PPC Blog: PPC strategy

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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Why You Can’t Build a Successful PPC Program in Just a Few Hours

Recently, I came across a couple of online PPC guides that suggested you could get a PPC program up and running in just a few hours.

The argument goes like this: SEO takes time to ramp up. You aren’t going to get on the first page of Google overnight.

In contrast, you can launch a PPC program, throw up an ad, and have revenue coming in the door within just a few hours. Ka-ching!

If only it were that easy!

Unfortunately, this description completely misrepresents what it takes to build a successful PPC program.

Let’s take a closer look at this “you can build a PPC program in a few hours” argument to see what the reality is.

Build a successful PPC program

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Google Ads Not Working for Your Small Brand? Try Something Different

Often, smaller companies struggle to compete in competitive markets where megabrands dominate.

When cost per clicks are sky high in Google Ads and competition is tough, it can be hard to elbow your way in.

But while it may be difficult, that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.

Sometimes, you just have to approach things more creatively.

In this article, I’ll share with you some of the strategies we’re seeing smaller companies use to get a leg up in markets that are dominated by larger players.

Google-Ads-Not-Working-for-Your-Small-Brand-Try-Something-Different

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A Rundown of Your Google Ads Automated Bid Options

My last column talked about the ins and outs of Google Ads bidding. If you haven’t seen that column yet, give it a read before proceeding. It has some important tips to get you started with automated bidding.

This column will focus specifically on Google Ads automated bid options.

Automated bidding sounds great in theory (“Everything’s done for you!”) but can be much more complex in reality.

Not only do you have to pick the right type of bidding strategy for your business goals, you also have to learn the nuances of each.

Google Ads automated bid options

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What You Need to Know About Google Ads Bid Strategy

Of all of the technical aspects of PPC, none confounds both pros and novices more than bid strategy.

This is partly because there are so many bid strategy options in Google Ads, each with its own nuances.

Even when you think you understand how they work based on their descriptions, that doesn’t always translate into how they work in practice. As a result, you’re never entirely sure of your footing.

Therefore, in this article, I’m going to walk you through some of the basics of manual and automated Google Ads bidding. I’ll then give you some tips for moving into automated bidding when you’re ready.

Google Ads bid strategy

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The Challenge of Competing with Directory Sites in Paid Search

When you run Google searches, the results are sometimes filled with ads for directory sites.

This is especially true when the search terms relate to expensive, big-commitment services, such as schools and assisted living facilities (a.k.a., nursing homes).

People will usually thoroughly research and compare these services before buying, which makes directory sites appealing.

As an advertiser, you might see this as a problem. After all, how can your ad for a single facility compete against ads for directories that list hundreds of facilities?

Competing with directory sites in paid search

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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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5 PPC Takeaways That Will Make You a Better Marketer

One of the joys (and challenges) of a career in paid search is the constant state of learning and change. It’s a theme that runs through many of my articles.

But in the busy-ness of our day-to-day PPC activities, it’s easy to simply move from one thing to the next without pausing to learn from what’s in front of us.

What lessons can we draw from our experiences? How can we apply these lessons more broadly?

In that spirit, I will recount some of my team’s top PPC takeaways from the past few months:

PPC takeaways

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4 PPC Metrics That Get More Attention Than They Deserve

It’s not uncommon for people new to paid search to get overly focused on certain PPC metrics.

While I applaud their interest, I often find that those metrics—in isolation—aren’t terribly useful.

At the same time, I can understand the fascination with certain numbers. After all, it’s easier to focus on one or two highly visible numbers than more complex metrics that are harder to nail down.

And, sometimes, I think these metrics become a way to avoid taking a broader perspective and asking tougher questions.

Therefore, I’m going to use this post to describe a few metrics that get more attention than they deserve—and what you might want to focus on instead.

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Matt Grimm, Ecommerce Director at Red Star Traders

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