How Cleanaway Utilised an Offshore Digital Team To Double Site Traffic And HALV Cost Per Lead In Only 5 Months
With yearly revenue of $1.4 billion per year, Cleanaway has many irons in the fire. So consistency and high-quality communication with the offshore marketing team are the keys. These 5 tips will ensure you develop marketing strategies that work without losing important details.
Communication is the key to success for any business.
Any management professional will tell you that they talk regularly with their teams. They offer feedback and reinforce key tasks. Communication allows them to keep track of the team and ensure its focus doesn’t wander.
Yet many seem to forget this when using offshoring solutions for marketing. This could be because the team is further afield. Or, they may not understand the intricacies of working with teams in other time zones.
Whatever the case may be, poor communication will damage your offshore team. But good communication keeps everything on track. Cleanaway’s use of offshoring solutions shows how to communicate well.
Case Study – Cleanaway
Based in Australia, Cleanaway provides recycling and waste management solutions. It operates on an industrial scale. Moreover, it’s established itself as one of Australia’s leading companies in the sector.
Cleanaway offers several unique services to clients. The company can turn food waste into a soil enhancer that’s packed with nutrients. It also creates bespoke solutions. These help companies achieve their environmental aims.
Their aim is always to create solutions that will lead to a sustainable future. To highlight these services, Cleanaway needed an effective marketing strategy.
Any company can create a website in a matter of weeks. But having the website isn’t enough. The site needs a full marketing machine around it to ensure it reaches the right people. That means a full search engine optimisation (SEO) campaign. But you also have to consider copywriting and online advertising strategies
Cleanaway could not commit enough of their resources to an onshore team for their digital marketing. This led to them turning to an offshore team.
Managing a digital marketing team on such a large scale isn’t easy when working onshore. The challenges multiply when creating an offshore team. But with AS White Global’s help, Cleanaway built a team to keep its web presence in check.
AS White Global spoke with Cleanaway to learn what they needed from an offshore team. They told us that they needed a full marketing solution. They wanted graphic designers and copywriters. They also needed developers and digital marketing experts. The team would need to handle every aspect of a Cleanaway customer’s web experience.
We got to work on building an offshoring solution to suit their needs. In total, we hired 18 skilled professionals. They worked in our offices in the Philippines, Malaysia, and Vietnam. The key was that every new hire brought a new set of skills into the team.
Combined, these 18 individuals could deliver any digital marketing project that Cleanaway created. Moreover, the team had a hunger to learn new skills to bolster Cleanaway’s service.
The End Result
The team got to work In short order. Within six months, it revamped the website. The team also created five industry-size digital marketing campaigns. On top of that, Cleanaway developed over 20 new landing pages and the same amount of new case studies. This all came with clean animation and graphics, as designed by the offshore team. The team also launched several Electronic Direct Mail (EDM) campaigns.
Here are a few examples of the fruits of their labours:
Web traffic doubled in five months.
Total conversions doubled while the cost per lead fell by 50%.
EDM click-through rates increased
Communicating With Offshore Marketing Teams
Without clear communication protocols in place, your project runs the risk of failure. When working with your onshore team, communication isn’t an issue. You can call up a team member during working hours and know that they’ll answer. If you’re working in an office, you can go to a co-worker’s desk.
Things aren’t quite so easy when working with an offshore team. You have to deal with different time zones. Plus, you may have to use some different communication methods. Moreover, it’s important to document as much of your communication as possible. This ensures that everyone in the team understands their roles. Thus, they know what they must deliver.
Poor communication with your offshore team may lead to it losing focus. The team becomes disconnected from your onshore base and may feel alienated. Your goal is to integrate your offshore employees into your business. But you must also understand the new challenges that working with people offshore presents.
This is especially important with the wide-scale marketing campaigns that Cleanaway needed. Poor communication leads to the wrong messages getting sent out to clients.
AS White Global facilitates communication for the organisations that we work with. But you must still communicate well to achieve your aims. Here are five tips for communicating with an offshore team.
Tip #1 – Ensure Full Integration
Many organisations make the mistake of treating their offshore team like a different company. They communicate only when absolutely necessary. This makes communication seem like a burden, which your offshore team will detect. Remember that your offshore employees are a part of your team. They’re not part of another company. They are your company.
Good communication starts with full integration of the team into your business. Treat your offshore employees in the same way that you treat your onshore ones. Have them undergo the same training procedures and help them to learn as much about the business as possible. Provide the team with a central point of contact to show that you take their work seriously. This simple act of communication in the early stages of the relationship goes a long way to building your relationship.
You’ve integrated the team into your process, which accomplishes two goals. Firstly, it makes your new team feel like a legitimate part of your organisation. Secondly, it helps your offshore team to understand the internal communication protocols that you have in place.
Moreover, maintain this integration at all times. Include your new team in any company announcements. Treat them with the same respect as you do your onshore team.
Tip #2 – Stay a Step Ahead
One of the key challenges of working with offshore employees is that you operate in different time zones. This can play havoc with projects if it’s not properly managed. In many cases, you can’t expect your offshore people to work at the same time as you do. In fact, that’s something that many organisations desire. The different time zones allow them to provide services to their clients during all hours of the day.
But when it comes to communication, those large distances present a problem. Let’s say that you have a task that you need to complete within a couple of hours. But your offshore team is 10 hours ahead of you. Their office may have closed, which leaves you with nobody available to complete the task.
What’s the solution?
Staying ahead of the game is the best way to communicate with an offshore team. Don’t communicate as though you’re working with a team that operates in the same time zone as you. Instead, communicate as though you’re working a day or two ahead of yourself. Create clear and concise instructions as early as possible. This means that you don’t get caught short with a task that you can’t assign.
Tip #3 – Centralise Communications
You may have offshore employees working in all corners of the globe. Trying to maintain email streams with all of them gets inconvenient. Emails go unchecked or forgotten about, which means that projects get delayed. You also can’t guarantee that you can hold phone conversations with everybody. Take the above case study as an example. Cleanaway maintains offshore employees in three different countries. That creates the possibility of important messages getting lost in the mix.
Centralisation is the key to solving this problem. Modern technology provides us with all sorts of tools. You can use these for centralising communication and organising projects.
Cleanaway’s Malaysia-based web developer Mohammad Firdaus Othman provides an excellent example.
“Most of us in the team communicate through numerous tools such as Basecamp for our task allocation, Skype for chat, and calls on VoIP among internal users,” he says.
“The other tool is Slack, which is purely for quick communication within our marketing team. If we ever need to reach out to our client on any urgent matters, we’ll utilise X-lite tool. And, with the convenience of Bluejeans tool, this helps to speed up the work process during our regular meetings through video conferencing.”
These tools combine to create a communication process that everybody understands. The use of Basecamp is particularly important to this setup. It offers a centralised location for converting communications into project tasks. This ensures no important messages get lost.
Identify similar tools for your team. Ensure every message gets stored in a central location.
Tip #4 – Be Crystal Clear
Your offshore employees will have a good grasp of the English language. But you also have to recognise that some cultural barriers exist. Take slang for instance. There are some phrases and idioms that you use every day that an offshore employee may not understand. Any phrases with subtle meanings or hidden contexts can create problems. They’re not crystal clear, which makes them open to interpretation.
Keep things simple and obvious. If there’s any room for misinterpretation of a message, make an adjustment. Moreover, don’t assume that your team gets the message straight away. Ask for confirmation to ensure they’ve understood you.
Tip #5 – Align Schedules
Different time zones aren’t the only thing that can affect your communication with your people. You also have to deal with different countries having different holiday periods.
On one hand, this can benefit your business. A team in Vietnam may not observe an Australian Bank Holiday. This means that they’ll continue working while you have the day off. In some cases, this alignment can put you ahead on your projects.
But these holiday differences work both ways. Vietnam has several national holidays that you must account for. The Tet festivities, in particular, bring the country to a standstill for seven days in February. Other countries have similar holidays and traditions that you must account for.
Align your onshore schedules with your offshore ones. Make sure that everybody understands everybody else’s availability. Planning ahead with your schedule means that you’re not left with a team that isn’t there when you need it.
The Final Word
Creating a great offshore team is only the first part of the puzzle. Understanding how to communicate with the team makes a huge difference to your projects. To communicate well, do the following:
- Anticipate scheduling conflicts and prepare for them in advance.
- Create a centralised store for all vital communications.
- Integrate your offshore team into the company.
- Account for different time zones and working hours.
- Offer crystal clear communication at all times.
AS White Global can help Australian companies create strong offshore solutions. We can also help you to deal with the intricacies of offshore communication. Contact us today to arrange a FREE consultation.