Interview with Larry Kim @MobileMonkey

Interview with Larry Kim

Hello Marketers, Welcome to another edition of TechWyse Interviews.

When we hear about MobileMonkey or WordStream, our first thought is Larry with his absolute best smile. For those among you, who do not know him already, Larry Kim is the CEO of MobileMonkey, and founder of WordStream, the World’s top PPC marketing software company.

In addition to this, Larry is widely considered one of the most influential experts and thought leaders in Digital Marketing, and was voted the most influential PPC expert in 2017, 2015, 2014 and 2013. Larry’s blogs on marketing and entrepreneurship are read by millions of people every month.

Enough from us, let’s hear it from Larry!

1) Let’s start with what you love the most! What’s the story behind starting MobileMonkey? What was your original vision when you were planning to start this?

I had been relying on email marketing for many years, but the engagement rates have been plummeting over the last decade, from +50% open rates to just 5-10% today – for opt-in email marketing.

I knew that messaging technologies like Facebook Messenger MarketingSMS Marketing, and Web Chat Marketing would need to become part of every company’s marketing strategy going forward. Because the engagement on those platforms is 10x higher, we decided to build it.

We wanted to create a way that businesses could interact with customers on whatever messaging platform they use, and to be able to view and respond to those inquiries from a unified chat messaging inbox.

Today, MobileMonkey is used by hundreds of thousands of businesses across the entire World, is the #1 chatbot on WordPress and is the best Web Chat app, according to

2) Chatbots are the latest trend that we tend to see on websites with a high rate of conversion. What is your blueprint for making a great chatbot?

People are 3-5x more likely to engage using webchat vs. filling out a static web site form. Because you’re engaging with the customer immediately, they’re 3-5x more likely to convert to a sale.

MobileMonkey provides tons of chatbot templates you can use to get started. A great chatbot provides answers to the most commonly asked questions, as well as a way to navigate and browse through a business’s core offerings, like a miniature website. It’s also important to provide a way out to let users speak to a live chat customer service operator.

3) MobileMonkey is well-known for its innovative upgrades. What are some of the latest updates/features we can expect from MobileMonkey this year?

We’re working on supporting more messaging channels, as well as improving support of the messaging channels we currently support.

4) We’ve seen your “obsession” over unicorns on the Internet. Why unicorns, and what is the story?

I have been totally obsessed with unicorns for over a decade and consider myself in some way partially responsible for the unicorn craze that has been happening for a few years now.

For me, unicorns are just a metaphor for something truly remarkable and my hope for you and your marketing campaigns is to be a unicorn in a sea of donkeys!

5) For paid campaigns, what’s that one thing you focus on so that you don’t give your money away to Google?

I would focus on reducing click fraud. Nobody likes to talk about it, but it is a huge problem – some accounts I see +90% of clicks are complete junk.

6) What do you think of Google reps handling your ad campaigns? Do you think they have your best interest in mind?

They just advocate for raising bids and budgets and trying out things you might not be already using, like adding Google Display Ads to your ad spending, etc.

The real leverage in PPC advertising comes from the creativity of your ads, which will never originate from a Google ad rep.

7) What do you think is the best mobile marketing tactic for an e-commerce site?

Try an automated SMS drip campaign for cart abandoners.

We also posted a list of SMS marketing examples for e-commerce folks to copy.

8) What is your magic word for social media engagement?


For example, try adding a comment-guard to a Facebook post and see what happens.

9) MobileMonkey is doing an amazing job! But how do you measure success and failed marketing campaigns?

You just need to be brutally honest about setting objectives and seeing if the hard work paid off or not.

The sad thing is that I have found that 97% of marketing campaigns fail (donkeys) and are a total waste of time, and about 3% of campaigns (unicorns) do remarkably well.

The sooner you can identify and eliminate the donkey campaigns, the better off you are as a marketing organization.

10) Outside of MobileMonkey, how do you like to spend your time?

Being with my family – my wife, Kay Lee, and our two sons, Julian (5) and Oliver (1).

Julian is in kindergarten and loves computers, mathematics and Keroppi.

Oliver is very joyful, fearless, and can speak nearly 20 words.

No amount of money ever bought a second more of time, so make sure you spend your time wisely with the people who you love and care for.

Thank you, Larry, for taking the time to share your insights!

Do you love reading insights from marketing specialists? Check out our past interviews! If there is someone you’d like to see interviewed on the TechWyse blog, be sure to leave a comment below!

Post By Ramzeen A V (11 Posts)

Ramzeen is the co-founder & Social Monk at Ranking Monks. He loves big ideas, brand strategy and uncanny ability to make his clients look solid on social media. You'll usually find him on a football pitch or trying new teas!

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