Connect with us

MARKETING

7 Signs Your PPC Program Is Being Mismanaged

Published

on

Most experienced PPC specialists will recognize the telltale signs of PPC mismanagement.

But if you’re not a PPC professional – maybe you’re a business owner or marketing director – you might overlook those indicators.

This is a problem because now, more than ever, it’s important that your PPC program is managed skillfully.

You have to be careful in interpreting those indicators and not jump to conclusions.

No one practice or setting can tell the whole tale.

And maybe your PPC managers have a good explanation for the small anomalies you see.

But when you see an accumulation of things in your account that are odd or even bizarre, you can start to conclude that the account is being poorly managed, whether due to lack of expertise or indifference.

So what are the signs of mismanagement that you should look for?

Here are seven of the most common ones.

1. Campaigns Have Incorrect (or Absent) Audience Targeting

I’m amazed at how often I’ll come across campaigns with incorrect targeting – or no targeting at all.

For example, I recently audited an account and found Display campaigns that were named “custom intent” but didn’t have custom intent audiences.

I’ve also seen the same problem with remarketing campaigns.

Just because your managers name a campaign “custom intent” or “remarketing” doesn’t make it so.

They have to actually set up the correct audience targeting.

2. Campaigns Have Hundreds of Ad Groups & Duplicate Keywords

Let’s start with the problem of having hundreds of ad groups.

As a general rule, your managers should only have about seven to 10 ad groups per campaign (and only 20 or so keywords per ad group).

Yes, there are exceptions.

But they certainly shouldn’t be creating hundreds of groups within the same campaign.

When they do, the groups become unwieldy and impossible to manage.

Duplicate keywords are also a problem.

Years ago, it was common practice to have plural and singular forms of keywords (“car” and “cars”), but that was a long time ago.

And if you see them in an account now, it’s a major warning sign.

Here’s what Google has to say about duplicate keywords:

“Duplicate keywords happen when one of two or more of your ads are using the same keyword list. It’s best to avoid having duplicate keywords in your account. Google shows only one ad per advertiser for a particular keyword, so there’s no need to include the same keywords in different ad groups or campaigns. It’s okay to have the same keyword in different match types in the same account if you want to use different bids or creatives.”

3. Location-Based Campaigns Have Incorrect Ad Extensions

While some PPC mistakes are only obvious to people who have access to the account, some are obvious to everyone when ads are displayed.

Mismatched locations and ad extensions are one of those errors.

For example, one account I looked at was a law firm with three locations: Boston, Chicago, and New York.

The firm had ads targeted to those three geographic regions, but the extensions weren’t matched correctly.

So ads that impressioned in Chicago, for example, had extensions with information about the Boston office.

4. Reporting Focuses on Unimportant (or Misleading) Metrics

Some signs of mismanagement don’t become obvious until you look beyond the Google Ads account itself and examine what managers are reporting to executives.

Unfortunately, it’s not unusual to see a reliance on less important metrics with misleading conclusions as proof of the program’s success.

For example, I’ve seen reporting that equates number of page visits to number of conversions where the goal is to generate leads.

Obviously, this is misleading.

You could have millions of page visits, but if you’re not getting any conversions (whether that’s making a sale or getting a lead), then you’ve got a problem.

5. Account Strategy Doesn’t Align With Broader Marketing or Business Goals

Sometimes mismanagement isn’t evident until you examine the account in the context of your company and its goals.

When you do, you discover that your goals aren’t supported by the PPC strategy.

For example, I talked to a business owner who told me that an important component of his business was brand awareness and development.

But then I found that 60 percent of his $93,000 budget was going to Shopping campaigns, 37 percent to search and only three percent to remarketing.

Shopping campaigns are great for making sales but not so great for brand awareness.

Remarketing, however, is great for brand awareness.

So what gives?

Shouldn’t these percentages be split more evenly?

Also, I was surprised by the absence of GDN campaigns as they would have been a perfect fit here.

When you see this kind of mismatch, it can be a warning sign that the account managers either don’t know what they are doing, or they’re applying the same strategy to all of the accounts they’re managing.

6. Post-Click Elements Are Ignored

Maybe the PPC account is set up perfectly and the CTR is amazing.

Great!

But if post-click elements – such as landing pages – aren’t carefully designed and in place, that’s a problem.

For example, I was recently auditing the PPC accounts of a business that sells an expensive, personalized service.

It’s the kind of service that requires a lot of thought, research and trust before someone will buy.

When I checked out the landing page, I was shocked to discover that it only had some stock photography and a contact form.

It had no contact information, no reviews, and no testimonials.

They didn’t even have a link back to their home page.

If someone had never heard of this company before, and landed on its landing page, would they buy?

I really doubt it.

Instead, they’d keep looking and researching, which is a lost opportunity.

7. Using Google Ads Optimization Score as a Crutch

Google Ads’ optimization score has gotten a lot of attention recently.

Google has been promoting it as an easy way to see how well your account is being managed and get recommendations on how to improve it.

If only it were so simple.

Unfortunately, Google’s assessments and recommendations aren’t always in your best interest.

Your managers should take them with a healthy dose of skepticism.

So when your PPC managers use a high Google Ads optimization score as proof that everything’s going great, that’s a strong indicator that problems lie below.

Most PPC pros (including this one) agree that getting a 100% optimization score shouldn’t be your goal.

Are some of the recommendations helpful?

Sure.

Should you accept them across the board?

Definitely not.

What Should You Do When Your Account Is Being Mismanaged?

The question of what you should do when your PPC account is being mismanaged depends on whether your account is being managed in-house or by an agency.

If your accounts are being managed in house, talk to your account managers and get their perspective.

They may already be aware of the issues and know what they need to correct them.

Maybe you’ll need to invest in more training and/or work with a PPC pro in the short term to bridge the gap.

If an agency is managing your accounts, consider getting a second opinion from another agency via an account audit.

This is common practice in the industry, and your current agency shouldn’t object to it.

However, most agencies appreciate being given a heads up and having the opportunity to respond.

Most of all, recognize that having your accounts managed well (either in-house or through an agency) comes at some expense.

But isn’t it better to put a portion of what you’re currently spending on Google Ads towards better PPC management?

Not only will you get better ROI, but you’ll also miss out on fewer opportunities.


Image Credits

Featured Image: Dreamstime.com

Read More

MARKETING

HubSpot to cut around 7% of workforce by end of Q1

Published

on

HubSpot to cut around 7% of workforce by end of Q1

This afternoon, HubSpot announced it would be making cuts in its workforce during Q1 2023. In a Securities and Exchange Commission filing it put the scale of the cuts at 7%. This would mean losing around 500 employees from its workforce of over 7,000.

The reasons cited were a downward trend in business and a “faster deceleration” than expected following positive growth during the pandemic.

Layoffs follow swift growth. Indeed, the layoffs need to be seen against the background of very rapid growth at the company. The size of the workforce at HubSpot grew over 40% between the end of 2020 and today.

In 2022 it announced a major expansion of its international presence with new operations in Spain and the Netherlands and a plan to expand its Canadian presence in 2023.

Why we care. The current cool down in the martech space, and in tech generally, does need to be seen in the context of startling leaps forward made under pandemic conditions. As the importance of digital marketing and the digital environment in general grew at an unprecedented rate, vendors saw opportunities for growth.

The world is re-adjusting. We may not be seeing a bubble burst, but we are seeing a bubble undergoing some slight but predictable deflation.


Get MarTech! Daily. Free. In your inbox.



About the author

Kim Davis

Kim Davis is the Editorial Director of MarTech. Born in London, but a New Yorker for over two decades, Kim started covering enterprise software ten years ago. His experience encompasses SaaS for the enterprise, digital- ad data-driven urban planning, and applications of SaaS, digital technology, and data in the marketing space.

He first wrote about marketing technology as editor of Haymarket’s The Hub, a dedicated marketing tech website, which subsequently became a channel on the established direct marketing brand DMN. Kim joined DMN proper in 2016, as a senior editor, becoming Executive Editor, then Editor-in-Chief a position he held until January 2020.

Prior to working in tech journalism, Kim was Associate Editor at a New York Times hyper-local news site, The Local: East Village, and has previously worked as an editor of an academic publication, and as a music journalist. He has written hundreds of New York restaurant reviews for a personal blog, and has been an occasional guest contributor to Eater.

Source link

Continue Reading

MARKETING

Advocate | DigitalMarketer

Published

on

Advocate | DigitalMarketer

Happy customers love to share their experience, but sometimes they need some encouragement to do so. The cool thing is, once they do, they become even more loyal to your brand.

So, at this stage of the Customer Value Journey, ask people to share their positive experience with your brand by writing a review or sharing a social media post.

Once you get to stage seven, the Customer Value Journey is going to get a whole lot easier for you. This stage is all about learning your customer’s experience, and building up your testimonial database. 

The most important part of this step is asking these four questions. 

What Was Your Life Like Before Finding Our Solutions? What Challenges Were You Facing That Caused You to Consider Us? 

These questions are great not only because it gives you some really good stories, but because it gives you some insight on how you can provide similar prospects with that AHA moment. Understanding the average day of your clients is important in reflecting on your Customer Value Journey, and helps you understand what really set you apart from your competitors.

What Key Features Had the Biggest and/or Fastest Impact?

Not only is this going to get you to really specific stories, you will understand the specific things you provided that gave the biggest impact. The answers to these questions will not only give you great insight and testimonials, it will provide you with ideas for new lead magnets. This part is a new Entry Point Offer goldmine! 

What Has Been the Impact or Results in Your Life or Business Since Using Our Product or Service? 

This is a fairly broad question, and that’s why we put it after the others. You will have already gotten all of the specifics out of the way with #1 & #2. But when you ask this question, this is where you get the most valuable stories. You can use this part as testimonials, as an order form, as a sales page, this part is testimonial gold. 

If You Were Asked to Justify this Purchase to Your Boss or a Friend, What Would You Say? 

This is our favorite question by far. If you had to go back in time and justify this purchase, what would you say? I promise you what we’re going to find is a lot of great ideas for the jobs that your product or service has done. You’ll get a lot of great ideas for your core message canvas. This question is about backfilling all of the assets that you may not have. Here you’re going directly to the customer who are already happy, and using their justifications to help you sell to new customers. 

Hopefully you now understand just how valuable the Advocate stage could be, as well as the key questions you need to ask to get your customers talking. Here’s how it works for our example companies.

When it comes to fashion we all love to show off our outfits. So a good example for Hazel & Hems would be to have customers write reviews for a discount code or points towards their next purchase. 

Better yet, follow up with the customers to ask them to share and tag themselves wearing the items in a social media post and providing them with something valuable as a reward.

For Cyrus & Clark Media, hopping on zoom meetings or a streaming service for live talks about them and their business could generate valuable awareness for them, and a live case study for the agency. They can use the questions Ryan provided during this lesson to conduct the interview.



Source link

Continue Reading

MARKETING

Drive Conversions and Generate Engagement With Instacart Promotions

Published

on

Drive Conversions and Generate Engagement With Instacart Promotions

Through deals and coupons, Instacart has saved consumers more than $700 million in 2022. As we dive into 2023, the leading grocery technology company in North America has big plans to help consumers save even more while also helping CPGs generate sales. Instacart recently announced an advertising solution that helps both sellers and consumers called Instacart Promotions. This exciting feature is designed to help drive conversions, boost sales, and generate overall engagement on the app.

Interested in this feature and how it can help your business on Instacart? Read on as we dive into everything you need to know about this ad solution including benefits, how to get started, and more.

 

What are Instacart Promotions?

 

Instacart Promotions is an advertising feature that’s now available to all brand partners, including emerging brands, within their open beta program. Promotions give CPGs the opportunity to offer new deal structures, promotions, and incentives with Instacart Ad campaigns. With this feature in place, consumers will have access to more promotions, coupons, and deals that are tailored to them within the Instacart Marketplace.

“With the launch of our new Instacart Promotions, all of our brand partners now have the ability to set up coupons and promotions that can drive meaningful business results while also passing on more savings opportunities to consumers. We’re proud to continue expanding our portfolio with additional self-service capabilities, ad formats that drive results, and measurement that brands need to understand the true impact of their campaigns on Instacart.”

 

– Ali Miller, VP of Ads Product at Instacart

 

Source: Instacart

 

How Do Instacart Promotions Work?

 

Promotions, now available in Ads Manager, gives consumers the ability to discover more promotions and savings opportunities within the Instacart app. These promotions now show up directly on product item cards before checkout for easy accessibility. Promotions allow advertisers to customize their campaigns to sync with their goals and objectives whether that be driving sales, building baskets, or boosting trials.

Instacart shared a recent example of a brand successfully utilizing Promotions… 

Athletic Brewing, General Mills, Sola Company, and Wells Enterprises (maker of Halo Top) are strengthening campaign performance by pairing Instacart Promotions with ad formats such as Sponsored Product and Display. Instacart Promotions include two new flexible and customizable structures: Coupons (“buy X units, save $Y”) and Stock Up & Save (“Spend $X, Save $Y”). 

According to Instacart, in the coming months, the company “will work to further enhance the new offering with new deal structures such as Free Gifts and Buy One, Get One (“BOGO”). The new deal structures will help brand partners run “Free Sample” programs that can win new customers and serve personalized discounts for different customer segments, such as “new to brand” and “new to category.”  

 

Example of Instacart Promotions

Source: Instacart

 

Instacart Promotions Benefits

 

Deliver Value and Savings to Consumers

 

With Instacart Promotions, you have the opportunity to deliver value and savings that will have consumers coming back for more. With this savings feature, your brand can stand out among the competition and offer a variety of deals to shoppers ie: “Buy X units, Save $Y”.

 

Hot tip: Ensure you are selecting products for your promotion that are well-stocked and widely available.  

 

Tailor Your Campaigns to Specific Objectives

 

With a variety of savings options available, your brand can structure deals to fit specific business goals and objectives. 

 

Hot tip: If you’re looking to drive visibility and awareness, try pairing promotions with Sponsored Product campaigns. 

 

Access Real-Time Performance Insights 

 

The Promotions beta program is live and can be accessed within Instacart Ads Manager. Within Ads Manager, advertisers can access real-time insights to maximize performance and adjust campaigns as needed.

 

Hot tip: Make sure your budget matches your discount and objectives.

 

“As an advertiser, Instacart’s unique offering to self-manage promotions is so exciting! Historically, making adjustments to offer values and other promotion parameters was a more manual process, but now we’ll be able to easily make optimizations in real-time based on redemption performance.”

Emily Choate

Emily Choate, Senior Specialist, Marketplace Search at Tinuiti

 

Interested in Instacart Promotions?

 

With Instacart Promotions, you have the opportunity to reach new customers, build bigger baskets, and drive sales. Interested in testing out the beta program or looking to get started with advertising on the app? Drop us a line – we’d love to help elevate your CPG brand on Instacart.

 

Source link

Continue Reading

Trending