July 20, 2016 Jonny
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Welcome to the second article in the ‘Relationships’ series, if you haven’t read the first one (not-essential) about Fantastic British Food Festivals  you can read it here.

Sometimes case studies aren’t enough to convey the whole depths of a working relationship. This is why we’ve decided to start a series called “Relationships” which delves into the detail of what it means to work with the WATB Team. Each article we produce is with the express permission of the client.

Relationships.

This time we’re looking into our relationship with GLAD Solutions, GLAD are experts in creating brilliant bespoke elearning covering a range of subjects. They provide custom elearning, customised, branded and written for all types of organisations. We’ve been with GLAD for over a year now, but we’ve been through a lot in that time, from a new website to on-going marketing and continuing design work.

How did it begin?

GLAD Solutions found us by using Google, I believe the term ‘Web design Surrey’ was used! They’re only in Redhill so it was a no brainer for us to meet up, have a coffee and discuss how we could help them. Ryan, the director, came to see us with a new website being at the top of his list.

image of WATB and Glad solutions

Ryan and some of the GLAD team meeting WATB

GLAD already had a website, but it wasn’t really working for them, which is the case for many business, large and small. Anyhow, we went through our process with Ryan and devised a plan of attack. Sales generation is the most common goal we get asked about, and this was no different.

image of website on multiple devices

Here’s a GIF of what we made for GLAD Solutions in its first incarnation.

 

As you would imagine, over the year we’ve been working together there have been updates, feature add-ons and plenty of tinkering behind the scenes on the website itself.

As with any good website, continual evolution and monitoring user behaviour is essential to understand how to make it work best for business.

What happened next?

Whilst we all agreed that our objectives were met and the website was a great tool for GLAD solutions, we also realised that to start to get the quality and quantity of leads needed through the website, we would need to bring digital-marketing to the table. This in itself is a leap of faith for any business; how can you invest into something that doesn’t have instant gratification or a tangible quality? Effectively you are putting your faith in a team to guide your business in the right direction and help you achieve sales online.

At this point, I think it’s only fair to hear how this stage has worked out from Ryan himself, here’s what he had to say.

Interview with Ryan O’Connell, Managing Director of GLAD Solutions:

Headshot of Ryan O'connell

Ryan O’Connell

Jonny: Ryan, thanks for taking the time to answer these questions, it’s very much appreciated! Ok, so my first question is, paying an agency a monthly fee for marketing must be daunting for a small business. How do you justify such an outlay on something such as inbound-marketing?

Ryan: It is! However, in order for any small business to grow you need to have a successful marketing strategy in order to generate leads, clients and show yourself as experts in what you do. We have worked with some excellent clients who have been kind enough to recommend us to other organisations, but we knew we needed to employ clever marketing strategies in order to reach new clients and showcase why companies looking for brilliant elearning should choose us.

Jonny: Why did you decide to put your faith in WATB to achieve these goals?

Ryan: We have worked with WATB for a while now and you built our website which gets very positive feedback. So we wanted to work with a company we trusted and naturally you fit the bill there. Also, we wanted to work with a company who’d taken the time to understand our business, our customers and client base, and how we wanted to be perceived generally – again, it was easy to choose WATB given the work you’d done in understanding our niche.

Jonny: As we know, you work closely with Graham, our Marketing Executive, has his input changed the way you think about websites and marketing in general?

Ryan: Yes, incredibly so. What I like about Graham’s monthly analysis that he provides us is that it forces us to look at what our competitors are doing and – importantly – what our potential clients are interested in. This makes us more customer focused in our marketing strategy and we have used that analysis to create interesting content for our website and marketing that people are really interested in. We are constantly looking at new ways to market and engage with prospective customers online and the information from Graham really helps focus the mind!

Jonny: Have you seen a correlation between what you pay us for and your business improving via the website?

Ryan: It’s fair to say we have! Yes, our return on investment has been impressive so far as we have made sales with clients who have told us they found us online and we can see from the stats that our ranking has improved for critical keywords immeasurably since we engaged with WATB for the monthly marketing strategy.

Jonny: Thanks so much for your time Ryan, is there anything else you want to add?

Ryan: I look forward to seeing our monthly marketing report each month. We see improvements in rankings, keywords, domain authority etc. each month and it’s great to see how we compare to our competitors as we improve each month.

Scaling the website to handle loads of great content and build leads.

Our marketing executive Graham has a great working relationship with Ryan, they’re in constant communication talking about progress, ideas and all things ‘elearning’. We also provide a content calendar to GLAD every month with a week by week schedule on what content we think will help them improve their rankings and also, their general appeal. Yes, content is great for Google but it’s even better for your users.

The GLAD team started to pump out some fantastic content which meant we needed to elaborate on the existing blog functionality. We needed something that could handle elearning and industry news, educational material, tips and tricks and other content that users would find useful. You can see their blog here, which now has filters and sections to make it easier for users. One thing to mention, GLAD took our advice whole-heartedly and really committed to creating content on a weekly basis, it’s this partnership that has led to success. There’s no doubt in either of our minds that this approach has led to increased visibility and enquiries for GLAD Solutions.

Creating great, shareable content is a hard challenge and takes a lot of time and effort, but when it’s done right, the results can speak for themselves.

“WATB created our website for GLAD Solutions and I am delighted with their work. They have totally understood our business and objectives and the website reflects this. We are continuing to work with them on social media and marketing projects and heartily recommend them.”

– Ryan O’Connell

Where are we now?

We’re working closely with GLAD Solutions on a regular basis, constantly trying to improve their online presence with website updates and content creation. We recently made an infographic for GLAD which we got featured on a leading elearning resource. This of course is a really powerful link for GLAD, which is always of benefit. One thing to mention about backlinks, quality over quantity always wins!

Our relationship with GLAD has evolved over the last 12 months into a partnership. Working with an agency should be collaborative, and we both need each other to make things work well. Ryan knows his business inside out, and we know about digital marketing. Together we are constantly improving results, search rankings and awareness of GLAD Solutions.

We’ve gathered lots of useful tips from Ryan, he’s a small business owner too. There’s always something to be learnt from each other in all aspects of business. Marketing aside, Ryan clearly knows how to run a business and of course, when he talks, I’ve got my pen and paper ready.

Side note: Collaboration and forward thinking are key attributes to running a successful digital marketing campaign. Ryan is a prime example of how client relationships thrive when the client is willing to prioritise marketing alongside other vital business activities. Whether supplying us with feedback on an idea, signing off on a piece of content or providing some of the more technical industry lingo and knowledge, Ryan is always on hand to answer our questions. With that, we are in the best possible position to deliver a successful marketing campaign which yields results. If you succeed, we succeed. 

screenshot of glad on a website

As with all relationships, it takes both parties to be as involved as each other. Collaboration, continuous communication and trust are vital.

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