When NOT to follow the herd!
There are just those times when following the herd will not be in your best interest. Say a stampede that is heading for a cliff for example. Some state there is safety in numbers, but for those times when the masses are marching in a direction that doesn’t work for you, I say pick up your own drum and head the other way. A very wise woman (yes, that would be my mother), used to say “think for yourself. If everyone else jumped off a bridge would you do it to just because they did?”
There are always lists of the best practices that tell you everything you should do to organize and maintain your Campaigns but rarely mentioned are those things that you should never do. Here’s my top 5 worst things you can do to kill a campaigns performance and cost you in the long run.
- Never get emotional about a bid. Do the math before you ever start a campaign you should have a number in mind that clearly is the target upper limit of when it makes sense to ever purchase a click. Understanding what you can afford will keep you in check with your budget. If you sell widgets for an average cost of X and your profit is Y. You should never spend more than Y to attract a customer.
- Never buy a keyword just because a competitor has done so. There are several tools available such as SpyFu for example, that allow you to check out what the competition has been up to with their AdWords. This can shed some insight on what they have learned over time. Paying attention to keywords that convert as well as average CPC provides great insight. You should keep in mind that competition only increases the cost-per-click you will pay. In fact you should look for keywords that your competitors are not using. Your competitors may also be focusing in on their features and not yours. Evaluate whether that keyword makes sense to you and monitor whether that keyword converts or provides any value.
- Never dive in before testing the waters. Never invest more than a small amount in any new provider or campaign element without testing on a small scale. I cannot stress this one strongly enough!
- Never blindly use the default match type broad without a purpose. You can get more information about keyword research ideas here. Not all keywords follow the same patterns on bids for match type, do your homework and test for results. You should also monitor your results and adjust the match type to meet your needs.
- Never combine search and display into one campaign. These types of campaigns serve two very different purposes and should have their own separate campaigns with their own set of success metrics. Separating your network types gives you more control over the campaign settings and will allow you to pause each area as needed.
Managing a PPC campaign can be rather exiting and very rewarding when it all goes well. It can also become very costly if it is not done properly. Hopefully these tips provide some helpful insight to keep your campaigns moving in the right direction.
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