Content Targeting vs. Placement Targeting in PPC Campaigns

- April 27, 2009

If you are looking for additional ways to market your brand and increase your visibility online, Content Targeting and Placement Targeting campaigns can be excellent options.  It is important however, to understand the differences between the two channels and align your goals with the strengths of each.

Content Targeting gives you the opportunity to reach a huge audience.  The Google content network has thousands of publishing partners from widely known websites to very small forums and blogs.  Google will automatically deliver your ads to content network sites based on the relevancy of your keywords and ads to the site publisher’s content and themes.  Content Targeting gives you a chance to increase brand awareness and you can expect to receive thousands of impressions per day.  But the Google system is not perfect and this type of campaign must be watched and managed closely.  Google offers a report titled Placement Performance which provides performance data from the content network sites where your ad(s) have been shown.  This report is extremely useful in identifying sites within the network that are not performing to your expectations.  Be proactive in running this report daily and add sites to your “excluded sites” list to optimize your content network campaign.

Placement Targeting allows you to deliver your ads to a much more targeted audience.  Instead of your ads being shown across all the publishing partners who Google determines have relevancy with your ads, you choose the sites from the content network.  Many site publishers within the content network allow both text ads and banner ads.  If you have banner creatives already in place this can be valuable way to test your banner ads against text ads on specific websites.  This type of campaign must also be watched closely.  There are usually only a few available ad positions on these content network sites and if you simply set up the campaign and let it run you may find your ads are not being displayed.  It is important to assign a value to visitors from placement targeting sites.  You may have to bid much more aggressive in order to achieve ad delivery on sites with a lot of competition.

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