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During times of economic downturn, most businesses are forced to re-examine each aspect of their business to determine where to make budget cuts to ensure their company remains profitable. Many times, when businesses begin searching for ways to reduce their spending during these difficult times, marketing and advertising budgets are often the first to land on the chopping block.

On paper, making cuts to marketing budgets during a dragging economy may appear to be the most rational and justifiable decision. Unfortunately though, for many businesses it can actually be a step in the wrong direction and can in fact do more harm than good. In reality, it is more often than not in a company’s best interest to increase their marketing efforts during such economic times. When leads are sparse and competition is tight, effective marketing can be the decisive factor on whether you eclipse or get edged by the competition.

The Challenge

Facing the aforementioned dilemma was a local, Austin-based Medical Spa. As consumers were coming to grips with a new, sobered economy, they too were forced to perform their own personal financial assessments to distinguish the necessities from the luxuries. Albeit, treatments like Botox injections have come to be viewed as a necessary investment to many individuals, at the end of the day, the field of medical aesthetics by and large falls into the “luxury healthcare sector”. This makes the cosmetic surgery industry a more vulnerable target when it comes to consumer spending cuts.

For this reason, the respective MedSpa (like many of their competitors) found themselves frequently meeting with managerial staff to revisit their spending budget. At these gatherings, as one might assume, at the top of the list for budget cuts were a number of the practice’s advertising expenditures. Included in this inventory was an advertising agency that the MedSpa had been using for about a year known as ReachLocal. With each fiscal meeting, ReachLocal managed to avoid getting the axe, while other marketing and lead generation services fell to the wayside.

Once the obvious budget cuts had been made upfront, when further financial adjustments were necessary, it was no longer as clear-cut which advertising expenditures were providing the least profit. With the system the MedSpa was currently using, tracking and assigning lead sources was fuzzy and ambiguous at best. Unable to effectively qualify and track ROI from leads being sent via ReachLocal, the doctor was on the verge of severing ties with the advertising service.


However, before eliminating any of their marketing services based on presumption alone, the practice decided to implement MyMedLeads.com into their lead management strategy. MyMedLeads.com is a tool that helps office staff more effectively manage, nurture and convert incoming leads. The system aims to streamline marketing efforts by using relationship-based strategies like nurturing and tailored email campaigns to directly market to leads. Additionally, the web-based software tracks every lead all the way from source to conversion, gathering important data like how many times the lead was called by staff members, how many emails they were sent as well as providing recordings of phone calls to help staff members refine and improve upon follow-up protocols.


After integrating MyMedLeads into their lead-management program, the Austin MedSpa was able to successfully track and measure what leads were being sent from which sources. After the first quarter of 2011, the data revealed that ReachLocal had sent a total of 336 leads to the practice, resulting in $31,651.00 of revenue, with only $6,000 being spent on ReachLocal services. Therefore, the resulting ROI for ReachLocal for the 1st quarter came out to an impressive 427.5%. With these bulletproof numbers regarding revenue and measurable ROI, the practice was now better equipped to make well-informed decisions about future marketing investments. The data not only revealed how many leads each marketing vehicle was sending but the quality of these leads in terms of conversion rates. In the end, these figures were able to eliminate any lingering doubt surrounding the ROI for ReachLocal and prevented the doctor from making a potentially costly mistake by eliminating one of their practice’s biggest referrers.