2 Reasons You Can’t Ignore a Branded PPC Campaign

If you were a storefront merchant, and had the choice to either leave the outside entrance of your store bare, or put a sign out that featured your store name and an eye-catching message, which would you choose?

Now, imagine that you didn’t choose to put a sign out, but your competitor next door did. All things equal, a shopper may choose to walk into the store next door – even if they were on their way to yours – simply because the sign suggested it.

Having a branded PPC campaign is not unlike having a sign outside your storefront that gives your brand that extra boost. Moreover, if you don’t do it, your competition surely will.

That’s why there’s no better way to help control the way your brand is displayed in the paid search results – and in the search results in general – than a branded PPC campaign.

In this post, we’ll look at a couple reasons why you can’t ignore bidding on branded keywords in your paid search campaigns.

1. You Want Control of Your Brand’s Messaging

Having a branded PPC campaign is a best practice because you get to choose how your listing looks and what it says in the search results. Versus the organic listings, ads give you a way to say exactly what you want to say about your brand.

Sure, you can add Meta information to your Web pages that aid in the way the organic listing will show up, but it won’t always display how you intended it to. In paid search, there are a multitude of ways that you can craft a perfect representation of your brand through PPC ads.

Take sitelinks for example. Sitelinks in the PPC world are carefully selected by the advertisers to send searchers to the precise pages on a website they want them to visit.

On the organic side, sitelinks exist, but you have no control over which sitelinks will show. Sure, you can demote a sitelink if you think it’s not appropriate, but that’s about the extent of your control.

Here’s an example of organic sitelinks:

screenshot of organic sitelinks

Even the most recognizable brands run branded PPC campaigns. Let’s look at an example using “Diet Coke.” Here, you can see that Diet Coke does, in fact, have a branded PPC campaign:

Screenshot of PPC Ad

And here’s a great example of how organic sitelinks are not necessarily the most relevant for everyone, using Coca-Cola as an example in a U.S.-based search:
Screenshot of Organic Listing

Does a link to the Nigerian site seem like the most relevant place to send a U.S. visitor?

2. You Want More Coverage, and Less Cost per Click, Right?

The concept is simple: The search results are prime real estate, and you want to build your brand in as many places as possible to increase the chance of being found.

In a post last year, I showed readers how Nordstrom handled the search results like a boss when it was featured in the organic listings, in Product Listing Ads and in the PPC results for one search.

Example of Three Listings for a Brand in a Search Result

Trifecta of Branded Search Results: PPC ad, PLA and Organic Search Result

To make the branded PPC campaign deal even sweeter, branded keywords cost less per click and have the propensity to have more impression share because search engines like Google know that if people are searching for a brand name, they likely want to find that brand in the search results.

Finally, people often visit a site more than once before they convert. Oftentimes, they enter the site for the first time through a non-branded keyword while they are in the research phase, then later go back to the search results to perform a search for the brand name they discovered earlier, but are now in the comparison stage of the conversion funnel.

Also, they may have first found a brand via the organic channel, and then once they moved into the comparison phase, clicked on an ad to get to the website/brand they were looking for.

It just takes one look at your multichannel funnel report in Google Analytics to show how many times a person came to a website before they converted, and which channels aided in that conversion. That means, you always want to align with your prospect’s journey. The only way to do so is to predict the actions they might take and what they might be looking for at every step.

That’s a big job, but a no-brainer is to invest in controlling how and where your brand pops up as searchers make their way across the Web.

So don’t delay, and start bidding on your branded keywords in a branded PPC campaign today!