Google Ads Display & Search Network: SHOW UP
With more than 80% of search traffic worldwide and a vast network of publishers with popular web pages who are looking for advertisers, Google is the big boy on the block.
Google also employs a sophisticated advertising platform that allows advertisers to target specific groups of people with targeted messaging that is likely to resonate with that audience.
With the ability to direct such specialized messaging to people at different stages of the customer journey, we dedicate considerable effort in determining your customer avatar (ideal customer) and writing ad copy that is appropriate for the audience temperature (cold, warm or hot) and where they are in your marketing funnel (top, middle or bottom).
For top-funnel, cold audiences, video or rich-image ads on the Display Network will introduce your business to people who have never heard of you before and may not even be aware of the products or services you provide. Here, we focus on a problem that your avatar is having that you can solve for them.
At mid-funnel, text ads on the Search Network are served to warm audiences who are now aware of you (because of your display ads) and have entered certain search phrases into the Google search engine. These potential customers aren’t looking for your product or service—rather, they’re actively searching for a solution to their problem. Ad copy at this stage is result-focused.
At the bottom of your funnel are the hot leads. These are people who have purchased from you before, visited your website or social media page, liked a post, filled out a form or taken some other action that indicates they’re ready to buy. Customized remarketing campaigns on the Display Network are a great way to drive home conversions. Ad copy to hot audiences is product or service-centric.
More About the Display Network
Forecast estimates vary but, by all accounts, the fastest-growing advertising medium worldwide is digital display advertising (banner ads). For display, Google offers the Google Display Network (GDN) which provides a means of reaching millions of websites via their network of AdSense publishers and websites. GDN gives us the ability to put out static or animated image ads as well as rich media and video ads, rather than just plain text, which offers a stronger ability to brand your business than with the search network alone. Google estimates that display ads reach 90% of internet users.
Not so long ago, this was accomplished in similar fashion to traditional advertising (television, newspapers, magazines, radio, etc.) where the task was to try to find websites with similar audiences to the targeted market. Now, machine learning allows computer systems to track user behavior in real time across the web and place ads where an algorithm determines they are likely to engage. In all our campaigns, we strive to collect data that is measurable, quantifiable and repeatable so we can make in-process adjustments and collect lessons-learned for future campaigns. We start collecting data from the instant one of our ads is displayed on a prospective customer’s screen. Just that information (called an impression) is valuable for future adjustments to the site or ad. If they click the ad, we track their progress through to the website and determine whether they immediately leave the site (bounce) or navigate around the various pages of the site (conversions) all the way through to the moment they click “buy”. If they leave without buying, we can continue to serve them ads (retargeting). We track and report key metrics against industry standards so you can see exactly how your advertising is working.
More About the Search Network
Every day, there are 3.5 billion searches made on Google—and since Google accounts for about >80% of worldwide searches over the past 10 years, that’s a pretty good place to be if you’re interested in driving traffic to your website. Paid search or pay-per-click (PPC) advertising on Google Ads (previously AdWords) puts your ads above the organic (unpaid) results through an auction process where you compete with other advertisers to have your ads displayed when users enter certain keywords into search queries. When a search engine user enters a search term containing your keywords, the competition is on!
Although Google commands the largest share, by far, of the online search traffic via Google, there are a number of other search providers available, including Bing, Yahoo and numerous others that might be right for your business, depending on the market. Paid search on these networks can be an extremely effective part of an overall advertising strategy, depending on the competitiveness of the keywords we’re bidding on and the relevancy of those keywords to your product or service.
Depending on your organization, market and budget, there’s a good chance that paid search will be a good move for your business. However, it’s not a “once and done” proposition! An effective search campaign requires familiarity with the platform (which is constantly changing) and continuous management. We’re always testing and tweaking our client’s ad campaigns to get them to the top of the search results page with thoughtfully considered ads that are relevant to the avatar and will yield a verifiable ROI.
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