The Benefits of PPC Management
They can be set up fairly quickly and served on a given platform instantly, making them a great option for those with larger pocketbooks.
Unfortunately, this level of expediency comes with costs. There’s obviously the cost of ad spend during the campaign, but then there’s the element of manpower involved to keep PPC campaigns running.
PPC campaigns demand full attention. They are an all hands on deck operation. What seems profitable one minute can drift into unprofitability on a dime.
When business owners try their hands at PPC, they quickly learn that it’s a hefty commitment.
That’s why PPC management exists.
What is PPC Management?
PPC management involves the oversight of an organization’s ad spend, from research to ad creation to A/B testing and beyond.
These specialists are highly experienced in crafting ad campaigns across a variety of platforms and optimizing them for success. It’s not a perfect art, but one that involves constant tweaking and testing.
Campaign monitoring is the biggest time suck involved in PPC management, but it’s a critical step towards ensuring campaign vitality and success.
Monitoring involves a constant performance evaluation, looking at all-important metrics like ad impressions, click through rates (CTR), and more.
It’s up to the PPC manager to identify progress and make necessary changes that will continue to drive business growth.
Just like SEO, search engine advertising begins with keyword research. A PPC manager must determine the right keywords to target based on a number of factors.
Search volume and cost per click are the primary considerations, but there’s also the need for testing to ensure that these are the right targets.
Where should your campaign take place? There are a number of ad networks to choose from, but it’s important to go where your audience lives.
This is where search intent comes into play. Customers who are performing active Google searches for a product or service will most likely click on ads in the Google search results, whereas customers who have a more passive interest in a given product or service might be on Facebook or elsewhere.
Competitive research is everything. If your competitors are advertising on Google search, so should you. If they are using Facebook ads, well then you get the point.
There are tons of convenient tools to help with competitive research, including AdEspresso which packs in loads of analytics to show you how your competitors are advertising.
PPC campaigns are not a ‘set it and forget it’ affair. Once a campaign is launched, it’s important to continually monitor and optimize.
Components to optimize include keywords (if targeting seems off), ad spend, ad placements, text, and ad images.
Creating one campaign at a time is not your best use of resources. The best PPC managers know how to properly split test in order to choose the most profitable campaigns for their clients.
Split testing, or A/B testing, is when you create multiple campaigns with different features for the sake of comparison. These features could include different keywords, audience targeting, or overall ad spend.
A/B testing is another facet of PPC management that is ongoing.
Setting Realistic Goals
Every paid search campaign should have realistic goals in place at the outset, so that the client and the PPC manager are on the same page.
Goals will depend on the type of campaign. For example, a brand awareness campaign will not be looking at product purchases the same way as a retargeting campaign.
Common KPIs & Campaign Metrics
There are many different types of PPC campaigns to choose from, but here are the most common benchmarks that companies will want to track.
Customer Lifetime Value
What is the monetary value of a given customer who enters your sales funnel? To find this, you must track all customers from the awareness stage all the way through to purchase and repurchasing products.
Retargeting campaigns are really important for helping this along, as they allow companies the opportunity to nudge would-be consumers through the final stages of the sales funnel.
Customer Acquisition Cost
But alas, we can’t even get to the lifetime value stage without calculating our customer acquisition cost. How pricey is it to acquire a customer in the first place?
This is determined by the amount of ad spend it takes to bring one customer into our sales funnel.
Return on Investment
How much money are you earning for the amount of ad spend used? This can be a million dollar question, right?
PPC managers are tasked with cultivating ad campaigns that meet ROI demands for their clients and should be adjusting ad spend and targeting based on these fluctuations.
Return on Ad Spend
ROAS measures the amount of money generated per each dollar spent in a given ad campaign. If you had earned $1,000 after spending $100, your return on ad spend would be 10:1.
Cost per Lead
Also known as CPL, cost per lead is an ad model that means the client will pay only when a customer signs up for something, becoming a qualified lead.
This method of advertising makes sense for many lead generation campaigns when the goal is to get customers to take action on a specific offer.
Calculating cost per lead is simple. Just take your total marketing spend for the campaign, add up your new leads, and divide the spend by the amount of new leads.
Click Through Rate
Click through rate is a crucial metric for any campaign, both SEO and PPC varieties.
CTR is calculated by taking the amount of clicks on the ad and dividing by the number of impressions. A low CTR usually means the ad copy, image, or call to action is not compelling enough. This is where A/B testing comes into play.
PPC managers will constantly shoot for higher click through rates to ensure that an ad budget is properly spent.
Now that we’ve examined the most common metrics for online advertising, let’s review the most common goals.
It may seem like common sense, but it’s worth remembering that our number one goal is more sales.
For a brand awareness campaign this may not be the case, but for most PPC endeavors it’s the primary end goal.
Some ad campaigns are specifically tailored for more traffic. This is especially true with a new brand, or a site that’s trying to drive traffic to a new webpage.
Generate More Leads
Lead generation is typically a step down the funnel from brand awareness, but not quite all the way down to a sale.
Leads are usually enticed via an upsell, or lead magnet. These are items you offer potential customers to get them into your sales funnel where you can interact with them further. These types of campaigns will utilize ad copy like “check out this FREE eBook!”
Increase Brand Awareness
The most top of funnel campaign is meant for brand awareness. This is most common for newer brands who are trying to break into the market and get noticed by top level consumers.
Brand awareness campaigns often take place on social media platforms like Facebook and will encourage people to “like” their page.
Lower Cart Abandonment Rate
How can you reduce the number of people who abandon their shopping cart on your website? You simply retarget them with your ads.
It happens on Amazon all the time. You’ll have something in your shopping cart and then you suddenly get distracted and forget to finalize the purchase. Before you know it, Amazon is sending a promotional email your way to remind you.
Ecommerce websites grapple with cart abandonment on a constant basis, but these remarketing efforts can help reduce that scary statistic one and for all.
Structure of a Google Ads Campaign
Google ads is the most widely used online advertising platform and it’s clear to see why. Everyone uses Google to search for stuff!
Structuring your Google ads is simple enough, optimizing it is where things get tougher.
Picking the right keywords makes all the difference. In a typical Google ads campaign you’ll be able to choose from five options.
Broad match: these are terms that aren’t highly relevant but will achieve the widest reach. If you are launching a new campaign and aren’t really sure where your profitability lies, picking broad match terms is the way to go.
Modified broad match: once you have a sense of what your main terms are, you can hone in the targeting slightly by using certain modifiers. This will add more relevance to your campaign.
Phrase match: these are search terms that must include a specific phrase of your choosing. It’s a good way to hone in your relevance even further, while keeping options open as far as which keywords you’re targeting.
Exact match: when you’ve thoroughly tested a series of keywords and you begin to understand what’s working and what’s not, you can start implementing exact match terms. These will only trigger when specific searches are made, which can give you much more qualified customers.
Negative match: this category becomes useful as you optimize your campaign. Negative match terms will NOT trigger your ad when someone searches for them. This is commonly used for terms that may damage your campaign by causing unnecessary clicks.
A campaign is the overarching entity that houses your budget, keywords, ad groups, location targeting, and more.
Within each campaign are ad groups. These house one or more ads that contain similar audience targets. PPC managers will set bids and prices that will be used when an ad group’s keywords trigger the ad to appear.
Ad copy is one of the most lucrative parts of the ad. It needs to have a compelling call to action in order to make people want to click. Success comes down to copywriting and A/B testing.
Ad extensions are components added to a Google ad to help people take an action right away. If you’re a local roofer, you’d want to include your phone number to encourage immediate calls.
Where are you sending people who click on your ad? This can be a vital factor in determining the success of a campaign.
If people click on your ad but don’t convert on your page, there’s something wrong. You need to continually make your landing pages better by heatmapping them, monitoring bounce rates, and tracking other interactions on the page.
You can view your Google Ads account information from within your Google Analytics account, simple by linking them together.
Regular Monitoring & Optimization
Like we said before, a successful campaign takes hard work. Your PPC manager should be on top of it, constantly monitoring its progress and making necessary changes along the way.
Looking at data from past and current campaigns will help inform your decisions moving forward. Learn from campaign success and failures to ensure that budgets are properly utilized and ad spend is in line with conversions.
Trial and error is the name of the game, so don’t be afraid to operate new campaigns with different strategies from old.
New campaigns should target new keyword possibilities and new audiences based on analytics data.
A/B testing should be a fluid process. Just because one ad has proven to work, it doesn’t mean you give up and rely on that one solely.
Continued A/B testing ensures that you’re giving your client the best value for their dollars.
Benefits of Regular PPC Management
PPC campaigns are more involved than you may think, which is why it’s so useful to hire a reliable PPC manager who can oversee your campaign from start to finish.
That’s where a PPC management company comes in.
With experience and hard work, these professionals will help your website create profitable ad campaigns that fit within your budget and help you defeat your competitors.