What to Do When PPC Fails – 12 Key Questions to Achieve Your Marketing Goals


When PPC failsWe hear it all the time. “We tried PPC, but if never worked for us or that client.” Unfortunately, it is all too common. Rather than resigning oneself to the “fact” that it will not work, we encourage people to consider 12 questions when PPC fails. Why reconsider? Because repeatedly we have seen that asking the right questions and getting the right answers can completely turn around the endeavor, and help you reach your goals. Whether you are a small business owner frustrated that leads are not coming in, a marketing director at a large corporation who thinks Google has gotten too expensive, or the head of a digital agency who cannot squeeze fantastic results for his clients out of his team, we have answers for you. There are lots of minor changes that can continually improve PPC, but today we want to focus on the questions that reveal the biggest mistakes or missed opportunities.

What Should I Do When PPC Fails?

PPC trainwreckGet a second opinion. As the following questions will show, there are lots of big ways campaigns can be derailed. Most of the time, the PPC manager is better at turning wrenches than thinking strategically. Not so at That! Company, the nation’s top white label PPC management company. We have turned away business because we knew that Facebook advertising would fail, and the client refused to consider Google AdWords. There have been times when we predicted that the ROI (Return on Investment) for a $2 item would never materialize. We have investigated hundreds of accounts run by both independent managers and large national firms. It would be extremely rare if we were to not produce some major changes that could save the client money or missed opportunities to grow business. If your team is not getting the results you want, please schedule a time to talk with us, and discover the That! Company difference.

As our boss says, if you cannot measure it, you cannot manage it. Click To Tweet

What Are Your Goals?

While the goal is obviously to make more money, smart marketers are far more exacting than that. Is any of this brand marketing, or is it all expected to supply a trackable ROI? Do you have a target CPA (Cost Per Acquisition) or ROI? Is that supposed to improve over time, or is the goal simply to generate as many leads or sales as possible under a given CPA? Looking at the expected costs per click and your budget, are your goals even realistic?

As one of the nation’s top white label AdWords firms, we have helped countless clients and partner agencies help to set realistic, and ambitious goals – the kind that are both attainable and break sales records. If your previous PPC manager did not understand your goals, they were sure to disappoint you. At That! Company, primarily, we are marketers, we just happen to use the internet to do it. Let us help make your marketing and your client’s marketing strategic.

How Are You Measuring Results?

This is one of the most important questions to ask. History has taught us the hard way. A client reacts to early data and concludes PPC fails. “These campaigns stink,” says the client. “Shut them down and go in a different direction.” Then two weeks later they realize those terrible campaigns drove 80% of their calls, and they were not tracking it. Or those campaigns fed into email campaigns that closed the business months later. It is vital to tie everything together, linking AdWords to Analytics, doing some sort of phone tracking, and whenever possible, tracking leads straight through to close.

As our boss says, if you cannot measure it, you cannot manage it. Fortunately, our team has some of the most adept and experienced problem solvers when it comes to tracking. Other agencies often come to us with problems they cannot solve, so if you are a digital agency with tracking problems for one of your clients, you have finally found the right partner.

Which Mediums Have You Tried, and Which Ones Are Failing?

There two choices here, search engine or social media PPC. Many times, clients try to force a round peg into a square hole, and market in a medium that is inappropriate for them. Call 1-800-255-0396 for a free consultation and let us walk you through the pluses and minuses of each.

Which Marketing Platforms Have You Used, and Which Ones Are Failing?

If PPC fails like a square peg in round holeThere are several options…and you can waste a lot of money on any one of them. Just because Linked-In failed does not mean your Facebook ad campaigns would also be doomed. Google partners with advertisers in ways that Facebook and Bing do not. Of course, your PPC fails if you try to sell robotic arms on Facebook, or $1 postcards on Google AdWords. Our experienced team can help you decide where your marketing dollars are going to be best spent. Failure in one platform does not foretell hopelessness in another platform.

What Types of Campaigns Have You Been Running, and Which Ones Are Failing?

The obvious distinction here in Google AdWords is between Product Listing, Display, and Search Campaigns. A smart marketer, however, would break those into sub-categories. Search Campaigns can consist of traditional (keyword-based), competitor, and branding campaigns. Display Campaigns can consist of traditional (keyword-based), placement, remarketing, and similar audience campaigns. Has your PPC manager discussed the differences with you? Have they predicted which would work best? If you are an agency, are your managers discussing all these options with your clients? If not, and PPC fails, you may be wasting money in the wrong places and losing clients.

How is Your Performance on Different Types of Devices?

Do not underestimate this if you run Display Campaigns! Almost everyone has mobile-friendly websites now (and if you do not, it is time to change that). Yet, I bet your mobile performance lags behind desktop/laptop performance. How much of that is due to Display Campaigns that are generating accidental clicks? And how much of that traffic is coming from just a handful of websites? Do you need to treat mobile traffic differently in your Facebook of Google Campaigns? On the other hand, if you are offering emergency services, such as a locksmith or towing company, should you even have desktop/laptop campaigns, or should all your budget go to mobile call campaigns? This is often not a key factor for many marketers, but for some, it is a game-changer.

When PPC Fails, Do You Check Your Performance by Region?

The obvious implication here is to use geographic exclusions to improve efficiency. That can be helpful, especially if you are accidentally advertising overseas (you would be amazed how often that happens), or if a powerful competitor has a stranglehold over a particular state or city. The often-overlooked step, however, is to find the few high-performing areas and create specific campaigns for them. This allows you to be more aggressive in your bidding and micromanage your budget, so the best places never run out of funds.PPC takes time

How Is Your Performance by Time?

This is a frequently neglected metric that can occasionally have a significant impact on account efficiency. Let’s assume you do not have an unlimited marketing budget (or else you would not be concerned if by chance your PPC fails). You need to devote your advertising dollars to the times when they are going to perform best. Does that mean turning things off on the weekend, or ramping up? Saving extra money for the holidays, or scaling back? Advertising during working hours or in the evening? If calls are your most important type of conversion, should you be paying less for campaigns running after-hours? Did you realize that many of your competitors run out of money by the end of the day, and evening clicks can sometimes be cheaper? On occasion, the data here can make a real difference; you should be looking at it.

What Generates the Traffic You Do Not Like?

Doing a “search query report” will allow you to find the terms people are typing in to trigger your ads. It is almost always insightful. Why is your marketing person allowing all this traffic to arrive for searches involving “free” or “cheap” when you sell high-end products? If you run an agency, why hasn’t your pk coordinator blocked “rent” and “rental” for your client that only does online sales? In Display Campaigns, you may be shocked at which websites are generating traffic (and often bad traffic) to your website. What if you could reduce your spending on your Display Campaigns by 50%-60% without losing any conversions or sales? That is sometimes possible when advertisers do not spend the necessary time watching the placement of their ads. Do not underestimate the importance of blocking bad traffic to free up the budget for good traffic.

How Are People Behaving Once They Get to the Website?

There is too much here to really get into. This is advanced PPC, and ties to a deep understanding of Analytics. The point is, there are pages, messaging, and calls to action that visitors to your website want to see, and those they do not. Knowing the difference and giving visitors what they want is the difference between successful and failing PPC campaigns.

Where Are the- Opportunities?

Hopefully, these questions have lit up some areas where things can be re-evaluated or improved. Do not underestimate how much impact a few simple changes can make if they are the big systemic changes these questions are focused on. If you are a business of any size, That! Company would be happy to provide you with a free Google AdWords/Ads account audit. We may find a whole host of things in your account ready for change. If you are an AdWords reseller and are looking for a dedicated team ready to take your clients to the next level of success, we are eager to speak with you. What to Do When PPC Fails? Call That! Company at 1-800-255-0396.

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