Welton Hong, founder of Ring Ring Marketing ® (www.RingRingMarketing.com), is a leading expert in helping small businesses convert leads from online directly to the phone line. Based in Silicon Valley, Ring Ring Marketing has successfully helped many home improvement companies and funeral homes increase their revenues in a short amount of time.
Welton is the author of Making Your Phone Ring with Internet Marketing and a regular contributor to Window & Door magazine. He has a graduate degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Prior to starting Ring Ring Marketing, he was a senior technologist at R&D facilities for Intel, Sun Microsystems, and Oracle.
Read on to learn more about Welton and how his philosophy has shaped Ring Ring Marketing, in his own words.
Why he left a lucrative position at a major tech firm to start his own company:
I bought my house in San Jose, California, in 2010 while I was still a full-time employee. One of the contractors I hired for remodeling was telling me he had wasted a lot of money with online marketing. He tried doing it himself at first, and then he hired various marketing agencies, but none of the efforts were successful.
As soon as he told me this, I knew I could do a better job. I’d never run an online marketing campaign before, but I had some familiarity with that world, and I was able to immediately pinpoint where the other agencies’ efforts had gone wrong for this contractor.
So I decided to take the challenge, and we bartered: He would do some renovations in return for my marketing consultation. He removed the popcorn ceiling and painted the interior and exterior of the house. I started immersing myself in online marketing, learning about every single aspect and technique, and then implementing the strategies.
Having come from an R&D tech environment, I learned the tactics very quickly: That sort of thing was just natural for me. I was able to help the contractor grow his quantity of high-quality leads in a very short amount of time. He was thrilled, and so was I. It’s unbelievably fulfilling to help a struggling business succeed, to see it prosper well beyond anything the owner had expected. That’s become my mission statement, in fact.
After I helped him out, I knew I couldn’t go back to being an employee. I knew I wanted to be like my entrepreneur dad and own my own business.
It’s a very good fit for me, because I have a talent for online marketing, and I’ve developed a broad skill set. But this is just as important, if not more so: I have a passion for it. I truly have a passion to help out other great businesses. There’s no better feeling for me.
So I started approaching local business owners. Several were really struggling with the housing crisis. They laid off employees and downsized a lot. A few of them were literally on the brink of bankruptcy.
Through all my studies, all those late nights burning the midnight oil, I was able to design techniques that saved their businesses. Those companies recovered to be as strong as they were before the housing bubble burst, and some even expanded into multiple locations.
It was an amazing experience, and I’m very proud of what we were able to accomplish together. Since then, we have helped do the same for a wide variety of companies, and now we’re targeting businesses nationwide to help those owners enjoy the same levels of success.
How he selects Ring Ring Marketing clients:
Some other agencies work with any business that will hand over money. Those agencies are not concerned with whether they can actually help that business or provide any substantial return on investment. They just take the money and run, promising nothing in return.
We don’t work that way. I want to help great businesses succeed. We only work with businesses that have a proven record of high integrity. We check out every company’s reviews to ensure they make customer service a priority. We ask around and do other research: We want to know that the business owner cares just as much as we do.
At the same time, we only contract with businesses we know we can help substantially. We create an individually tailored marketing plan for every company, and with our money-back guarantee, we take on all the risk. That’s why I’m choosy about our partners: It has to be a great relationship that engages my passion for helping truly wonderful businesses prosper.
Why integrity and honor is so important to Welton:
It comes from my father, who owned a chemical company in Taiwan. He is a very down-to-earth man, a man of very high integrity, and he taught me the value of always having integrity in everything you do.
Because my dad and his friends are all current or former business owners, I know how tough it is, and how stressful it can be, to run your own successful company.
So I know how entrepreneurs think. They don’t want to spend money on things that don’t work. They don’t want to be cheated, which is unfortunately what happens with some so-called marketing companies in this field.
This is why integrity is a founding principle of Ring Ring Marketing, and it always will be. Doing the right thing is at the core of everything we do.
We know our clients’ money is hard earned. We don’t spend their ad budget unwisely or pitch them services they don’t need. We treat their money exactly as if were our own money. Which is why we provide a 100% money-back guarantee for 60 days.
My dad was able to create many jobs and provide a good living for his family and his employees’ families. He treated every employee very well, like they were his own family members. He taught me to give and to never expect things in return. That’s why I’m always very generous, and that will always be the central principle of my business.
What you can learn from his book, Making Your Phone Ring with Internet Marketing:
The book is an amateur’s guide to online marketing. Its objective is educate business owners who used to rely on offline marketing tools (such as newspapers and the Yellow Pages) for their leads. Traditional tools used to work well for those companies, but that’s no longer the case.
These business owners have watched traditional offline marketing tools become less and less effective through the years, and consequently, their revenue has dropped precipitously. Meanwhile, the local competition keeps getting bigger and bigger.
The book is there to decipher all different types of online marketing tactics and explain what works—and what doesn’t. I made a point of being comprehensive while also making it easy to understand for the layperson. That’s important to me. The more educated you are as an owner, the better we can help your business thrive.
How Ring Ring Marketing partners with Google:
Ring Ring Marketing is a Google Partner and a Google Mobile Guru. This means we are well connected with Google and are immediately informed of all the latest changes and new tools from Google. This ensures that we are always a step ahead of other marketing agencies.
Also, by being here in Silicon Valley — Google’s home and the epicenter of digital technology — we get to meet face to face with Google leaders frequently.
It’s incredibly important and rewarding to maintain a great relationship with Google, one of the biggest businesses in the world. When you can maintain a partnership with a company with more than $100 billion in equity and the most visited website in the world (Google.com), you’re doing something right.
Ring Ring Marketing was named a winner at the Google Partners All-Stars Contest, part of the Google All-Stars Global Summit at Google’s. Google flew RRM employees to its headquarters in Mountain View, California for three days of training, providing invaluable education and assistance. That experience meant a lot to me and my staff.
Recent speaking engagements and Google partnership events:
- Speaker at Window & Door Dealers Forum, Sept. 2014
- Speaker at Fenestration Day, March 2015
- Speaker at Window & Door Dealers Forum, Sept. 2015
- Guest speaker at Milgard’s Dealer Day, Nov. 2015
- Joint webinar with Google to teach about Google Remarketing, Aug. 2015
- Speaker at Milgard Windows & Doors Dealer Day, Nov 2015
- Joint webinar with Google to teach about Mobile Marketing, Dec. 2015
- Speaker at OKNA Windows & Doors Dealer Day, Feb 2016