYS be at least 1 image and 1 video ad in each ad set.

2) We also recommend at least 1 carousel display

Carousel ads aren't as important as image and video ads, but they're still pretty damn effective. We recommend that you have at least 1 video ad, 1 image ad, and 1 carousel ad in each ad group.

3) Add 2 control indicators and 2-6 test indicators

Overall, we would like to take photos for 4-8 ads per ad set. Two of these indicators should be control indicators, i.e. H. Ads that we know are effective from past data.

The other 2-6 ads should be newer ads. We also like to test different ad formats and hooks.

Don't over-complicate it

And that's it, guys. It doesn't have to be very complicated. Just follow these three steps to protect your ad sets from the declining performance of One-Ad-Itis.

Because we work with some very large advertisers, we often have large amounts of ads (6-8 million or more). We’ve noticed that Facebook’s selection of smaller groups within a larger audience that responds to your ad has continued to improve. This means that you can address a relatively broad target group and still achieve excellent results.

Keep in mind that with a target audience of 8 million people, not all of them respond to the same ad type or messaging! And here the ad grouping strategy can really convince by helping you get the maximum conversions out of your ad sets.

Mike Rhodes, CEO of WebSavvy

Mike Rhodes

AI & Machine Learning are here. But … they are far from perfect at this point. Google may be the global market leader for ML, but even they, with all their data and lightning-fast computers, don't get it right every time. Maybe one day they will, but we are not there yet.

For this reason, we spent a lot of time in my agency WebSavvy in 2019 to improve our AI monitoring systems. With hard data, we want to know where it is strong and where it is weak. This allows us to add clever people to the mix at the right places and work with the machines to achieve outstanding results for customers.

I'm going to outline a handful of them that I think are the most useful to you and that you can implement in your agency or company.


I firmly believe that information (not data) will be shown to us when we need it automatically. Real-time dashboards are an inexpensive way to do this on a scale. Thinking only needs to be done once. Once the dashboard template has been created, it can be transferred to multiple clients.

We create dashboards for different user levels in our customer businesses (board level, CMO and tactical marketing), but we also create a variety of different reports that can be used to detect anomalies and continuously optimize them.

The latter is becoming increasingly important, as Google's AI / automation is being forced on us as users of Google ads more and more frequently. For example…

Monitor match types

Over the years, Google has expanded the definition of exact & phrase match. This means that your keywords are now "matched" with a larger number of searches. Google believes this is best for you. However, the machine often makes mistakes. So we need to monitor the results and take corrective action if necessary.

The raw data is confusing and difficult to read. By automating the weekly creation of a report (using Google Scripts) and converting this data into useful information, the Account Manager can do this
See at a glance how each type behaves.

An example of a table with a weekly keyword report

To know what corrective actions to take, clear goals need to be set, and this is where the Profit Curve ™ comes in.

Using the Profit Curve ™

I developed the Profit Curve ™ tool earlier this year to explain to customers and show them why choosing a random CPA target (and then asking for more leads "but cheaper") is often not the best approach ,

The total profit can often be increased by increasing the CPA goal because we can buy so much more traffic. This is where all new customer engagements begin – by identifying clear goals and then testing those goals to test assumptions.

The profit curve

If you can allow the machine to spend slightly more on each lead than your competitors, you will end up with all the good traffic.

Google Display Ads

Google's "other" network is the Display Network. Nevertheless (!) A mostly untapped resource of most marketers and an enormous potential opportunity for your company.

Of course, as a performance marketer, we want to show ads on websites that lead to real results (conversions!), Without focusing on impressions and cheap clicks. However, the device does not always target quality sites.

A table with invalid domain strings

We are again using automation to address this problem.

We don't want to spend thousands or tens of thousands of dollars on the customer budget to prove (again) that these ads on the .xyz or .press website have not led to high customer quality. We have data stacks of millions of dollars in advertising spending to support these assumptions. So we don't want to start over every time (which the computer will probably do).

However, it is impossible to prevent Google from showing your ads on all .xyz websites unless you know the exact domain name (e.g. Fortunately, we have a long list of these domains that we have built over many years, but new ones are constantly being added.

The solution? Another Google script that browses the reports every day and every time it finds a domain that contains a phrase we specify (the above is a tiny subset), it blocks this site for each campaign for that customer AND adds them to the master list stored in the cloud.

Once a new site gets a single click, we can block it and stop wasting thousands of dollars. For every customer.

Potential negative keywords

Every day, a similar script searches the list of searches for search and purchase campaigns to find new words that have never been seen before.

If the results are terrible, they can automatically be blocked for more and more. If they are not clear, a team member marks them for review to make a subjective call.

So there is not a single go-to-killer campaign. Maybe one day the machine can really optimize your account better than a human. In the meantime, the idea is to automate as much as possible, pass on useful information to the account manager before they even know they need it, alert them, and remove the garbage further.

Hopefully you can use these ideas in your Google account and save a small fortune.

We know that was a lot. And just like at the Traffic & Conversion Summit, we'll give you advice.

Choose and focus on the home run strategy that makes the most sense for your business in 2020. Then let the rest act as a guide for your new strategy.

Happy New Year!

(NOTE: Do you need support in your digital marketing efforts? Or do you just want to implement proven, actionable marketing tools, tactics and templates in your company? Find out about the latest offerings from DigitalMarketer and you're on your way to helping your business grow.)