David Pagotto, Founder and Managing Director, at SixGun, is a listener of the show and reached out to me to suggest that sharing the success that they’ve achieved for a client, Detail Central, an automotive, marine, and motorbike detailing service, would be of interest to the rest of you.
I 100% agreed and so we made it happen.
David has a history working for various marketing agencies before founding SixGun in 2017.
David’s approach, and I take this form Six Gun’s website is, quote “Our approach focusses on building relationships with our clients. We take the time to learn about your industry and your ambitions for the future to plan the perfect strategy. No two businesses are the same so we don’t follow a template and ensure that everything we do is unique to your website. This means high-quality content, comprehensive website audits and technical improvements, social media strategies, and Facebook, LinkedIn, Google and Instagram marketing campaigns.”
To be fair, that is what all good marketers should be doing so I knew David was going to be able to offer some great insights and obviously the practical application and examples from their work with Detail Central.
You can visit the subject of the case study, Detail Central, at detailcentral.com.au
As part of the service, I have had this episode transcribed. Transcribing, proofing, and editing a podcast episode is A LOT of work. That’s why I use a service called REV who provide professional freelance transcriptionists who are vetted for quality. While they offer a 99% accuracy guarantee, I do not proof-read their work extensively. Instead, I simply copy and paste below and, as such, please note that this is not be a verbatim transcript of the episode and I have trimmed things like the intro, close, and mid-show ad.
Daniel: So, this is a bit of a case study episode, to help bring to life how a business can really apply some marketing to grow. David, set the scene for us, the business is Detail Central, which is an automotive, marine, and motorbike detailing service in Victoria, Australia. Can you describe the business in terms of what sort of marketing they were doing when you firs spoke with them?
David: They had a previous SEO provider, but they weren’t 100% sold with them. I think there was some things going on in the background with trust and things like that. And they also do quite a bit of organic social work as well.
Daniel: And in speaking to you, what did they say apart from what every client says, “We want more sales. We want more money.” What did they say they wanted to achieve with their marketing?
David: Look, they definitely wanted to see consistent growth. They wanted to say that steady month-on-month, year-on-year increase in business that is reliable. That was the primary thing for them. And they also… I think they wanted someone that they could really trust, that they knew that would have their best interests at heart, after their previous experience with previous agencies.
Daniel: As an agency that specializes in digital, when you have a new client like Detail Central, where do you start with them in terms of figuring out what to do? Where does that process begin?
David: Generally? What happens is, we have a discovery session with the client or the prospect, before they become a client. And in this discovery session, that’s when we dive into all of that fun stuff, in terms of, what are their goals? What are their KPIs for the campaigns? What does their target market look like? How is previous performance played out based on the channels that they’ve executed on? So we really want to get into the nuts and bolts and the data aspects of how things have gone previously with the client, what they want to achieve. And from there, we can start to look at specific strategies that break down to tactics in terms of what should be done and how it should be done in budgets.
Daniel: For the end of that process in determining what they should be doing, what does their marketing look like now? And it’d be great if you could talk through maybe anything that they were doing in their marketing that you decided with them that should stop, anything that was existing, and that they then tweaked, and you kept in their marketing, and obviously anything new that you recommended and added and implemented as well as any, maybe… I know you’re a digital marketing agency, but even any non-digital marketing that they have in place, which we need to consider in the overall marketing plan.
David: The first thing that we jumped into and attacked as fastly as possible was the SEO side of things. So they’re already running SEO, but it needed a bit of a refresh. It needed a bit of new strategy to really continue to perform well. We also worked on some Google Ads Campaigns as well, to kind of integrate into that search space. They we’ll already doing the organic social media side of things, so Facebook, Instagram, though [inaudible 00:02:33] done a reasonably good job with that. But we started doing some advertising in the Facebook and Instagram space as well.
David: We also started looking a little bit more deeply at what email marketing could do for them. They already had a reasonable database that was being underutilized, so we’ve sent out some strategic bits and pieces. There is time to engage their audience, which has been great. So they’re probably the digital aspects that we’d come in and help with. Something else that they’ve done internally was, they’ve actually bought an Audi S5, and they’ve souped it up, and put the brand wrapping on it and take it to all the events, and stuff like that. And I think the owner really loves that aspect of it because, he loves the cars and all that kind of stuff. So it’s a bit of a project for him as well as the marketing piece.
Daniel: How long does that process take? You’ve just spoken about those things that they had and we tweaked and we added, and now what they have going forward, but how long does that whole process take from that first initial contact and maybe the meeting through to, “Okay, now we have everything in place, and we’re monitoring and reporting, and we’re tweaking as we go.” How long does that take to work through?
David: There is definitely a difference between initial implementation time and what it takes to refine a marketing campaign. If I was to say, “How long did it take us to do the initial implementation of these channels and get some bits and pieces up and running?” I would say, “Probably within three months.” We had all these aspects built into the campaign, but we’re finding it’s truly ongoing, as anyone in marketing can tell you. It never ends, there’s lots of stuff that can be done. Even now they’re [inaudible 00:04:08] time, and there’s still lots of refinement and optimization that goes on, on a very regular basis.
David: But I would say, to give your audience a little bit more information on that, probably around the sixth month mark to get everything up to a place where the ROI is consistent, things are happening in a fashion where you can really look at the numbers and say, “Yeah, we’re going down the right path. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel in terms of the goals we want to hit. We can see things moving in the right direction, sales are up. All of these things start happening at around that mark, I would say.
Daniel: And the important point there to make is that, reporting plays a key role in managing that marketing and that refinement that you spoke about. And you gave some metrics there about sales and inquiries and things like that. We all know that digital is highly trackable. Sometimes it spins our head how much we can actually track and try to make sense of all of that. What do they, and what do you focus on in terms of data and do you manage the reporting for them?
David: So firstly, we do manage the reporting for them, and that breaks down into a few things. Firstly, they get a live dashboard, with all of the statistics we’ll talk about in a moment. Secondly, they get a fortnightly call with their account manager, a work in progress call to talk through some of these metrics. And I also get a formalized monthly report in a PDF format as well. So there’s a lot of reporting that goes on, and that’s a critical part of any marketing campaign, particularly digital, because it is so trackable.
David: Now, when we look at what to track, we really break it down into lag measures and lead measures. So, it’s an e-commerce store, the most important aspect is sales, online revenue. That is by far the Holy Grail of what we are measuring and what the client wants to see. But there are lead indicators, and those lead indicators are things like ranking performance for keywords, organic traffic coming up to the site, impressions and reach and subsequent clicks through Facebook ads, for example. So there’re these measures that we look at to say, “If we increase the number of clicks we’re getting through a particular channel, and we have the same conversion rate, we know that that will eventually lead to more sales, which is the end goal.”
Daniel: So irrespective of this client, and knowing, as you said, and as I said in my previous question, that we can track digital marketing to some really fine details. How often do you recommend that, remembering that the target audience is small or medium businesses, and not everybody would have an agency like yours to help them… So for those people that are maybe doing it a little bit more on their own, how often do you recommend looking at their digital marketing assets and assessing at that top level, what needs to change or keep going? Is it a daily thing, a monthly thing, or is it maybe every six months?
David: It depends on the level you want to look at it. If you’re in the trenches, you’re working in the specific channels, for example, in Google Ads, and you’re running Google Ads to do business, you want to be looking at that, I would say, weekly. Even creating yourself a dashboard that you look at in the mornings before you start work, if you’re responsible for the marketing of the business, for example, might be useful as well to give you any red flags or anything like that. You’d want to be checking things, I would say, latest, weekly, for those in the trench tactics. But then if you’re talking about the pitch for changes in terms of strategy, new channels, new target markets, new products, all of this kind of stuff, that’s probably something to either do monthly or quarterly, depending on the type of business it is.
Daniel: So the big question now is, how has all of that impacted their business, Detail Central, and how have they grown? I know that we can’t really talk about exact dollar figures, because that’s confidential. So using percentages is fine.
David: So some key numbers. Year-on-year online revenue increased by over 130%, with transactions increasing by over 82%. We saw an increase in users to the website by 46% for this period. Some of their core keywords… So for example, detailing supplies, which is at the top of the list of the keywords that they want to rank for. They rank in the first organic position, and they also rank in the first maps position. So if you type it in, or if you type it in from Melbourne anyway, it might be a little bit different if you type it in from somewhere else in Australia, they’re first in the maps block and the first organically. So it is an unbelievable result from an organic perspective.
David: And intangibly, outside of the numbers, the client is growing at a really strong pace. They’ve just leased the building next door to them, so they can have double the space. They’re talking about bringing out new products and expanding into new states and things like that. So on all fronts, both in terms of the numbers that we can look at, and from the business perspective, everything is heading in a very, very positive direction.
Daniel: So David, do any of those success elements, those numbers that you just ran through and those percentages, do any of those surprise you in terms of, that maybe they were better than you expected? Because I know everybody goes into this expecting success. People come to marketers wanting to know how they’re going to help them. We aren’t always great at committing to, “We will improve this by 150%”, or, “We’ll give you 10 new customers”, but in our heads, we all know that we carry that stuff around, and we think we can probably get to here or there. Does any of those surprise you, and they were way better than what you maybe thought they were at the start of this process?
David: Yeah. A fantastic question. And I would say definitely yes, primarily because of COVID-19 and the impacts of that. Detail Central sells high end detailing products. They don’t sell the kind of stuff you go down to the Supercheap Auto, and buy some wax for 10-20 bucks. The kind of stuff they sell is professional grade, so it’s quite expensive and it’s quite a luxury. And just like most luxuries, when budgets are starting to tighten up, we expected things to not quite reach the numbers that they have. But we have seen the work that we’ve done prop the business up during this period, so that they have done extremely well when you measure year-on-year. So the fact that there has been a pandemic, and the numbers that I’m talking about are including… I’m talking about 130% increase year-on-year, comparing July to July last year. So we’re talking about, we’re comparing a period that’s inside a pandemic for a product that is likely to get knocked around against a period when there was no pandemic. So 100%, the outcome here has been phenomenal and more than unexpected.
Daniel: You’ve implemented some great things there, and there are obviously the successes with those numbers that you just spoke about. You also spoke about their expansion with taking over new premises next door, and they’re talking about maybe expanding into other premises and then interstate. Does the marketing stay the same just with more money because we’re in different locations or is there talk about adding new elements to the marketing to support that growth?
David: Largely the channels remain the same, but what we do inside each channel will vary quite a bit. So for example, the search strategy will shift to be able to pick up any local searches, for example, for where their new premises will be, all their interstate locations would be. Same thing with how we tackle Google Ads, Facebook ads, all of that kind of stuff. Because even though online is where things happen for them, they provide a lot of expertise as well. One of their selling points is… I don’t know if you’ve ever done too much work waxing a car or anything like that, but there’s a lot of complexity in which product to buy for what circumstance and how to use it. And the owner of this particular business is a little bit of a … He’s like the wizard behind the curtain.
David: He’s very well respected in the industry. He knows exactly what he’s doing. You ring him up and say, “I’ve go this car with this kind of paint, with this kind of coat, and we’ve done this, we’ve done that. It’s got a sticker here.” He’d say, “This is the product for you, and this is how you need to use it, and you’ll have no problems.” So that element… It’s still important, that localized element is still an aspect of importance to that, and that specialization. But yet to answer your question, the channels will largely stay the same, but the strategy within each channel will definitely change.
Daniel: David, that’s a fantastic chat, some great insights and great advice. And it’s excellent to really focus some channels riding on a particular business, and understand how that’s been applied. So thank you so much for coming on the show and taking us into how a digital agency can work with and create success for their clients. If people want to get in touch and have a chat to you about how you can help them, what should they do?
David: They should check out our website, sixgun.com.au, or they can find me on LinkedIn, Facebook, all of the standard social media platforms out there.
Daniel: Outstanding, thanks again for joining us, much appreciated.
David: Thank you so much for having me on.