Autopilot is not an option!

- October 5, 2009

I speak with a large number of clients on a daily basis and often hear that they are already running an AdWords, Yahoo Sponsored Search or Bing campaign on their own. In other words, they have that aspect of their Online Marketing initiatives covered and are engaging us to help with other components such as: Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media, Web Design, etc. In some cases, this is perfectly fine and can be a viable way to save the cost to outsource their Search Engine Marketing (SEM) efforts. HOWEVER (and I have bolded, capitalized, italicized and underlined the however in this circumstance, as I really want to get my point across) there must be consistent, ongoing maintenance and management if this effort is to be kept in house.

Basically, if any client (large, small, ecommerce, lead generation, what have you) is going to manage their own Cost Per Click (CPC) Campaign, it is imperative that the campaign be actually “managed”. By managed, I mean that autopilot is not an option! Sure, a campaign will run and generate impressions and/or clicks without anyone managing it. The big issue here is that it will not run well and your clicks will not be nearly as relevant as they could be if you invest the time it takes to effectively manage it.

Here are some tips:

  • Be sure to log into your account(s) on a frequent basis; daily if possible.
  • Be aware of performance. What is your CTR? How much have you spent? Do your bids need to be increased/decreased? Do keywords need to be added/removed?
  • Do not allow your keywords and/or ad copy to remain stagnant; optimize and tweak regularly.
  • Use rotating ad copy; a minimum of 3 versions is suggested. Google will eventually show the best performing ad.
  • Employ an analytics tool like Google Analytics. Invest the time to review your stats. This ensures that your advertising dollars are being spent as intelligently as possible.

Let’s face it. Every dollar and every click is important and if your campaign is on autopilot, then you are effectively shooting in the dark with a blindfold on. Not too smart, huh?

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