A question of measurement
Campaign: Online Forex Trading
Client: Go Markets
GO Markets is a Melbourne-based company who offer financial products and services to a client base from over 120 countries around the world. However, the majority of their clients reside in Australia, particularly in the Eastern states. In 2009 and 2010, GO Markets won an Australian Financial Review Smart Investor Blue Ribbon Award for their services, as well as being titled the International Business Times Best Forex Broker Oceania in 2010.
The focus of this campaign was GO Markets’ online Forex trading market. The typical Forex trader is well-informed and usually holds a number of trading accounts with different brokers. This kind of trader usually seeks information online, so GO Markets reaches them via online advertising.
However, for this campaign GO Markets’ intent was to reach their other client segment – those who are relatively new to Forex trading. This client is interested in financial investment and often has a few investments already in equities or other markets. But they might not have much experience with Forex trading, and may therefore be reluctant trying it without adequate support. Providing this support was the challenge which the campaign aimed to overcome.
TXT2GET were brought in to add measurability to the campaign, which gave GO Markets the confidence to use radio advertising for the first time.
"We knew exactly how much response we got. If we hadn't used TXT2GET, I would have been apprehensive as we have not used radio advertising before. Having a measurable instrument was the thing that got us over the edge," said Natalie German, marketing assistant, GO Markets.
GO Markets identified four key objectives for the campaign:
- To gauge consumer interest in Melbourne for online Forex trading
- To introduce new traders to the GO Markets online Forex trading platform
- To test the effectiveness of radio as an advertising medium, and
- To increase brand awareness in Melbourne.
The campaign was as much about connecting with newtraders as it was an evaluation of the effectiveness of GO Markets’ radio undertaking. In the past, GO Markets have used print advertisements (in addition to its online advertising) to connect with active traders or potential new traders. However, despite advertising in magazines such as Smart Investor andYour Trading Edge, and newspapers ranging from the Sydney Morning Herald to The Australian and The Age, ad response has never been unambiguously measurable before (aside from online advertising). By allowing listeners to respond to the ad by texting the keyword ‘demo’ to 19 33 33; GO Markets could view the exact number of responses that the radio advertising generated. In addition to this, the exact time and day was also revealed; thus determining the effectiveness of the radio ads and delivering insights into the purchasing behaviour of GO Markets’ target audience.
To compare response rates within the radio creative, a mix of advertisements and live reads were broadcast. Being able to see the exact minute and second that responses came in allowed GO Markets to determine whether ads or live reads were more effective, and by how large a margin. Both were broadcast on Melbourne's 104.3 Gold FM, a ‘classic hits’ station.
Gold FM’s music selection (70s to 90s), as well as its status as a representation of ‘middle Australia’ was perfect to reach potential Forex traders. The typical GO Markets trader does not take blind risks; trading only with disposable income. They are usually aged between mid-late 20’s and early 60’s.
In both the ads and the live reads, the offer was a free demo account for GO Markets’ Forex trading, identical to a live account in every way except that no actual money is used. This gives an opportunity free of financial consequence to those who are new to online
The three-week radio campaign utilised SMS as an alternative way to communicate with potential Forex traders. Allowing potential customers to interact with an ad through SMS increases the number of responses by making it as easy as possible for the target market to connect with the message. By using the six digit shortcode 19 33 33 and the keyword ‘demo’, GO Markets made the call-to-action easily retainable. In addition to being easy to remember, listeners could action the response immediately, rather than waiting until they were able to make a phone call or until they had access to a computer to visit a website.
SMS is also favoured by consumers, as it is cheaper than calling and accessible at all times. In the developed world there is a mobile subscription rate of over 100 percent. All of these mobile phone users can text, whereas only one third of them access the internet via mobile. Sending an SMS requires less effort and commitment than contacting the business by phone call. On both live reads and advertisements, the call-to-action was the same: "You can practice and learn international currency trading without using real money. To set up a free 30 day trial and have a go, SMS the word 'demo' to 19 33 33"
Potential traders texted the keyword to TXT2GET’s shortcode 19 33 33, and received a free 30-day demonstration account. Natalie German, marketing assistant, GO Markets, explained that with a database of opt-in mobile contacts, communication was easy: "once we got their number, we gave them a call and explained what we do here. The idea was, have a go to see if you like it."
- The ads and live reads were estimated by Gold FM to reach an audience of 468,000.
- From this audience of potential traders, over 130 text messages were received. This campaign was the first which gave GO Markets an exact (not speculative) number of responses, thus providing a benchmark for future campaigns to be measured against.
- During the campaign timeframe, total Australian website traffic actually decreased on average by 12.28 percent from the previous three week period. This is due to factors outside the campaign. What’s interesting to note is that Melbourne was the only city to not suffer a decrease in website traffic. While Sydney, Perth, Adelaide and Brisbane traffic was down 19.27 percent, 18.08 percent, 5.91 percent and 4.68 percent respectively, Melbourne’s traffic was stable with a 0.68 percent increase. While it is impossible to state that Melbourne’s comparative strength was due to traffic generated by the campaign, it’s likely that this was a contributing factor.
- It’s estimated that 68 percent of those who texted in downloaded the demo account, totalling approximately 90 downloads.
- From these 90 downloads, there was a direct link to nine live account activations. This is a ten percent conversion rate from demo accounts to live accounts or a seven percent conversion from texts to live accounts.
- There was a correlation between the broadcast schedule and the timing of text responses received: listeners usually texted in soon after hearing the ad or live read.
- A further insight into the radio medium was finding that each live read typically received around three times the responses of each ad. This would not have been realised without the text response mechanism.
The next phase of GO Markets’ strategy is to apply the text response mechanism to other media such as newspapers and magazines, thereby comparing the effectiveness and response of various media and creating accurate measures of ROI.