The UK’s WhatClinic is a lead-generating directory of international medical treatment providers. The company started off targeting medical tourists — people who travel abroad in pursuit of lower-cost healthcare – but as it expanded its international reach, WhatClinic realized that its service could be just as valuable to local consumers.
The basic business model remained the same: Consumers come to the site in search of specific medical treatment – anything from plastic surgery to a hip replacement – and can access the directory of care providers and contact the ones they like for free. Care providers, on the other hand, pay for leads that come through the site. They can also buy ad space or more prominent listings. WhatClinic’s lead-gen model requires a way for it to get credit for the leads it generates, so it went in search of a call tracking solution.
A broken call tracking solution
WhatClinic implemented call tracking in 2010, but found the results discouraging. The company would receive bills and charges from its call tracking provider but never got an official invoice, so WhatClinic just had to trust that the charges were correct.
The main issue surrounded the highly variable costs per call. In the UK, a local call runs about 2¢/minute, but calls to a mobile or long distance number run as high as 15¢/minute. WhatClinic’s original solution did not give the company any transparency into how much it was paying per call.
Worse, calls wouldn’t always hang up properly. On a particularly bad day, the line stayed open 12 hours. WhatClinic estimates that one malfunctioning call could cost them several hundred dollars.
Twilio comes to the rescue
In March 2011, WhatClinic decided to ditch their existing call tracking provider and switch to Twilio. Thanks to Twilio’s call tracking capabilities, WhatClinic can now analyze their customers’ communications down to the last detail. Phone calls connect and disconnect on time. All the necessary history is at its fingertips.
Most importantly, the Twilio-powered call tracking solution makes it easy for WhatClinic to show treatment providers exactly how many phone leads it generates for them.
The importance of phone leads
WhatClinic researched the kinds of leads that were coming in and found that phone calls were often for less severe, less expensive procedures, but came in at a much higher frequency than emails. It also discovered that phone calls converted into actual sales at a much higher rate (15% for emails became actual versus 50% for phone calls.)
The verdict was that a small handful of WhatClinic phone calls could be just as profitable as a whole lot of emails. It was crucial that its call tracking solution allow WhatClinic to support its claims with data. Twilio’s highly flexible platform enables WhatClinic to do just that.
Now that it has streamlined its call tracking solution, WhatClinic is now looking into other ways it can use Twilio to provide better service. Thanks Twilio’s ease of use, flexibility and economies of scale, it will be easy for WhatClinic to make the transition once it decides to make the leap.