Saturday, 23 November 2013

Ultimate Guide On How To Run Successful PPC (Pay Per Click) Campaigns


Pay-per-click (PPC) by definition according to Wikipedia is an internet advertising model used to direct traffic to websites, in which advertisers pay the publisher (typically a website owner) when the ad is clicked.
Have you ever wished you could thoroughly master the science of creating effective and successful PPC campaigns? Keep reading, because your wish is about to be granted.
As with other forms of advertising, targeting the people with the right demographics is key, and to decipher the right people to target in your PPC campaigns, these few factors often come into play: the target's interest - often understood by the search term they entered into a search engine, or the content of a page that they are browsing, target’s intent – to purchase or not, target’s location - for geo targeting, and also the day and time that they are browsing the internet.
Running a successful PPC campaign is beneficial to marketers who invest in PPC properly, as they get a guaranteed placement in the SERPs and in effect increase their website traffic and then generate more leads/sales. That said, when a PPC campaign is not done properly, the marketer run the risk of obtaining a bland lead generation results and/or racking up costing by spending more money than they are getting in return of their time and money.
So, how do you run a success PPC campaign to enable you actually get qualified leads/sales at a reasonable cost? I’m glad you asked. That’s why I wrote this article, to specifically to tell you how you can run successful PPC campaigns, read on!
I have used several key components over the years to run successful PPC campaigns namely – demographics targeted keyword research, keyword grouping and organization, ad groups creation and management, and landing page identification and selection. In the remaining part of this post, I will try and talk about the above areas in more details. Are you with me so far?
Alright let’s dive right in..
6 Great Steps To Run An Effective PPC Campaign
   1.             Understand The Content Of Your Client’s Website
In the quest of running a successful PPC campaign, you need to have an in-depth knowledge of your company's or clients' products and services and their website’s content. Normally I carefully review the content of the client’s website I’m working with to understand their subject area and offerings. And I achieve this feat using some free keyword scrape tools on the Internet and as I peruse through the data I obtained using the scrape tool, I always look out for and make notes of any keywords that I deem relevant to my campaign. This process helps me know the keywords that are relevant to the page in review.
When developing a PPC campaign for a new site design, it’s always helpful to use wireframes applications to assist you in understanding how content will be laid out and how the site would be structured.
   2.             Demographics targeted keyword research
Enabled with an in-depth knowledge of your company's or clients' products and services and their website’s content, you should start to conduct a meaningful keyword research. This involves employing various keyword research tools such as Adwords keyword tool to enable you take your initial list of few keywords and turn them into tens and maybe hundreds list of keywords. Your goal in this process should be to discover as many related terms, keyword variations, synonyms, and misspellings as you can.
In my opinion, keyword research is probably the most important and valuable activity in the search marketing sphere as getting found with the right keywords would make your campaign successful and getting found with the wrong keyword for your business would mar your campaign. Also through the process of building the keywords for your PPC campaign, you not only learn which terms and phrases to target with PPC, but also learn more about the demographics of your customers as a whole.
Having ran quite a number of PPC campaigns myself, I would tell you that it's not always about getting visitors to your site, but about getting the right kind of visitors. When keyword research is done right, your products, services, and content would be reconciled with web searchers that are already actively seeking what you have to offer.
         3.             Have an Appropriate PPC Campaign Structure in Place
It’s always advisable to group your keyword findings into keyword blocks; these can be used as the basis for your campaign's structure.
There are more to just setting up a campaign, then ad groups, creating an ad(s), picking some keywords, directing the ad to a landing page and hitting go.
You are always given an opportunity to create multiple campaigns with AdWords and Bing Ads. It’s important to structure your campaign as much as possible by having a campaign contain several AdGroups, and each AdGroup contain a few ads and multiple, similar keywords. Creating multiple campaigns is advised as this tactic enables you to create rules per campaign such as setting daily budget caps, day-parting, pausing campaigns at certain time and select geo-targeted regions etc.
  4.             Optimize Your Keyword Strategy
After you have selected the long lists of keywords that are relevant to the landing page and offer, you have to endeavour to keep these keywords as relevant as possible to increase the chances of each of the web user you’ve paid to visit your website to complete the action you want them to complete on your landing page. To maximise your campaign, it’s important the landing page answers the search term queried.
         5.             Ad Copy Creation
You have to understand that when people type any term into the search engine, they are looking for answers to their questions, I guess that's why it's called search terms. So the level at which you succeed at driving the right traffic to your website including to your product/services pages, lies in your ability to answer your prospective customers yearning questions. Why should they click your Ad among the lists of Ads on the that search engine result page? What benefit(s) does your product offer better than your competition? Does the product have the ability to solve, make easier or better your searchers life? Do you have these components as much as possible in your Ad? If not, you have to consider rewriting your Ad. 
You are allowed to create more than one ad for each AdGroup with Google Adwords and Bing Ads and the service will run these ads to test your messages until it notices that one appears to drive a higher clickthrough rate (CTR). Based on how robust your campaign is, I would suggest you run at least three ad copies at a time as this would help with A/B/C testing your ads and you could always optimize the better performing ads for even better conversions.  
With Adwords, there are character limits for each line. You are allocated 25 characters for the title, 35 characters for the display URL and 35 characters for each line of copy.
When writing your ads, it’s always advisable to make your ad copy as relevant to the keywords as possible, as a rule of thumb, try adding some of your most important keywords to your ad titles.  
   6.            Landing Pages Identification & Selection
As part of your ad copy development, you will need to add "display" and "destination" URLs for each of your ads. The display URL is the URL you want to show on the SERP when your ads are displayed while the destination URL is the place on your website where you want the PPC traffic to be sent to. It's always good to add your keywords in your display URL as it helps reinforce relevance in the searchers mind.
It is always advisable not to drive your paid traffic to your home page or a blog article in the hopes that your paid visitors will stumble upon your product/services page, sign up or lead generation form. Find the page on your website that is most relevant to each group's keywords, and send the group’s traffic to that landing page. Remember that creating a landing pages for each of your PPC campaign will increase your chances of converting those who clicked on your ad.
To increase the click through rate on my ads, I always add the benefit the searcher will get by clicking on my Ad, the striking feature the product offers, I establish credibility when I can, I add the price of the product and of course a defining call-to-action, and I always drive the traffic directly to a specific landing page where I explain what the offer is about, what they would benefit from signing up or buying the product and why they should sign up and/or buy the product.
For more details on landing page optimization check out these 10 Pro Tips for Creating Great Landing Pages That Boost Conversion.
How successful have you been at running PPC campaigns? What challenges have you faced while developing PPC campaigns? What strategies have you implemented that have enabled you run a success PPC campaign? Is there anything that you would like to add to this post?
Top comments will be added to this post, so let’s hear your thoughts! Also feel free to share this post with your network(s). 


  1. What an insightful piece. Among all of the things that I resonate with in this post, I think each marketer need to be clear on what sets their ad apart from their competition on the search engine result page. Really, why should your prospective customers click on your ad?