Early this year, the Mobridge Area Chamber of Commerce agreed to invest $11,111 of the City’s 3B tax in a new marketing campaign for the City of Mobridge. While all 3B money is used to promote Mobridge, the Chamber also received $11,111 in matching funds from the SD Dept. of Tourism to expand the new campaign into a regional effort. After the creative work was completed and additional landing pages added to Mobridge.org, Chamber staff were able to launch their first Google Adwords campaigns on May 1. (Complimentary print materials are currently being printed.)
Why should area residents care about a buzzword like ‘Google Adwords’? Online advertising gives the Chamber new information about the impact of our messages. For years, we’ve been casting a wide net, somewhat blindly, and hoping to catch a few proverbial fish with whatever message we thought might work. Online advertising is like adding a state-of-the-art fish finder to our marketing boat. We can now see the schools of potential customers in the waters underneath for the first time--and what their biting on. (My apologies for likening people to fish--it's June and we're a fishing hotspot--so I have fishing on my brain constantly.)
"Online advertising is like adding a state-of-the-art fish finder to our marketing boat--and seeing schools of potential customers in the waters underneath for the first time."
And what we can now see is fascinating. From May 1 to May 30, we had a total of 266,466 people see a virtual billboard about visiting our area. Of those people, 451 virtually walked through our Chamber’s doors by clicking to our website. That’s 15 people per day. We have more potential tourists that engage us daily through our website than by phone, email, and in person combined. (For those of you interested in the cost of all this, each click was 60 cents, 32 cents cheaper than the average cost per click in 2013, and less than $275 for 30 days.)
"We have more potential tourists that engage us daily through our website than by phone, email, and in person combined."
Our number of total sessions on Mobridge.org was 2,748 this month, up from 1,875 in 04il. Google was directly responsible for sending 1,334 (48.5%) of our visitors to the website. The next biggest driver to our website was Facebook, which was responsible for 201 visits. Then came Bing (156 sessions), Yahoo (86 sessions), NationalWalleyeTour.com (49 sessions) and MobridgeOutdoors.com (28 sessions).
After our home page, which received over 5,000 visits, the top landing pages were the jobs page (439 unique page views), the new ‘Our Area’ page we created for this campaign (352), and the ‘Our Area’ fishing subpage (229). The Business Directory was up from last month (79 to 101 unique page views), but still isn’t where we want it, so staff added a link to it from all of the ‘Our Area’ pages. That’s the kind of quick response we are now capable of achieving. The implications for reaching marketing goals and achieving our desired results are huge. The possibilities for promoting our region are boundless and endless!
"The implications for reaching marketing goals and achieving our desired results are huge. The possibilities for promoting our region are boundless and endless!"