Revenue From Mail Effort Doubles Campaign's Cost

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A direct mail campaign publicizing Lifeguardingjobs.com's job placement service has brought in nearly twice the cost of the campaign in listing fees.


Lifeguardingjobs, Larchmont, NY, began the campaign in January, targeting managers, supervisors and coordinators of aquatic facilities. It rented a list of 11,000 names from the trade magazine Aquatic International, Los Angeles, and 2,000 names from the American Camping Association, Martinsville, IN, an organization of camping professionals.


The campaign generated an average response rate of 2 percent to 5 percent. Though the company would not provide information on how many of those names placed a job listing, Lifeguardingjobs' revenue from employer fees for listing positions was nearly double the campaign's expenses, said Dan Sullivan, vice president of marketing at Lifeguardingjobs.


Recruiters pay $99 per month, $149 per quarter, $199 for six months or $299 annually to list a lifeguarding job.


"Aquatic facilities have traditionally used offline methods, such as newspapers, and it provides very limited amount of space for the cost," he said. "We wanted to provide employers with more than that because it doesn't help them to get one day. Newspaper ads have a short life."


Meanwhile, job seekers, who can use the services for free, can opt in to receive an e-mail newsletter with job announcements each month, Sullivan said. One hundred job seekers and 130 recruiters have opted in to receive the free newsletter, he said.


Redwood City, CA, has recruited through Lifeguardingjobs since February for its parks and recreational facility. The results have been mixed, said Chris Beth, the city's personnel director.


"It's good that you're getting people inquiring who are lifeguards or are interested in lifeguarding positions," he said. "It helps augment what we're doing."


However, Beth said the listing brought in too many inquiries from overseas. Twelve of the 15 inquiries it received in the past two months have come from outside the United States, he said.


"I wish there were more traffic locally," he said. "There are just too many respondents from overseas, and that doesn't really help us too much."


Redwood City has hired one lifeguard via the service, Beth said.


Lifeguardingjobs has taken steps to increase traffic to its site by job seekers. It formed an agreement with Top-10.com, Roanoke Rapids, NC. The search engine submissions company provides about eight keywords for Lifeguardingjobs to 25 to 50 major search engines, Sullivan said.


The keywords, which appear in engines such as Yahoo, AOL and Lycos, are submitted twice per year, he said. Search engine placement accounts for 5 percent of Lifeguardingjobs' traffic.


Sullivan said he is not satisfied with that percentage. He expects it to increase to 15 percent to 20 percent.


Additionally, Lifeguardingjobs has placed banner ads on several swimming-oriented Web sites, including AquaWeb.org, a resource for lifeguards and aquatic personnel, and USA-Swimming.org, which has a database of 4 million to 5 million swimmers, Sullivan said. The ads bring in 8 percent to 10 percent of the site's traffic, he said.


Offline, the company has placed ads in magazines such as American Lifeguard Magazine, which has a circulation of 10,000 certified lifeguards, Sullivan said.


The Web site also features a business-to-business professional services section for pool operators, allowing them to search for and contact product vendors, who can be listed for an annual fee of $149.


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