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One Simple Step to Eliminate the Marketing Funnel Immediately

By | AdWords, Marketing advice | One Comment

One Simple Step to Eliminate the Marketing Funnel Immediately

marketing funnel elimination with Google AdWordsIt is a well-known fact in the AdWords community that Google has dramatically improved the AdWords platform over the last year couple of years.  Outside of the AdWords community it is not so well known.  As an AdWords Certified Partner (as I write this I remember I need to retake two of my exams as they have expired) I am constantly updated, trained and tested on my knowledge of the new additions as well as the removal of some things.

One of the things that Google added about a year and a half ago was call-only ads.  I am writing about it today because I still talk to people almost daily who are unaware of this type of ad. It doesn’t really surprise me because let’s face it; you shouldn’t have to try to keep up with the changes in the Google eco-system.

Now you’re wondering what does that have to do with the traditional marketing funnel.  It’s actually quite simple.  The traditional marketing funnel may vary depending on who you talk to but in most cases, there are six phases that require multiple touches and time to drive a potential sale through the funnel.

Lead nurturing can take a lot of time and energy and while some people will tell you that it is a waste of time I think it’s more important than ever.  With that being said there is a way to eliminate the marketing funnel.

Eliminate the Marketing Funnel

As mentioned before there are 6 steps in the traditional marketing funnel.  They are:

  1. Awareness-at the top of the funnel, and where you deal with the most people, is where you build your brand and make people aware that your business exists.
  2. Consideration-the funnel narrows a little and you’re now educating your audience about your product or service.
  3. Preference-Your audience begins to interact more with your business. They start engaging more, asking more questions or getting more information.
  4. Action-This is usually the purchase step. You’re not really done here though because it’s easier to retain a customer than it is to get a new one.  Exhausted yet?
  5. Loyalty-Now that the client has made a purchase what have you done to keep the client and turn them into a loyal member of your audience.
  6. Advocacy-These are the people who got your back in the business world. They leave reviews, refer more business to you, drive traffic to your website, etc..

You can see why the marketing funnel is still important.  Step 6 is a very powerful step.  What if I told you with Call Only ads you can eliminate steps 1-4?  Here’s how call only ads work.

Google still accounts for 65-70% of search today.  As of May 2015, more search happened on mobile than on desktop.  Combine both of those statements and you can understand why acknowledging mobile search is extremely important.

At the top of a Google Search Results Page is 4 ads.  They appear before anything else on the page.

What if your ad showed up at the top of the page and the link to the ad called your business directly.   You’ve just eliminated the marketing funnel and you are now talking directly to someone who wants to make a purchase.

Marketing Funnel Eliminated!

marketing funnel eliminated

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I’ve created a 5-minute video to quickly show you how to set up a call only ad in AdWords.  Hope it helps.

AdWords updates that will impact your business

Google Is At It Again.  AdWords Updates Because of You

By | AdWords | No Comments

Google continues to make changes to their AdWords platform in large part because it recognizes a few things.

  1. We are becoming an increasingly mobile society
  2. People want more information/content
  3. Not everyone consumes information the same way

What is Google Changing Now Scott?

Yes, Google makes changes on a regular basis.  In fact they change their algorithm almost twice a day.  As a Certified Google AdWords Partner in CT I have to stay up to date on the latest with Google AdWords.  They require me to pass several tests once a year.   To ensure that I am aware of the latest I have several resources that I check on a regular basis and I set up Google Alerts to track conversations on AdWords.  I do all of this just to keep up with anything Google related because I want to be the best at what I do, and I want to provide the best possible solutions to my clients marketing and advertising needs.

Google made a splash a few months ago when they removed the right side ads and added a fourth ad result on the top of the Google Search Results Page.  The only ads you will see on the right side now are shopping ads.  Essentially if you do not place in the 1-4 position for ads then you’re not going to achieve your desired results.

Here’s What Else Is Changing in AdWords

Yesterday Google announced more changes coming to the AdWords platform.  Here are four things to look for in the coming days and months.

  1. Google is attempting to make their AdWords platform simpler. One thing is certain, the Google AdWords platform can be overwhelming and has a huge adjustment period.  Most people can’t afford to spend the time it takes to learn the platform and all of its intricacies.  Some of taken to 3rd party platforms to assist with managing AdWords.  Google recognizes that people have a hard time with the AdWords platform and is working on making it an easier system to use.
  2. Expanded Titles & Ad Copy. In a recent blog post I wrote for LinkedIn I talked about how Google, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram are all encouraging content developers to create MORE content.  Well AdWords was part of that.  Google is expanding both the headlines and ad copy sections of text ads as follows:
    1. Instead of one 25 character headline you will have two 30 character headlines available later this year
    2. Instead of two 35 character description lines you will have one consolidated 80 character description line, also later this year.
  3. Certified Google AdWords Partner in CTMobile & Local. It has been almost exactly a year since mobilgeddon and there continues to be fallout since.  Google has made updates to their mobile algorithm further penalizing non-mobile friendly sites.  Further recognizing that more and more queries are taking place on mobile devices, and that 1/3 of all mobile searches are bases on location; Google will be introducing/enhancing local search ads across Google Search and Google Maps.
  4. Bidding Across Different Devices. Today you can adjust your bids for mobile versus desktop.  In the near future you will be able to adjust bids based on the device.  If you know that more of your audience is likely to be on an iPhone then you can increase your bid to reflect that.

Final Thought

These updates are pretty exciting.  If you’ve ever experienced the pain of trying to right ad copy in 95 characters or less while trying to make sure it makes sense, catches the searchers attention and has a positive ROI then you know that every character counts.   I have also come to recognize that not every business has a higher rate of mobile searches, or that some businesses have clients that prefer a certain device.

I’m a huge fan of small local businesses.  These updates mean that small local businesses now have a better chance at success against their big corporate competitors.

For a free review of your AdWords, Facebook Ads or LinkedIn Ads campaign email info@scottgombar.com

Google AdWords CT Certified Partner

Stop the Lame & Mundane Digital Ads

Stand Out In a Crowd of Ads with AdWords & Facebook Ads

By | AdWords, Facebook Ads | No Comments

Stop The Lame & Mundane Ads Now

It’s time to step your Google AdWords & Facebook Ads game up.  

Let’s face it, the internet is a noisy place, right?  You know it, I know it..everyone knows it.   A simple Google search will show you exactly what I mean.

Boring Google AdsLet’s work with an example.  If I search life insurance on Google I get four ads at the top of the Google Search Results Page.  If you look at the image you will note that the ads are all very similar in nature.  If you’re anything like me you would likely pick one at random from the four unless you are already familiar with one of those companies.

The first company, Amica, is spending approximately $333,000 a month on Google AdWords.  Global Life is spending over half a million a month.  Select Quote is spending almost $885,000 a month and AAA rounds out the top 4 spending $408,000 per month.  There are a few flags right away for Global Life and Select Quote but we’ll get to that on another blog post.

There really is nothing that makes any of these ads stand out.  Life Insurance might seem like a dry topic that has little room to be creative because of compliance.  However you can be creative while staying in the compliance guidelines.  Take a look.

Just a real quick creative for AdWords and Life Insurance.

You’re Not Dying Are You?
Life Insurance Isn’t Just About
Death. College, DI & LTC Planning

The ad meets compliance for most life insurance companies but would definitely stand out in the crowd of boring ads from the top advertisers on Google.

It’s really not too hard to be creative even with the character limits of an AdWords ad.

On Facebook you can be even more creative.  I am part owner of a startup in the golf industry and we ran a few ads on Google and on Facebook.  On Facebook the ad can include an image so long as the image is not more than 20% text.  No problem.

We created an all black image with a golf club and ball.  There were two different statements that we used for this set of ads. The first was “We’ve Got The Balls To Change The Game” and the other said “This Isn’t Your Father’s Golf Game”.  Both ads went over very well and drove traffic better than any other ads we ran on any platform.

In both scenarios the status quo of the digital advertising industry was challenged by being creative and bold in our ad text.  These are just a few examples of what are possible.  I will add this little caveat.  Not everyone will like these ads but for those that do your conversion rate will certainly be higher.  Not everyone likes the boring ads in the life insurance ad results either.  Either way you will have some that disagree with your methods so why not use the one that will work to your advantage? Why not use the ad copy that gets you more traffic and conversions?

Challenging the status quo of advertising is nothing new in the advertising world but it is relatively new in the digital advertising world.  The idea of using an all black ad was first used by Smartfood Popcorn.  Many people told them no one would buy a bag of popcorn if it was all black.  Man, were those people wrong.

If AdWords or Facebook Ads didn’t work for you in the past it might be time to revisit and do things a little differently.  Buck the trend.  Be Bold.

4 Free Tools to Help You Stop Wasting Money on Google AdWords Spend

By | AdWords | No Comments

4 Free Tools to Help You Stop Wasting Money on Google AdWords Spend

classic ad vs google adwordsNot sure where to start with your Google AdWords Campaign? 

You might be surprised to learn that the answer might be right under your nose.  If you’re like any good business owner there’s a good chance that you do pay some attention to what your competition is doing.  Why not apply that same thought process to setting up your Google AdWords campaign?

I am not suggesting that you give your competitor a call and ask them how they set up their Ad campaign, how much they’re bidding on keywords or what their monthly ad spend is.  Even if they are friendly competitors they’re probably not likely to share their successes.

There is a way for you to research what your competition is doing on Google AdWords, for free.  Using tools that are easily accessible and available to everyone you can determine what keywords your competition is using, what they are spending for those keywords and what they are spending per month.

4 Tools to Get You Started on Google AdWords

  • Spyfu-is a great tool to use to determine what your competitors are doing within organic search and within their Google AdWords For AdWords you can see up to 5 keyword phrases, the monthly spend and what your competitor is spending on cost per click without spending any of your own money.  If you want more information you’ll have to pay for a subscription.Spyfu offers plenty of other resources to help with your Google Dominance including organic results, backlink checker and tons of research tools.  They are all available for free with limitations.
  • Google Keyword Planner-When planning for Google why not use a FREE Google tool? The Google Keyword Planner allows you to search for keywords that are relevant to your competitor’s website.  All you have to do is enter their website URL.This is great for several reasons.  First you can see the number of searches particular keywords get monthly.  The number is based on a 12 month average but it helps to determine whether or not you should spend money on a keyword phrase.

    You can also search for specific keyword phrases within very specific locations..down to the zip code.  This allows you to see how many people within a certain area are searching for something, and how often.

    Google adds a suggested bid to the keyword research but in most cases you won’t have to spend the suggested amount if things are set up properly.

  • Google Analytics-There’s a saying in the digital advertising world that goes something like this. “Don’t spend money on an ad until you know it works”.  So now you’re probably wondering how I do that.  Well one way is to use Google Analytics to determine what people are coming to your site for organically.  On this site people show a lot of interest in Instagram for Business so given that piece of information I might run an ad on Google letting people know they can use Instagram to grow their business, or advertising on Instagram.
  • Libby_McNeill_&_Libby_Corned_Beef_1898Google Trends-You can use Google Trends to check trending traffic for keyword phrases. This is useful if you’re in a seasonal business or if you believe an offering you have may become more and more relevant.You can also see in what parts of the world the keyword phrase is trending most, and related keyword phrases and performance.  You might find that a related keyword phrase is a better alternative than the one you first thought.

    Using my example above of Instagram for Business I can see that the phrase is trending up over the last few months and years (duh).  But I can also see where in the world it is the most popular, and what phrases are relevant to Instagram for Business.

Being a Connecticut based business most of my AdWords Clients are in Connecticut, and in most cases they are local businesses.  Research is a critical component to setting up an Ad on any platform or your ad budget can be blown to pieces very quickly.  Wasted ad spend is probably one of the biggest reasons you can easily get discouraged from using AdWords on a consistent basis.  Using the 4 tools above you can get started with the right keywords and budget while being at peace with your choices if you do things correctly.

Don’t just set it and forget it though.  Make sure you’re checking back almost daily to make sure your results are what you’re expecting.  There are other aspects of your campaign that you need to keep an eye on, or you will waste ad spend.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is Digital Advertising Right For Your Business?

By | AdWords, Blab | No Comments

Is Digital Advertising Right For Your Business?

Google AdWords and Facebook Ads

Digital Ads with Google AdWords and Facebook AdsThere really are 3 scenarios that I would consider using Google AdWords or Facebook Ads.  The irony is that it covers just about every business in existence today.  I decided to make this a blabcast on Google AdWords.  As a Google AdWords certified partner I thought it was my obligation to give a broad overview of scenarios, case studies and a very quick walk through of setting up an ad.

This should not by any means be considered to be an AdWords tutorial as there are a lot of intricacies and rules that I did not even begin to touch.  The truth is AdWords is a very intense system that takes time and training to understand.

The 3 scenarios in which Google AdWords is probably a good idea:

  1.  A new business or startup.  It takes time for a new business to gain traction through organic or social media efforts, sometimes it takes months or even years.  If anyone tells you that you will be on the first page of Google in days or weeks I would run as fast as you can.  No one can guarantee those results through organic search, or social media.Therefore if you’re looking to reach people immediately then ads are the way to go.  Most businesses tend to shy away from spending money on ads as they get started but if ads are set up properly they will more than pay for themselves.  That also depends on the businesses sales process and follow through.
  2. An existing business not gaining traction through organic and social marketing.  This one is really a no brainer but there is one thing I would check before even starting an ad campaign.  If your business has been around for a little while and you have not gained any ground on social or organic we need to assess why that is.  Once we can determine that then we discuss how advertising can enhance your program further.
  3. An existing business who already shows up on the first page of Google but wants even more traction.  You show up on the first page of Google results, and the Google 3-Pack.  Now imagine if on the first page of Google your business shows up in 3 different spots?  The authority that this will give your business will pay for itself over and over.Keep in mind that ads show up above everything else on Google.  Even though they are labeled ads and have a light yellow background many people do not know that those are ads.  For those that do know that these are ads they are more likely to click through to your website if they see your business listed in the ads section, the 3-pack and the organic results.  While I don’t have the statistics the number of clicks to your website is significantly higher if you fall into this scenario.

Things to consider when running a digital ad campaign:

  1.  Target your ideal clients.  If you don’t know who that is then don’t run ads until you do or you will be throwing money out the window
  2. Closely monitor the ads, especially AdWords.  If you’re getting clicks for things that are not relevant to the ad you will be throwing money out the window
  3. Track conversions and measure the cost per conversion
  4. Start with a small geographic area to measure results and keep costs down
  5. Make sure the ad points to a relevant, content rich, landing page or location on your website
  6. Know the difference between the different networks to advertise on
  7. Be cautious with suggestions from Google
  8. Facebook Ad images cannot contain more than 20% text

That’s just a few key points..there are lots more.  In reality you should have a Google Certified AdWords Partner assisting with your ad campaign.  If you have questions or just want to make sure your ads are running properly and efficiently a member of my team would be more than happy to talk to you.

 

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