Articles written in November, 2008

November 26 2008

Google Announces YouTube Sponsored Videos


Google announced earlier this month that YouTube Sponsored Videos would be their new advertising program. We have heard the talk of Google expanding its reach and its “drill baby, drill” efforts. This announcement is just another example of how Google is introducing more ads on its properties, and in the process gaining more of our advertising dollars.

YouTube Sponsored Videos will allow users to surface their videos on YouTube, the third most visited website on the internet. You can create your video, choose keywords, enter your budget and maximum cost per click, write an ad and then pick your video to be served on YouTube. You can even use your Google Adwords for billing. Best of all, there is no minimum spending requirement and you will only be charged on a CPC basis.

Now, most of you are asking yourselves, “Why should I pay for a YouTube video when I can upload them for free”? There are several reasons why paying to have your video displayed on YouTube is a good idea. The most obvious reason is that by having a sponsored link, your video will be more visible and easier to find. According to The Official Google Blog, these are 13 hours of video uploaded to YouTube every minute and it can be difficult to ensure your video will be seen.

Many advertisers are already experimenting with YouTube Sponsored Videos and are taking advantage of the prime real estate being offered at low costs due to limited competition. Others are still hesitant to pay for something they can get for free. Well, if you are a current Google Adwords advertiser you are probably are doing just that. You do not have to pay to be on Google’s natural or organic searches, but you still pay to have sponsored listings. According to, competitive mix allows advertisers additional visibility when surrounded by competitors. In other words, everyone wants their name to be more prominently displayed than their competition.

If you decide to give YouTube Sponsored Videos a try, don’t forget that your video needs to have a strong call to action and a reason to follow through with that call to action. For example, at the end of your video, you might invite viewers to visit your website for a free download, more information or percentage off purchase.

With nearly 63 million US-based visitors in October 2008, there is no doubt that YouTube is the frontrunner in online video. Until now, advertisers have chosen from banners, rich media and in-video formats priced on a CPM-basis. With the roll out of YouTube Sponsored Videos, advertisers can benefit from most of the things we, as Google Adwords users love; CPC-based pricing, targeting capabilities, and of course more visibility.

November 25 2008

Matching Your Keywords


When creating an online campaign, much time is spent selecting keywords and even more time writing ad copy, but very little time deciding which match type to use for keywords.  Recently, I was working with a client who asked MoreVisibility to create a fresh, exciting search engine marketing campaign (SEM).  When I spoke to the client with respect to their previous SEM efforts, I was surprised to discover they had not been utilizing any variations in match type; in fact, they had only been using broad match.

Broad match keywords display the widest range of search query results possible.  Broad match will allow the keywords to be displayed in any order; with other search terms before, after or in between your keywords.  For example, if you were a farmer looking to create an SEM campaign for avocados; you may choose to use ‘avocado’ as a keyword.  However, if ‘avocado’ is used as a broad match keyword, the interpretations are endless and the search query results are limitless; even if a searcher is looking for an ‘avocado colored sweater’ or someone looking for ‘how to plant avocado trees’ then your ad would be displayed.  Typically, broad match keywords produce huge numbers of impressions and clicks, but very few conversions; especially when the search terms are general.

Phrase match keyword types are a useful match type, as they prevent words from being inserted between the keywords when a search query is conducted.  You can indicate phrase match keywords by putting keywords in quotation marks when adding it to Google.  Phrase matched keywords will not allow words to be inserted between your quoted keywords.  For example, more appropriate keywords may be “buy avocados” or “fresh avocados.”  These keywords are more targeted and when implemented as a phrase match type, reduce the amount of superfluous clicks and irrelevant searches.

Exact match is another useful tactic which prevent any words to come before or after the specified keyword or keywords when performing a search query.  Exact matching can be implemented by adding brackets to the keyword; for example by enclosing the keyword [avocado] inside the brackets, it is considered to be an exact match keyword.  This will then cause your ad to not be displayed for such queries such as, ‘avocado sweater’ as the keyword [avocado] is set for exact match status.  Exact matches will produce fewer clicks and impressions, but lead to more qualified visitors.

While campaigns have many components, one essential feature that should not be ignored is the keyword match type.  An effective match type will reduce the amount of unnecessary clicks, and leave more money for your advertising budget.  An effective SEM campaign utilizes a combination of different match types to target specific searchers and limit uninterested parties.

November 19 2008

Kick Your Holiday Ads into Full Gear


The 2008 holiday season is right around the corner. There are many predictions about decreased consumer spending this season; but are you doing everything you can to minimize that effect? As a marketer, it is very important to get the most sets of eyes on your ads and products and it all starts with ad copy. Your ad copy is the first impression that you place on your customer. It is crucial to get the right message across and also make a genuine connection.

Here are some tips to improve your ad copy and overall paid campaign performance this holiday season and beyond….

1. What separates you from your competition? This is often overlooked by many search marketers. Rather than using ad copy that only describes what you are selling / promoting, tell your prospective customers why you are better. Do you offer a money back guarantee? Free shipping? Buy one, get one free? Complimentary gift? Whatever sets you apart….make it known in your ad copy!

2. Shoppers are looking for specific holiday discounts. Your ad copy should be tailored to your holiday promotions and should be run in place of your normal ad copy. Create different ad copy for different stages in the holiday season. Here are some important dates: (may vary for your business).

a. Black Friday — The day after Thanksgiving
b. 1st Cyber Monday — The Monday after Thanksgiving
c. 2nd Cyber Monday — The Monday 2 weeks before Christmas
d. Around December 14th — When many retailers end free shipping
e. December 20th — Usually the last day for 2-day shipping
f. Post Holiday — Don’t forget gift card redemption!

3. Prepare for an increase in click rates. As this is the busiest time of year for shopping, competition is also the greatest. Make sure to allow some room to increase your cpc’s during this time. It is not unusual for your cost per click to jump around 25% during this time.

4. Last minute deals. Don’t underestimate the power of procrastinating shoppers. Whatever the reason, there always seems to be a heavy amount of last minute shopping. Attract these shoppers by using ad copy such as “last minute deals,” “ships same day,” “guaranteed to arrive before…,etc”

Time is running out! The official holiday kickoff (Thanksgiving) is just about a week away. Make some tweaks to your campaigns and quickly gear up for this holiday shopping season, if you have not done so already. With an effective message and timely implementation, you can make the most out of this season.

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