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Amping Up Pay-Per-Call Advertising: A Conversation with Marchex

marchex

We recently blogged about Marchex’s acquisition of Jingle Networks, a move to own a platform that monetizes mobile voice search. Recently we were able to get a bit more color from Senior VP of Strategic Development Scott Greenberg.

According to Greenberg, the two companies didn’t have any major distribution partners in common and similarly little overlap on the advertisers side. Marchex gained Jingle’s influential mobile voice distribution partners like Verizon, Sprint, and Cricket out of the deal.

Much of  the million dollar monthly budget from advertisers is spent on call advertising, the fastest growing part of its business. With Jingle, its annualized revenue run rate for 2011 will be 75 percent call based advertising. Greenberg also told us that its advertisers are seeing a 20-30 percent call conversion rate.

Call conversion is measured by customer feedback, analytics, and call mining, a technology that takes transcriptions of each phone call. Using dual-channels, it can determine which voice belongs to the caller and which belongs to the agent. This lets it track keywords that denote a sale including “credit card,” “reservation,” and “confirmation number.”

The success metric is how many qualified phone calls can Marchex drive for their SMB customers. The same holds true for national advertisers. Greenberg told us that “national advertisers want the phone to ring too.” But instead of competing with Google and Bing on pay-per-click, Greenberg said that Marchex can achieve higher call volumes for national advertisers at a higher quality than traditional search.

Local Media Watch – BIA/Kelsey

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