Are You Optimizing Your Facebook Ad Campaign Structure?

It is now fast and easy with Power Editor to create Facebook ad campaigns, ad sets and ads. At no time with FB has it been easier to create and manage campaigns! As FB continues to improve their ad platform we are the beneficiaries. With the new ad structure and Power Editor there is no reason why account managers shouldn’t be test, test, testing. With all of the different targeting and A/B test options including; audiences, bidding, devices and buttons…etc, there are limitless tests to experiment with. Many people want to know what works on FB and the only way to know is to split out your testing across campaigns and ad sets.

With so many different strategies to build campaigns, it is important to remember to structure and organize your campaigns, ad sets and ads. Splitting out the different targeting and placements allows you to know what is working in your account. Here are a few key targeting options for campaign strategy that would be wise to split out and test.

  • Placements: Desktop, Mobile, Right Side Ads, App Installs
  • CTA Buttons: Learn More, Shop Now, Download, or no button at all…etc
  • Ad Creative: Copy, Images, Links
  • Location Targeting: Countries, States, Cities…etc
  • Audiences: Interests, Custom Audiences, Lookalike Audiences, Behaviors…etc
  • And many others!

Organizing Campaigns For Testing

Depending on the account, I typically like to organize my campaigns by location. It’s even more wise to go a step further and organize your campaigns by device, and/or audience. Usually when split testing you can find yourself with a lot of campaigns to manage. While there will be a lot to manage, having a clear structured account will keep your tests more accurate and organized. It’s also beneficial to have a proper naming system in place so you can easily move between campaigns and ad sets. A poor naming system or no naming system at all can lead to confusion and campaigns/ad sets getting mixed up. The image below is an example of splitting out three campaigns by device targeting.


Smart Ad Sets 

Screen Shot 2015-02-27 at 3.47.40 PMAd sets are a perfect way to split out your audiences, devices and location targeting. This practice enables you to see which device performs better; desktop, mobile or right side column ads? A common mistake is to leave these 3 devices lumped into one ad set. Doing this will make it near impossible to see which placement is performing better. Also, when you see a location or device that is producing amazing results, you can allocate more budget to that particular ad set(s). If that location or device isn’t split out your budget may be going towards the least performing audience?

A best practice when advertising on FB is to create different ad sets for each target audience. For example, if your strategy is to target FB fans, interests, and lookalike audiences, you will want to breakout these targeting options into their own ad sets. You can analyze performance and make bid/budget optimizations based off what’s working.

Creating Ads Quickly & Efficiently

Power Editor has made creating/duplicating ads much easier. With the new ads structure you can create multiple ads for testing in one ad set very quickly. Creating ads in PE used to be time consuming. The big benefit now is you don’t have to worry about setting targeting at the ad level so you can duplicate ads across ad sets and campaigns more easily. Ads can also be edited in bulk which can be a life saver. Whether you’re testing ad copy, destination URLs or images, PE makes it quick and efficient to create new ads.

trophy-01Overall, there is a huge benefit to testing when running Facebook ads. As I’ve managed ads for multiple clients, I’ve found through testing that some audiences have performed very differently from what I expected. For example, one of my accounts, I found through testing that Lookalike Audiences performed far better than other targeting options. Desktop ads also outperformed mobile so you can guess what we did, yep, we increased budget for lookalike audiences and desktop ads. We would have never come to this conclusion without splitting out our targeting and placements. In the end testing requires a lot of work but it’s needed to create an effective and profitable account.

What are some different strategies used to structure your FB accounts?

18 Pubcon Takeaways from the Experts

If you missed Pubcon earlier this month then I feel bad for you son. You got 99 problems but finding out what happened there isn’t one. That’s because 9 experts agreed to share their top two insights from Pubcon! That’s right, one epic post with all the best of Pubcon material. If you want more you can also checkout the Pubcon 2014 Collaborative Notes where the top experts participated in taking notes from nearly every session.

Sean Dolan@_seandolan 

Session: Creative Techniques for Selling Your Services and Retaining Your Clients

Speaker: jabezlebret (@jabezlebret)

  • Takeaway 1: Write a book on a niche market, and send it to your friends and clients asking them to purchase. After only a few sales, you can become a top seller in a small category. When you have “Amazon’s #1 Best-Selling Law Practice Marketing Book” on the front of the book you hand to your current and prospective clients, they have something physical to hold onto. It goes a long way in building your credibility. See Jabez’s book here.
  • Takeaway 2: Jabez mentioned Mouse Flow in his presentation. I checked it out the day I returned from Pubcon, and I’ve been blown away by this tool. I’ve used heat map tools in the past, but wasn’t aware of a simple solution for viewing mouse movements of my site visitors. This tool is my most exciting takeaway, as I’ve already implemented it on a client site and can’t wait to show them the data we now have on live shopping behavior for their ecommerce site.


Jesse Semchuck@jessesem

Having been to many other marketing conferences, I wasn’t sure what to expect from Pubcon. I’d heard great things, but that doesn’t always translate into tactical takeaways. I was pleasantly surprised by the high level of expertise and overall tone of the conference.

Link building from here on out can be classified into two distinct buckets.

  • Repeatable processes. These are the tried and true tactics we’ve been using for years. The broken link building, resource links, and outreach. While these are still very important, the value of these types of links could continue to degrade unless placed on highly relevant sites. Relevancy becomes even more important as Google continues to roll out Penguin algorithm updates aimed at targeting organizations that value quantity over quality.
  • Big ideas. These big ideas need to be something that appeals to the influencers, the linkerati that exist in your space. For example, Caterpillar (the bulldozer company) created a video where they played Jenga in an arena with two huge excavators. Now, does this video help them sell more excavators immediately? No, my guess is the viewer of this video won’t be clicking an Add to Cart button for a shiny new bulldozer. But what it does do is build links through press syndication and social shares in a boring industry where it could be tough to acquire them otherwise. These backlinks can help build a website’s domain authority and allow them to rank for the valuable head terms they can monetize. Stephan Spencer’s presentation with more big idea examples can be found here (PDF).

We are just now at the early stages of ad personalization. Google is collecting every piece of data it can about our lives online and offline. From Android and Google iOS apps, Chrome, and now Google Fiber they are just now beginning to get a clear picture of who we are and the types of products and services we’re interested in. It might sound a bit intrusive but I’m excited at the concept of a service that can anticipate my needs and help streamline my life. Google has proven they’re experts in data collection, and they’re just getting started. I can only hope this will lead to Google knowing which Netflix show I want to catch up on while driving me to work in one of their self-driving cars. Of course, not without displaying an ad for my favorite coffee shop.


Erin Sagin@erinsagin

  • Optimize Your Cancellation Page (David Vogelpohl, Creative Techniques for Selling Your Services and Retaining Your Clients): Given that I come from a Customer Success background, this point really hit home for me.  When clients cancel, most companies just let them walk away.  Instead, this is the perfect point to reengage them!  At best, you are able to address their problems and keep them on board.  If you’re not able to retain them, at least you can glean some valuable data to improve other customers’ experiences.  It’s a total win-win. David’s recommendation was to revamp your cancel page to include video tutorials on common problems, lower priced packages or subscription variations and a live agent chat.  This is especially poignant because it can be applied to nearly every industry.
  • Identify and Focus on Buyer Personas and Audience Personas (Michael King, How to target Visitors Using Personas): During his presentation, Mike highlighted the distinction between audience persona (people looking to consume content for education or entertainment) and buyer persona (people looking to consume content, but only as a means to make a transaction) and he encouraged SEOs to keep BOTH in mind as they develop content.  This is critical because oftentimes these personas overlap or users transition between the two types.  I feel as though we are often so focused on that buyer persona that we neglect to cater to the audience persona.  This was a good reminder to keep both in mind.

Alma Smith@Alma_Smith

  • The changing role of SEO – The role of SEO is more about collaboration, training and managing relationships. With semantic search, not provided keywords, and other updates the focus has shifted away from SEO as a silo function. SEO practitioners should now be spending their time training other departments on SEO best practices, collaborating on content strategies, and managing SEO related projects.
  • This ain’t about you! – Several times throughout the sessions and particularly during keynotes it was brought up that marketing is really all about serving customers. This seems like a no-brainer, but in the world of online marketing where we spend so much time working with numbers, it’s easy to forget that there are real people behind those numbers. Focusing on providing what customers want rather than what we want them to do can make the difference in success or failure. Or in the immortal words of Dr. Phil: This ain’t about you!

Larry Kim@LarryKim

  • The social events were the best part of the conference. great to meet so many search marketing friends and catch up.
  • Facebook Atlas / Facebook Audience Network is a big deal. The New concept of people based marketing (targeting people) is a big shift.

Greg Young@PPCJedi

  • In testing/improving search ads and landing pages, making small changes will only get you small results.  Changing the wording slightly or adding punctuation isn’t going to make your ads magically awesome.  Write a completely new ad that triggers an emotional response, if you want to see big CTR jumps.  The same applies to landing pages.  Changing button colors, images, fonts… those will get you trivial results.  Come up with a completely new offer to test and triple your conversion rates!  -From @LarryKim’s The Top 10 PPC Hacks of All Time
  • Marketing Conferences are an awesome way to network.  Just do it.  You’ll gain valuable insights from the speakers at the conference, but don’t let the learning end there.  Make connections, follow them on social media, and stay engaged.  So  many great discussions in the PPC industry take place daily on twitter (#PPCchat) You can build great relationships with peers in your industry by promoting their work online, then share your own work with them as well.  Your network will lift you up naturally, as you lift others.

Garrett McGregor@McGregor212

  • We (PPC Managers) are the assists that make things better. -Katie Lawler While third party software is important and useful we must not forget that we are the difference makers.Our time must be spent on improving accounts and not over loading ourselves with too many automated tools…etc. I’m not saying tools are bad but we should only take on what we can handle.
  • Rely more on Facebook’s Resources. Similar to Google, Facebook has tools/resources that can help improve account management and management skills. These educational categories range from; Product Guides, Case Studies, Measurement & Research and Resources/ tools. Each category can be applicable to every account and can help stay up to date on best practices and optimization. is a tool I want to get more familiar with.

Katy Tonkin@KatyTonkin

  • Network your face off. Pubcon networking happens at night, on the town, in bars, casinos and the lot. You have to be ready for that and my best advice is line up your networking in advance. Figure out who’s going where, have a list of who you want to meet, wear comfortable shoes, and get after it.
  • The US Search Awards are where the best and the brightest are at for one night. The most talented folks in the industry in are in one room for almost 4 hours and there is ample opportunity to go up and introduce yourself. Buy a ticket – it’s worth it! ​And it’s just darn good karma to support the recognition of some of the industry’s leaders and up-and-comings.
Luke Alley@LukeAlley
  • Remarketing Lists for Search Ads – these are the HOTTEST thing in search right now. Remember when shopping results went to a paid model and you got incredibly cheap clicks and lots of sales? That’s RLSAs right now. Even though these were rolled out last year less than 10% of accounts have them implemented. For your RLSA campaigns, make sure you have higher bids than other keywords, choose more broad terms, and have copy tailored to the already-visited-your-site audience.
  • Try New Remarketing Strategies – do you ever think you’ve tried nearly every PPC strategy out there? I did, but was humble by Sean Dolan (one of our very own contributors) in his remarketing session. One idea was using “parameters” in your URLs to create remarketing lists depending on where they came from. This way you can target different audiences although they are all going to the same landing page. You can also turn on or off your list based on the time for the next service (haircut, oil change, pest control service, etc.) and time it when they are looking for the next round of service.
Were you there? Do you have some other tips? Share them in the comments!

I Have a Dream: The Future of Google’s Call Extensions

Google just announced that they will be enabling “local number call forwarding” for advertisers starting in early November 2014.   This is great news, and puts Adwords one step closer to my call extensions dream.

Let me quickly tell you what the new update means for call extensions and then go into what I think the Future holds for call extensions.

Google’s call forwarding is great because advertisers can get data like: call duration, call start/end time, caller area code, and whether the call was connected.  The downside has been that we give up displaying our local number when Adwords replaces it with a random Google number for call tracking.  Now, Adwords will bestow upon us a tracking number that will match the area code of the phone number we are forwarding to.  The upside, higher PTRs (Phone through rates), because as Google puts it, “people are more likely to call a number with a recognizable area code”.

Basically, advertisers won’t need to do anything to take advantage of this new update.  If you are using a local number, Adwords will automatically show a local number matching the area code where available (or an area code for that geographic region, if not a matching area code).   If you are using a toll-free number for your call extensions, Adwords will also use a toll-free number for tracking.

If you need help with Call Extensions, I know of a pretty talented Utah pay-per-click company you could contact.

Now, to the good stuff, the “Dream Call Extension”

I’ve put together 3 features I dream (and halfway expect) Google Adwords to add for us in the future.  Basically making the ULTIMATE CALL EXTENSION!

Dynamic Local Numbers

I’ll start with an example. Lets say you have a 50-mile service area for your chimney sweep company.  You have one office in San Francisco and your business area code is 415. The problem: you’d like to take advantage of Google’s local number call forwarding, but your service area includes 9 area codes (see image). This means people in the other 8 area codes will still see 415 area codes, not the end of the world right? But wouldn’t it be much better if Google used the visitor’s current location to serve a tracking number that is “more recognizable” to that visitor?

SanFran Area Codes
But my service area includes 9 area codes… So… now what?

That’s my idea for a Dynamic Local Number.  It’s using the location of the searcher to serve an area code number that is always ‘local’, regardless of the business having phone numbers for every area code in their service area.  So if they call from Palo Alto they’ll see 650, but if they call from Napa they’ll see 707.

Call Recording

This one is pretty straightforward.  I think all call tracking services provide this, Google voice does this, and it’s only a matter of time before Google Adwords has this feature as well.

Automated Call Grading (Conversion Analytics)

This is a cool new feature.  The only call tracking company that I know of that does this is LogMyCalls. The short version of what I’m talking about is a service that listens and transcribes the call, then uses several algos to evaluate/grade the content of the call.  Some things you could measure from the calls:

  • Conversions (Sale was made, appointment set, reservation… whatever)
  • Quality of the Lead (How qualified was that caller)
  • Analyze Call Purpose (Wrong number, sales call, customer service call)
  • Assess Phone Agent Skills (Did your rep ask the right questions, get the caller’s info…) This isn’t as important in adwords, but great data to analyze your call center reps.

And Since I can’t Blog without a shoutout to Star Wars…

I leave you with this gem. I noticed a fun similarity between two of my heroes, so I put these two pics together. Its Han Solo Frozen in carbonite, and the MLK Memorial in D.C. but it kinda looks like Martin Luther King had an unpaid debt with Jabba the Hutt.

Han Solo in Carbonite and MLK Memorial in D.C.
Han Solo frozen in Carbonite and MLK… frozen in carbonite?!

Best Lead Generation Tips from 22 PPC Experts

Lead generation using PPC is complicated. From offers, to Adwords, to landing pages, to lead quality, there are myriad of ways to mis-step and miss the mark. So what makes lead-gen campaigns effective? What’s the biggest mistake that you could make? I asked 22 of the top Pay Per Click experts those two questions and compiled their responses here.

Ready for a knowledge drop? You might want to bookmark this page. :)

**You can follow all 22 experts on this twitter list. Thanks @PPCJedi for compiling.**

Brad Geddes (@bgTheory)bradgeddes-sm1_2_

  • Best TipGo local! Searchers like to see their geography in the ad and on the landing page for most lead gen type companies. There are some exceptions, such as education when the person is often trying to leave the state. However, no one buys ‘national insurance’; they buy Seattle or Washington insurance. In addition, your campaigns often convert differently by location, so when you go local, its easier to work with local based bidding or exclude areas.   Going local can also help you engage users by other factors, such as income levels, the type of residence commonly bought in the area, and a host of other census type data. 
  • Biggest Mistake – Using a single landing page for all your keywords. I can’t count the number of times that a company might have 100 campaigns and 100,000 keywords and a single destination URL. I often see these pages or templates tested over and over again and can become exceptionally fine tuned; however, by just connecting to the user at a keyword, industry, or geographic level, it can significantly increase the conversion rates. 

Chris Haleua (@chrishaleua)chris

  • Best Tip – Focus on the various micro-conversion rates beyond the initial click and final conversion. Bidding and ad testing can make a big difference but they are not a panacea for the other PPC problems that can only be solved by maintaining accountability beyond the click. Examples: Find the bottleneck buried in fallout analysis. It is fine to have a top priority KPI like CPA that you respond to first, but when a keyword or ad has no conversions to calculate conversion efficiency, fall back to the other micro-conversion rates to find other optimizations worth spending time on. 
  • BONUS Best Tip 2When conversion signals dry up, filter for zero and find more opportunities by sorting the next metric closest to the bottom line. Invest a little extra work to estimate revenue from leads based on their type and close rates. Moving beyond CPA to estimated ROAS can improve the data-driven nature of advertising investment. Then fall back to close rates, completion rates, bounce rates, and finally CTR. Examples: What is the conversion rate from landing page to lead started? (Refine ad copy to qualify visitors before they click). What is the conversion rate from lead started to lead completed? (Simplify the form to balance detail with speed). What is the conversion rate from lead completed to sale closed? (Coordinate efforts between advertising and sales teams).
  • Biggest Mistake Avoid blindly accepting whatever landing pages that the client already has. Don’t just try to squeeze profitability out of an inefficient conversion process that was doomed from the start. Never underestimate how a little time spent on testing designs up front can save countless hours on SEM optimization later. The only lead gen campaigns that can sustain success are the ones that combine relevant ads with data-driven bids before the click and solid business plans with an aligned site after the click. 
  • BONUS Biggest Mistake 2 – Adobe Target and Optimizely are my 2 favorite tools for this job, but there are many others. The cost and learning curves of these tools pay for themselves quickly. During the early phases of any client engagement, discuss how much time and money clients are willing to invest in the essential first step of design testing. Some retailers might complain that testing tools only demonstrate a small part of the larger site redesigns that need to be funded in the long term. Smaller lead gen campaigns can avoid those excuses for caving in to inertia of the current site. Lead gen can be much more agile with even the simplest of testing tools. 
Robert Brady (@robert_brady)robert
  • Best Tip – Know your audience deeper than the keywords they search. Go beyond age, gender, income bracket. Get to know them on an emotional level. Discover their pains & passions at work. That will improve your targeting, your ad copy & your landing pages. Want to go even further? Learn their educational background. What are their hobbies outside of work? What do they enjoy reading? These will give you even more opportunities.
  • Biggest Mistake – Imprecise/inaccurate targeting (mostly due to not knowing your audience). Leads to lots of unqualified clicks & poor leads.

Pamela Lund (@Pamela_Lundpam

  • Best Tip – For effective lead generation campaigns I recommend telling people exactly what you want them to do in your ad text or on your banners. Frequently people you’re targeting with lead gen campaigns are in information gathering mode. You need to get them to click on your ad by offering them the information they are looking for, but once they get to your site you need them to take action rather than just reading the information and leaving. So you want to specifically tell people to use the contact form or enter their email address in your ads. By setting the stage in your ad with a call to action and an offer to provide information, you will get a strong CTR but people will be more likely to do what you want them to on your landing page.
  • Biggest Mistake – The biggest mistake I see is not testing landing pages or testing too many landing page changes at once. Simply moving a contact form or reducing the number of required fields on a form can dramatically increase conversion rate. When you start testing, focus on finding the layout that converts the best. Once you get the layout optimized, test the language you use and the offer you provide. For instance, does your page convert better when you offer a whitepaper or infographic in exchange for users submitting their information?
Nicole Mintiens (@Tregesynicole
  • Best Tip – Start with a wide search funnel, then refine and target. Begin by capturing (and most importantly TRACKING) a large audience and observe their search behavior. Once significant data has accrued, analyze search queries, refine campaigns with negative keywords and pause/remove under-performing keywords and ad text. Segment ad groups, write more targeted ad text and test variations of lead capture specific landing pages. Extra credit: Give visitors who didn’t complete the form on your initial landing page the one-two punch by remarketing to them on the display network and their Facebook feed
  • Biggest Mistake – #1 = Little (to zero) or incorrectly applied conversion tracking. Very Close 2nd = No landing page testing and iteration/optimization process. As Paid Analysts, SEM Specialists, Search Gurus, PPC Wizards [insert additional titles associated with our expertise] we can do stellar jobs leading herds to water but we can’t force them to drink if the landing page is a conversion wasteland.

Mark Kennedy (@markkennedysem)Mark_pic

  • Biggest Mistake – I’ll answer Q2 first since it leads to Q1… The biggest mistake with lead gen PPC campaigns is thinking the keywords and ads will do all the work. Yes, they will drive qualified visitors for your service (if researched and set up correctly), but the magic happens on the landing page. People send these visitors to the home page or a broad services page, when in actuality, they should utilize a nice landing page with calls to action, support assets or links, etc. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen a site (or landing page) not even have a phone number. Or bury it down in the footer. If the end goal is to get a visitor to contact you, make that very easy to do. And with CMS’s like wordpress or programs like Unbounce, there’s no excuse for a bad landing page.
  • Best Tip – So with all that being said, my #1 tip is to focus on the landing page and CRO. A good keyword and bad landing page will never convert. A bad keyword and great landing page has a fighting chance. And bare minimum, make the phone number and/or contact form prominent and accessible. Then once you have a decent LP, test variations and test them again. Always try and “beat the champ”.
Garrett McGregor (@mcgregor212IMG_3066
  • Best Tip –  Focus your attention and energy on what’s working in the account. Test all aspects of the campaigns, continue to optimize so you understand your target market.
  • Biggest Mistake  – Adgroup and keyword level structure not following best practices. A poorly thrown together campaign will get poor results. Campaigns should be well organized with adgroups that contain relevant keywords, ad copy and landing pages that match the searchers intentions.

Melissa Mackey (@Mel66)Mel_2012

  • Best Tip – Track obsessively. Follow your leads through the sales pipeline as much as possible. It’s not easy or cheap, but it is well worth the investment.
  • Biggest Mistake – Awful landing pages! Pages with no call to action, with the form buried or absent, or pages lacking a value proposition (i.e. “what’s in it for me?”). I also dislike pages with modal windows that you can’t close – that’s an instant bounce for your visitors.

Joe Kerschbaum (@joekerschbaum)joe

  • Best Tip – Campaign structure. Implementing the proper keywords, ad group structure, and match types can improve CTR and conversion rate, but more importantly they can reduce irrelevant traffic and improve lead quality. You don’t want to clog up your sales team with poor-quality leads.
  • Biggest Mistake – Overlooking conversion optimization. I’ve seen well-structured accounts delivering users to terrible landing pages. You have to be thinking about pre-click and post-click opportunities.
John Ellis (@JohnWellis)john
  • Best Tip – My top tip for effective PPC lead generation campaigns is simple forms. It’s important for landing page forms to ask for the bare minimum. Often that bare minimum is name, phone number, email address, and little else. Users are uncomfortable giving too much information. Make it easy for them
  • Biggest Mistake – One of the biggest mistakes I see with PPC lead-generation campaigns is under-testing. PPC includes constant testing. That means constantly testing multiple landing pages, multiple ads, different call-to-actions, etc. Once a clear winner has evolved, throw out the losing ad and add a new one to the rotation.
James Svoboda (@Realicity)James-Svoboda-sq-800
  • Best Tip – The best tip that I can give someone who’s developing a PPC lead-gen campaign is to take into account how your Audience, Content and Conversion Goals work together.  I refer to this as a Liner Engagement Model.  For Search PPC campaigns these models take into account how the keywords work with the text ads to identify and shape the searcher intent, and then how they work with the landing pages and the conversions that you are trying to generate for this audience.  It should also take into account the geography of the searcher (city, state, nation or global) as well as device type (desktop, tablet or mobile phone), conversion type (call or web lead) and the mental match of searcher with keyword, ad and landing page.  Too often I audit PPC accounts that others have built and find campaigns and ad groups that are convoluted with loosely related keywords.  If you don’t have a defined segment that you are targeting, then you will produce lower converting traffic.  I gave a presentation at SearchFest a few month back on this and the powerpoint goes deeper into the elements of these Linear Models.
  • Biggest Mistake – Not creating Linear Models earlier. J No seriously though, I’ve been guilty of dropping too many loosely related keywords into an existing ad group instead of creating a new one, or sending that traffic to a loosely related landing page.  This is one reason why I dislike standard Broad Match so much, you just don’t have the control over the visitor journey as well as with Exact, Phrase or Modified Broad.  There is no better way to kill your conversion rates on a lead generation campaign than sending it to a bad page… unless it’s to the right page but the lead capture form is broken or the phone number is wrong.  Yea, made that mistake before.

Johnathan Dane (@JohnathanDane)johnathan

  • Best Tip –  It has to be dedicated landing pages with a great focus on conversion rate optimization (CRO). So many PPC companies and individuals out there focus on bidding and/or ad creation, hoping that they can nail it perfectly and hit that CPA or lead volume goal, not knowing that it usually comes with sacrifices in either margin or volume. There’s no shortage of advertisers that send traffic directly to websites with either no clear call-to-action or incentive to capture that lead and it’s really unfortunate. They might be getting results, but they’re just not reaching their true potential. The biggest wins that I’ve found are when you can be super specific with the message match of keyword, ad, and landing page. If you’re able to double the conversion rate through CRO testing, then you’re now bringing in twice as many leads at 50% of the cost, all while you’re still spending the same monthly ad budget as before.
  • Biggest Mistake – In my opinion, the biggest mistakes are not your usual “red flag” broad match keywords, but actually where you’re sending your traffic to. Lead-generation PPC can work if you have an awesome site, but most advertisers lack big time on creativity or the ease of conversion for the visitor. It’s disappointing at the same time, because you know PPC is an amazing tool at growing businesses, but many people think it’s just a turn-key solution when there’s actually a lot more work involved than what you’d think. So to answer your question :) The biggest mistake I see in PPC lead-generation campaigns is not having a specific landing page to handle the targeted traffic your creating.

Aaron Levy (@bigalittlea)aaron

  • Best Tip – Speak the language of your customers. Chances are very few people in your target audience are searching for specific head terms; they’re seeking to solve a problem. Make sure your keywords reflect the “problem” your audience may have, and that you’re effectively answering it with your ads.
  • Biggest “yeesh” – Ignoring (or abusing) the Google Display Network. Simply cloning search campaigns to the GDN isn’t gonna cut it, nor is turning a blind eye.  Google released a myriad of targeting features over the last year or so that can really help you hand pick your audience and get them interested in your brand before they even begin searching. 

Sam James (@SamuelDJames)samuel

  • Best Tip – My number one tip for effective PPC lead-generation is to gain as much insight as I can of how the offer is worth the investment of divulging contact information, and for whom. Without this insight, you start with too many targets, too little in the means of persuasive copy, and confusion that can take months and years to work through. As is always the case, it also doesn’t hurt to be on the same page as your client.
  • Biggest Mistake – The biggest mistake I see made in PPC lead-generation is decisions made from CPL alone, without treating every impression opportunity based on achieving the end goal of the client. I’ve seen too much damage done by a focus on a volume of leads, which made the entire department seem to be doing better than it was, hurting the whole company. A lack of this focus, can also lead to constantly shifting priorities and initiatives, because of overcorrections. 3)      My Twitter handle is @SamuelDJames 

Heather Cooan (@HeatherCooanheather

  • Best Tip – Tight chain of relevance from search term to ad copy to audience segment. I’ve been known to say that digital advertising success is 70% account structure and 30% data. I think this holds true across all verticals, between lead gen and eComm, and across all digital advertising channels. You must get the right message to the right people, which means a tight, granular account structure with consistent messaging based on data.
  • Biggest Mistake – The biggest mistake for many is avoidance of less restrictive match types. Often times lead gen campaigns are trying to reach a very specific segment of searchers, which means lots of one off converting queries that come in off of broad and modified broad match keywords. Without these less restrictive match types it’s just about impossible to cover all your basis and either don’t convert or leave opportunity on the table.
Greg Young (@PPCJedi)greg
  • Best Tip – There is a lot of value in realizing that not all searches are created equally; as a result, marketers shouldn’t use the same single offer for all traffic, but rather utilize different assets/offers depending on the keywords that trigger the ad.  Your visitor’s search may have been a: question, solution, brand, product, symptom, or problem.  Make sure that your offering/page matches what their query suggests they are looking for.  Some sample offerings based on queries could be: If query denotes a question, offer a guide; if query is about a competitors brand, offer a comparison; if query is about the product offer a trial.  Organize your keywords so that you’ll know what the visitor is searching for and then be able to serve up a lead capture page that better serves your visitors.
  • Biggest Mistake – One of the big mistakes I find with PPC lead generation is that companies will generate leads without having tracking in place to measure quality.  It is worth the time and money to get tracking properly implemented, and tied to your CRM so that you can optimize your campaigns for Quality Leads rather than just maximizing quantity.  If you don’t know which leads are turning into prospects or sales, then you can’t focus budget on your best sales performers.
Ginny Marvin (@ginnymarvin)ginny
  • Best Tip – I’m sure lots of other respondents will have great #1 tips, instead I’ll offer some avenues to test. I would recommend testing Twitter lead gen cards, which allow users to submit their information without leaving Twitter. The ad format is user-friendly, and Twitter’s targeting options continue to get more sophisticated. The caveat is it can be time intensive to manage and optimize Twitter campaigns, so be prepared to dedicate resources to it. Another avenue that looks promising is from PerfectAudience. They just started beta testing a product that allows companies to retarget each others’ audiences to reach new prospects. It’s a double opt-in program, so companies are in control of who they let retarget to their audiences and auctions are managed in a way that others don’t bid up the original cookie owner’s CPCs.
  • Biggest Mistake – Not testing landing pages. I’ve seen companies use the same landing page template for years, still. And when the CPAs are adequate, I get it, I do, but there are so many helpful tools and companies out there to make landing page testing easier for those that don’t have in-house resources. Every lead gen initiative should have landing page testing factored into the budget and timeline. Your CPAs, and sales team, will thank you.

David Szetela (@Szetela)david

  • Best Tip – At least test call extensions (where the phone number appears adjacent to the ad on the search results page) and click-to-call (where the only option when the ad appears on a smartphone is to make a phone call. For many advertisers, phone leads outnumber web-form-submitted leads.
  • Biggest Mistake – Too many required fields on web forms. Every additional field depresses conversion rate – or said another, each field that is elminated boosts conversion rate.
Martin Röttgerding (@bloomarty)martin
  • Best Tip – With lead generation the conversion side of the story is often crystal clear: A lead is a lead. But only if it’s a new one – so don’t count conversions twice. The easiest way to do this is to just focus on converted clicks. More importantly, don’t pay again for a click when it’s already converted. Remarketing Lists for Search Ads (RLSA) are great for that. You don’t even have to put new remarketing tags on your site. The AdWords conversion tracking code doubles as a remarketing tag and covers the only audience you need for this. So go ahead and use it to make a simple remarketing list of people who converted. Then add it to your campaign and exclude the audience. Or just add it to see how much money you’re currently wasting on people who’ve already converted. :)
  • Biggest Mistake – My all-time favorite mistake is to have a campaign lose a large percentage of impressions due to budget constraints. If you can’t raise your budget, simply lower your bids (this goes for CPA bids as well). This will lead to lower ad positions, which will in turn lead to lower CTR, meaning you’ll need more impressions per click – no big deal when you have so many unused impressions anyway. In essence you’ll get more clicks for the same investment. On one hand it’s a big mistake, on the other hand it’s a great opportunity. Don’t miss it!
Richard Fergie (@richardfergie)richard
  • Best Tip – If running global campaigns, be *very* careful about lead quality from the content network.
  • Bonus Best Tip – Offering something (e.g. a whitepaper) in exchange for a lead increases conversion rate. But I’ve found the number of AAA quality leads stays about the same – these guys are such hot prospects that they’ll sign up anyway. Having a bigger pool of slightly lower quality leads isn’t normally a bad thing though.
  • Bonus Bonus Best Tip – Find out what they do with the leads once you’ve generated them. Make sure they can handle the deluge during busy times or lots of money can be wasted. And remember that clients hate a lead-follower-upperer (what is the right word?) sitting doing nothing; speak to them about changing efficiency targets during quiet periods.
  • Biggest Mistake – See “Best Tip” above :-(

John A. Lee (@john_a_lee)johnlee

  • Best Tip – Don’t be afraid to try new campaign types (a la beta features, etc.) or new channels (display, social, etc.). Time and time again I find I can take my lead gen performance to another level with new channels. Of course, test – your performance may vary.
  • Biggest Mistake – No call tracking. Online conversions are a big deal. But 9 times out of 10, phone calls are as big of a deal or bigger. Track ’em. Leverage call extensions and get a 3rd party tracking tool in place (Mongoose Metrics, ifbyphone, etc.).
  • Bonus Biggest Mistake – Poor landing pages or offer. The foundation of lead gen is a quality landing page that converts. The lead form is still a transaction – what will the visitor receive in exchange? Some advertisers are lucky to have brands or services that will attract leads no matter what happens. We are not all so lucky. Review what you can offer the visitor in exchange for their information. Free trial? Demo? White paper? Maybe a contest (tread lightly here)?
Kayla Kurtz (@one800kaylakayla
  • Best Tip – Accurate & thorough attribution modeling! Too often one medium or another (could be PPC, but maybe not) doesn’t get the credit it deserves when it comes to the ultimate goal of generating quality leads. If PPC played any part in causing a consumer to submit their information to a brand, then PPC should at least get some assist points. Absolutely focus on the bottom line and what medium (hopefully PPC) is driving the most last-click leads, but don’t short sight yourself or your campaigns by not fully attributing all leads to all mediums that helped push them.
  • Biggest Mistake – Not enough focus on the *entire* funnel. It is certainly expected that the bottom of the funnel (aka – near closing) leads are more valuable, but how do you think those leads got there? They started somewhere in the funnel picture and it’s highly unlikely that they came in nearly ready to buy, so from keyword scope to ad copy messaging to ROAS/ROI goals and reporting — loading fresh, less-ready-to-buy leads in to the funnel is crucial.

What tip is your favorite? Do you have your own tip that wasn’t mentioned? Leave it below and I’ll add the best tips to this article!

Hat tip to @ArnieK for the idea. :)

New Facebook Campaign Structure: How To Use Ad Sets

Facebook’s new campaign structure was rolled out throughout March and has been in my opinion, a huge addition to my accounts. Before this new upgrade, you had to individually setup each campaign depending on what type of audience you wanted to target. Of course to make life easier you would use power editor to duplicate campaigns, but you would find sooner or later that you had too many campaigns to keep track of.

Aside from keeping track of campaigns, it was extremely difficult to keep accounts organized. The best way to keep accounts organized was to make sure you had an effective labeling system for your campaigns and ads. With the new Facebook campaign structure, ad sets have made PPC Management more simple and better organized.

There are now three ad levels (Campaign, Ad Sets, Ads) compared to the two prior levels (Campaign & Ads) before the upgrade.  You now have the option of setting up campaigns with a specific objective and creating ad sets labeled in a way that will best fit your personal or clients needs.

To better explain and demonstrate the effectiveness of Facebook’s new campaign structure, I will create a fake headphones company called “Beets Headphones” and layout an example scenario. To start, Beets Headphones has three markets they serve; California, New York, and Florida. Based on these three markets I will create and explain their campaign strategy.

Campaign Structure:

When setting up a campaign it’s critical to set the appropriate objective depending on your clients or business goals. In this example our goal is measuring sales, so we will be using the website conversions objective to track performance so we can measure our ROI. Since we will be advertising in three different markets my campaign structure will contain three different campaigns based off of the three markets; California, New York, and Florida.

Facebook Campaign Objectives


Having the account structured in this way will help me organize audiences by location and keep my different markets separated from each other. Before Facebook’s new structure if you wanted to keep track of your campaigns by location you would have to make sure the campaign included the market name. For example if the location was Utah, the campaign would have to be labeled “Beets Lookalike (Utah) or something similar. Leaving out the location from the campaign name led to confusion especially if the account was serving more than one location.

Facebook New Campaign Structure

Ad Set Structure:

Within each campaign you can have several ad sets, which allows you to organize and separate your target audiences into separate groups. This method or strategy is comparable to Google Adwords adgroups. Similar to Adword’s adgroups you can set unique budgets for each ad set. With ad sets you can also set ad schedules depending on your audience and advertising needs.

As I’ve used ad sets it seems as though the best way to utilize them is to group your ad sets according to your different target audiences. For the Beets Headphones example we will be using several different target audiences so we will create an ad set for each. The ad sets will go as follows:

• Email Subscribers
• Lookalike Audiences
• Facebook Fans
• Friends of Friends
• People not Connected (People who haven’t Liked our FB page)
• Interest Targeting (Interests we select; music, sports, iPod…etc)

Having all your target audiences in their own ad sets allows us to create ads specifically for those audiences. It will also allow us to view all three of our target markets separately. Instead of browsing through endless amounts of campaigns, I can click on the California campaign and view all my target audiences associated with California. Making analyzing my data and reporting a lot easier.

Facebook New Ad Set Structure

Same Old Ad Structure:

Not too much has changed with ads. They still have the same function as before, you set your creative, imagery, target audience…etc but as we mentioned throughout this post ads are now better organized for the ad set in which they are placed. Multiple ads can be placed in a single ad set which will allow you to test different creative and images against each other.

For Beets Headphones, each ad set will have unique ads that will allow us to better differentiate our creative based on our target audiences. Our Facebook Fans ad set will have ads that are specifically tailored to our fans and could be used to introduce new products or get customer referrals, while our Friends of Friends ad set could be used to offer a special discount or promo code. The different variations are endless and ultimately depend on your business or clients needs and goals.

Facebook Campaigns Ads Structure

It’s nice to see Facebook continuing to better their advertising platform. Aside from now having to change account structures for each of my clients, the new change is for the better. It has helped me better analyze data, performance and navigate through each account.

What are some different ways you structure your campaigns?

Using Facebook Lookalike Audience Targeting To Increase Ad Reach

For months you’ve been running Facebook ads and may be feeling like you’ve exhausted every targeting option Facebook crosshair-symbol-34616813130offers. You have used the various targeting options by uploading custom audience lists, inserting precise interests, selecting broad categories and targeting fans or friends of friends through advanced connection targeting. Even after all of these targeting options you are looking for different ways to boost volume. Is this the case? Well here is a helpful solution.

Facebook has made it easy to take your custom audience (emails, UIDs or phone numbers) and generate custom lists to expand your reach so you can have a new and focused volume of people to target. Working for a PPC lead generation company it has been important to explore all of Facebook’s targeting options. Facebook’s solution for more volume is creating a Facebook Lookalike Audience Targeting list. Facebook takes your existing custom audience list(s) and generates a similar list of new people with similar attributes, interests, characteristics and more.

How to Create a Lookalike Audience:

 1. Creating a Lookalike audience is fast and easy. All you have to do is go into your Facebook “Power Editor” and select the “Audiences” tab.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 10.33.36 AM

2. To create a Lookalike audience you need to have already uploaded an email list, customer phone numbers, UIDs, or mobile advertiser IDs from your business contacts. These need to be uploaded in a spreadsheet and in .csv or .txt format.

3. Once you have an audience created, select the “Audiences” tab and select the list you want to create the lookalike audience list from. Click the list and go to “Create Similar Audience”.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 10.38.14 AM

 4. Next you will have the option to create a list optimized for “Similarity” or “Greater Reach”. You will have the option to select what country you want Facebook to generate the list in. Optimizing for “Similarity” will give you a more specific list related to your original custom audience (email list). These people will match your customer profile better. Optimizing for “Greater Reach” will generate a more broad customer profile and this list will be less specific compared to “Similarity”.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 10.45.16 AM

5. After you select which type of list to optimize for you can expect a time frame of up to 24 hours for the new list to populate. When the list is created successfully it will show up in the “Audiences” tab along with your other lists. Remember you can create several lookalike campaigns and create two lists both “Similar” and “Greater Reach” to expand your marketing campaigns.

Note: Lists may overlap so be sure to exclude one from the other when creating campaigns.

Creating new ads using your lookalike list is easy. Create your ads as usual and when selecting an audience just type in the name of the list you want. Boom, it’s that easy. When selecting a location for your ad just remember what location your list was populated for. For example you don’t want to create a list in the United States but then in your ad target Canada. You can add additional targeting (interests, locations, categories…etc) on top of the lookalike audience list but it may limit the amount of people who see your ad.

Screen Shot 2014-01-16 at 11.49.08 AM


As I’ve created lookalike audiences I have found it to be a great opportunity to expand volume. I would recommend targeting lookalike audience lists after you’ve tested Facebook’s other targeting options. Lists that are optimized for “Similarity” will be more precise and relevant to your business, I recommend starting with “Similarity” then if needed test the “Greater Reach” option. A reminder is to test these targeting options before going all in on them.

PPC Lead Generation Landing Pages: Five Elements of a Great Page

Some people call landing pages “squeeze pages”. I don’t. I call them landing pages because when I think of “squeeze” I think of Darth Vader making orange juice…

PPC Squeeze Page
Fresh Squeezed PPC.


But that is NOT the point of this post. The point of this post is to explain the FIVE elements of great Pay Per Click lead generation landing pages. Lead-gen is our bread and butter and we’ve cycled through many iterations of landing pages. Our experience boils down to five things:

1. Build Trust

The look and feel of the page have a significant affect on this. Clean design goes a long way. Other elements that help build trust are trust symbols (BBB, certifications, awards, credits, ect), testimonials, phone number, address, and social signals (G+, FB, and Twitter follower counts). Though not always included a privacy policy close to your form is a great way to assure people you won’t abuse their information. Did you know that including a privacy policy improves quality score too? Placing all this near your form typically improves conversion too.

2. Overcome Objections

What is it that holds your customers back from buying? Is it the high price point? Then show the value in your product. Are there many substitute goods in your market? Do a side by side comparison highlighting your strengths. Does your product seem hard to install? Show a video of someone installing the product. Address their concerns and overcome them so they are more willing to take action. This question helps guide the content strategy which we will discuss next.

3. Relevant Copy

When someone searches for “fresh squeezed orange juice” your landing page needs to talk about “fresh squeezed orange juice”! Pretty simple right? Not so much. Beyond that you need to know WHO it is you’re talking to, including their demographics and pyschographics, and tailor the page to them. The difficult part with this is replicating across dozens of keywords. We usually go with themes or use dynamic keyword insertion. We’ve also used dynamic city insertion with good results. In the end, relevancy helps both Quality Score and conversion. We’ve found that following the “SEO optimized page” practices will land you high QS marks for landing page.

4. Focused

Eliminate distractions is the name of the game. Take off that navigation! Don’t ask for more info in the form than you need! Captcha? No way! Once you determine what the goal of the page is (capture the lead) then everything on the page should help move them to take that action. How your form is structured is a big part of this; if you need a lot of information split it up into multiple steps so it seems less daunting, in multi-step forms ask for personal info last, put first and last name into one field, don’t ask how they found you, etc.

5. Trackable

Knowledge is power. That is especially true with the data Adwords and landing pages can give us. You should start with Analytics and tie it back to Adwords to see how each keyword performs. However, the key piece of data that many marketers look past is tracking the quality of leads and tying that back to Adwords data. Leads/conversions are not created equal so knowing which are of high value is paramount. We not only track that but also automate the bidding of lead quality through Marin Software (Avalaunch Media PPC is Marin Certified yay!).

BONUS – Don’t forget about your thank you page! This page is more than just a place for confirmation code. It’s an opportunity to upsell, reinforce your brand, tell them what to expect when they get a call, have them subscribe to your blog or social pages, or more. We should call these pages “More-than Thank You Pages”

Creating a landing page is like going to bat. With past experience you try to hit a home run on each page, however you’re not going to hit it over the wall every time. Once you’ve created your page you need to test and optimize your page to continually improve your conversion rate! Eventually you’ll knock it out of the park.

Adwords Needs More Security, Much More!

*note, I’m completely joking*

I have beef with Adwords. Not grass fed beef which is dang good. But beef that I could possibly give the wrong person access to my account! Right now, when I grant someone access to my account/MCC I have to get to do this:

  1. Navigate to the Account Access tab
  2. Click on +Users
  3. Type their email in
  4. Type their name in
  5. Choose the Access level
  6. Send them the invite… Then they are in, right? Nope. Luckily I have to  get to do more…
  7. BONUS – Wait for them to accept
  8. BONUS – If I take Google’s advice I should contact this person via phone or face-to-face and confirm he or she accepted the invite.
  9. BONUS – Then and only then should I grant this person access.

Seriously Adwords??? I have to grant access to the access I already gave out, ONLY ONCE? There needs to be better security on Adwords accounts than this. This isn’t my bank account (which only has a simple login) this is for PPC! There needs to be more granting of access. Utah PPC companies should unite!

Proposed Granting of Access (SRSLY?)

Here’s what I propose for granting access to accounts:

  • Send the user an invite to the account (current)
  • User accepts invite to account (current)
  • Grant access to invited user (current)
  • User confirms granted access (NEW)
  • Confirm the users confirmation of granted access (NEW)
  • User approves confirmation of confirmation of granted access (NEW)
  • Enter a CAPTCHA code to finalize the approval of confirmation of confirmation of granted access (NEW)

We’ll title this the Security Redundancy Special Loop Yield or SRSYL? for short. This will help take false accesses from 0 down to 0. Or maybe lower because the process has too many steps! But hey, we’re ok with that as long as the account is protected.

Don’t Stop There

In all my time of managing accounts you know how many times I’ve heard of people being hacked? Zero times! You know what that means? Our guard is down and we need more security. What could we do? More Captchas! We don’t want robots getting into our accounts so what if we did something like this:


Call Me Maybe?

But if security is really important to Adwords then they won’t stop at SRSLY? and Multiple Captchas… they need our number! I mean, everyone else is doing it so just grab our number for securities sake.

The best way to do get our number? Have us confirm it with another phone number!

*note, I do actually appreciate that my accounts have never been hacked*


PPC Takeaways From Pubcon

Besides the “Awesome” yeti shirts and amazing buffets there was much to takeaway from this years Pubcon conference. I was fortunate to attend and represent Utah PPC. Many of the industry leaders in PPC attended. They shared their tips and tricks to help us master Adwords and take accounts to the next level. There were plenty of interesting speakers. Among them were; David Szetela, John Ellis and Kevin Lee. Many of these speakers had several opportunities to speak in numerous sessions and were also available after to answer questions one on one. Sitting in on as many sessions as I could here are a few of my PPC takeaways from Pubcon.


As PPC managers we are constantly analyzing data and generating reports for our clients. John Ellis offered great insights on creating automated reports using Google analytics data. John stressed using Google Sheets and app scripts together to create custom reports. Since most of us have clients with different goals and needs, these reports make it easy to customize and include different data for each PPC account. These reports can be tailored to each client and provide only the information that matters. The reports can be customized to include different templates, business logos, color schemes…etc. Using app scripts and Google Sheets can change the way we do reporting. To learn more visit Advantages of using Google Analytics to create reports using app scripts include:

  • Fast & Easy to gather data
  • No limitations as far as building a template
  • Custom Designs, visualizations, dashboards
  • Live Reports

Watch a Google Analytic professional Now

David Szetela was the “Conversion Optimizer” King! If there were any PPC managers out there wondering about Conversion Optimizer and missed Pubcon, Szetela’s session was informative. So what is Conversion Optimizer? Conversion Optimizer Changes your bids automatically every time an ad is displayed. What you do is set a target CPA goal and CO takes control. CO will find the optimal CPC to reach your target CPA. Not every account is eligible for CO, Google sends out an alert within Adwords when a campaign is eligible. Among the various tips David shared here are some important takeaways:

  •  CO is most effective with a lot of conversions
  • Wait until you’ve reached 30 conversion or more over a span of 30 days. This allows Google to work more effectively.
  • After 2-3 weeks regulate by changing Target CPA.

Screen Shot 2013-10-31 at 11.21.20 AM

 One of the main PPC topics at Pubcon was Google’s new Adrank Change that took place on October 22. Ad extensions will now impact your Adrank. In the words of Kevin Lee, “Its time to test ad extensions to see which ones produce best results and how they will give you the ability to trigger ads or not.” By including ad extensions into your campaigns there will be an increased opportunity to achieve a higher Quality Score. The pros of having an increased Quality Score are; the possibility to experience lower CPCs at the same position, lowered billed CPC or a better Average position. Kevin Lee emphasized that an increase in Quality Score can lift conversions. If searchers find your ads and landing pages to be more relevant you can experience:

  • Higher Average PositionsScreen Shot 2013-10-31 at 11.23.48 AM
  • Less Expensive Clicks
  • Higher Conversion Rates
  • Increased Volume with better ROI

Before ending Kevin encouraged everyone to stay educated on best practices. To find more information on the new Adrank change and recommendations for using extensions follow the link below.

As with any conference there is a plethora of notes taken and to dos. The next task is to put those notes to good use by testing new ideas, tools and theories. Thanks to all the Pubcon speakers who shared their insights and strategies.

Any other insights or takeaways please don’t hesitate to share.





5 Simple Ways To Build Trust With Your PPC Clients

1) Setting Client Expectations:

From day one it is critical to give the client a layout or plan of exactly what needs to happen to create a profitable and successful PPC account. Most of our clients are interested PPC lead gen so we make sure they are well informed of the steps needed to ensure a profitable campaign. “My campaigns have been running for two days, I’ve spent $150 bucks, why am I not getting new leads?” says the client. We all have been there, the client has the right to expect new leads but PPC doesn’t always act as a “Go” button and automatically produce results overnight. As we meet with new and existing clients we cannot ignore setting realistic expectations. As we set expectations we eliminate a long list of problems for the future. Expectations will vary from client to client but we need to explain clearly the process of setting up an account, letting it run and optimizing as data is collected.

2) Consistent Communication:

Throughout each month campaigns may experience highs and lows, some clients may appreciate knowing if there have been significant changes in results or strategy. Some clients may want to know where a group of keywords climbed in CPC and a plan of action moving forward. You will also encounter clients who want to give you a specific budget and just require you sending them a monthly report.  The purpose of keeping your clients up to date is letting them know you are fully invested in their account and you care for the success of their business. Here are a few updates that may be worth sharing about the account:


  • Received an increased amount of conversions at a low CPA
  • Sharing your expert advice by recommending strategies and what outcomes should be expected.
  • Inform clients of current struggles and what steps can help produce better outcomes


Consistent client communication outside of sending monthly reports or monthly phone calls can help increase trust levels.

3) Act Swiftly to Requests:

As we communicate with clients through weekly emails or monthly phone calls we should act swiftly to the suggestions, ideas Dwight Shruteor needs our clients ask of us. Acting fast will ensure we care for their business and want them to succeed. I recently had a client suggest we try some new ad copy strategies and he requested I email him a list of ideas. After the phone call I had a few minutes to spare and while my ideas were fresh I Immediately thought of new ad copy strategies. Once finished I emailed the ideas and didn’t think twice about it. I received an email from the client regarding my ideas and how pleased he was for my quick response. We can’t always respond so quickly but as we make it a priority we will improve our accounts.

4) Don’t Click Send, Pick Up the Phone:

Email is one of the greatest tools we have as PPC account managers. Consequently it can sometimes be a tool that prevents us to from communicating with our clients on a personal level. It is beneficial to give clients an occasional phone call and touch bases aside from regular scheduled meetings. This phone call can deliver updates on the account or suggest strategies to make the account more profitable. Now let me be very clear, I’m not suggesting calling each client every week but rather an occasional phone call offering your professional insight on their account from time to time. This phone call could be a response to a recent email or even a question you may have about the account. As long as we are keeping in contact with our clients and keeping them in the light, they will further trust us with their money.

5) Search For Common Ground:

While interacting with clients on a business level it is also helpful to connect on a personal level. Now I’m not suggesting you find out where they live but rather finding common ground so both of you can better relate to each other. These common interests can be hobbies, what they did over the weekend, even their favorite football team…etc. something to break the ice occasionally while communicating. Most of us don’t have time to sit and chat about our recent waiver wire pickup in fantasy football but building a relationship includes exchanging things we enjoy or have passion for. Doing this will open up increased levels of trust because the clients will feel like they know you because they know you they will be more likely to refer you to business contacts.


Implementing all of these steps could be hard to measure but they will help improve your personal and agency’s branding. As we try to strengthen and aid our client relationships we will ultimately build trust. This trust will lead clients to expand business opportunities with you and introduce their close business contacts and friends. The outcomes are endless.