How long has ZPL been in business?
We were founded in Shenzhen in 2013, but, we just started marketing our services to the Chinese market in 2018. Previously, we were full-time consultants in several leading Chinese factories. You can learn more about our company on the About us and why ZPL pages.
How much will it cost for your services?
Our costs vary. As we are consultants, you can ask us for a several hour consultation, or, a SWOT analysis. This will range from several hundred CNY to several thousand. Once we provide you with our analysis and strategy report, you can either do the work yourself, or work with ZPL to complete the tasks, or, ZPL can do everything for you. Have you filled in our RFQ form? If not, fill it in today! Request for Quote (URL).
Do you have any references or portfolios?
Depending on the service you’d like to see our previous work for, we can send you more details about our past projects once we are in the consultation process. Due to some brands not being launched yet, or due to non-disclosure agreements, we can only showcase a few of our previous clients. In the meantime, you can check out Our Customers page.
When will we see higher site rankings? Why is it taking so long for my site’s ranking to go up?
Search engines like Google, Bing, etc update their algorithms for site rankings yearly. They update site results according to how frequent you create new content and how many people are searching for this content. Creating content and it indexed into Google search results can take weeks if not months.
Hence, website traffic tracking sites such as Alexa.com generally show your site’s rankings from the previous 3 months. This is why ZPL will present your first quarterly reports after 3 months and 6 months. As long as your team and ZPL are growing and maintaining your marketing channels, our work and investment will be translated into higher returns in your reports.
Why are sales still slow? We have paid for $xxx for Adwords, we still haven’t seen results, why?
There are hundreds of factors that may influence a customer’s buying decision and timing. If we knew the exact answers to this question, we wouldn’t have to pay for advertising and marketing!
On a more serious note though, the vast majority of online customers take a few days to a few months to purchase. “Impulse” buyers are those who purchase only a few minutes after learning about your product. Unless, your product is one used for daily use, or has many different brand choices, impulse buys seldom happen on first day. Impulse buys also tend to be for “niche” or “hobby” products; the customer really does not need this product and probably won’t use it much.
Let’s take the first instance, your product has many different substitutes and is used regularly. If customer is looking for Tide detergent and they click your Adwords which are bidding on the keyword “Tide,” there is a good chance for conversion. Laundry detergent is easy to substitute and it often comes down to the cheapest choice when consumer’s make their buying decisions.
The more specialized your product is, the more the customer will want to research, compare and shop for the cheapest price. If customers are buying as a gift, this searching can start as early as 3-4 months ahead of purchase date. Another recent phenomenon is many customers wait for the last few weeks before Christmas for 11.11 Single’s day or Black Friday sales. During holiday seasons, customers generally have their shopping lists ready; At this point, it’s all finding the best deal.
In general, you can expect to start seeing an increase of sales one week to three weeks after starting organic marketing and paid advertising campaigns. The same logic applies after your turn ad campaigns off. You will continue to see sales for a few weeks after pausing/stopping ads as some customers will finally be ready to purchase.
Another important thing about your campaigns is they will constantly be adjusted and optimized during the time ZPL manages them. It can take months to adjust your Adwords to the point where they really start showing high conversion rates.
This 1-4 week period the consumer generally needs, may seem like an eternity, but, it is important to remain patient and not give up. So many clients feel the urge to either cut their advertising budget or to discontinue them after only 2-3 weeks. We will help you gauge your expectations and show your industry’s average cost per conversion.
We went to many trade fairs and did many giveaways last year. We still didn’t see any results. Why should we continue to invest?
Depending on whether you were using a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system, or you were using proper conversion tracking software, it will very hard to track results from online and offline promotions. ZPL strongly recommends using these tracking software and several of our subscription packages (link) include these programs. Only with a proper system set up will you truly be able to gauge your ROI.
Sometimes, people are really busy and only find time to research and order your product months later. Or, maybe you need to re-ignite your dialogue with the customer. ZPL can come in and review your current salespeople’s performance and also provide sales training to teach better sales techniques and help you to create more professional sales English templates. Sometimes, it is simply lousy sales techniques that end up being the weak link in your operation. ZPL also offers sales solution (link).
$xxxx per month for a marketing solution is expensive, why shouldn’t I hire 5 people for that price to do marketing and sales?
The wage to hire marketing specialists is pretty transparent and the salary gap is not as high as it used to be. Talented Chinese markets can find multi-national HR posts and demand a salary that resembles a marketing salary in the West. In fact, many sales and marketing managers in company’s now make more than English teachers. 10 years ago an English teacher could easily make 4 times the salary as a local person with marketing and sales expertise.
The salary for foreign specialists in China has more than doubled in the past 10 years. This means it can easily cost 40k after taxes to attract one foreigner who knows marketing and has over 5 years of experience to join your company. Even if the expat knows how to copywrite and do social media, they probably won’t be a professional designer or website programmer.
This leads us to the fact that to hire a professional and experienced branding and marketing department in-house, it would cost at least 4 times this 20k monthly fee. To produce the same marketing results as ZPL, uou would probably need 2 designers, 2 foreigners per target language, 2 people to run social media, one website builder / programmer and one person to manage everything.
ZPL lowers your risk by lowering the investment you pay to workers, and by guaranteeing results; you can increase or decrease your marketing resources anytime you like with ZPL. If you hire a team of marketers, you will have to follow labor laws, pay holidays, and pay salaries even when your new products have not been released onto the market.
It also takes around 2-4 months to train workers to do the task. These training costs are also saved by using seasoned marketing veterans.
We have shipped out 50 samples. We still haven’t seen an increase in sales. Why is it taking so long?
Agreeing to send out review samples is the easy part. Once a large reviewer finally does agree to review your product and link into your page, there are a ton of logistics and follow-up emails that follow. Here are some of the reasons for a reviews being uploaded months after being shipped out:
A) Sometimes reviewers have a backlog of products to review before your product. This means your product is probably being queued in line and will be reviewed soon.
B) Sometimes reviewers receive the product and find something wrong with it. This is where following up with the reviewer and building up a good relationship matters. If your relationship with the reviewer is good, they will let you know that your product’s build or firmware has an issue. You can then troubleshoot and re-ship out unit if needed. If there is very little communication and rapport with the reviewer, many times they will review your product but give it a bad review or “not recommend” your product. This happens so many times to Chinese factories that only ship units out and don’t follow up.
C) Depending on the complexity and product’s expected time to be in use, some user’s may want to check out all of the functions, or, use the product over time and see if the performance remains the same over time.
D) Larger reviewers have a post-production team that edit the video and makes sure it looks professional. In many cases, this is why channels with over 1 million followers tend to charge a fee for a review. In any case, just like how the reviewers have a backlog of products to review, the editing team also have a line of products before yours. This is why it is important that if you are running a crowd-funding project or a global launch, you plan to have your review samples shipped out 2-3 months before you need the reviews uploaded.
E) Customs and shipping issues also affects the upload time for reviews. Depending on the country in which reviewer is in, they may ask to have the review unit shipped using regular post. This is because many countries like Brazil, India, Russia charge up to 60% import taxes! The trade-off for cheaper shipping rates and customs fees is that sometimes shipping can take up to 2 months in some cases. ZPL will try to let you know if some of your target countries have these additional import taxes associated with review units.
In short, sometimes shipments take longer than expected for the reviewer to receive their review unit. If you already have a good line of communication, they will let you know once they receive their package so you can know when to start looking for an uploaded review.
F) The most important reason for a lag time between seeing SEO and ROI on review samples is because customers take a few days to a few months before deciding to actually press the “buy” button. This applies to both retail and wholesale customers.
We have a team of 20 people in our marketing and design teams, why do we need ZPL? Why are your services so expensive?
Depending on your SEO, marketing and sales goals, this size could be excess or mismanaged. It is worth it to pay the consulting fee to have a fresh set of eyes look at your operations and give you a second opinion. You will find out that many of the things that ZPL recommends changing, you also had the same opinion before. Other things ZPL recommends, such as changing your name to one that is more English-friendly, may seem too radical or too big a jump, but, it is only our job to provide you with our honest professional opinion. Maybe you will only use 20% of our recommended proposal. This is still an improvement especially if this translates to larger greater efficiencies and growth.
Paying ZPL per hour may seem expensive, but, if we can help you fast track your company onto a proper marketing path, your company will quickly gain the advantage on your competitors. In this online and tech age, time is money. The longer you take to catch us with your competitors, the more market share this wasted time will cost you.
There is a very famous Chinese proverb: “一份钱，一份货”or “You get what you pay for.” For many companies though, it is hard to properly comprehend all of the components that go into proper branding, marketing, SEO, so many companies pay for a “re-packaged”SEO tool or PPC advertisement management. Many of these local services are not only too expensive, but they are many times not even half as effective. ZPL has your back. Our quarterly reports and marketing managers will explain difficult concepts every step of the way. ZPL is just like your company looks to future long-term growth based on a healthy and growing customer base.
Is there one social media that I should build up first?
All social media channels are important. Different people prefer different channels. While Facebook may be more commercial and good for portraying a message in images and words, Instagram generally receives more likes and user interaction. This could be due to the fact that is does seem less commercial, and, many people are visual meaning that powerful images speak louder than words to them.
What about Twitter?
We all know by now that Donald Trump has popularized twitter in the USA and abroad. Twitter is somewhat a mix between Facebook and Instagram. Post content can only be a few lines so this means your message for each post needs to be clear and straight to the point.
If I pay for Facebook/Instagram boosts, will this mean my likes are fake?
Not necessarily. Depending on how we boost, you will either receive more like or more engagement. In many cases, both increase.