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Fathom Talks Box.com (& Benefits of Transferring to a Cloud Storage Solution)

By | April 22, 2014

boxcta2Today, Fathom was excited to present a webinar in collaboration with Box.com, sharing our experience evaluating cloud storage solutions. We were even more excited to learn there were over 300 webinar registrants! Clearly, there is a need for faster, more efficient file storage and team collaboration tools. As an innovative, fast-moving company, we’re always on the lookout for tools and platforms that will increase efficiency and make our lives easier. Box.com is just that, and we couldn’t be happier to share this secret with other marketers out there!

During the webinar, we openly discussed the reasons for needing a new storage solution, our process in evaluating potential providers and ways we encouraged adoption among our marketing and sales teams. After doing an internal audit of case studies, and realizing we stored them in 7 different locations (in all different formats, on all different letterheads), we made a decision as a company that we needed a centralized storage solution that was easy to access. We also were looking for a storage solution that offered:

  • Different permissions for sharing documents internally (with teams) and externally (with clients and partners)
  • Easy search navigation (so teams could easily find documents in ANY folder)
  • Comments feature (so we didn’t have to rely on going back to individual emails to see who created what when & the status of documents)
  • Version control (so that when we updated letterheads or documents, we could easily see the most updated version without deleting older versions)
  • Salesforce, Marketo and Docusign integration
  • Easy way to share big files with team members, partners & vendors (so we could provide links instead of attachments)

We decided on Box.com because it offered all of these benefits and more! What we’ve found is that Box.com:

  • Saved us a lot of time! (much more efficient)
  • Unified all documents in one place, and was easily accessible on desktops or mobile (no VPN necessary!)
  • People LOVE it – it’s super intuitive and didn’t require extensive training

Below is a recap of some of the additional questions we were asked, along with answers from both myself and Joe Moran (our CRM manager). If you or your company are evaluating Box.com and have any questions about practical use and implementation, we’d be happy to jump on a call and talk through these things with you (216-369-2220)!

1.  A lot of potential customers ask about the relationship between IT and line of business. How did you two work together to bring in Box? How did it start and what would be your best practices that you’d want to share with the audience?

The process started separately, as both marketing and IT had needs for a better storage solution. The collaboration of making this new storage solution happen began when Jay (our IT guru) and I began talking one day about some of the struggles we were having using the Intranet and fileserver. Together we realized there was a better way, so we made it our mission to prove this to others in the organization.

A few best practices / tips to working with IT:

  • Realize that IT is BUSY – plant the seed early and realize this transfer to Box.com is not an overnight thing – it requires planning and buy-in from other stakeholders in the organization.
  • Providing a list to IT of all the folders we needed to create (prior to actually transitioning from the file server to Box.com) made Jay’s job easier (because we took on the burden of cleaning up / organizing / purging old folders).

2.  Another question related to company or team relationships is then getting the actual buy-in from Finance and getting them to pay. What did you do to work with Finance or other client teams that may not have been using Box? Any lessons learned that you’d recommend?

We used sales and marketing as a “test” drive for the rest of the company – we had to prove that we gained efficiencies in using box, and started talking about all the cool things it could do. To get buy-in from Finance, we stressed the importance of “consolidating” tools (instant cost savings) and focused on the fact that Box integrated with the other solutions – Marketo and Salesforce – we’re using heavily as an organization (efficiency = savings)

3.  I know when we were talking earlier that Fathom has a lot of younger employees in general. How has that changed your view on what technology you bring into the company? Do you think there’s a generational gap within the company?

We don’t feel there is a generational gap at Fathom. We are a very technologically savvy organization, willing to try and test new tools all the time. Our problem is almost the fact that we try TOO many new tools, and move on quickly. Box.com is a platform that has stuck, due to the fact that it’s heads and shoulders above the other solutions we’ve looked into and used in the past. For those who hesitate to “latch on” to new tools, for fear they’ll quickly be abandoned, we continued to tout the fact that Box.com offers such cool features (like comments, tags, version control) that tie into our other existing platforms, that it’s here to stay.

4.  What type of training did you do to get your team onboard to use Box? How was it received?

We really didn’t have to do much internal training – the platform itself is very intuitive. Our training basically involved dedicating two Monday meetings to reviewing Box.com and our new folder structure with the sales and marketing teams, so they knew where they could find all items and how they could add new documents and folders themselves. We also create a “10 Commandments” guide and distributed it to the team – this reviewed naming conventions, best practices and things to keep in mind when using Box.com.

5.  Can you speak to some of the other cloud solutions you are using like Salesforce, Marketo or Docusign? How do they integrate with Box and how did that help you choose Box as a solution?

We currently integrate Box.com with Salesforce. It allows all users to access the same files on an account and contact level, so team members who have Salesforce and those who don’t can view the same files. Before integrating with Box.com, some files were uploaded to Salesforce but not all members who needed them could access them (because they didn’t have Salesforce licenses).  We’re in the process of integrating better with Marketo and Docusign – more to come on this front!

6.  What would be your recommendations or takeaways for anyone on the webinar who is either considering to buy Box or recently purchased and is planning to role out to their marketing team?

  • Talk to stakeholders often and work from the top down – come to the table with a company roll-out plan (who you want to receive licenses, when and for what cost) – having numbers and a plan to support your requests is key. It wouldn’t hurt to try to quantify the efficiencies you’ll gain in terms of revenue (by seeing how many hours you’ll save doing burdensome, administrative tasks instead of revenue-generating marketing activities).
  • Come up with a plan for transferring all files (before starting the process)
    • Use this as a time to reorganize purge & consolidate files
    • Decide who owns which folders & who is in charge of transferring files
    • Better to get team members involved (so everyone knows where to find files)
    • Map this out in a “folder” tree diagram (people will have opinions on where things should live – better to hammer this out before creating everything in Box)
  • Create a list of “guidelines” for utilizing Box
    • Naming conventions
    • Version control considerations
    • Expired Links
    • Tagging
    • Link privacy (open vs private)
    • Discuss access of employees

     

Have more questions?  Get in touch with us.

 

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Marketing for Manufacturing in the Age of the Self-Directed Buyer [Lunch & Learn]

By | April 15, 2014

factory light bulb

Retooling Your Marketing for Exponential Growth & Profitability
If you’re serious about understanding the new ways of marketing and selling, attend the Fathom/NitroMojo “Lunch & Learn” seminar on May 8th. You’ll walk away with a concrete plan for growing your company in the age of the self-directed buyer.

WHAT: Lunch & Learn: “Retooling Your Marketing for Exponential Growth & Profitability

WHERE: Richard Shatten Board Room, Greater Cleveland Partnership office. 1240 Huron Road E, Suite 300 Cleveland, OH 44115-1717

WHEN: Thursday, May 8 (11:30 a.m.–1:00 p.m.)

Space is limited to 25. Don’t miss out: Register today!

Join us to talk about:

  • Your sales goals
  • Your growth plan
  • The black hole in your distribution channels
  • Lead generation
  • Lead nurturing and sales conversion
  • Staying current in a rapidly evolving marketplace

WHY: In the old days, your customer came to you knowing nothing except that maybe you were the place to buy from. They needed you to hold a hand through the buying process, explaining every aspect of the thing they were purchasing. Information—and the advantage—was on your side.

Fast-forward to today: Buyers might be anywhere from two-thirds to 90% of the way through their buying journey before they contact the vendor (Forrester). What does this mean? The buying process has been transformed. Customers often know what they’re looking for; they just don’t know YOU have it. And chances are, before they even know your name, they can easily investigate every aspect of what they’re ordering and discover your rivals in the course of that research.

THE ANSWER: Manufacturing executives, all is not lost! We can show you ways to capitalize on this information overabundance and your customers’ hunger for knowledge/help. Your company need not get tossed overboard in the sea change.

Stay for lunch, leave with a plan. We look forward to seeing you there!

***

Photo courtesy of Steve Jurvetson via Flickr.

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How Creative, Conversion and Analytics Joined Forces to Reinvent the Fathom® Website

By | January 16, 2014

About one year ago, Fathom decided to focus even more tightly on areas of industry expertise.

At this time, the Fathom website –the most important medium for reaching new customers and generating more sales – was in need of a new identity to reflect our evolving approach, services, areas of expertise and brand identity.

(Cue superhero music) Enter a dedicated marketing team with the sole purpose of promoting and establishing the Fathom brand.

PRIORITY #1: RECOGNIZE THE ISSUE

As we began digging into the analytics of the website, we found ways to boost the conversion rate, audience engagement, and overall user interaction.

From a design perspective, the original version of the website was not mobile-friendly, and was not automated to react responsively to browser window sizes. Responsive Web design (RWD) is an approach aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing experience — easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from mobile phones to desktop computer monitors). A site designed with RWD adapts the layout to the viewing environment by using fluid, proportion-based grids,flexible images, and CSS3 media queries.

Also, there was an incredibly large amount of real estate in the upper-left-hand corner of the home page that was ripe for repurposing. Your top priority “above-the-fold” should be establishing who you are and how your products or services can benefit your potential customers. Think of it as your storefront window; it is a peek inside of your business. If it is not appealing almost immediately, then chances are that your prospects will move on very quickly (attention deficit issues are at an all-time high on the Web these days, if you haven’t noticed).

 

Issues with the problematic homepage included wasted space and a lack of conversion elements.

Elements to focus on with a redesign of the homepage included wasted real estate, mobile viewing, and a lack of conversion elements.

Another balance designers must achieve is aesthetics vs. usability, i.e. user-centered design (UCD). UCD is focused on the usability of a site, or what makes for an easy and seamless user experience, including the ability to complete tasks (especially conversions, from the commercial perspective). We needed to integrate conversion-centered design (CCD) with a total creative redesign of the website. UCD and CCD do intertwine, but the major distinction of CCD is that it aims to persuade the user to achieve your business goal while ideally matching it to the user’s.

To sum it up, CCD is a discipline targeted specifically at designing page-level experiences that achieve a single business goal. It seeks to guide the visitor towards completing that one specific action, using persuasive design and psychological triggers to increase conversions. In Fathom’s case, that single business goal was to get users to request a free marketing opportunity assessment.

PRIORITY #2: REDESIGN THE FATHOM WEBSITE WITH RESPONSIVE CCD IN MIND

Now that we had established a conversion-centered design, the next steps were to mock up a website that not only maximized our new desired conversions, but also appealed visually to our target audience, and behaved in a responsive manner.

We redesigned the entire site to be responsive within our existing CSS template, but for the sake of time and this article, we will focus on the design of the homepage. The plan was simple: Focus on key elements that spoke to our customers with clarity about three very important topics:

  • Who Fathom was and why we exist
  • Our approach to digital marketing
  • Industry specialization

The initial mockups resulted in two varying designs of the homepage consisting of essentially the same content. Version A focused heavily on our digital funnel management approach to marketing, and included many features:

  • Industry areas of expertise
  • Ticker for tracking revenue delivered to clients
  • “About us” video
  • News and blog feed
  • Featurette of one of our teams
  • Resource library slider
  • List of the company’s top accomplishments and awards

Version B primarily concentrated on who Fathom was as a company, our goals, and our service areas of expertise. Version B was designed to be much simpler and more visually appealing than Version A, and included a large image slider with large calls-to-action; a breakdown of our digital funnel approach; a list of industry areas of expertise; our “about us” video; a news and blog feed; and a resource library slider.

Both variations included two main call-to-action buttons: “Free Assessment,” and “Chat with Our Experts.”

 

Versions A and B of the newly redesigned Fathom homepage

 

PRIORITY #3: ESTABLISH AN A/B TEST OF THE HOMEPAGE VARIATIONS

After some quick and masterful development within WordPress by our resident front-end Web developer/genius, Matt Thompson, it was time to put Versions A and B of the revamped homepage to work. With the help of Visual Website Optimizer, a multivariate conversion testing application, we put the two variations of the homepage face-to-face in a battle for conversion glorification. We focused our tests on three important variables:

  1. Our Approach (clicks to the ‘approach’ page through any stages of the funnel breakdown buttons)
  2. Engagement (overall time on the website)
  3. Free Assessment Conversions (clicks on the green button to our assessment request page containing a lead form)

The results of the test, which ran a total of three months, although very close in some cases, gave us some very important insights (see below).

a_b_test_results

While Version A led by a hair in conversions to the “Free Assessment” page, winning by 0.30%, Version B won the test for website engagement and clicks to learn more about our approach. With these analytics, we were able to conclude without a doubt that Version B led to higher engagement, keeping visitors on the site longer, resulting in higher education about Fathom’s approach and services.  With this knowledge, we have set Version B as the static and full-time variation of Fathom’s homepage.

PRIORITY #4: KEEP TESTING!

And the testing is far from over! Now that we know Version B holds the highest engagement, we will utilize this data to formulate and create three new variations of Version B to A/B/C test. Because we now know that our homepage visitors did not overwhelmingly request the “Free Assessment”, we can focus one of our variations around it with a slider banner image. Other elements we are planning to test include:

  • Variations of CTA button designs within the slider to increase clicks
  • Moving the “about us” video above the fold to increase engagement/time on site
  • Focusing the top entirely on our industries of expertise
  • Designing the top fold to be “approach”-centric, educating our audience on the services and people who make Fathom unique

The bottom line is: We will never stop testing, and neither should you! Web design and content architecting is the perfect storm in which creative, conversion and analytics fuse together to become the ultimate proving ground for your business. Do you have what it takes to appeal to your audience while maximizing conversions for your business? Balancing these interests can be a challenge, but the only way to truly refine and perfect this art is through the fusion of creative, conversion and data. The measuring stick to this balancing act will always be testing – and you should never be satisfied.

 

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Box.com: A Gift That Keeps on Giving

By | December 20, 2013

In the spirit of the holidays, Jay (Fathom’s IT superman) has given the gift of a cloud-based file sharing system to the Sales and Marketing team.  It’s a gift that will keepboxcta2 on giving, as it’s rolled out to the entire company over the next few months.

Box.com is officially replacing our fileserver, and we’re very excited about it.  It makes downloading documents a much faster process, allows for version control (no more saving over each others’ files permanently!), and enables team members to post comments and get real-time updates when files have been uploaded or changed.  Pretty awesome.

As a prerequisite to accessing Box.com, our internal marketing team produced “The 10 Box.com Commandments”.  This is a list of rules that all sales and marketing team members agreed to abide by to maintain the integrity of the new Box.com folder structure. We’d like to share these with you, if you or your company are considering a switch to Box.com.

 

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Dreamforce Recap 2013: 7 Key Call Metrics that Will Accelerate Sales Revenue

By | December 4, 2013

call-metrics-phone-dial

Howard Brown, CEO of RingDNA, kicked off Dreamforce with a session on 7 Key Call Metrics that Will Accelerate Sales Revenue. At Fathom, we’ve used call tracking services for years – both for ourselves and our clients – so we realize the importance in qualifying phone calls just like any other lead. However, this session took call tracking a level deeper – exploring the opportunity to tie both inbound and outbound calls into Salesforce.com directly using RingDNA. Not ever having heard of this tool before, I have to admit – it’s worth looking into if you’re utilizing Salesforce.

As Brown stated in his presentation, call metrics matter for three reasons:

  1. They help predict the future.  Call metrics help companies identify which sales reps are succeeding, which are likely to hit revenue targets and which are best to receive calls not just based on industry, but on keyword searches.
  2. Insides Sales hiring is up 54%, and for every one outside sales rep that is hired, there are 10 insides sales reps being added to teams.  It’s more critical now than ever to track the activity and performance of these insides sales reps, and the calls they’re making and receiving.
  3. First place gets a Cadillac, second place gets steak knives and third place is fired.  Closing deals is critical to sales reps, and understanding the quality of phone call leads can help sales teams know where to allocate their time and effort.

Without further ado…here are the 7 call metrics that every business should be tracking:

  1. Number of outbound calls by rep by day
  2. Call disposition per rep per day (how many calls turned into appointments?)
  3. Number of calls per lead (if a lead is unresponsive, how many times will the sales team try to reach out?)
  4. Number of unanswered calls (missed calls = lost revenue opportunity)
  5. Lead response time (did you know that responding to a leads query within an hour = 7x more likely to have a meaningful conversation and 60x morelikely than waiting 1 day? Harvard Business Review)
  6. Average Call Rating by Marketing Campaign (rate phone calls 1 to 5 stars so marketing has a good gauge on the quality of the leads they’re sending to sales)
  7. Wins by Rep by Campaign (are the right calls being routed to the right closers?)

If would like advice on how best to track your phone calls or leads, don’t hesitate to call us at 866-915-0418, chat with us, or shoot us a quick email.  We’ll get back to you right away.

You can also learn more about call tracking below:

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