There’s no denying that PPC advertising is one of the most popular, economical, and lucrative ways to promote your brand online. But, understanding how to use tactical PPC in your strategy is the key to really seeing success.
So, how does PPC work if you’re using it to complement your content marketing efforts? Keep reading for a full guide on what pay-per-click advertising is all about and how to incorporate tactical PPC campaigns into your marketing strategy.
How Does PPC Work?
If you’re totally new to paid marketing, then you’re probably wondering, “What is PPC advertising?” Simply put, PPC advertising is a form of marketing in which an advertiser or company pays each time someone clicks on an ad they’ve created.
Essentially, you’re paying for visits to your website instead of earning them organically. However, this doesn’t make them any less valuable. This is part of the reason why these kinds of ads are so great for brand awareness. The key to seeing success with paid marketing is in combining it with other organic search engine optimization and marketing efforts. PPC advertising is great when you use it as part of your regular content marketing strategy.
So, how does pay-per-click work on a deeper level? Well, you begin by creating a PPC campaign that includes keyword research, ad groups, and all of the ad copy you’re going to use in your ads. People who search for things in search engines will see your ads come up if their search words match the keywords and text that you use. While Google is the most popular search engine, you can create paid ads on others like Bing, too.
And, once someone clicks on your ad, you get charged for the click. This means that you only pay when someone clicks on the ad, and you pay per click. If this sounds like a lot, it’s because it is. While PPC campaigns aren’t necessarily difficult to create or manage, they’re pretty time-consuming. That’s why we recommend leaving them to the professionals!
However, it still helps to understand the importance of it all and how it works! Keep reading to find out all about the ins and outs of PPC campaign creation and management.
Learn How to Create a PPC Plan
It’s hard to engage in any form of marketing without a plan. The same goes for pay-per-click advertising. While each individual or marketing company is going to plan a PPC campaign a bit differently, it all usually starts with quality keyword research and audience segmentation.
From there, you’ll need to figure out how much you have to spend on paid marketing while factoring in the costs of your other content marketing expenses. Remember, PPC marketing shouldn’t be a stand-alone effort. It’s going to work best if you use it alongside a regular content marketing strategy that includes quality blog and content writing.
However, in the beginning, it helps to focus only on your PPC plan in order to ensure you’re using this kind of marketing in a tactical way. Here’s how to do so.
Segment Your Target Audience
It’s hard to create ads that are going to attract customers if you’re not even quite sure who your customers are yet. That’s why the first step in creating a PPC plan is developing a target audience and segmenting them even further.
First, try to develop a target audience by using psychographic segmentation. This means that you’re going to use character traits, values, pain points, and more to create what looks like your ideal customer. Not only does this help you adjust your product offerings, but it helps you really hone in on a specific, targeted audience that’s going to be easier to target with ads. It also helps you develop a more specific marketing language that you can use in your ad copy.
Then, be sure you and your team are thinking about factors beyond just age and gender. Think about occupation, education level, income, marital status, interests, and values.
All of this is going to be useful for you in your PPC efforts, and it’s also great to have when working on other content marketing campaigns like social media content and blogs.
Perform Great Keyword Research
What is a PPC campaign in terms of actual content? Really, it’s all about the keywords.
You’ll use something like the Google Keyword Planner to do basic keyword research, even though there are numerous other tactics that professionals use in order to develop high-quality keyword lists. But, there’s more to great keyword research than only including the most popular keywords. You have to be more tactical than that!
You want to start by researching your competition and other similar companies in your industry. Ask yourself the following questions:
- What kinds of content and keywords are they using to attract a similar target audience?
- How long is their content?
- What kind of intent are they writing for?
Now, if you want to do independent keyword research, you can start with Google’s Keyword Planner. Enter two or three keywords you like and then the planner will pull up (likely) hundreds or thousands of suggestions.
Make sure you’re using mostly long-tail keywords as these yield more specific results and aren’t as competitive. Stay away from short one or two-word keywords that are super popular. Trying to rank for “electrician” is going to be really hard. Instead, choose a more focused word that your target audience might also search for.
Choose keywords that have high search volumes but medium to low competition. Once you have a list of great keywords, you’ll want to use them both in your PPC ad campaigns and as part of your content marketing. And finally, be sure to incorporate both transactional and informative keywords into your website copy just as naturally as you do in your ads. This helps keep things consistent and makes for a great user experience.
Think About Your Paid Marketing Budget
Now that you’ve figured out your audience and your keywords, it’s time to think about your PPC budget. Paid marketing is only a portion of business marketing, and you need to ensure you include it when coming up with a yearly marketing budget.
This also means allocating the right amount of money towards each individual paid ads channel. If your customers are mostly on Facebook, then you’ll want to invest more in paid ads on Facebook, which are often a bit more visual than Google search ads. If you’re a B2B company and your target demographic seems to use LinkedIn more than Google, then you might want to ask a professional marketing company to handle paid ads on LinkedIn for you.
Whatever you choose to pursue, it’s best to ensure that you’re investing in the right channel or search engine. If you’re not, then you’re going to be losing money.
Focus on High-Quality Content
Paid marketing can only get you and your visitors part of the way there. Once they click on your ad and reach your landing page, you’re going to need to ensure that you have high-quality content there that they’re going to want to stay for.
If your ads are great but your website content isn’t, then you’re going to notice that your site has a high bounce rate. You want to avoid this at all costs. This means that part of tactical PPC requires that you focus on non-PPC components of marketing as well. The first and most important? On-page SEO.
Take those keywords you found in your PPC campaign planning and incorporating them into your website copy and blog.
When it comes down to it, on-page SEO is great for organic traffic. Earning organic traffic is more of a long-term effort whereas paid ads will yield results nearly instantly. However, neither one is inherently “better” than the other. They’re both great for different reasons! Not sure which to focus on first, how to go about it, or where to even begin that process?
Get in touch with us and let’s start a conversation. We’ll get to know your business and your goals and then go from there.