A prospective client recently asked me why they should use us to manage their pay-per-click (PPC) advertising program, rather than have a recent college graduate do it. “After all,” they said, “It seems so easy.”
Technically speaking, it is easy to do pay-per-click advertising….badly. Best case, you won’t know how much money you’re leaving on the table because of what you don’t know. Worst case, you could lose thousands of dollars almost overnight because proper controls weren’t in place. Most likely case, you’ll give up and decide that PPC advertising doesn’t work without giving it a fair shot because you just didn’t understand how to do it right.
That’s where the judgment and experience we bring to the table comes into play. Some of the ways we help include:
Selecting Search Terms
• Researching the terms people search on. It’s often not what you’d expect.
• Determining which search terms indicate that you have a prospect in “buying mode.”
• Avoiding search terms that bring you completely unqualified traffic.
Setting Up the Campaign
• Choosing the appropriate “match type” for each search term, which determines the rules for when your ad will be shown. Many people don’t even realize that match types exist.
• Selecting where each search term should link. (Nearly everyone chooses incorrectly.)
• Determining a budget that will give you an adequate test without paying for an excessive number of clicks that turn out to be unqualified.
• Setting bid amounts based on the economics of your particular business.
• Choosing which ranking to aim for. Most people think the top spot is the best, but rarely is.
• Structuring the campaign so that a few high traffic search terms don’t gobble up the entire budget.
Writing and Testing Copy
• Writing copy that motivates qualified prospects (and discourages unqualified ones) in just 12 to 15 words.
• Repeatedly testing headlines and descriptions against each other scientifically – crucial to maximizing your success, and something almost no one does.
Evaluating the Campaign
• Tracking and evaluating conversions. An astonishing number of companies judge a campaign only on the number of click-throughs, and never even look at sales.
• Deciding where results from one search term lead – what it implies for which additional terms to test and not test
Judgment and experience can make or break a pay-per-click campaign. Let the newbie in your office cut their teeth on implementation, but if you want to stay out of trouble, don’t just hand them the car keys and let them start driving.