In the early days of Google Adwords and other pay-per-click engines, the quality of your ad only mattered to one person: you. Well, you also cared about what effect it had on potential customers.

But now it matters to the search engines as well, because their consumers expect relevant ads, and also because search engine revenues have become a serious business. That’s great for people who can write great ads, because the search engines will reward them with a better rate, and you’ll ultimately enjoy a better return on investment.

So how can you write more effective ads for your pay-per-click campaigns? We’re giving you our favorite list of tips here!

1. Know your customer

When you know your customers well, it becomes a lot easier to write the kind of copy that will resonate with them, and make them feel at ease. Regional dialects and slang words can be great, as long as they match the likely search queries closely.

A great example of this is in the sale of college football items. If a user searches for an Alabama Crimson Tide hat, you might do well to add Alabama’s motto “Roll Tide” to start off the ad, like this:

— “Roll Tide! Best Alabama Crimson Tide Hats, Custom Fit $18”

2. Use call extensions

If you’ve got an ability to take phone calls, or hire a call center that can do it for you, give call extensions a try. These are hot right now, because smartphones are hot, and it’s often easier to call than it is for a consumer to continue looking at his or her phone.

A great example of this might be any situation that requires credit card processing, which takes a heavy amount of input from the user, but they’ve got the information memorized and could easily recite it over a phone call.

3. Monitor

Check back on which queries led to clicks on your ads, and make sure you’re not wasting money on the wrong types of clicks. Even more, see if you can generate some more traffic from the insights you’ll get from a search query report.

4. Play on fear

Fear is a very real thing for all of us, and even the toughest people must surely acknowledge that fear plays a role in their decision making, to some extent. Marketers have known this for a very long time; if you really look at the advertising that’s around you every day (billboards, television ads, radio ads, print ads, etc), you’ll see that many products and services are sold by appealing to various fears.

It’s not necessarily unethical, when used correctly. For instance, some people might be afraid of retiring with not enough money, and that’s a legitimate fear. You can strike a chord with an ad that mentions that concern, and how your product will make it go away.

For any given consumer product or service, there’s a set of associated worries that can be addressed by the advertising, for powerful copy and conversion.

And consumer products aren’t the only place to apply this strategy, either, because business-to-business products work exactly the same way. Sometimes the fear is lower when it comes to professional purchases that are done so often that they become less intimidating, but the one fear everyone has when it comes to business is spending all their money on the wrong things.

If you’re selling advertising, you might play into this fear by explaining how to waste thousands of dollars on advertising, and highlight your competitors’ products as an inferior waste of money, compared to yours!

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