Customer Story

Driving a 505% Increase in SQLs

How Directive partnered with Sendoso to acquire qualified leads and book meetings with incentives.

With Directive Paid Media Account Director

Tim Davidson


Directive needed a creative, scalable strategy to get the attention of a very niche, savvy audience — marketers at mid-market B2B SaaS companies.


The team leveraged Sendoso to incentivize meetings with an eGift, helping their ads stand out across crowded digital platforms.


Return on Investment (ROI) in Q3


decrease in cost per lead from Q2 to Q3

Directive is a performance marketing agency for software companies, focusing on SEO, paid media, and creative services.


Irvine, CA



Company Size

100-200 employees


Marketing & Advertising

The challenge of targeting a niche audience

Founded in 2014, Directive helps marketers at software companies exceed their business goals through organic search, paid media, performance creative, and business intelligence solutions.

Directive targets marketers at mid-market B2B SaaS companies, which happen to be some of the savviest marketers of all. Getting their attention and securing intro calls is how Directive fills its pipeline.

But with such a niche audience, Paid Media Account Director, Tim Davidson found that running profitable ads was challenging — and scaling them was near impossible, as narrower targeting often led to higher customer acquisition costs.

Tim needed to come up with a creative hook that would attract qualified leads and secure introductory calls with the Directive sales team. Performed correctly, the campaign would increase sales qualified leads (SQLs), reduce wasted spend, and offer opportunities to scale across platforms.

Incentivizing introductory calls with eGifts

LinkedIn provides the targeting that Directive needs to reach their niche audience, with the ability to specify by industry, company size, job title, seniority, job function, and more. Tim and his team decided to experiment with a new LinkedIn ad format — the Conversation Ad. This format allows marketers to create interactive, personalized experiences for their prospects.

Tim leveraged Sendoso to offer a $100 Uber Eats eGift in their LinkedIn ad to incentivize prospects to book an introductory call with a Directive team member. Through Sendoso, they were able to efficiently and effectively fulfill the eGift offer within their ads after the prospect completed the call.

“The $100 gift card provided something valuable in exchange for someone’s time, so it stood out from the hundreds of other messages prospects received,” explained Tim. “It intrigued our audience enough to book a call and learn more about what Directive could do for them.”

The $100 gift card provided something valuable in exchange for someone’s time, so it stood out from the hundreds of other messages prospects received. It intrigued our audience enough to book a call and learn more about what Directive could do for them.

-Tim Davidson

The LinkedIn ad campaign quickly took off. Within the first couple of months, Directive was booking introductory calls with marketers at software companies in their target market at a cost per SQL far lower than any other channel.

Once the campaign started demonstrating results on LinkedIn, Tim decided to scale it to other platforms. His team capitalized on the diverse ad formats on Instagram and Facebook to reach even more qualified leads, using the same Sendoso eGift.

“Sendoso was a huge part of this campaign,” said Tim. “It really helped us scale.”

Generating pipeline while lowering acquisition costs

Directive has continued to run this campaign after seeing impressive results in the first few months. From Q2 to Q3, they saw a 505% increase in SQLs and a 43% decrease in cost per lead. They also generated a 517% increase in opportunities (defined as a prospect in the proposal stage of the sales cycle) with a 44% decrease in cost per opportunities.

Overall for Q3, Tim and his team saw a 1,319% Return on Investment (ROI) and a 1,419% Return on Ad Spend (ROAS) landing him the 2021 Sendie Award Winner in the Digital Excellence Category.

Campaign Details

Teams Using Sendoso


Increase in Opportunities from Q2 to Q3


Decrease in Cost per Opportunities


Q3 Return on Ad Spend (ROAS)


Directive is still running the Sendoso campaign in 2021 and continuing to see strong results. They have optimized the campaign by personalizing eGift offers in Sendoso based on interest — for example, if they see that the prospect is interested in pets or coffee, they offer Petco or Starbucks eGifts to generate higher conversion rates.

The best part about the campaign is that it gives prospects a taste of what Directive can do for their companies. “A large percentage of our leads want to run the campaign that brought them into the Directive funnel,” explained Tim. “They bit the bait, and through trial and error and referencing helpful technologies such as Sendoso, we’ve been able to help clients implement a similar strategy for their own campaigns.”

Tim and his team also leverage Sendoso during other stages of the sales cycle. Once a prospect has received a proposal from Directive, the rep sends them a succulent gift. Tim also uses Sendoso to send thank you gifts after customers participate in Directive content or industry award submissions.

Learn how you, like Directive, can use Sendoso to increase SQLs.

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