EP109 – Business Factors To Consider

Author Halli Biggs 24 min read time

Welcome back to the Marketing Freaks podcast! In this week’s episode, Jon is joined by our Head of Paid Social Abi Carey to talk through what business factors you should be taking into consideration in paid advertising.

In the ever-evolving realm of digital marketing, paid media campaigns have emerged as a game-changer for businesses seeking to expand their reach and drive tangible results. However, achieving success in this space requires a keen understanding of various business factors that can influence your outcomes. 

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In order to fuel growth and maximise your returns, you should ensure that you strike a clear balance between profitability and growth by carefully evaluating your margins and finances whether that’s for your business or for a client. 

To truly excel in your marketing efforts, it’s also vital to grasp the pulse of your business and understand its unique needs. Imagine this: you’re on a mission to conquer a weekly lead target, but not just any leads – they must be high-quality gems. 

Now, picture this: you invest your hard-earned budget in a strategy that maximises lead quantity, only to find out that the leads generated are poor, leaving your sales team twiddling their thumbs. It’s not just money wasted, but also precious time. 

In a world where every marketing penny counts, aligning your campaigns with your business goals is the secret sauce for success. So the key things to remember are to stay agile, adapt to emerging trends, and continuously refine your strategies to seize new opportunities.

If you want to find out more on what business factors your business should be considering, take a listen to this week’s episode! 

We hope you find this one useful!




Jon (00:10):

Hello and welcome back to the Marketing Freaks podcast. And this week’s episode I’m joined by Abi. We’re talking about how business context can help to make better and more informed decisions when it comes to performance marketing. So we’re gonna run through the types of things that really help out and help just understanding a little bit about business can give you a really strong advantage. Really hope you enjoy this episode. If you do, please come and subscribe on Spotify, apple Podcast or the usual places. And let’s get started.


Okay. Business context and performance marketing. Why is it so important? That’s what we’re talking about in this episode, Abi. Now, I believe that if you’re running performance marketing, you don’t understand the basics of business and how a business operates, you’re at a major disadvantage a hundred percent. Because how can you possibly make informed decisions if you don’t know what the nuts and bolts of the end thing are? Yeah, I don’t like, and I think it’s worth pointing out that we’re not talking about like major things here. Like we’re not talking about, um, kind of MBA level No, no, no, no. Like business kind of management here. Like we’re really talking about basic stuff like finance, like basic finances, margin. Yeah. Like just even understanding what margin is. And I know it sounds really obvious, but it’s a, not everyone does. Yeah. Uh, supply and demand, you know, stock and fulfillment, um, customer journeys, channel mix.


There’s all these things that sit outside of the platforms that we work in, yet they have a humongous effect on our ability to drive performance. And I think we need to understand those and be involved in conversations. And when we do understand those, we see better results. Big time. It’s a consequence. Big time. So it’s all part of a thing. So we’re reworking our services. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> to kind of mm-hmm. <affirmative> fit in with this, right? Yes. Because it’s exciting because it’s so important and it, you know, you get it right. You can, like you say, the results are amazing and it’s, it’s totally win-win, isn’t it? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So there’s kind of what we’re big thing that we are working on as a business. Um, what do you think, because I guess, um, part of the challenge with that is when you’re a PPC professional or a paid media professional or you, you know, you work in paid social, you might not get into it wanting to learn about business or Yeah. You know, it might not be something on your mind. Um, obviously you’ve come in, you’ve been working in paid social for four years mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, how have you found like conversations around this?

Abi (03:07):

I think it’s been super interesting. Um, I think you have to have an open mindset towards it, but I think the more that you know and understand about a business, the better you can do your job as a PPC professional or a paid media, whatever it is, because it means that you have that context to make those bigger decisions on things. Yeah. And to help guide the business that you’re working with in a better direction. So it’s actually, although maybe not, um, strictly a part of the day-to-day as like a paid social exec. It should be. Yeah, it should be. And it helps you to do your job even better. And it also makes the results even more exciting cuz you’ve had even more input and even more kind of understanding of how you got there.

Jon (03:51):

Yep, exactly. And it’s, it puts, I think if you can start to understand it, you can start to understand your clients better and also their language. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> and ultimately the reason you run ads on Facebook, Instagram, Google, whatever platform you run your ads on, the reason you do that is to get a business result. Yeah. Which might be sales, revenue, profit,

Abi (04:19):

Uh, leads,

Jon (04:21):

Leads, qualified leads mm-hmm. <affirmative> pipeline value, whatever that goal is, the, the reason it’s being invested in is because there’s a goal that needs to be hit. Yeah. And things like impressions, click through rate, stuff like that doesn’t matter. It does because it helps you kind of inform the decisions, but at the end of the day, you, we we’re not running ads to get an impression or a, or a click.

Abi (04:48):

No, no. I think the, the really good example of this is when people run, uh, lead gen campaigns and don’t check in on the quality of the leads. That’s kind of like the best way I can think to Yeah. The best example is like if you are not clued in with what the business needs, whether it’s your business that you know you’re working in house or whether it’s agency, if you are not clued in for the fact that if you get a hundred leads and 99 of them are shit, that’s not a good campaign. Whereas actually if you are checking in and saying, you know, what’s the quality of these leads? If you have a formula to figure out if that’s a good quality lead, then you’re good, then

Jon (05:28):

You’re doing a better job.

Abi (05:28):

Yeah. Then you’re starting up those conversations and you are Yeah. Yeah.

Jon (05:32):

Leads are a good, actually leads are a really good example and a good way of explaining it really in, in very tangible terms because if you got your Facebook ads matter ads blinkers on mm-hmm. <affirmative>, you are sat there going, I’ve got a hundred leads,

Abi (05:47):

Cost per result was incredible. Loving it. Yeah.

Jon (05:49):

20 per lead. Yeah. Yeah. I’m rocking this and then, but what you’re actually doing is you are, you know, wasting the sales time. Yeah. Because they’ve gotta open up a hundred leads, go through more Yeah. And find out they’re all rubbish. Um, so you’re was, you are, you are, you are, not only are you not getting results, you are, you are having a negative impact because you are wasting people’s time. Wasting time.

Abi (06:12):


Jon (06:13):

Now if you just got your blinkers on, you won’t understand mm-hmm. <affirmative> that or then the client becomes frustrated because they’re not getting what they actually need. Yeah. The paid media person is getting frustrated cuz they think they’re doing an amazing job and they can’t and it just goes wrong.

Abi (06:30):

Yeah. But we’ve had like both sides of that with the lead side of things. So we had a client who hired some people in specifically to pick up leads and they were like, we need more leads, we need more leads. So that was much then we understood that the focus was much more on, obviously it was still quality but on quantity because they had hired two people to come into their sales team, give them a pipeline and you’ve gotta give them something to do, gotta give them a pipeline. And then we also had the flip side where there were some issues with hiring somebody for that like sales role. And actually it was much more important that we were getting like five really good quality leads coming in and actually it didn’t matter so much the cost per lead as long as the quality was there. Yeah. So it’s like we’ve had both, both sides of it as well to understand, you know, that process from each business. Yeah.

Jon (07:20):

But then once you’re thinking about that and yeah, a lot of this is just thinking about it and having it front of mind, but once you are, you can then have that conversation. Yeah. What’s your scenario? Um, what do you need here? Do you need, do you need volume, do you need like less volume but just like the absolute best quality that what do you actually need as a business? And that will then inform what you do or don’t do with your campaigns and you will get better results at the end. Yeah. Much better. Um, cool. So I’ve got a list of things here that we can kind of run through the, I think for me these are the key things that people, or it’s very helpful to understand mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So I thought we’d go through them and then talk about some examples. Yeah, yeah. And uh, real life scenarios as to why they’re actually helpful. Concepts, margin and finances.

Abi (08:15):

Big one. <laugh>

Jon (08:17):

Obviously, um, I was gonna say money makes the world go round, but I think friendship and love does

Abi (08:26):

<laugh> family,

Jon (08:28):

But if you’re, if you’re running a business, having money come in does help. Yeah. It is useful. Um, so margin is a very useful concept to understand mm-hmm. <affirmative>, what’s gross margin, what’s net margin and how might that impact on what you’re doing?

Abi (08:46):

And I think that as like as um, paid media professionals, we can get really fixated on ROAS return on apen, which is a super important, um, metric for us to be looking at. But actually if the margin on that is really shit Yeah. Then

Jon (09:05):

Yeah, exactly. So

Abi (09:06):

You getting no, quite a skewed view there.

Jon (09:07):

Yeah. If you are selling a product that is, has an uh, a retail price of a hundred pounds Yeah. And the cost of that good to the client is 80 pounds and you are therefore making a 20 pound gross margin.

Abi (09:23):

Oh, but you’ve also got free shipping in there that you have to factor in.

Jon (09:26):

Yeah, exactly. Um, and you are getting a row as of 2.5. Yeah. Which in many cases, actually right now, I’m, you know, if you can get that that’s potentially scalable Yeah. On the surface. But in that example, you, you are then going to a client going, Hey this is brilliant, we’re getting a roast of 2.5. They’re coming back going, we’re not making any money, you’re still making, you’re still losing me money on every sale. Yeah. Congratulations. Um, so it kind of, knowing that is, is pretty useful because then you can have a better conversation with the client mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, you can prioritize certain products. So if you know a rows of 2.5, let’s call it that. Yeah. On a um, product where you are making a 20% gross margin has a very, very different contribution to the business. If you are comparing that against a product of the same value that’s making a 60% gross margin

Abi (10:28):


Jon (10:29):

Cause then you’re actually making some money. Yeah. But the ROAS is the same. Yeah. Obviously cuz it’s revenue. We

Abi (10:35):

Had this, um, we had this with our e-commerce project though the city scooter because we were running dynamic product ads and Meta was pushing our merch, so we had some t-shirts Yeah. And it was really pushing that and we didn’t make any money off the t-shirts. No. I mean, in fact we didn’t even really want massively to be selling them. Our focus was obviously the actual scooter. Yeah. And so we had to change that up, but we didn’t, if we didn’t have that context, we wouldn’t have known to do that. Yeah.

Jon (11:04):

So you have to think about these things, don’t you? Yeah. Then you can start to kind of, uh, take products out the feed that have a, um, like a non-viable gross margin level mm-hmm. <affirmative> or set priorities towards products that do. Yeah. You know, and it just again means you can make informed decisions and have a better conversation with your client, which is always a good thing.

Abi (11:27):

Yeah, definitely.

Jon (11:28):

Second thing on my list is landing page optimization.

Abi (11:32):


Jon (11:35):

You could get the best click in the world from the best campaign in the world, but the landing page doesn’t convert that traffic then you’re screwed.

Abi (11:44):

Our job doesn’t finish after the click.

Jon (11:48):

Correct. Yeah, absolutely correct. Um, it’s, again, it’s back to this point of like, if you look at true performance, like genuine performance, most of that stuff happens after the click has occurred. Yeah. You know, so yes. Making sure you’ve got great campaigns are great creative and you’re getting great traffic to the site is really important. Yeah. But if the landing page doesn’t convert or convince someone to buy, um, then nothing’s gonna happen.

Abi (12:20):

Yeah. Isn’t set up in a user friendly way that is easy to navigate and gives you all the information you need. Yep.

Jon (12:28):

Yep. And having a testing plan for that is really key. Oh yeah. And split testing different pages of different titles and different images and different layouts and look, it has to be an integral part of what you’re doing, but so often it sits with another team or another department. I, we’ve got, we’ve got a department that takes care of all of our landing pages. Our, our dev agency does the landing pages. Yeah. Don’t worry about it. You’re like, no <laugh>, this has to be like a big part of it. Yeah. Otherwise we just, you literally even money on the table.

Abi (13:06):

Yeah. And I know that people are often kind of loathed to put like people in touch with say the dev agency or whoever it is, but actually when you can open up those conversations Yeah. It is hugely helpful and can be really rewarding in results.

Jon (13:23):

Yeah. And the gains you make there are just incrementally beneficial to your paid media campaigns because then any other optimizations and improvements you make in your campaigns have a much bigger impact further down the line. Yeah. Um, but also all the other traffic that’s going through that landing page. So yeah.

Abi (13:41):

It’s not, it’s not just the paid media that is affected by those changes,

Jon (13:45):

It’s really a win-win. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> next on my list is check out slash conversion data.

Abi (13:51):


Jon (13:52):

So this is looking at that final step in the funnel before someone makes a purchase or makes an inquiry with you. Why are they falling out at that point? What’s happening? Yeah. How do you fix it? Because again, if you are, if you are fixing the closer, the closer your fixes get to the end conversion, the more you can do at that point, the bigger the impact and everything else. But again, so often it’s forgotten about mm-hmm. <affirmative> within paid media, it’s no, no, my campaigns are great and you know Yeah.

Abi (14:29):

People are adding to cart,

Jon (14:30):

Hey, well done. You know, it’s not, it’s not my fault, but it’s actually the attitude should be in my mind, I’m gonna have a look at that and let’s see why that might be happening and come up with some theories and test some stuff out.

Abi (14:45):

Is it because you’ve got a code that’s not auto applying in the checkout? People are getting frustrated with that.

Jon (14:51):

Is your shipping too expensive?

Abi (14:52):

Yeah. Do you not offer payment methods like Klan?

Jon (14:57):

Yep. Are your returns policies rubbish?

Abi (15:00):

Does your page look a bit sketchy? So people don’t wanna put their details in, we’re

Jon (15:04):

Riffing here,

Abi (15:05):

But there are so many reasons why that’s not gonna work.

Jon (15:08):

Yeah, exactly. Yeah, exactly. And if, you know, um, we, we did a bit of work for a business recently where the, this is slightly different to the checkout stuff really, isn’t it? But the returns policy was really poor and the delivery slash lead time was really poor for

Abi (15:27):

A product that needed to be there at a certain time.

Jon (15:31):

Yeah. So not ideal. Whereas the competition mm-hmm. <affirmative> returns policy was really good and the um, the lead time of delivery time was really good. Yeah. And the price is the same. So that as a customer, which one are you gonna choose?

Abi (15:51):

And it was a high ticket item that people will be shopping around for.

Jon (15:55):


Abi (15:56):

Yeah. So they’ll have done their research in way Exactly.

Jon (15:58):

Yeah. So you go Right. Well in, in that scenario you could have the best PPC campaign, SEO campaign, best landing page. Mm-hmm. Um, in the entire world, you know, the best of the best the cream of the crop. Yeah. But if someone can get the product quicker and return it, if they don’t like it from somewhere else at the same price,

Abi (16:24):

You know, they

Jon (16:25):

Will <laugh>. They will <laugh>

Abi (16:27):

And they do.

Jon (16:29):

But these are things to be aware of and things to check in on when you’re running campaigns. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> because it, you know, sometimes the ads, it’s the ads fault, the ads aren’t set up correctly, the audiences aren’t set up correctly and that’ll be why things aren’t performing. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, there might be a technical issue in there somewhere, but it might also not be the ads

Abi (16:50):


Jon (16:51):

Or the landing page. Yeah. You know, and I think checkout abandonment is often a, um, yeah, there could be something going on, but it might, it’s that last opportunity for someone to go and have a look somewhere else. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, I’m just gonna go and double check that otherwise,

Abi (17:07):

Oh, I wonder if I could get a 10% code off somewhere else.

Jon (17:10):

Oh yeah. Yeah. Particularly

Abi (17:11):

With the free shipping somewhere else. <laugh>

Jon (17:13):

Particularly with a bigger ticket item where the last minute nerves are, um, more likely to be higher. So it, it might not actually be a technical issue with a checkout, if you’re seeing dropout, it might be a market condition or a competitor thing as well. Yeah. It’s been, it might be a symptom or something else,

Abi (17:30):

But that’s where it’s also useful to have things like live chat where you can quickly talk to people about their problems Yep. If they’re at that stage. Yep. Hey, just wanted to make sure this was gonna arrive by this date. Yep. Then they feel way more secure, they’re gonna go through and finish that.

Jon (17:47):

Yep. Carl, our new best friend from Belgium, <laugh>

Abi (17:50):


Jon (17:51):

Uh, at Geck earlier this week. He gave a really good example of um, he was running like one question surveys on the checkout to try and identify why people were falling out and what it was that were putting people off and, and um, yeah, that softer customer feedback, it really

Abi (18:08):

Good. It’s hugely important.

Jon (18:09):

It’s really good. And his big point there was don’t, like there’s no one size fits all. Like you could have the best, most optimized checkout process in the world that has an amazing conversion rate for that client and that other very similar client over here will need something different because there might be something else putting their customers off or Yeah. You know, um, but yeah, that feedback, that’s a good point. Feedback is important. Yeah. My last point on the list is pla platform diversification and mix. Yeah. Not putting one’s eggs in one basket. No. And I think particularly now with rapid pace of change on meta and Google and everything else, you have to be able to first off test from your opportunities. Secondly, be able to move your budget round in a very fluid way. So if you have a bad week here but a great week there, you know, you can adjust and chase the performance. Uh, you’ve been talking about diversification for some time.

Abi (19:13):

I have. I’m very passionate about it.

Jon (19:16):


Abi (19:17):

Not only for that reason of being able to be like agile with the budget, but also just that I’m really anti having an over-reliance on one platform because something can go wrong, that platform can go down, you can lose your account. These things happen and do happen. Yeah. So if you are solely relying say on meta and it goes down, you lose your account, you get hacked anything, you are gonna be in big trouble. Yep. Definitely. And you don’t already have, say Google set up and ready to go and you haven’t got those learnings through already. You’re gonna be starting from scratch and having probably six weeks of learning without good results. Exactly. Before you can really get going. Yeah. So yeah, super passionate about that because it just doesn’t make sense to only run one platform and so many people do.

Jon (20:07):

Yeah, I know. It’s crazy, isn’t it? It’s, it’s just good common business sense I think. Yeah. And also making sure you don’t have an over, I know no. Saying this is a performance marketing agency. It sounds mental, but not completely relying on paid media.

Abi (20:23):


Jon (20:25):

Because you have to have other stuff in the mix. Like a decent organic strategy on, on search. Yeah. So that, you know, people are gonna be able to find you without paying for every single click. And this is when you can start to build a scalable, profitable model. Mm-hmm. <affirmative> if you are 100% reliant on paid media. Yeah. It’s really difficult to make sure that you are also investing and planning for SEO email.

Abi (20:52):

So important.

Jon (20:53):

Why does no one talk about, well obviously people talk about email, but it doesn’t get talked about half as much as, um, ppc. No, but drives infinite, usually infinitely more conversions at that last point or has a better conversion rate because you are talking to your database and customers

Abi (21:13):

And it has, and it can have such a, uh, polarizing effect on your customer base as well with how you do it. Yeah. Like you can have a really strong strategy and be taking people through a good customer journey, educating them, getting them excited about your brand building brand loyalty. Yeah. Yeah. Or you can be completely putting people off your brand because you were inundating with them with stuff you’re not interested in.

Jon (21:35):

I had an experience like this recently where I ordered a, I ordered a plane, T-shirt.

Abi (21:41):

I thought you meant plane. Like plane <laugh>.

Jon (21:44):

No, not an airplane T-shirt. Although I wouldn’t mind an airplane T-shirt ordered a, a plain boring T-shirt and uh, or a packet, a three pack of boring T-shirts and, uh, ordered it, got the order confirmation email and an order confirmation message on WhatsApp.

Abi (22:02):

Yeah. That’s creepy.

Jon (22:04):

Leave me alone. That’s my private space. Um, and then before, and I’m not actually a hundred percent sure where they dispatched the order from. I should go and have a look mm-hmm. <affirmative>, but it took about a week to arrive. Okay. Which I’m honestly, I’m fine from that because this was an independent store. Okay. It’s like fine, whatever. Um, took about a week to arrive before the product arrived. I, I looked in my inbox, I had 10 emails. Oh my

Abi (22:31):


Jon (22:32):

10 emails, all the confirmation. Fair enough. Send me, I would, I appreciate the order confirmation email. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, um, dispatch. Yeah, fair enough. Send me the dispatch email. It’s nice and it’s coming. Um, but within that there are also like, here’s some other things you can try. Here’s, here’s some of our other product range.

Abi (22:49):

You haven’t even got the product

Jon (22:50):

Yet. Um, if you, if you like this, think about this. Um, we’re also doing this over the summer and I’m like, oh my God, don’t want your emails right now. I’d like my, I’d like my T-shirt. Thank you very much. And it wound me up.

Abi (23:03):

Yeah. Because if you haven’t physically got the product in your hands, felt that it’s like a nice t-shirt, whatever, you don’t care if they have other products.

Jon (23:11):

Yeah. And it has almost left. I don’t bear grudges, but it has left me with a slightly bitter feeling about this brand. The t-shirt’s nice, but I don’t think I’d go back because

Abi (23:25):

You don’t wanna get hounded.

Jon (23:26):

That annoyed me. Yeah. Yeah.

Abi (23:29):

Makes a big difference.

Jon (23:31):

But get it right and it works really well and mm-hmm. <affirmative>, it mops up so many conversions. And if you are investing those in money in ppc, seo, paid social, making loads of effort with your organic, um, social content, whatever it might be, you work so hard to get that traffic on the site and so hard to engage that traffic. Mm. Um, with your products or service email, like the more you get email right, the more of that momentum you mop up and get into that final purchase. Yeah. So it is, yeah. Massively important to get right. I think. Anyway, these are all very interesting things, aren’t they? Yeah. Love it. It’s very exciting. Uh, and thank you so much for taking time to chat. No, all good. And, uh, thanks for everyone for listening in. Thank you everyone for listening in. I’m really jump <laugh>, can you tell us Friday and uh, yeah. See everyone next time.

Speaker 3 (24:30):

Thank you so much for listening. If you enjoyed that episode, please do come and subscribe. Join us for future episodes where we talk about the ins and outs of running paid media and driving improved conversions of revenue for your business. See you next time.