Dallas-based Mingle Media Marketing co-founder Hendrik de Vries takes mingling with prospective clients to the extreme. He’s learned how practicing extreme transparency together with conversion marketing techniques cannot only generate breakthrough business results but can get you fired in the process. And, as you’ll learn in this success story, Hendrik wouldn’t have it any other way.
"When Leadpages announced the Conversion Marketing Certification program I knew that would complement our relationship-building approach. The certification training was an absolute game changer for us."
The genesis for Mingle Media’s Relationship Method was the realization that every single one of their clients, without fail, had been burnt in the past. “They’re confused and frustrated, and a few of them are angry, so the biggest obstacle was and still is to this day: to remedy what’s happened to them and to show there’s a better way.”
One client in the healthcare industry sought three proposals to build two new websites from web development firms. They contacted Hendrik and Mingle Media Marketing, “Just give me a proposal,” said the business owner. “Hold on a second,” replied Hendrik, “let me ask you some questions.”
After a round of probing questions, the business owner was surprised Hendrik was so inquisitive. “Well,” replied Hendrik, “didn’t these other companies ask questions?” “No,” came the response, “I asked for, and they sent me their proposals.”
Hendrik was excited and sickened at the same time. Excited because he saw a huge opportunity, but sickened because he was being jammed into a cookie-cutter development approach, offering services they didn’t need and marking up prices as much as they thought they could get away with.
"The Relationship Method is a transparent approach to give clients a sense of confidence, comfort and control."
The Relationship Method was born out of Hendrik’s desire to remedy these wrongs and find a better, more transparent way to meet clients’ needs. A big part of which was to ask questions, listen and help them understand what an ideal solution for them might look like. “And that,” said Hendrik, “gave them a sense of confidence, comfort and control because they’re now becoming fully informed as to why they’re doing it, what they need, and how we can help.”
To make The Relationship Method work in the sales process, Hendrik knew they had to focus less on the solution and more on getting to know their prospective customers. The best way to do that, thought Hendrik, was for Mingle Media Marketing to get to know and be confident in the marketing method, systems and tactics they saw at work in Leadpages own business.
After taking the course Hendrik didn’t worry so much about what tactics to use, it helped make them conversion marketing experts. Hendrik and his team were finally able to focus on getting to know their clients better. But not only that, the training instilled a new feeling of confidence, which their clients felt as a result.
"We give clients access to everything. We give them admin access to their website, hosting account, Leadpages account, and we give them access to all the tactics and systems we use to get them results - all of which we learned from the ConvertedU course on Conversion Marketing."
Through this new found confidence Hendrick and company were able to push their extreme transparency approach further. Other solution providers hold clients hostage to accessing information, tools and understanding the why/how of doing things, Mingle Media provides total and open access to everything.
It may seem ironic that Mingle Media’s total access to everything mentality may result in client attrition. Clients, while being so delighted with successful outcomes may very well reach the point of no longer needing you. They may, in fact, fire you, and go it alone. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, and may, as Hendrik’s experienced, lead to a growing client portfolio via many welcome referrals.
“Sometimes,” according to Hendrik, “we even say to clients, ‘Look, our goal is to work with you for two, three months. We will educate you so much on the how and the why that you won’t even need us anymore.’”
And, when that’s the case, one can’t help but think: you’re no longer operating in a customer-vendor model, you’re working together in a trusted partnership relationship.
"It’s not how much money you make - It’s how you make your money."
Reflecting on this journey of serving clients with professionalism and conversion marketing expertise has made Hendrik realize two important lessons. First, “it’s not how much money you make - it’s how you make your money that matters most.” And second, “the conversion marketing training has given me tremendous confidence, because it flat out works, which translates to healthy, trusting relationships with our clients.”
But that’s not all. These lessons have brought remarkable change and have dramatically improved business results for many of the clients Hendrik’s company has served. In the final section of this transformational story, we’ll look at some examples of what extreme transparency and total access of their Relationship Method, coupled with implementing conversion marketing techniques did for their customers.
An appointment setting firm hired Mingle Media to generate Sales Qualified Leads (SQL) for their business. They targeted companies in the ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and custom software development and managed services space that paid, on average, $1,000 per qualified appointment set, and who would spend a minimum $50,000 for their services.
The client was very clear and specific on their goal to reduce their existing SQL expense from $500 per lead to $250 per lead. Using their trusted Relationship Method, and some paid media tactics learned from their Conversion Marketing Certification training, Mingle Media was able to reduce this client’s SQL from $500 to $100, an 80% reduction, easily beating their initial goal of $250 per SQL, which they thought was ambitious in the first place.
Getting qualified traffic and exclusive leads for those in the senior care business is a challenge. They typically purchase leads from third-party businesses like Caring.com and A Place for Mom. But those leads aren’t exclusive to them. Basically, the first one who calls them has the best shot at getting the business.
“One landing page we built using the best practices learned in conversion marketing resulted in an 85% opt-in rate.”
“Working with us, and what we’ve been able to do for them, the traffic and leads generated are 100% exclusive,” says Hendrik. “They don’t have to share them with anyone else. What’s better, by applying conversion marketing techniques we’ve been able to generate 10 times to 15 times the qualified traffic to their websites, and have increased their lead generation opt-in rate from 2 percent to 5 percent.”
Using best practices for increasing landing page conversions learned in the Conversion Marketing Certification course, Hendrik found one landing page alone resulted in an 85% opt-in rate!
A business focused on the healthcare industry and specializing in building rehabilitation hospitals, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) centers and senior living communities was in need of two new websites. One to focus on the investor side and the other on the patient side of their business.
This, you may recall from above, is the client who had requested proposals for each website from three different firms. But it wasn’t until Mingle Media engaged thoughtfully with them in their Relationship and Conversion Marketing approach did they realize they were being stymied by over-priced services and a one-size-fits-all web development mentality from the other agencies bidding on the project.
“We need you to take down some of the lead magnets and CTAs from our Websites, now!”
Hendrik and his company won the business, built the websites and launched the conversion marketing initiatives to generate traffic and leads. A few months later a call came in from the business owner. “He actually told me to take off some of the lead magnets and other CTAs because they couldn’t handle all the leads!” “Which at that point,” recalled Hendrik, “we were generating over 10 qualified inquiries (opt-ins) per week on the investor website and 20 opt-ins per week on the patient (resident) website.”
That’s impressive, for sure. And it goes back to Hendrik’s belief in building relationships through radical transparency, learning and doing what works in conversion marketing, giving your clients total access to everything, and ultimately helping your clients be so successful they don’t need you anymore.
When’s the last time you’ve heard a client of yours cry, “UNCLE!” followed by, “we got this”?
"My biggest piece of advice is just be transparent and give access. Also, the biggest thing is always be learning and improving your skills. The conversion marketing training I got completely changed our business. It changed my life, really."View Profile
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