PPC Blog: PPC Management

Brand Awareness is Your Insurance Policy Against Dirty Tricks in PPC

The paid search community was recently caught up in a flurry of tweets on the topic of a certain “dirty trick.”

The CEO of Basecamp, Jason Fried, complained that Google Ads allows competitors to bid on a company’s branded keywords (including his own). He claims that the practice is cowardly and nasty — and implied that it’s a dirty trick.

Fried is right in that Google does allow competitors to trigger ads with protected brand keywords. However, Google doesn’t allow advertisers to display competitors’ protected marks. (Hat tip to Marty Weintraub for the clear explanation.)

Dirty tricks in PPC

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SEO vs. PPC: A Few Forgotten Truths

For years, people in this industry debated the merits of paid search advertising versus organic search marketing.

Which was better?

Which one should you put your resources into?

Honestly, I thought we’d settled this argument a long time ago:

You need both!

But recently, the topic came up again amongst some of my clients.

I can see why. If you weren’t part of the original discussion, this conclusion might not seem so obvious.

Therefore, allow me to use this article to express a few forgotten truths in the SEO versus PPC debate.

SEO vs PPC

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Brand Versus Non-Brand Goals in PPC Campaigns

Many of my clients have questions about their PPC program goals.

Should they only set goals that are directly related to leads and sales?

Or should they also set goals that are related to brand building?

And if they’re doing well with leads and sales, wouldn’t it make sense to put all of their focus there?

Not necessarily.

When you consider the health of your PPC program (and your business overall), you need to take a balanced approach.

And to explain what I mean, I like to use financial portfolio management as a metaphor.

Brand Versus Non-Brand Goals in PPC Campaigns

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What to Expect From Your New PPC Agency

If you’ve never worked with a PPC agency before, you might wonder what to expect.

What questions will they ask? What will they want you to do?

And what can you do to make the relationship go more smoothly?

As the manager of a PPC agency, I like to think I have some insights into the client-agency relationship.

Here are six things you can expect from your new PPC agency.

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What Does PPC Have to Do With Website Design?

If you’re relatively new to PPC, you might not think much about website design.

Instead, your focus is more likely on things such as ad groups, ad messaging, and conversion tracking.

After all, what does the design of your website have to do with PPC performance anyway?

Quite a lot, actually.

It isn’t just about how your website looks.

It’s also about performance.

While getting qualified users to click on your ads is a crucial first step in any paid search program, everything that happens after that click is equally important.

And if users don’t like what they see or experience when they’re on your site or landing pages, then your PPC campaign performance will suffer.

This post will outline just some of the ways your website design can impact your PPC program.

What does PPC have to do with website design?

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4 Things You Should Know Before Hiring a PPC Agency

For many companies, hiring a PPC agency is a big step into the unknown.

You’re not sure what to expect. And you might have some not-quite-accurate ideas about how the relationship will work.

We see this all the time with new clients. It’s why we have a formal onboarding process that helps us set expectations and answer client questions.

But even so, there are some things you should know even before you start looking for a PPC agency to hire.

I’ll use this post to outline four of them.

Hiring a PPC Agency

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Should You Choose a PPC Agency or In-House PPC Management?

I recently received a call from a prospective client who was looking for temporary assistance with their PPC program. Their in-house marketing manager had resigned and, so far, they had been unable to find a suitable replacement. In the meantime, the CMO was covering the position.

They didn’t want to make a rushed hiring decision just to resolve the issue. But they desperately needed some help.

So they asked if my agency might step in temporarily to bridge the gap — this in spite of the company having a strict “no agency” policy due to past bad experiences. Because my agency doesn’t require long-term contracts, we agreed.

But when we opened the account, we uncovered many issues.

PPC agency or in house PPC management

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Don’t Bother With PPC If….

While we’re always happy to take on new clients, we’ve learned over the years that even the most brilliant PPC campaign can be scuttled when certain conditions aren’t met.

Fortunately, fixing these problems is within reach of most clients with a few resources and the right mindset.

But until then, proceed with caution. As a PPC agency, we don’t want to waste your time or budget. Which is why we sometimes decline to work with clients when these conditions aren’t met.

What are these problem areas you ask? The most common ones are as follows:

Don't bother with PPC if

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8 Huge Dangers of Shutting Down Your AdWords Account

Occasionally, clients decide to discontinue the services of their paid search advertising agencies.

Sometimes they intend to let their paid accounts run with minimal oversight or stop their campaigns entirely.

The motivation for this decision can vary.

Sometimes clients are experiencing production issues, and they want to cease advertising temporarily because they’re unable to fulfill the volume of customer orders the ads are generating.

Sometimes the client feels overwhelmed by the number of inquiries — and want to stop advertising until they’ve exhausted all of those leads.

And sometimes, it’s intended as a cost-saving measure. Clients decide to cease PPC activities for several months to “save money.”

Dangers of shutting down your AdWords account

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Your PPC Resolution for 2018: Keep Learning!

Paid search advertising is always changing. (Which is one of the things I love about it.) It takes a concerted effort to keep up with the times.

Paid search changes at such a rapid rate, in fact, that you have to look extra carefully at work experience. For example, if someone says, “I’ve worked in paid search advertising for 12 years,” that doesn’t tell me much. Sure, they might have excellent management experience and good contextual understanding of PPC advertising, but if they haven’t touch an AdWords account in the last two years, they would be woefully unprepared to directly manage an account.

PPC resolution for 2018

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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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