Sunday, August 19, 2012

Paid Search Marketing Wisdom @ SES San Francisco 2012

Pay Per Click Analytics Marketing Tips at SES San Francisco 2012

I attended as many PPC focused sessions at SESSF 2012 as I could. The presentation by Steve Latham and Crispin Sheridan was a motivating, and useful addition to the full day of PPC training I had earlier in the week. See Fun With Adwords @ SES San Francisco 2012 for more details on Monday's two 1/2 day classes devoted exclusively to PPC.

Paid Search Analytics and Multi-Touch Attribution Analysis
Moderator: Andrew Goodman, SES Advisory Board; President, Page Zero Media
Speakers:
Steve Latham, Founder and CEO, Encore Media Metrics
Crispin Sheridan, SES Advisory Board; Sr. Director Search Marketing Strategy, SAP
Make Adwords work smarter for you.
There were good strategic key points and take-aways in this informative session. Some suggestions may seem obvious to someone familar with Adwords, but these points go deep and require going beyond the routine.... using drill-down efforts to really benefit from gained knowledge and insight. These suggestions can have subtle and important implications in the success of your PPC campaigns.

A good rule of thumb is to never get complacent with your PPC campaigns. Ignorance is not bliss with PPC, it is merely just another way for Google to make more money off your Adwords account!
  • Paid Search is much faster than any other marketing channels. Exploit this advantage.
  • Paid Search provides a sense of urgency, on a constant basis.
  • Paid Search provides a form of inexpensive market research. 
  • Start your PPC campaigns with actions, then apply and study the analytics.
  • PPC Factors and Measurements to look at:
    CPA (cost per action), ROAS (return on ad spend), CTR, Conversion Rates, Ad Quality Score, Match Type, Ad Text.
  • Bid Management Tools can be useful. Try automated tools for routine work. Monitor!
  • Inaccurate bids are some of the biggest costs in PPC today.
  • The Quality Score is connected to search intent. A poor quality score score can be a warning of misguided notions about potential client behavior.
There are 7 suggested areas ripe for PPC Campaign Improvement:
1. CTR and Conversion:
  • Ad Content makes a big difference. 
  • Test your ads often. Don't rest. Try A B tests. Use Ad extensions. 
  • Conversion Rates can be misleading if the volume is low. Don't assume!
  • Understand and use setting filters and negative search terms.
2. CTR on Keywords:
  • "Sculpt" your campaigns. Remove or move poor quality score keywords. Filter. Use negative search terms to weed out wasteful clicks. Focused keywords "tend" to perform better than broad search.
  • Get the keywords closer in intent to your ads.
  • Get more granular in your campaigns and ad groups.
  • Conversion Rate is an important quality factor, but what if the search term is generating quality first time visitors who are researching, in discovery mode, and don't convert on the first click? It is very important to use analytical data to track actual behavior over time before slashing low conversion rate keywords.
3. Bad Segments:
  • Are there differences between device behavior? PC versus Tablet versus Mobile? Apple versus PC?
  • Are time zone settings, geography and language campaigns in need of dire attention?
  • Adwords 'teems with waste' - - find and prune.
4. Attribution and Analytics:
5. Steady and Constant Account Adjustment and Expansion:
  • Always look at adding new products, services, offerings. 
  • Capture trends and opportunities before your competition have time to think about it or react.
  • Target category leadership.
  • Try using Display Ads, Geography and Language settings. 
  • Never stop experimenting. 
6. Reshape your Adwords accounts to pursue 'high intent keywords'.
7. Be proactive. Less reactive.
  • Over time, you'll be spending much more of your PPC time working on opportunities than fixing problems.