September 9, 2015

Connecting Your Business to Online Customers through PPC Advertising

How PPC Advertising Can Help You Reach New Customers

PPC (pay-per-click), also known as paid search advertising on the Google and Bing networks, can provide your business with a great opportunity at reaching a large digital audience.  Ads are triggered in response to specific searches, so they only appear to people who might already have an interest in your product or services. Ads are presented, but you are only charged if the viewer ‘clicks-through’ to your website.

PPC is a great way to gather leads, acquire new customers, learn about competitors, test pricing strategies, and gather feedback for how you can optimize your website .

Before starting a PPC campaign, you should make sure that your business has a website that is set up to capture business, as well as consider the following:

1. Your Brand

Let’s face it, a strong brand goes a long way to attracting customers. The more your brand is able to connect with your target audience, the higher your probability of gaining new customers.

2. Your Presentation

Your presentation materials (website, banner ads, etc.) must be strong promoters of your brand. Your materials should get your market audience excited about your business offerings. Presentation must  attract, and when paired with good marketing, the sky is the limit. Make sure that your presentation material speaks directly to your customers and addresses their needs. Something along the lines of “You need this because…”

3. Your Price

One of the main sales drivers (especially online) is price. More specifically, your price your competition. Price undoubtedly makes or breaks your potential at gaining customers, unless you have absolutely no direct or remotely similar competition.

Today’s internet users are web savvy in comparison to a decade ago, so it is important to make sure your services are competitively priced. With a wide selection of options that are available in just a few clicks, most customers will ‘shop around’ before deciding on which company to go with. This is why your website pitch needs to be strong, and a good pricing strategy is a place to start.

Research what your competition is doing online by browsing their websites and social media and you will discover how they connect with customers. Doing research on your online competition will go a long way at helping you design the focus area of your PPC program.

4. Trackability

For a PPC campaign to be successful, you have to make sure that you are able to track performance and results, in order to learn what is working and what isn’t.

Knowing what isn’t working is probably just as important as knowing what is. This ongoing process is called ‘campaign optimization’. With good optimization techniques you can make ongoing adjustments to your marketing strategy and website for a continually higher success rate. This is a very large topic which we will be covering in more detail within future posts.

5. Understanding Marketing Costs

When starting a PPC marketing program, you have to make sure you set realistic short term and long-term goals. Speak to your account manager about the average cost-per-click prices in your industry and target market. Get a good understanding of what costs are associated with the volume of customers you’d like to reach. Ensure you understand the process of customer acquisition and all the metrics involved.

Some of these ‘metris’, or measurements, include  ad impressions & clicks, and potential website conversions vs. actual website conversions. We will cover this in more detail in a future post.

You probably won’t be able to estimate final costs, but a skilled account manager will definitely be able to provide you with a ball-park numbers breakdown of a campaign that will get you results.

6. Strategy of Execution

Decide if you want to start with a broad marketing approach, or a more a refined and conservative approach. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Broad typically means that results may come quicker, but you will also spend quicker and possibly more as your ‘targets’ are less specific and your reach therefore greater.

Starting more focused typically means being conservative with audience reach, slowly discovering what is working and what isn’t. This strategy can provide huge cost saving benefits but will also take longer to generate results.

Your PPC campaign manager should be able to advise on which approach to use.
Ask for a comparison between the two types of strategies and  how either scenario could play out to help you maximize results based on your investment.

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