The Challenge

Enable DDM’s campaign managers to handle more campaigns and improve returns for small business clients

The Results

25% drop in CPC, 131% increase in CTRwithin one month of migrating campaigns to MatchCraft

Shortly after Deseret Digital Media (DDM), the digital media division of Utah publisher The Deseret News, added online search advertising to its lineup of marketing services for local businesses, Marketing Operations Manager Paul Winterowd knew his team needed help. Their internal systems for managing merchants’ campaigns were working for the moment but left little capacity for the sales growth the DDM team had planned.

Winterowd also suspected that there was room for improvement in merchants’ campaign performance. “I wasn’t sure whether the answer was technology or human knowledge, but I wanted to make sure we were doing everything possible to maximize returns for our clients,” he says. Most of the companies DDM works with are small businesses who watch their ROI carefully, he notes: “If they don’t see solid results from advertising, they won’t be doing it for long.”

MatchCraft’s advertising platform, AdVantage™, brought superior technology, a proven track record, and a wealth of experience to the table with tangible immediate results: Just one month after migrating all of DDM’s search campaigns to MatchCraft, average CPC (cost per click) had declined by 25% while the average CTR (click-through rate) more than doubled. “Our clients are extremely happy and we’re seeing their monthly budgets increase,” says Winterowd.

Seamless Transition, The Right Training

DDM has helped thousands of Utah businesses connect with local audiences since 2009. The group began with display ads and classified listings on its own properties (deseretnews.com, ksl.com and others) and has expanded its services over the years to include mobile and video ads, social media, and search campaigns.

DDM’s team began by managing merchants’ search campaigns directly through Google’s robust AdWords platform. The campaign managers were well versed in the intricacies of building and optimizing search campaigns, and AdWords works well for individual businesses with onsite and dedicated expertise, but it’s not the most efficient framework for one person managing multiple campaigns across disparate businesses, says Brad Petersen, MatchCraft’s Senior Vice President of Business Development. “AdVantage™ lets campaign managers see exactly which campaigns are performing well, and which need attention, on both Google and Yahoo|Bing, making the team much more efficient
very quickly.”

In October 2013, DDM migrated all its merchant campaigns to Match-Craft’s platform. The DDM team had no trouble getting the campaigns set up in the new system – in fact, it took only days . “The MatchCraft team took care of the whole thing – no hiccups at all,” says Winterowd.DDM’s customers are local Utah businesses like law firms, contractors, hotels and car dealers; monthly budgets range from $200 up to $40,000, with the average budget around $1,500 per month.

MatchCraft also provided in-depth training for the DDM team to share the best practices identified by MatchCraft’s experienced campaign managers based on running hundreds of thousands of campaigns around the world over more than a decade. “The campaign manager has a direct impact on a campaign’s performance, particularly at the beginning during setup,” says Priscilla Soriano, MatchCraft’s Director of Campaign Management. MatchCraft worked directly with DDM’s campaign managers to make sure they understood every step of the setup process within the MatchCraft platform AdVantage.

Automated Bidding, Tailored Taxonomy

So how did MatchCraft’s AdVantage™ platform improve the performance of DDM’s campaigns so quickly? “The answer lies in MatchCraft’s proprietary bidding algorithm. AdVantage™ scans the available inventory and bidding landscape throughout the day and identifies periods when bidding pressure is reduced for each merchants’ keywords,” explains Soriano. “During these periods users are still searching keywords with high conversion rates, but at lower volumes – and that’s when other advertisers often drop out of the auction. AdVantage™ seizes the opportunity to capture those clicks with lower bids, driving down CPC.”

MatchCraft’s detailed taxonomy also saved DDM’s campaign managers a lot of the manual campaign setup and optimization work they had been doing prior to the migration to AdVantage™. MatchCraft’s proprietary Advisor™ system strategically guides DDM’s campaign managers toward the best categories in the taxonomy for each merchant; each category is linked to a set of high-performance keywords and tailored ad copy. “Before MatchCraft, our campaign managers spent a lot of time choosing keywords and writing ads,” says Winterowd. “Match-Craft’s technology puts structure around the campaign setup process and leads our people through it. The system does a better job and does it a lot more efficiently.” (Campaign managers always have the opportunity to review and refine the system’s suggestions.)

Ready For The Future

Because of MatchCraft, Winterowd is confident that his campaign management team is ready to handle all the new search campaigns DDM’s sales team brings in. “We’ve doubled the number of campaigns each of our account analysts can handle,” says Winterowd. And being able to deliver great results means DDM’s merchants will stick around and even increase their budgets – great news for DDM’s bottom line. “We look forward to a long relationship with MatchCraft,” says Winterowd.

ABOUT

  • Founded in 2009, DDM is a subsidiary company of Deseret Management Corporation
  • DDM runs the premier sites of KSL.com, DeseretBook.com and DeseretNews.com which delivers more than 4 million unique visitors and 200 million page views a month
  • Largest online degital media network in Intermountain West

Before MatchCraft our campaign managers spent alot of time choosing keywords and writing ads.”

Paul Winterowd

Marketing Operations Manager
Deseret Digital Media

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