#DMS2011: Featured Address: Bill Dinan, president, Telmetrics

Bill Dinan, president of Telmetrics, runs one of the leading companies in the growing call measurement space. He spoke this afternoon on key trends in the industry and where he sees call measurement heading next.

Based on the millions of calls measured by Telmetrics each month, Dinan said they are experiencing strong growth across all media channels (print, SEM/interative and mobile). Print continues to grow, but is no longer the majority of their business as it was seven years ago. Traditional performance metrics vary with each, with print traditionally measured with calls, Internet performance measured by clicks, and mobile, in his words, being “the perfect marriage of clicks plus calls.” Overall, pay-per-call programs are growing more than 200% in 2011.

A sample of the trends across media channels include:

  • Print: Performance-based advertising is increasing; transition to pay-per-call / pay-per-action remains at a measured price; and QR scans increasing to initiate calls and bridge the relationship offline.
  • SEM/interactive: Increased emphasis on measuring post-click actions and consumer engagement points; search and IYP providers leveraging technology to gain attribution
  • Mobile: Will open to a variety of new categories (i.e. gas stations and parking lots) and increase relevancy of location-based performance metrics; increased mobile QR cocktails; and complete call intelligence to determine quality as opposed to quantity (accounting for dropped calls, telemarketers, etc.).

The biggest takeaway for me was the consumer experience across media influencing call duration. Longer calls doesn’t necessarily equal a purchase, but it certainly implies high-quality leads. Based on Telmetrics research, calls through mobile leads last an average of 3.7 minutes, Yellow Pages 2..2 minutes and SEM/interactive at slightly less than 2 minutes (1.7 minutes). It makes sense for mobile since consumers are the go are probably looking to do something or book something at the point of search.

No matter what the platform, small businesses are careful where they’re spending the money and will increasingly want to see performance results. Our clients’ desire for action-based metrics will fuel the growth of mobile and greater acceptance of pay-per-call and pay-per-action pricing.

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