Call Measurement: Are Your Ad Programs Delivering?

In this complex world of advertising choices, it is important to know which ad programs are working. This can be challenging for franchisors driving consumer response across a network of franchisees. To address these complexities and meaningfully evaluate system-wide ad performance, many franchise companies are turning to call measurement.

Consumers like to connect with businesses by phone, and calls are the preferred response among advertisers. By assigning unique phone numbers (local or toll-free) to any direct-response media, call measurement programs track the number of calls generated by ad, media type, campaign, or market. Results include cross-media lead generation and lead quality data. Franchisors can use these actionable insights - ranging from total number of calls received (both answered and unanswered) and caller demographics to call duration and customer service performance - to maximize their marketing and advertising dollars and improve their overall advertising program to drive more qualified leads to their franchisees.

What is driving my quality phone leads?

When a franchisee receives a call, it's often unclear how the caller originally found the business, particularly with many consumers doing online or mobile research before contacting a business offline. Call measurement tools that assign call tracking numbers to each ad or media campaign make it easy to determine where leads are coming from, e.g., mobile app or browser, paid search engine keywords, banner ads, TV commercials, Yellow Pages, direct mail, or outdoor ads.

Taking it a step further, call tracking provides visibility into call duration to determine whether inbound calls were long enough to indicate qualified leads. It also offers quality lead generation data through each caller's name and address, which can be used for optimized remarketing or follow-up activities. Once corporate knows which ads and media types are driving the most valuable leads to individual franchisees, the franchisor can more accurately tailor media buys for maximum ROI.

Which demographic and geographic profiles are responding?

Knowing the trending locations and household demographics of callers is valuable for determining the overall reach of a franchisor's ad program and which types of consumers are responding best to different types of ads or ad copy. Call measurement solutions can automatically collect and sort this ad performance data, which can then be used to optimize ad campaigns based on these demographic and geographic buying patterns.

Another benefit of tapping into the caller's geographic information is that the franchisor can use call tracking to automatically direct/route calls to the closest or best-suited franchisee for the caller's needs. This drives an improved caller experience and increases the likelihood of more conversions (sales).

Are franchisees executing on phone leads?

Your corporate ad programs are driving leads to franchisees, but are these individual locations making the most of the opportunities? Call measurement can help franchisors evaluate franchisee performance by tracking call times and durations, as well as whether or not the location missed any calls. Depending on the type of business, a short call could mean a lower propensity to make a purchase or book an appointment - which presents an opportunity for better training at individual locations. Additionally, if a location is missing calls or experiencing peak calling periods during understaffed times, call tracking tools can identify the need for better staffing arrangements. Detailed call analysis can improve operational efficiencies by maximizing sales conversions and lowering cost-per-call ratios.

Franchisors can glean key lead generation insights through a centralized call tracking program. This type of performance data is key for optimizing advertising campaigns for increased consumer response to their network of franchisees. Additionally, call measurement provides franchisors with another way to identify both high-performing locations and those that may require operational or staffing changes to better capitalize on inbound leads. The end result is increased qualified leads based on a finely tuned advertising strategy, accurate consumer response data, and higher sales.

Bill Dinan is president of Telmetrics, a provider of advertising call measurement solutions. Contact him at

Published: February 15th, 2012

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