Jamal English Of EDM Network On How to Effectively Leverage The Power of Digital Marketing, PPC, & Email to Dramatically Increase Sales

An Interview With Fotis Georgiadis

Fotis Georgiadis
Authority Magazine

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Education — invest time into resources or money into accelerated knowledge.

Marketing a product or service today is easier than ever before in history. Using platforms like Facebook ads or Google ads, a company can market their product directly to people who perfectly fit the ideal client demographic, at a very low cost. Digital Marketing tools, Pay per Click ads, and email marketing can help a company dramatically increase sales. At the same time, many companies that just start exploring with digital marketing tools often see disappointing results.

In this interview series called “How to Effectively Leverage The Power of Digital Marketing, PPC, & Email to Dramatically Increase Sales”, we are talking to marketers, advertisers, brand consultants, & digital marketing gurus who can share practical ideas from their experience about how to effectively leverage the power of digital marketing, PPC, & email.

As a part of this series, I had the pleasure of interviewing Jamal English.

Jamal English is the CEO and Founder of EDM Network, a ​lead generation and marketing company revolutionizing strategic marketing, technology, and distribution innovation. English is an entrepreneur and investor with deep expertise in the needs of the insurance, financial services, and home services industries. They develop unique marketing campaigns that attract quality leads and produce fast results for their clients. The core of their service is lead generation, and their goal is to help businesses achieve continuous profitable and scalable growth.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive in, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your ‘backstory’ and how you got started?

My unifying goal is centered around aligning synergies where they exist. I founded a marketing company to serve the need of the insurance, financial services, and home services industries as a whole, providing lead generation to many large distribution partners. I also co-founded many life and health insurance agencies, and established EA International Holdings as the investment arm of our portfolio, investing in multifamily developments, insurance agencies, and technology.

Can you share a story about the funniest marketing mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lessons or ‘takeaways’ you learned from that?

I’ll start by telling the story of my first time advertising. Growing up, my father was a partner in a nightclub in which I spent my time cooking in the kitchen. One summer, I asked my father and his partner if I could host a one-night Sunday event when the bar was closed for kids.

They agreed, and I spent $250 on creating fliers for the event and advertising it on Twitter. On the night of the first event, we had a total of 8 people show up. The next week I told myself I would post about it every day and do everything I could to spread the word. That Sunday, 6 people showed up. It crushed my ego, and I almost threw in the towel. After checking my Twitter to see if anyone was looking to come, I saw these two guys that went to my rival school that announced a party, and EVERYONE showed up. I DM’d the guy driving everyone to the party, who was also a DJ, and asked him to come to the club to see me the following week. To my surprise, he showed up in awe of the fact that I was so young working at a 21+ club. I asked him to DJ the party, and I gave him $100 for doing so. Then I told his friends that everyone that brought their flier to the club would receive $2 per person that came. That next Sunday, we had a packed house of over 600 people. I was blown away; each of those people paid $25 to come to the party. I learned the most valuable lesson about advertising that day: you can not do everything alone. It takes a network to make the dream work.

​​None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

There was an event held in Dallas where I met my business partner Reda. We were both building insurance agencies in the final expense vertical. He was a prolific salesman with a keen awareness on how to communicate with people. He was writing a lot of business and spending a lot on leads for himself and his agency. He was writing more business than me, but I was making more money than him because I understood the fundamentals of cost per acquisition. We teamed up and grew our agency to $500,000 per month within 90 days.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

The people of EDM make our business unique. We feel a responsibility to serve the consumers we engage with each and every day. When I was five years old, my father died, leaving my mother with four kids on her own and no real pathway to prosperity. I think about the men and women who are unsure about their future, and we strive to serve those consumers with the tough conversation many try to avoid.

You are a successful business leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

  • Foresight
  • Perseverance
  • Self-Awareness

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

  • Data Authentication Blockchain Technology
  • DNC Suppression Software
  • Retail Lead Marketplace

Ok super. Now let’s jump to the main questions of our interview. As we mentioned in the beginning, sometimes companies that just start exploring with digital marketing tools like PPC campaigns often see disappointing results. In your opinion, what are a few of the biggest mistakes companies make when they first start out with digital marketing? If you can, please share an example for each.

Thats the problem; they are doing pay-per-click. They should consider Pay Per Call.

If you’re doing e-commerce, the pay-per-click models can be profitable, however, the vast majority of commerce done worldwide is solidified over the phone through multiple touchpoints. Understanding this is where you can provide a lot more value to companies.

Currently, our marketing company generates north of 30,000 calls per day, making us one of the largest distributors of live transfers and inbound calls in the country. Most entrepreneurs want to start with crazy goals, which are often unattainable. I break my goals down on a daily basis, and scale budgets as allocation and demand grow. Our initial goal for the company when we first started was to sell 80 calls per day. Then the 80 turned into 800, then 8,000, and continues to grow, but that only happens if you are profitable from the start and you understand your margins from the beginning.

If you could break down a very successful digital marketing campaign into a “blueprint”, what would that blueprint look like? Please share some stories or examples of your ideas.

The blueprint would include a combination of good images, solid copy, and focused targeting.

For example, good images would include things that pop and are distinguishing. Vibrant colors stand out when people are scrolling, but think about abnormal things that people don’t see every day. So that always captures attention.

When it comes down to copy, less is more. Try to get your point across in the shortest way possible and make it relevant to your audience’s challenges. A good example is opening up with a common question relevant to your partnership. Ask yourself, would they want to learn more about this from one question?

For targeting, it is crucial to ensure you’re reaching out to the right audience. You must be able to segment by social factors, which will usually be higher triggers for the target market you’re trying to speak to.

Let’s talk about Pay Per Click Marketing (PPC) for a bit. In your opinion which PPC platform produces the best results to increase sales?

While there are several strong PPC platforms, the reason why pay-per-call is so important is that it’s the only way that you can really start to figure out the math and mechanics of your business.

For example, if you only had to pay when you actually spoke to a customer, versus them just visiting a website where they can’t directly interact with you, which one would you rather pay for? This becomes the ultimate conversation. Most business owners would rather pay for a call with someone producing high leverage to convert that customer, especially if you sell anything high ticket versus e-commerce products. If you’re selling ecommerce products, you will want to pay for clicks, but for 90% of the world that still operates brick-and-mortar for intangible products or services (even in a digital format), this is a deciding factor.

For example, doing anything telesales. It makes more sense for them to pay for calls versus clicks, where the cost leverage becomes so much greater. Also, you can keep those people productive and busy on the phones all day. Would you rather have someone that’s able to talk to people six hours a day, or two hours a day? Which one is going to be more productive? That will be the biggest difference between pay-per-call and pay-per-click.

Can you please share 3 things that you need to know to run a highly successful PPC campaign?

  1. Synergistic opportunities. I don’t think there’s anything that trumps that. If you’re gonna run a pay-per-click campaign, you have to have a synergistic interest as that person or a synergistic audience. So if you think in terms of social brands, their value is super high because their click-through conversion rate is going to be high. The people that follow them are loyal, versus somebody who’s just trying to run traffic and spend the money. They need to have the established audiences that you retarget with your unique product or service that comes at a lower cost per click, where there’s a leverage point. This only works where there is a synergy.
  2. Appealing offers
  3. Solid funnel process

Let’s now talk about email marketing for a bit. In your opinion, what are the 3 things that you need to know to run a highly successful email marketing campaign that increases sales?

The biggest concern with email marketing is spam. I do not recommend email marketing as the strongest campaign. Spamming is a very big issue right now, and buying email lists is not a viable method for starting an email campaign. Building email lists can be valuable, especially if you have engaged people, but buying them is not very authentic. Many of those emails will get flagged and sent right to junk.

Email can be used for promotional campaigns, though. Promotional emails are viable, but trying to get customers to purchase products from an email campaign won’t be as successful since the ROI is very small. If you want to inform people about new offers or events, sure, but the ROI will likely not be outstanding.

What are the other digital marketing tools that you are passionate about? If you can, can you share with our readers what they are and how to best leverage them?

Let’s go through some of the re-engagement tools:

There is automated software that can pretty much completely facilitate the re-engagement process with all of the prospects and consumers that you already have. This type of technology is where the future of AI is going to start taking over, because some of that human interaction is no longer going to be required. I do think CSR positions are going to become automated through completely comprehensive workflows eventually, and automated, pre-recorded messages can even be more responsive than a human being. This will be one of the most impactful changes. There are sequences now that run email, SMS, and phone calls. Automation is innovation, and there are various technologies for re-engagement that help improve efficiency.

Can you please tell us the 5 things you need to create a highly successful career as a digital marketer or as a manager?

  • Attention to detail.
  • Patience.
  • Trust but verify: mistakes can be costly.
  • The belief that if one can, all can.
  • Education — invest time into resources or money into accelerated knowledge.

Can you please share a story or example for each?

One example of the belief that one can, all can, is ‘bad’ employees. If one employee is struggling or underperforming compared to the rest of the team, there are ways to support them and lean on strategies that worked in the past before deeming them unfit for the role. Taking the time to understand why they are struggling will help managers and marketers assist and support them to get where they need to be.

What books, podcasts, videos or other resources do you use to sharpen your marketing skills?

  • Emotional Intelligence.
  • Built to last.
  • Measure what matters.
  • Principles.
  • Bluefishing: The art of making things happen.
  • Building a story/brand.
  • Influence: the psychology of persuasion.

Thank you for all of that. We are nearly done. Here is our final ‘meaty’ question. You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

As a lifelong student, I want to encourage continuous unconventional learning.

How can our readers further follow your work?

Follow me on LinkedIn.

This was very inspiring. Thank you so much for the time you spent with this!

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Fotis Georgiadis
Authority Magazine

Passionate about bringing emerging technologies to the market