Who You Gonna Call? Using Call Only Campaigns to Maximize Your Advertising Dollars

If you’ve seen the movie Ghostbusters, you know the scene: A ghost appears in the local library. The frantic librarian calls the Ghostbusters team. The team arrives, saves the day and issues an invoice. A slam-dunk conversion!

Of course, this all happened when mobile phones were the size of shoeboxes and Google didn’t yet exist.

call only campaigns

Today, the Ghostbusters would run a call only campaign. The frantic librarian would whip out her mobile phone, search “ghost removal services” and click on a call only ad to phone the Ghostbusters team. Another slam-dunk conversion!

Call Only Campaigns

If you’re not yet familiar with call only ads, you will be soon. Call only campaigns were launched in February of this year via Adwords. The ads are designed to elicit calls from mobile phones (instead of clicks to landing pages).

The ads are short and to the point. They display a telephone number, URL, short line or two of text and prominent call button.

Call only ad

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If calls last less than 30 seconds, the campaign isn’t charged for the conversion—so you don’t incur costs for wrong numbers or unintentional dials.

Who Should Use Call Only Campaigns?

Aside from ghost removal services, what other business should use call only campaigns? Generally, if your business gets more conversions from phone calls than contact forms, then you’re a good candidate.

Maybe your prospects want to talk to someone immediately. “My water pipe is leaking, and I need a plumber NOW!” Or they want to talk to someone before making a commitment. “I need a lawyer, but I really want to talk to someone live before I sign up for anything.”

Our Law Firm Client

Take, for example, one of our law firm clients. We’d been working with the firm for a while and had good success with text and display ads. The ads were getting targeted clicks with solid time on site and several page views per click.

But we noticed that most prospects weren’t filling out the contact form but calling the law firm directly instead. That’s when we decided to implement a call only campaign.

Let’s Look at the Numbers

We launched the campaign in April. Since then, we’ve had twelve call conversions, with calls ranging in length from five to 35 minutes! The cost of each call conversion lead was $203. The average cost of a call was about $59.

During the same period of time, Search Network clicks resulted in four contact form completions, at a cost of $2,587 per lead. (This number is somewhat misleading. Often prospects would click on our Search Network ad but then choose to call rather than completing the online form.) Average click cost was $57.

Do all of these numbers seem high to you? Keep in mind the context of our client’s business. For this law firm, a new client can mean a six figure win, making the $203 cost per call entirely reasonable.

A couple of additional things we like about call only campaigns:

  1. They put prospects directly in touch with the client over the phone. This gives the client an unbeatable opportunity to wow the prospect and solidify a new relationship.
  1. They give us real numbers to analyze on behalf of our clients, including day, time and length of each call. This helps us figure out what’s working, what’s not and make changes accordingly.

So whether your business is Ghostbusting, or something a bit more mundane, try maximizing your advertising dollars through a call only campaign.