Case Study: WhatCounts


How Heinz Marketing helped WhatCounts increase the effectiveness of their lead generation efforts


Brian Ratzliff is the co-founder and leads the WhatCounts team overseeing tactical management and direction for the company. He has over fifteen years experience in building brands, forging strategic relationships, and driving revenue for several Internet pioneers. Some of the companies he has worked with include and Netstock Corporation (Sharebuilder), which became the second fastest growing online brokerage in 2000 (later acquired by ING). He holds an MBA from the Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario, Canada and a BA from Trinity Western University in Vancouver, Canada.

Describe your business and what you do?

WhatCounts is an email services provider. We provide a platform for customers in the publishing, travel, and retail space to communicate with their customers through email. I was the President & Co-Founder.

What objective did you have in mind that led you to seek outside help and Heinz Marketing specifically?

We knew Matt from the Seattle interactive community – knew of his background and reputation in online pr & lead gen. We were also familiar with him through HouseValues. We were looking for help in lead generation in core 3 segments – publishing, travel, and retail. Matt came highly recommended, so we didn’t really search for other vendors.

What specifically did Heinz Marketing focus on for your business?

We were looking for certain number of leads within our vertical segments to nurture from prospects into customers. Matt helped generating those leads through various channels – white papers, webinars, partnerships, and paid search, etc. In addition, he also created a Salesforce system to manage those inbound leads.

What impact did Heinz Marketing have on your business?

Our primary goal was to get qualified prospects through our lead generation efforts. Overall, Heinz helped increase our total lead gen number by 50 or 60%. Most importantly was the quality of the prospects the programs generated. They were in our sweet spot as related to our technology offering.

Where did Heinz Marketing surprise you in the value & insights provided?

Having a high volume of low quality leads isn’t valuable to anyone. Matt helped us target our focus, so we may have received a lower overall volume but of higher quality leads that turned into customers at a higher rate leading to increased revenue for our firm.I don’t know if this was so much a surprise, but the insight into the process was really valuable. Half the battle is getting the leads into the sales process, but the other half is nurturing those that aren’t ready to buy immediately and that nurturing was the other piece Matt brought to the table.

What was it like working with Heinz Marketing?

Matt is very creative and process driven. At the end of the engagement, you feel like you’ve received good value for your budget expenditure.

In a referral situation, how would you describe Heinz Marketing and what they can do & enable for another business?

On the lead gen. side, where we intersected with Heinz Marketing, we can attest to a results-oriented, process-driven approach to lead gen. that will be seen as a real value-add to the sales team.