Articles in the Advanced Digital Marketing Strategy Category

Use these advanced digital marketing strategies to stay ahead of the competition, and drive qualified traffic to your website. Learn the latest advanced digital marketing techniques, including our latest thoughts on remarketing, paid search, display media, social media advertising and local search.

March 10 2011

Are Your Competitors Bidding On Your Name & Trademark Terms?

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A California federal appeals court recently ruled that bidding on competitor keywords and trademark terms is not a violation of trademark law. According to the court, since Google and Bing have partitioned their SERPs so that the advertisements appear in separately labeled sections for “sponsored links”, a consumer will not be misled by a company using a rival’s trademark term to trigger a search ad.

This recent ruling opens the door for marketers to have more opportunities in pay-per-click campaigns. It has become standard practice in recent years for brands to bid on competitor’s trademarks and include the terms in ad copy in pay-per-click ads.

So this leads to the question of whether your competitors are bidding on your name and trademark terms. The answer is most likely, yes. This highlights the importance of bidding on your brand and trademark terms. If you are not showing up for your brand terms, it is most likely that your competition is, and you could be losing out on valuable, qualified traffic to your site.

In order to have your pay-per-click ads stand out against your competition, you can use terms like “official site” and “authentic” so that visitors know that they are getting to the correct web site.

Alternatively, when bidding on competitor names and trademark terms, it is advantageous to include discounts and/or special promotions to steer visitors to your site instead of the competitor the user was originally searching for.

Let the bidding games begin.

March 3 2011

Do They Know Your Name? The Case for Branding

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Many companies are focused on their ROI goals. They want to know how much they are getting in return for every dollar they spend. It is good for companies to want to have good metrics, but not at the expense of getting their branding message to the public.

Branding is important for every business. A company can have the best product in the world, but if no one knows who they are, it is to no avail. In the world of online marketing, there are several ways for businesses to brand themselves. Content targeting is a great way to convey a message to the public. A content campaign can be set up that allows a company’s ads to show when people are browsing different sites that are related to what the company does. For example, let’s say Company A has a local dry cleaning business and they are running a geo-targeted content campaign related to dry cleaning and how to clean delicate clothes. As a local searcher goes online to research how to get a stain out of a delicate shirt, they see an ad by Company A. The ad gets their attention, but they don’t click on it. They continue to do their research on stain removal and after a few days of research they decide that they are better off going to a local dry cleaner. As they do a search for local dry cleaners, an ad for Company A appears. They remember that they have seen an ad for Company A before and they decide to click on the ad. As they browse Company A’s website they decide to try them. If Company A hadn’t been running branding ads on the content network, they might have lost that sale. In this case, the content ad didn’t get the credit for the sale, but Company A did receive profits from it even though there was no visible action trail.

Running branding campaigns helps people to know that your business is out there. One fact that businesses seem to miss is that just because they have a website or a store front, doesn’t mean that people know your company exists.

Another tactic is to bid on competitor’s names. Many times people may know who your competitor is, but they may not know about your company. If a company continually bids on a competitor’s name, they have an opportunity to get their name out there and also to garner some of the business of their competitors. It may not produce instant gratification, but it has shown to be effective. Think about it. When you switched car insurance companies or tried a new breakfast place, who was the first company that came to mind? More than likely, it was the company that kept appearing in front of your face, long before you ever thought of leaving the car insurance company or the breakfast place that you currently frequent.

December 14 2010

Protect and Reinforce Your Brand

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Bidding on my brand name is waste of money. Why would I bid on my name when I already appear organically in the top results? There is no need to pay advertising dollars for my company name; I show up well in the natural listings…

Big sigh. Many clients often ask/tell me different variations of the above on a regular basis. Most feel that bidding on their company name is not only a waste of money, but not at all necessary. That way of thinking is entirely incorrect and this post will focus on some of the reasons why you should be bidding on your name…

  • To protect and reinforce your brand
  • Brand keywords are typically the least costly to bid on.
  • Many searchers will misspell your name. If you have a branding strategy in place, you can bid on many variations and misspellings of your name.
  • A visitor who typed in your company name already knows who you are (they typed in your name, remember?) and is more likely to convert into a sale or client than someone who doesn’t.
  • Your competition is probably already bidding on your name and if not, they will be. Do not allow your competitor(s) to steal away your customers!
  • You have complete control over both the ad copy that will be displayed and the URL your visitor will be sent to when the pay per click ad is clicked on. It is a huge value to send a visitor to a landing page with specific calls to action; this will help improve conversions.
  • You will take up more real estate on the Search Engine Results Page (SERPS) if you appear in both the organic and the paid results. Surprisingly, there are a large percentage of searchers who do not know the difference between the paid and the organic results.  See example below from Under Armour. They dominate the SERPS for their name, as they should.

If you do not already have a branding strategy in place, I strongly encourage you to develop one. Protect and reinforce your brand now by bidding on your company name!

Protect and Reinforce Your Brand

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