The SMEs became much more relaxed and open as they realized they were getting useful information, and the event maintained a very positive vibe. Everyone Shadow Making expressed a sincere desire to see local businesses succeed, and as a result, the speakers were not just applauded, but applauded. Ultimately, these same business owners, in turn, sought out our sponsors and speakers in the exhibit hall, where the sales pitches were well received. 7. The No-Sell Sales Model Thumbtack does not use any sales force. That's zero sales rep. Still, it generates more than $1 billion in annual revenue for local service providers who use Shadow Making its site and recently received $125 million in its fourth round of funding over the past two years. At LSA16, Jonathan Swanson, co-founder Shadow Making and president of Thumbtack, shared the business model that made this possible. Consumers fill out forms that detail the type of project or work requested. These requests are forwarded to service providers that closely match the location and work demand. Thumbtack only charges a fee when the vendor responds to a lead with a quote and a message.
So, losing a customer to destabilize him hurts. Customer retention is not only important from a cost perspective, but also from a revenue perspective. Revenue can be expressed simply as Revenue = Acquisition + Upsell - Churn. Kristin said the likelihood of selling to an existing customer is 60-70%, compared to 5-20% for a new prospect. So investing to take care of your existing customers is a prudent business decision. Churn is a big enough problem for Shadow Making Google to make it a “20%” project from which products such as Google News, Gmail and AdSense are born. It now offers programs to help its partners support retention and reduce churn, including predictive churn reports, historical churn analysis, and advertiser duration and performance Shadow Making reporting. All in all, we had a great conference and I hope you can join us next year. If you've made it through those 10 points, here's a bonus for you. Watch this video of 11 predictions for local marketing in 2016 from marketers attending LSA16. If you don't have six minutes, skip to the 5:19 mark.
Marketing technology – such as programmatic buying, automated CRM tools like online booking, DIY portals, and free platforms like social media pages – have led to a commoditized marketing environment. This causes two problems: finding a marketing partner becomes a “lowest bidder” decision, and it is much more difficult for marketing providers to distinguish themselves from the competition. Several speakers at LSA16 from Yahoo, DialogTech, Milesone Internet and Shadow Making Tiger Pistol described how to overcome these issues by creating identity through branding and emphasizing personalized service as added value. MapQuest has integrated these two means into the redefinition of its product. MapQuest faced real threats to its relevance from other, more Shadow Making widely used maps that were typically built into users' mobile device operating systems - Google Maps and Apple Maps.