Your SEM Success Metric: One Size Does Not Fit All

10/28/2013

- Fiorella Alvarado, Manager of Client Strategy

Interactive advertising is a great fit for marketers with commitment phobia. Most channels provide you with the flexibility to test continuously and pause efforts that are not meeting your success metric. However, could any of the efforts you paused not have been given a fair assessment?

If you run a keyword search campaign that targets a specific cost-per-conversion, you cannot use this same metric to measure the success of a media buy, Google Display campaign or even social advertising. You may have determined that there is a relevant audience present in these channels, but did you consider their level of engagement or at what stage of the conversion funnel they may be?

Users on channels like LinkedIn or Facebook usually prefer to not have their session interrupted by having an advertisement take them to an external website. You may notice high-bounce rates from these users when your ads take them to your website; however, sending them to your LinkedIn Company or Facebook page may garner social engagement such as shares, likes and recommendations.

For media buys, YouTube or Google Display Network advertising, consider that these users are not actively looking for the solution your brand provides. They are interested in the topic, but may need more reminders before they are ready to pull the trigger and complete a transaction or request more information. New visitor rates, pages viewed per visit and impression assisted conversions are just a few of the metrics that will help paint a more complete performance story.

SEM can increase brand visibility and revenue. However, each channel requires a different strategy, success metric and path to conversion.

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