PPC Blog: Paid Search Strategy

Go Beyond Keyword-Only Targeting in Paid Search Marketing

Some keywords garner so many clicks, you can quickly drain your budget if you use them.

So you (or your marketing team) might resort to the tactic of only running those ads for an hour or two a day.

I understand the problem. But limiting the amount of time you run these ads isn’t the best solution.

A better approach is to move beyond keywords and get more precise in your targeting.

Fortunately, Google Ads give us lots of options when it comes to audience targeting.

So many, in fact, that the choices can become overwhelming.

Therefore, I will use this blog post to show how you can move beyond keyword-only targeting with seven different audience targeting methods.

Go Beyond Keyword-Only Targeting in Paid Search Marketing

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Do You Really Want a 100% Google Ads Optimization Score?

It isn’t unusual for companies to offer free online PPC analysis tools.

So perhaps it isn’t surprising that Google itself got into that game in 2018.

Google Ads has a built-in feature that provides users with an optimization score and recommendations to improve it.

This sounds good in theory.

But what would happen if you applied Google’s recommendations across the board?

Google Ads optimization score

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3 PPC Fundamentals You Shouldn’t Overlook When Launching Google Ads Campaigns

By the time you become a PPC pro, you’ve probably launched hundreds of Google Ads campaigns.

But even with all this experience, you can sometimes overlook key PPC fundamentals in a rush to get ads live — or when grappling with Google Ads changes and updates.

And naturally, this kind of thing is even more likely to happen to PPC newbies.

In today’s article, I’m going to hit on three fundamentals for launching Google Ads campaigns that PPC pros sometimes overlook — and that PPC newbies might not be fully aware of.

Launching Google Ads campaigns

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A PPC Brand Awareness Resource Roundup

In the past few months, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking (and writing) on the topic of building brand awareness through PPC.

Why is this topic so often overlooked?

I suspect it’s partly because so many of us are focused on account performance.

Performance is important, of course. We’re all keenly interested in performance metrics, such as leads, conversions and sales.

But if your sole focus is performance — to the detriment of brand awareness — then you will lose opportunities, jeopardize long-term performance and even put the health of your entire business at risk.

Therefore, let me continue to bang the drum of brand awareness by recapping some of my most recent articles:

Brand awareness in PPC

 

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What You Should (& Should Not) Do with Your Sitelinks

Of the many functions available to us in Google Ads, one of my favorites is sitelinks.

Sitelinks are fantastic because they’re so effective and versatile.

Whether you want to promote low search volume themes, push lagging products out the door, maximize hot sellers, highlight certain product categories, answer common questions, or handle a PR problem – sitelinks can do it all.

But lately, I’ve been seeing more and more instances where advertisers are using sitelinks incorrectly – and they’re missing valuable opportunities.

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Should You Choose a Generalist or Specialist Marketing Agency?

When you decide to hire an outside marketing agency – either because you want to outsource your marketing entirely or supplement your existing in-house team – you’ll have a lot of decisions to make.

And one of the biggest will be whether to hire a generalist or specialist agency.

Let’s start by defining our terms: a generalist marketing agency is one that handles all kinds of marketing. These may include (but not be limited to):

  • Content creation and strategy
  • Social media management
  • SEO
  • SEM
  • Email marketing
  • Analytics
  • Media buying
  • Affiliate marketing.

A specialist agency, in contrast, will focus on only one of those channels. So they will do only SEO or only email marketing, for example.

So which should you choose?

Generalist or specialist marketing agency

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5 Ways to Build Your Brand With Google Ads

To my delight, more and more businesses are grasping the value of building their brand via Google Ads.

For too long, the emphasis has been on performance (“How many sales are we getting? How many leads?”) while ignoring the fact that brand building is a critical contributing factor to performance success.

Brand building is an investment in your company. Because, everything else being equal, prospective customers are more likely to buy a product or service from a brand that they know (or have at least heard of) as opposed to a brand they don’t know at all.

However, brand awareness doesn’t happen on its own. You need to put some of your budget behind it.

5 ways to build your brand with Google Ads

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Responsive Search Ads: They’re Not What You Think

When Google rolled out responsive search ads in 2018, they were met with skepticism and resistance by many PPC managers.

Responsive search ads were another instance of Google applying machine learning to the paid search management process — and this made some people nervous.

After all, many managers had had less than great experiences with Google’s other automated tools. And they worried that this tool wouldn’t be any different.

At Group Twenty Seven, we shared these concerns.

These concerns were confirmed when we tested responsive search ads and didn’t get the results we were hoping for.

But a couple of weeks ago, Google invited the Group Twenty Seven team to a customized training event, and responsive search ads were part of the discussion.

And in light of what we learned, we’ve started to reassess this ad type.

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Why You Shouldn’t Ignore Brand Awareness in PPC

In my last article on this blog, I described how brand awareness in PPC is sometimes viewed as less important than PPC performance.

Unfortunately, too many companies put all their attention on the performance of their paid search campaigns — and undervalue their brand awareness campaigns.  

Which is unfortunate because brand awareness is often a major driver of performance!

Why is this the case? Because when your product or service is expensive and/or complex, you have to lay some foundation before you can get a conversion. You have to give potential customers the opportunity to get to know you and what you bring to the table.

Brand awareness lies at the heart of this kind of foundation building. But by the time you get to the end of your conversion process, you’re too busy celebrating to remember all of the groundwork that went before. So your performance campaigns take all the credit.

Therefore, in the first part of this blog post, I will highlight some of the metrics that will help you see how you’re doing with brand awareness.

In the second part, I’ll look at a real life example.

Brand awareness in PPC

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The PPC “Dirty Secret” That No One Talks About

If you’ve spent time in the PPC world, you know that performance-based marketing gets all the attention.

After all, “performance” is what most clients want. They’re interested in PPC performance metrics, such as leads, revenue and ROI.

But some PPC pros have a dirty secret: We believe brand awareness is just as important! 

Allow me to use this blog post to explain why brand awareness doesn’t get the attention it deserves—and what can happen when you cut it.

PPC "dirty" secrets

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“Working with Group Twenty Seven has been tremendously valuable for our PPC goals. They are constantly bringing fresh ideas to the table and are focused on increasing our sales. The personal touch and flexibility they provide has made working with them not only a great experience, but also our ROI continues to grow. I have and will continue to refer the talented Group Twenty Seven!”

Matt Grimm, Ecommerce Director at Red Star Traders

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