We get many people asking us how to start a PPC strategy, and if you’re a beginner to PPC, it can be quite a complicated topic to get your head around.
Thankfully, it’s a service we have been working with for many years at ActiveWin, and if we do say so ourselves, we are pretty much experts in the area.
Whether you want to talk strategy, campaign management, or discover what PPC actually stands for, our team of dedicated marketing professionals have got all the answers.
To give you a little flavour of whether or not PPC is for your business, we’ve put together a ‘PPC for beginners’ guide that walks you through the starting points for getting set up with a PPC campaign.
1. Choose a Platform For Your PPC Campaign
It might seem common sense, but choosing where to start your PPC campaign is a point that needs plenty of consideration. At the end of the day, you want to be targeting where your customers are most likely to be.
Google Ads tends to be the most popular choice for PPC campaigns in the current era, but there is plenty of competition from social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, who both now offer pay-per-click ads.
You’re likely to have seen these types of posts on your own feed, but Facebook Ads basically allows you to place a “sponsored’ post on the newsfeeds of users who match with specific audience characteristics that you have chosen. These can range simply from age group, right the way to a person’s interests in a particular topic.
Through Facebook Ads, you can also choose the objective of your ad and it’s purpose. Whether that is to improve brand awareness, website traffic, or even physical store visits. Facebook will then charge you every time your ad gets clicked.
It’s a similar story with Twitter, who allow you to choose between eight different advertising objectives. They include app installs, new followers, tweet engagements and website traffic, as well as allowing you to chose the target audience for your ads.
Twitter will then “promote” your post on the newsfeed of your selected audience and charge you every time your ad is clicked.
As we’ve already mentioned, Google Ads tends to be the most popular. This is probably because they allow you to play for high-ranking real estate on Google’s various web properties, like search engine results pages (SERP’s).
You also get a few campaign types to choose from with display ad, search ad, app ad or even a video ad on YouTube all included. These PPC campaigns allow you to set your own ad budget, customise your audience and commit to groups of search terms that you want to appear for.
Like Facebook and Twitter, Google will then charge you for every time your ad is clicked on, so it pays to know which platform is going to work the best for you when building your PPC strategy.
2. Choose Your Type of Advert
All of those ad platforms give you the choice on what you want your ad to be. We thought we’d take a look more closely at Google Ads and guide you through the options they offer when it comes to PPC.
Google’s empire displays these around the World Wide Web on sites such as Gmail, YouTube, and similar sites that fall into the Google Display Network.
If you are interested in starting a PPC campaign, this is where most people start and what PPC is best known for. Using search engine marketing, Google shows your chosen landing page in the form of a hyperlinked search result when users search for a specific term. You can choose which search terms you want to appear for when you set up your campaign.
These ads are great if you want to promote an app that you’ve developed and is available to purchase through the Google Play store. Google automatically creates each ad’s artwork by using the contents of your app’s download page and then runs these in your chosen language and location.
Google’s is a particularly good place to start with video ads as they are able to appear across YouTube and other Google partner platforms. You can run your video ads before, during or at the end of various different YouTube clips that share a similar audience to the one you want to target.
3. Set Your Ad Budget & Bidding Strategy
When it comes to kicking off your PPC campaign, you need to decide on a budget. This will dictate how much you are willing to pay for the clicks you get on your ads.
With Google, you can set a daily budget. With both Twitter and Facebook you have to select the increments you want your payments to be in.
However, you also need to be conscious of the fact that not all topics and audiences are equal in value with your ad platform. This means that certain interests, audiences and search terms will cost more or less per click.
The main PPC platforms have auction style systems to help you decide how much your target audience will cost you. On Google Ads, these bidding strategies are:
- Cost-per-click (CPC) bidding: You pay each time somebody clicks on your ad
- Cost-per-thousand viewable impressions (vCPM) bidding: You pay for every 1,000 times your ad appears to users.
- Cost-per-acquistion (CPA) bidding: You pay each time somebody clicks on your ad, but the amount is optimised against how much it costs you to acquire a customer from your website.
- Cost-per-view (CPV) bidding: You pay each time your video ad is view, clicked on, or engaged with on YouTube.
4. Choose Your Target Audience & Keywords
We’ve already touched on it already, but with whatever platform(s) you choose for your PPC strategy, you will have the ability to choose who you want to see your ads. For Google Ads, this includes your audience’s location, interests, apps they use and the searches they perform.
Then it’s time to choose those specific search terms and which SERP’s you want your ads to appear on. Try and keep to a compact group of search terms as too many on one ad can end up with your appearing if front of the wrong audience.
The best bet is to start with just a couple of keywords that are high in search volume and match the intent of your target audience.
5. Speak With ActiveWin
Once you’ve decided on those first four steps, you’ll have a good idea on what you want.
That’s far from the final package, though and is where our PPC team at ActiveWin can come in with years of experience in turning an idea or project into actual results.
We can help you refine your audience and keywords, choose the most suitable platform and create the landing pages that have proven success in converting traffic into profit.
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