Getting to grips with pay-per-click (PPC)
Although it’s well known that pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can bring huge benefits to businesses of all sizes, getting to grips with it may seem a bit daunting. Luckily, GO Get Organised’s PPC expert Libby Thomas is here to help you tap into the potential of this growing advertising channel.
Libby worked in a senior PPC role at Microsoft for six years before going freelance. She now offers her valuable experience to SMEs looking for guidance in building their PPC strategies. So how does it work? “Pay-per-click advertising is a very specific type of online advertising,” explains Libby. “It’s when you put adverts on Google’s network – or Bing’s network – and the advertiser only pays if somebody clicks on that ad.”
She believes that it’s always worthwhile for SMEs to explore PPC advertising: “Successful PPC advertising enables you to reach your core target audience because they’re searching for exactly what you’re selling. The more specific you can be about who your target audience is, and what you’re offering them, the better it will work”.
How to approach pay-per-click (PPC)
Libby explains a bit about how to approach this: “You need to break everything up into the most tightly organised structure you can. So you might have a campaign called ‘Hotels in Bath’, and within that you might have sub-folders called ‘Cheap Hotels in Bath’, ‘Student Hotels in Bath’, ‘Family Hotels in Bath’. And then you write separate ads that directly relate to those keywords, so that when someone types in ‘I’m a student looking for a hotel in Bath’, the ad they see directly addresses that – it doesn’t say anything about families, or luxury, it directly addresses what they’re looking for.”
Refining a PPC campaign is quite a specialist skill, requiring insight into how search engines determine the relevance of keywords. “You need to be able to understand the data and how all that works together,” says Libby. “The aim is to find a rich stream of keywords that convert, that lead the right people who are going to buy from you, or fill in a form or whatever it is your website’s demanding from them, but with hardly any of your competitors bidding on it, so it’s lovely and cheap. That’s the dream.”
And even if it doesn’t work out quite how you hoped, and you decide not to continue, there are still benefits to be gained from the exercise, as Libby points out: “You’ve bought all of this amazing valuable data which you can then use in your SEO, your organic campaigns, or through your social media, or in print advertising – it’s still valuable.”
So what does Libby enjoy most about her job? “I’m quite analytically minded so I really love all the data – diving into it and working out patterns. I love improving results for small to medium businesses where their bottom line is people’s livelihoods – if you can help with that it’s a brilliant feeling. When I open up the accounts and I can see wow, they’ve made two grand in sales overnight, I genuinely get a high off that.”
As well as working directly with businesses to build their PPC strategy, Libby also offers training support to enable SMEs to manage their own PPC activity. As with all of GO Get Organised’s services, this is available at very affordable rates. If you’re interested in finding out more about how we can help with PPC advertising, please get in touch. If you still need convincing, here’s a final word from Libby: “Most businesses that I work with, as long as they’ve got a decent product and a decent website, can get a return on investment. Your audience is there, and PPC is a good way to get to them.”