LUXEMBOURG; SEATTLE, WA, 20 July 2010 – Skype today announced it has expanded its pay-for-call offerings for advertisers. Click & Call Advertising with Skype supported by Marchex, is an advertising program which provides an efficient and measureable way to acquire new customers by using Skype to drive inbound calls. Skype is launching this offering for the first time in the U.S., Canada and Western Europe through a partnership with Marchex Inc., a leading call advertising company, which will help manage, operate and sell Click & Call Advertising with Skype.
Today, millions of business phone numbers are listed throughout the Web, including within websites or blogs, directory listings, search results and online banner ads. Participating advertisers can have their phone numbers highlighted with a blue Free Call button anywhere online their numbers are displayed. When the button is clicked, the Skype software launches and the call is connected – at no cost to the caller.
Advertisers pay for qualified inbound calls via Skype on a pay-for-call basis. Call volumes are tracked by Marchex so advertisers can monitor the results of their campaign and also view detailed call analytics. Click & Call Advertising with Skype supported by Marchex relies on a user having Skype software installed on their PC and Skype’s browser plug-in which is downloaded automatically in Skype for Windows 4.0 or later. Click & Call Advertising is currently not available on Mac or mobile versions of Skype software.
“Working together with Marchex, our objective for Click & Call Advertising with Skype supported by Marchex is to deliver a performance advertising tool that turns the Web surfing behavior of Skype users into calls to advertisers,” said Andy Sims, Skype’s director of advertising. “Businesses will now have the opportunity to acquire potential new customers by using Skype in a highly efficient and measureable way. The experience is also beneficial for Skype users because it’s fast, convenient and the calls are free.”
“We believe advertisers have a strong demand for generating inbound phone calls and Skype is a promising customer acquisition channel that offers a large base of users who are typically familiar with making calls from a PC,” said Pete Christothoulou, Chief Operating Officer at Marchex. “Today, we are seeing a shift in the way consumers find phone numbers, the way they place calls and how those calls are paid for. As a result, coupling Skype’s reach with Marchex’s call advertising technology, sales team and service, we believe we can offer a high quality solution to large and small advertisers.”
Click & Call Advertising with Skype supported by Marchex commences with an initial group of customers, including agencies like Razorfish, national advertisers like DISH Network and Extra Space Storage, and channel partners like PRIMEDIA. The program is available to all advertisers, agencies and marketing services providers, including companies that have a large number of local and/or national business advertising customers, such as Yellow Pages companies, Certified Marketing Representatives (CMRs), independent local advertising services providers, direct marketing providers and newspapers.
“Within the digital and interactive advertising space, call-based advertising is becoming one of the fastest growing opportunities for us,” said Clark Kokich, Chairman, Razorfish. “As a leading ad agency, our clients rely on us to identify and execute against the most effective and efficient performance-based programs available – as such, we feel now is a great time to engage in call advertising.”
“We continuously strive to provide our advertisers with the latest, high-value lead generation tools and services available on the market today. Click & Call with Skype supported by Marchex not only strengthens our advertising offerings, but also provides consumers easy ‘click-to-call’ access,” said Tracy Dodd, Director, Interactive Media, Consumer Source Inc., a PRIMEDIA company. “We are currently offering this innovative service to our Apartment Guide advertisers and consumers and see this as a win-win across the board.”
How it Works
There are five steps to the program:
- Advertisers agree to pay a fixed amount per call, along with a budget. Rates are determined based on advertiser categories.
- Users with Skype software installed on their PC and Skype’s browser plug-in enabled see participating advertiser phone numbers graphically highlighted as a blue “Free Call” button across the entire web.
- Users who see the blue “Free Call” button respond by placing calls to the advertiser by clicking on the “Free Call” icon.
- Advertisers pay only for completed phone calls.
- Consistent with its privacy practices, Skype is not sharing personally identifiable information about its users with the advertiser or Marchex. Only standard call metrics are provided.
Skype is software that enables the world’s conversations. Millions of individuals and businesses use Skype to make free video and voice calls, send instant messages and share files with other Skype users. Everyday, people everywhere also use Skype to make low-cost calls to landlines and mobiles. Download Skype to your computer or mobile phone at skype.com.
Marchex’s mission is to unlock local commerce globally by helping advertisers reach customers wherever they may be – in mobile, offline and online channels, including on our own local and category websites.
Our performance-based call advertising products, the Marchex Pay-For-Call Exchange and Marchex Call Analytics, are reinventing how businesses acquire new customers through the phone. Our award-winning Small Business Marketing products empower local businesses to efficiently monitor their online presence, communicate with their customers, and acquire new ones. Every day, our products support tens of thousands of advertisers and partners, ranging from global enterprises to local businesses. For more information about Marchex, please visit www.marchex.com.
Marchex Forward-Looking Statements
This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve substantial risks and uncertainties. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in this press release regarding Marchex’s strategy, future operations, future financial position, future revenues and other financial guidance, acquisitions, projected costs, prospects, plans and objectives of management are forward-looking statements. Marchex may not actually achieve the plans, intentions or expectations disclosed in our forward-looking statements and you should not place undue reliance on Marchex’s forward-looking statements. Actual results or events could differ materially from the plans, intentions and expectations disclosed in the forward-looking statements Marchex make. There are a number of important factors that could cause Marchex’s actual results to differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements, which are described in the “Risk Factors” section of our most recent periodic report and registration statement filed with the SEC. All of the information provided in this release is as of July 20th, 2010 and Marchex undertakes no duty to update the information provided herein.
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Marchex Investor Relations
Telephone: +1 206 331 3600
Access to a broadband Internet connection is required. Skype is not a replacement for traditional telephone services and cannot be used for emergency calling. Skype recommends use of an unlimited data plan to avoid incurring additional charges from operators. Users should also be aware that extra charges may apply if they use Skype over a mobile data connection when abroad. Skype, associated trademarks and logos and the “S” symbol are trademarks of Skype Limited.