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Penquin rockets SAMTRAC to Inbound success

Posted by Alison Leishman on March 30, 2016 at 9:41 PM
Alison Leishman
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800_header.jpgThere was a moment in time we doubted it would take off. The marketing leap was too big, the content too specific, and the tactics too strange. But in seven months SAMTRAC, a South African health and safety eLearning training provider, ranked top in international organic Google search results in their field. Site traffic exceeded targets by 65%, customers increased and the target for leads rocketed by an astonishing 340%! All with the magic word: Inbound.


Our inbound goals

SAMTRAC International is a provider of online health and safety training; and started in South Africa in the 1960s as a child of NOSA. Despite their small beginnings, they offer courses in six languages and compete in an international space. The rivalry is fierce and their competitors are hugely active in the digital space – so how does a South African company make a wave in such a big pond? Inbound.

Despite the challenges to come down the road, SAMTRAC was an enthusiastic onboarder and loved setting up measurable goals. Measurability was always a challenge of theirs, and was previously both time consuming and inefficient.

Their 5 main challenges and goals were to:

  • Expand into the international market: The market struggles to find affordable and standardized health and safety training that work across global organisations
  • Become top of mind: SAMTRAC wanted to be top of mind as a health and safety (HSE) training provider
  • Shorten the sales cycle and bring in new students more frequently
  • Demonstrate thought leadership: Establish SAMTRAC as a thought leader in the competitive HSE industry
  • Improve measurability: Dive deeply into the stats around their digital activity and online presence


The challenges we overcame

Inbound can feel like a magic trick; with so much happening behind the scenes the results are hard to believe. And like magic, clients don’t always initially trust what they see. SAMTRAC was no exception. With Penquin new to Inbound, and SAMTRAC as one of our first Inbound clients, they were cautious of a marketing technique that was still new to South Africa from an agency learning the ropes.  Their boldness in signing up for such an innovative marketing strategy was soon balanced by fear of rocking the traditional marketing boat.  Together we persisted with the process and the first post was approved. This post is still their best performing blog entry with a click through rate of 30.5%!

Despite this success, it was still two months until we all trusted the Inbound process and began to publish regularly. We plunged into the new inbound marketing strategy, we committed fully and the numbers rocketed.

With buyer personas and heavy research, SAMTRAC’s content and site became magnetic. To date, the blog and website have received approximately 65,000 visits. With a regular posting schedule, a social media strategy, and emails based on lead optimization, figures soon met – and exceeded – the target. Prospects were nurtured down the funnel with landing pages, calls-to-action, personalized workflows and relevant content offers. Through this process we narrowed down the marketing qualified leads (MQL) and converted them to sales qualified leads (SQL), and finally they became our loyal customers and ambassadors.

Then we did this again. And again. And again.

The hard work and faith in the process was justified by the figures. 

The numbers

Inbound’s focus on numbers excited SAMTRAC. Using Hubspot tools and by working backwards from the number of clients they wanted and their current figures, targets were set up based on both this and their challenges and goals. 


Each of these targets was not only met, but exceeded. Have a look at the numbers.



The landing page submissions, which have a bench mark of the top 10% of achievers reaching 11.23%, after 7 months are at:



In just 7 months, SAMTRAC’s database exploded from 0 contacts, to over 2000 leads. The visit to lead conversion rate is 3.1% (above the norm of 1-3%)  with the lead to customer conversion rate at 8.5% - again above the expected benchmark. The blog has 299 subscribers, who receive helpful articles twice a week and the sales funnels continues to grow.


The lesson

Inbound marketing is an immersive experience with your client.  Through trust, collaboration and clear goals, it not only leads to marketing success but also builds a relationship that lays the groundwork for a strong future together.

“Inbound has helped SAMTRAC International become a trusted source of information and expertise in the industry, at the same time ensuring we nurture all our customers with the industry information they need when they need it.” Timothy Thom, Global Business Development Manager, SAMTRAC International


To start your own journey to inbound success, grade your website with our website grading tool.

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