[Asaad Bhamla is a new guest blogger and a Business.com marketing consultant who works with small and medium-sized businesses to meet their search marketing goals. He blogs about new business trends at The Online Economy.]
A pay-per-click advertising campaign is an effective way to immediately drive traffic to your company's website. But whether that traffic converts into an actual lead or sale depends on your overall strategy and execution. I've interviewed Greg Pritchard, one of Business.com's dedicated campaign optimization specialists. Greg helps clients optimize their PPC campaign for success, striving to meet and exceed their goals every day. Greg shares proven strategies and actionable tips and tactics you can use today. Here are just a few things he shared with me:
Q: What is the most important step a new advertiser should take when setting up their PPC campaign?
A: Know what is going to determine success for you. My advertisers have goals such as lead generation, ROI or brand awareness. Based on your goals, set up conversion tracking to measure key metrics like cost-per-lead, bounce rate, time spent on a page, etc. This will let you track the success of the campaign and make necessary adjustments.
Landing pages are another important factor in the success of a new campaign. Make sure there is a clear call to action that correlates with your ad copy. Ideally, if this is a lead generation campaign, there should be a lead capture form on this page.
Q: Once a campaign is up and running, what strategy do you use to optimize campaign performance?
A: Business.com offers a number of different metrics to measure a campaign. Within the account management dashboard there are performance indicators. These are based on the click through rates of an ad. This is an easy way to monitor the performance of specific keyword categories and ad copy. Performance can be improved by more tailored titles and ad copy. The higher the performance indicator the more traffic an ad will drive at a lower CPC.
It is also important to maintain the highest rank possible on a page. We have noticed that advertisers who capture one of the top three spots receive better ad performance and higher conversion rates.
Q: Tell me about a specific optimization tactic that you've seen success in.
A: Creative cross marketing can drive quality leads from sources you might not have thought of. For example, target your ads for printers to new businesses in the "Starting a Small Business" category. Many of our advertisers have been happy with the results of well thought out cross marketing.
Q: What does successful ad copy look like?
A: Effective copy can significantly improve conversions and lead quality. Here is an example of ad copy that was successful on a client's campaign;
100% US Based Outsourced Call Center - One World Direct® 2010 ATSI Call Center Award Winner. Top Companies Choose OWD For 24/7 Inbound Call Center Services. Click For Pricing! Inbound | Customer Service | Email & Web Chat | Get A Quote www.owd.com
Ad copy should include a direct call to action that will entice the user both to click and to convert ("Click For Pricing"). Key aspects of the brand's value must be identified in the title (in this example, 100% US based). Also include key "trust indicators", like the ® symbol and the recent award in the description. Finally, leverage multi-links that illustrate the broad variety of services provided by OWD and provide an additional call to action ("Get A Quote").
These are a few tips to get you started. If you have any questions about managing your PPC campaign or want to share your success stories, please leave a comment below and I'd be happy to answer them for you.