Brad Geddes / PPC Geek
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Author of Advanced Google AdWords.
Co-Founder, Adalysis.
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Brad Geddes's Theories on Marketing New Year’s resolutions for PPC marketers in 2014

New Year’s resolutions for PPC marketers in 2014

Every year there has been at least one blog post stating the New Year’s resolutions for that year in PPC.

I’ve gathered some examples from the past:

I’d advise you to go through these posts, as most of the topics and resolutions that are being made are still applicable to next year’s PPC management in 2014.

Building further on these lists I’d like to share these New Year’s resolutions for PPC in 2014 with you, refreshing some of the resolutions I believe to be important as well as adding some new ones to the list. I’ve added both PPC related ones as well as more generic ones that should increase productivity, efficiency or happiness at work:


Get the hardest things done first

Three reasons to get the hardest things done first:

  1. Once it’s done, it’s done
  2. You’ll have a good feeling and think of yourself as effective
  3. You’ve used your willpower (limited resource) in the most effective way

Good mornings, every day!

In line with the previous one: block your mornings to get through your to-do list. Brad touched this topic in this article on how to get all your tasks done while keeping up with the (industry) news, where he is referring to Paul Graham’s ‘Maker’s schedule, Manager’s Schedule’. When we take into account the three benefits of getting the hardest things done first this means you’ll have to block your mornings. No meetings with others before noon would be a good rule throughout many companies. Managers tend to go from meeting to meeting, which means an agenda with one-hour blocks is fine for them. Looking at the general PPC manager I believe him/her to be most efficient when they have longer blocks, two/three hours. As the productivity and efficiency would also be a main goal for the management this means meetings (1:1s) between manager and consultant should take place in the afternoon. This enables the consultant to clip_image004focus on their hardest tasks during the morning.

(Re)Define your purpose

Avinash Kaushik states “The single biggest mistake web analysts make is working without purpose”. I dare to state this isn’t only applicable to web analysts, but to all people and even all companies.

In his ‘Digital Marketing & Measurement Model’ Avinash goes through five steps:

  1. Identify business objectives
  2. Identify goals for each objective
  3. Identify the Key Performance Indicators
  4. Identify the targets
  5. Identify valuable segments for analysis

What better moment is there to check if all of the above are still clear for your PPC campaigns and if not thinking through these simple steps should bring back the purpose to your PPC campaigns and results and thus make 2014 a great New Year to work on the real objectives with good KPIs in mind!

80/20 still applies

Even though the Pareto principle is almost 100 years old, and known as such since 1941 it still is applicable in many of today’s situations.
In PPC you’ll pretty often see 20% of your keywords generating 80% of the clicks/cost/conversions. This would normally mean you’re spending your time efficient when you are spending 80% of your time on 20% of your keywords/ad groups/campaigns.

clip_image006If Data is King, let Creativity be his Queen

This has been in every single one of the earlier stated ‘New Year’s Resolutions’ lists, and now it’s on this list as well! As PPC marketers it’s easy to stray from creativity because of all the data involved. If Data is King then Creativity should be Queen in PPC. Without being creative the data will still show which ads are winning, which keywords are profitable, but dramatic increases are more likely to happen when you actually dare to try (dramatically) different things.

There are always things you can try, some examples as an inspiration to put on your test list:

  • Flexible bid strategies
  • Location bids
  • Mobile preferred ads
  • Sitelinks on ad group level (what is the impact of more relevant sitelinks?)
  • Product listing ads and optimizations to the feed (have you thought about the right descriptions and titles?)
  • Look outside Adwords (Bing, Yandex, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn to name a few)
  • Have you tested all Ad Extensions?

Always be testing

The last one has been stated many times before and I’m doing so as well. Always make sure you have multiple ad text per ad group and make sure to have a good test plan. Not only will this bring you a more efficient PPC account in time, but keeping good progress of the tests you are conducting will also make it easier to show what you are doing to your client (or stake holders in case you’re in-house).

Jeff Allen wrote a good article on what could be in your PPC test plan. The great thing is it also includes an example Excel test matrix. Another great article on how to structure your PPC tests has been written by Melissa Mackey. In a clear way she breaks down the various options to test in a matrix, so you can keep track of what you have already tested and what still needs to be tested against the winner.

This is a guest post by Lauryan Feijen, Online Advertising Strategist at iProspect|Netsociety,an online media agency based in Amsterdam. He has been managing PPC accounts since 2009 and is now responsible for the knowledge sharing, quality and efficiency of the online advertising department.

Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily bgTheory. If you would like to write for Certified Knowledge, please let us know.

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