A successful PPC campaign begins with investing in a PPC Pre-Launch Strategy. Below we describe our suggested pre-launch process for creating effective PPC campaigns.
PPC Pre-Launch Process
Phase 1: Keyword Discovery & Customization
The keyword discovery process is crucial for a successful PPC campaign . Ultimately, the process should uncover the keyword phrases most relevant to achieving your business goals. This ensures a focused and targeted campaign.
During keyword discovery, consider both specific and broad keyword search terms. For example, let’s say you sell dog toys online. A specific keyword term for your company might be, “Little Chompers Neon Green Frisbee Dog Toy.” This term includes a brand name (Little Chompers), a very specific toy color (Neon Green), and the item itself (Frisbee Dog Toy). Expanding that specific term to, “Dog Frisbee,” would be an example of keyword broadening. Exploring both specific and broad keyword terms enables you to find ALL of the applicable terms for your campaign.
This process for enCOMPASS clients often start with upwards of 2,000 keywords. Starting with thousands of terms enables us to eliminate poorly performing terms, and then maximize the higher performing terms. This ensures our clients bid on the highest quality terms for their business, which ultimately leads to conversions (phone calls, sign ups, purchases, etc.).
Phase 2: Budget Discovery
After selecting the keyword terms, budget discovery comes next in building a PPC strategy. You likely already know your total budget for PPC advertising. That’s not what we’re discussing here. This budget discovery process determines your bidding strategy for the keyword terms found in Phase 1.
Your PPC budget strategy should be based on data, not speculation. Many tools exist to show you how many searches are done each month for a variety of keyword terms, as well as information about how other organizations bid on those keyword terms. This information gives you an idea of how many people may see your PPC ads, as well as how much competition you have for specific keyword terms.
At enCOMPASS, once we complete the budget discovery process, we give our clients a three-tier recommendation. The client then chooses a campaign with which to proceed, based on their overall budget.
Phase 3: Geographic Targeting
Phase 3 in the PPC pre-launch strategy is to determine the geographic area you wish to target. The options include national, regional, and/or local. Your selections will depend on many business and marketplace factors. For example, even if you are a local business, you may want to advertise regionally to gain a larger audience of potential customers.
At enCOMPASS, we have a unique two-step geographic targeting process to ensure we capture all relevant searches for our clients.
Phase 4: Search Engine Publisher Selection
You have your keyword list, your budget strategy, and your geographic targeting selections – great! Now you must decide on which search engine platforms to publish your ads. “There’s more than one?” you might ask. Yes, there are many platforms. A multi-platform approach is most effective.
While Google holds a larger share of total searches, Google users tend to be “surfers.” They search for one item many, many different ways before deciding to take action. Yahoo and Bing users, on the other hand, tend to make purchasing decisions faster, with up to three times the conversion rate of Google for some campaigns. A solid PPC strategy begins advertising on multiple search networks (based on your research), and narrows the focus based on actual performance.
At enCOMPASS Agency, our search platform targets 98% of search engines available today. We constantly monitor clients’ campaigns to see which platforms perform the best. As the clients’ campaigns mature, we place heavier weight on the platforms generating higher conversions.
Phase 5: Ad Content
You are getting close to launching your PPC campaign, but you must write the ad content to have something to advertise! Ideally a PPC campaign will include ad content for multiple ads that run simultaneously. This enables you to test different content and tone in your PPC campaigns, which helps you determine what works best.
At enCOMPASS, our skilled ad content writers use a combination of experience and tools to write ad copy for our clients. This combination achieves higher click-thru-rates that lead to conversions.
Phase 6: Tracking
Tracking is the most important item on this list – without it, your campaign will perform poorly. All PPC advertising platforms offer tracking systems, but those systems are not focused on tracking conversions. The advertising platforms focus on tracking what happens to get the click – impressions, average position, click through rate, cost per click, etc.
To ensure success, you must track performance on your end, where the conversion occurs. Prepare to track website activity, incoming calls, completed webs forms, and purchasing activity while running your PPC campaign. Only then will you know what parts of your PPC campaigns lead to conversions, and what parts do not. This knowledge enables you to make changes to your campaigns, leading to higher conversion rates.
At enCOMPASS Agency, our proprietary technology allows us to go far beyond the click to ensure the success of our clients’ PPC campaigns. Quite simply, we track everything. From website visits to call tracking, we collect and analyze volumes of data. We then use that data to make the clients’ campaigns more effective in creating conversions.
Launch Your Campaign (Finally!)
With the pieces of your PPC pre-launch strategy pulled together, you are ready to launch your campaign. Yes, you may feel like you need a recovery period from the above process – it is a lot of work!
We’re not trying to discourage you from running PPC campaigns – far from it! We do, however, want you to have clear expectations of what it takes to run campaigns that convert. Investing in the above process proves vital to running a successful PPC campaign. If you go through the steps above, your PPC campaign will likely provide conversions for your business.
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