If you are going to be reading this weekly blog about Pay Per Click, it is only fair that you get a sense that Brian Newmark knows something about PPC. So here is a bit about my background.
I first began developing Pay Per Click campaigns in 2003. This was the very early days of Pay Per Click. I ran large national and geo-target campaigns for the next 7 years on Yahoo and Google. During that time I also focused on other areas of Search Engine Marketing and had numerous stints in Online Reputation Management. For the past couple of years I have been focusing on Reputation Management and have recently again started to develop renewed expertise in PPC and Social Media Advertising. I am loving the evolution and advancements in PPC. Today quality of content both on the ad as well as the landing page is key. This is an area I speak about all the time in the ORM space. So I thought this was the perfect topic for Blog #1.
In the early days of Pay Per Click, you simply wrote: Great Prices on XYZ Click here: www.xyz.com
Put in a bid of twenty six cents when others had only bid twenty five, you showed up at the top of the page and people would click your add. Today that is a formula for failure. Quality Scores have come into play as Google has realized that they will get higher click volumes if the quality of the ad is high. While SEO strategies have come a long way, so has Google’s ability to filter out many of them. This is why even the most sophisticated SEO experts still advocate for the use of PPC as part of a complete online marketing strategy.
Let’s take a look at a couple of PPC ads and asses their merits and what is holding them back:
These comments and opinions were not based on deep insight and study, because ad have 1-2 seconds to attract your attention. For each I tried to take one glance, look away and decide if I would click it or what I remembered. This is a roll I often fulfill for my clients. The problem is the client understand their business, so they assume everyone else does. The reality is 99% of consumers’ process things on a 6th grade level. I try to design most of my campaigns with this in mind. Why did I choose 25,000 over 25k. Simple, everyone knows 25,000 is twenty five thousand. While most know that 25k is twenty five thousand, it does take an extra thought. Why ask consumers to do any extra work. People need something to catch their attention, then instructions as to what to do next.
Now, let’s further pick on CarGurus. No offense intended to the site, but they are a web only company and my expectations for them is higher than a local car lot or dealership who does online advertising. I checked the results on my laptop and on my desktop. Here is what came up on my screen, click on the image to see a bigger picture:
The left hand image is from my laptop. The Right is from my desktop.
On my laptop all I saw was “Enter your zip code” Websites are judged by Google based on their bounce rate, yet there is nothing above the screen line that says to me, great sight, I want to keep looking. Instead, Cargurus just paid as much as $29.92 (yes, I’m not joking on that one) for me to bounce off the site in a few seconds. How would my experience have been different?
At least on my desktop I was able to see some green and the words Great deal… This might get me to keep looking. Unfortunately many people today are searching on mobile devices, so they can’t count on the full screen showing up.
This might get me to keep looking. Unfortunately many people today are searching on mobile devices, so the site can’t count on the full screen showing up. Websites are judged by Google based on their bounce rate, yet there is nothing above the screen line that says to me, “Great web page, keep looking!” Instead, Cargurus just paid as much as $29.92 (yes, I’m not joking on that one) for me to bounce off the site in a few seconds. How would my experience have been different?At least on my desktop I was able to see some green arrows indicating savings and the words Great deal…
I looked at the entire page, which I won’t bore you with, but it reflected 15 BMW’s each showing the savings below Market Value. According to the data provided, with each car I would save an average of $6,806. Why isn’t there a header on the top of the page saying “Save an average of $6,806 on BWM’s with CarGurus, scroll down to see for yourself” At very least, I would scroll down to see what they are talking about.
I think that online marketing is part art and part science. Unfortunately, sometimes businesses focus too much on the science and forget about the art. They hire a brilliant SEO guy, but forget to involve the marketing and sales guy. I have made an amazing living for 20 years developing marketing strategies for companies. I see things through different eyes than many. Remember your audience and remember to keep it simple.
Until next week, this is Brian Newmark – online marketing guru and all around great guy. To see more of my thoughts, visit two recent articles I was featured in:
Brian Newmark is an online reputation and brand management consultant specializing in International Accounts. Catering to high profile individuals, multi-national businesses, political figures and governments throughout the world Brian is able to both change what shows up on search results as well as public perception. To accomplish these challenging objective, Brian utilizing Brand's high profile media outlets, bloggers, third party sites, as well as cutting edge technology for sentiment and moderation. Brian has 20 years experience in the marketing field with more than 10 years in digital marketing. In that time he has run massive Pay Per Click campaigns, Social Media Campaigns, been a thought leader in Reputation Management, and led the way with thought provoking public perception campaigns. Brian lives in Villanova, PA with his wife of 17 years and his two children.