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The Surprising Lever for Customer Acquisition

13 Nov 2019 Anthony Vespucci

in Digital, Strategy

In my work for Stella Rising, driving customer acquisition for brands is always a core objective. As SVP of Retail and Business Services, I am simultaneously focused on e-commerce sales growth and lead gen acquisition across my suite of clients. Having written previously on the deep consumer understanding, data analysis, and blend of first- and third- party data required to drive customer acquisition, I wanted to follow up with another, less expected method for accelerating new leads.


Agency-client trust has, in recent years, declined 11%; nearly 40% of marketing clients show distrust in their agency partners. I see this suspicion stemming, at least in part, from a lack of transparency on the part of agencies. At Stella Rising, our size and mindset uniquely position us to have structured, “custom-built” teams that are ingrained in our client’s businesses. The collaborative conversations begin with high-level planning and continue through every single day-to-day touchpoint. This approach has fostered many tight-knit, long, and healthy partnerships; most spanning well over five years. By avoiding the trend of mistrust, we have excelled at a softer tactic for customer acquisition: client/agency cohesion.


Digital marketing happens in real time. All of the changes that my savvy digital team and I make daily—such as shifting digital ad spend to a new geographical market, decreasing targeting on a certain population subset, or removing keywords from a Google SEM program—happen because we are responding to data as we receive it. We are able to make smarter and more efficient decisions when we have a relationship of trust with our client and are powered by a comprehensive understanding of their business. For example, one of my clients has experienced outstanding growth within our portfolio. I am on that client’s weekly sales internal distro list, with visibility into sales by e-comm, in-store, by country, and by channel. This 360°-view, married with what we see through our own ad platforms and data sets, enables us to fuel stronger, more advanced, and smarter business growth. When we understand all of the shifts in the business, we deploy more appropriate lead gen tactics to the right audiences, at the right place, and at the right time. We can maximize advertising exposure where it is most efficient to do so.

In another instance where lead generation is the priority, we have worked with the client to better understand the profitability of their different physical locations. While we need to digitally drive leads to all locations, certain locations cost more to operate than others. Without this business transparency, we (and any other agency) would simply optimize our digital efforts towards the location with the most efficient cost per lead. But because there are locations where profitability is twice that of others, we can afford to invest in higher cost per lead while still yielding better results to their bottom line.


With successful lead generation as our core, we have recently grown one business 23% YoY, increased transactions for another by 98.4%, and seen a 1000% ROI in our efforts for a third client. These few examples illustrate that while much of lead acquisition is digital, sensational results are really powered by transparent partnerships and open communication.


Ready to take your brand to the next level through lead acquisition and business strategy? We would love to speak with you.

Digital Strategy