Planning is key to a successful paid ad campaign


Bob McCann, Director of Education - ARI
October 4, 2013
Filed under Guest Blog

As the Marine Dealer Conference & Expo approaches, it’s time for you to do your homework for our upcoming workshop Crank Up Your Search Engine Marketing ROI. This session will dig deep into paid advertising campaigns (PPC). Setup with AdWords (Google) or adCenter (Yahoo/Bing) can be intimidating, even for a seasoned marketer, if the objectives of the campaign have not been properly planned. There are three core planning factors to nail down for your campaign:

Set your goals

The first step is to decide if you want your PPC campaign to drive brand awareness and/or loyalty, or if your objective is to drive a direct response or conversion to sale. The answer to this question is what ultimately determines the audience you target, the keywords you choose, how your ad copy is written, the appropriate landing page, and much more.  If your business is new, or if you have recently changed your business name or model, a brand awareness campaign is a wise move since you need to build customer awareness of your business. On the flip side, if you are established, it’s more likely that you’ll want your campaign to drive sales, commonly referred to as “direct response” or “conversion.” These campaigns typically click through to a landing page for the customer to purchase a particular product or complete a lead form of some type.

Determine your budget

The campaign keywords you choose will determine the budget you need to run a successful campaign. Cost for a particular keyword is dependent on demand; the higher the demand for the keyword, the higher the price. That translates into some of your keywords costing only pennies per click, while others may cost several dollars. Most ad platforms do not have a minimum budget, so you can start out small and grow your campaign dependent on results. Every monthly budget is divided by the number of days per month to determine your daily budget. Caution: If your budget is too low it won’t allow your campaign to run properly because there simply isn’t enough budget per day to afford a significant amount of clicks. If your budget is low, focus only on the most relevant of keywords. That’s just the basics – during the workshop, we’ll provide you with some rules of thumb you can follow to make sure that you get the most out of your campaign and spend your marketing dollars wisely.

Keyword research

As of August 2013, Google’s Keywood Search Tool is now officially evolved into the new “Keyword Planner.” The Keyword Planner integrates the former Keyword Search Tool with the Cost Estimator with the goal being to assist marketers with the process of setting up campaigns. The Keyword Planner has a wizard-like interface, and you should find it to be user friendly and a nice upgrade. We’ll share more with you on that at the workshop.

Setting up a PPC campaign the right way can be fun and rewarding when done correctly. Do your homework ahead of time and you’ll be on your way to success. So, get ready to roll up your sleeves at MDCE where we’ll share with you more details on how to successfully launch and maintain a successful PPC campaign. I hope to see you at the show.

Bob McCann is ARI’s Director of Education. ARI creates award-winning software solutions that help equipment manufacturers, distributors and dealers Sell More Stuff!™ – online and in-store. ARI removes the complexity of selling and servicing new and used inventory, parts, garments, and accessories for customers in automotive tire and wheel, powersports, outdoor power equipment, marine, RV and white goods industries. More than 22,000 equipment dealers, 195 distributors and 140 manufacturers worldwide leverage our website and eCatalog platforms to Sell More Stuff!


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