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Does Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising live up to the hype?

By now whether you sell online advertising or you are an advertiser we have all at some point come across pay per click (PPC) advertising most commonly Google pay per click or ad words. Just in case you require a definition I am talking about those ads at the top of Google that no one ever clicks on. Well maybe you do but I definitely don’t.

As recently as last week I was meeting with a client who works with a SEO/website optimization agency and I was told that the agency was recommending that they cancel the online advertising with me and increase their Google AdWords/PPC budget. My response was “so to them it’s only about clicks when people are searching through Google”? I then went to explain that from talking to the agency myself I had learned that the advertisers click through rate with my platform is equal to the PPC program and I didn’t even let him in on my secret now that we have added audience extension/retargeting to their campaign we are now at least doubling the PPC click through rate which I will share the next time we go over stats. I am not trying to say that online marketers should not have this presence or it is not valuable because it is especially since these are high quality clicks. What I am saying is if this is where an online strategy stops you will be left out in the cold.

First off I am going to explain what this client (a local car dealer) is doing with Metroland. They have a content marketing strategy with monthly content, online business profiles on our local news site and goldbook.ca, IP targeted video overlay impressions and a lot of them, audience extension/retargeting targeting those in the market for a new or used vehicle. Overall the program is performing very well with about 250,000 impressions being served up over the course of the year (yes that’s 250,000 sets of eyeballs) with a click thru rate between .2 and .7 percent depending on the month and promotion that we are running. The click thru rate is 2-7 times the national average so performing exceptionally well and of course there is the content on a high traffic local news site all searchable through Google which separates them from the competition and increases the brand awareness. I could add in the social media benefit but that is another blog. The early stats are showing hundreds of reads, the articles showing up on page one of Google and yes even more click thru’s to their site. You can’t get a more engaged click than one that comes from an article that was just read on a product or service their company provides. We also have profile views and yet again there have been hundreds of them and YouTube views on the video we produced and yep in the hundreds at this point.

I am not picking on Google I am actually a huge fan but if your online strategy is 100 per cent pay per click advertising you are missing out on online marketing platforms with many benefits such as the ones illustrated above. You are missing out on sales and valuable loyal customers that your competition who does have a strong platform is getting. Online advertising is about more than just clicks (read my previous blog “it’s about more than just the click”). Potential customers go online to find out information so they can become a more educated buyer, go to sites looking for online Flyers/Deals/Coupons, are reading news stories and this is just the tip of the iceberg. You need to have a platform where you become part of this experience and that includes platforms such as content marketing, video marketing, audience extension, retargeting, deal sites, mobile marketing, impressions the list goes on and on and yes Pay Per Click.

If PPC is all you are doing all you have is a deal so in other words you are looking for price shoppers selling based on price. Google‘s biggest strength after all is the content it provides so focus on becoming part of that experience more so than the paid ads. Isn’t it more likely that potential customers are typing in key words looking for more information so that they become a more informed buyer than to see who simply has the best price? I will end on this note as a business owner looking to attract customers who are surfing the web you will obtain loyal customers by getting them engaged in your product or service and the internet is the perfect place to do that. What you need to do is plan a well thought out online marketing strategy.

Follow me on twitter @geoffjosey

Previous Blogs

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2015/01/22/online-advertising-click-thru-expectations/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/11/26/is-cross-border-online-shopping-becoming-canadian-retailers-biggest-threat/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/print-advertising-is-dead-i-guess-i-missed-the-memo/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/tis-the-season-if-you-work-in-advertising/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/23/online-advertising-its-about-more-than-just-the-click/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/17/multimedia-blog/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/17/have-local-business-interests-get-involved-in-the-community/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/using-twitter-as-a-business-tool/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/07/extreme-couponing-in-canada/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/27/why-all-small-and-medium-size-businesses-need-a-content-marketing-strategy/

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Online Advertising Click Thru Expectations

It is no secret that digital advertising is on the rise and traditional print is not. It hasn’t happened yet but slowly but surely my digital sales are gaining ground on my print sales such as newspaper display and the direct mail product I manage FlyerMail. Out of the 80 to 100 advertisers whom I manage their digital platforms 100 per cent of those were exclusive print clients in the past. This is good news in the sense that I am keeping these dollars away from digital competitors or at least getting my share. This becomes more important as print budgets get cut and businesses  allocate that revenue to online advertising. The challenge I have is virtually all of my clients had never spent a dollar online before I converted them.

There are many digital platforms at Metroland Media but one of the most popular for new advertisers wanting to get their feet wet in the digital world are online display ads. The most popular online ads for first timers are the big box, double skyscraper and leaderboard. Your digital advertising rep can show you examples on their tablet. At Metroland we sell impressions. These aren’t expensive  a local customer can purchase 20,000 impressions per month for as low as $240. Being so inexpensive makes this type of advertising very easy to sell as it fits most advertising budgets. One of my greatest challenges is managing click thru expectations due to platforms such as google ad words and other pay per click services. Impression advertising is much more than this but this all too often seems to be forgotten. (Read my blog “It’s about more than just the click).

So what click thru rate should you expect? From everything I have read the average click thru rate in Canada is .09 per cent.  So this means if you run a campaign at 20,000 impressions per month you would receive 216 clicks on 240,000 annual impressions. Not bad if you consider the campaign just brought 216 people to your store which in the digital world we call a website. My clients running campaigns on the Metroland network generally receive a click thru rate between .2-.5 per cent. This is 2-6 times the industry average pretty amazing right? It is but for first timers I spend a lot of my time educating  that their campaign is performing very well. The initial client reaction is usually the same “240,000 impressions and only 500 clicks?”  I then explain that their ad appeared on webpages 240,000 times and 500 people clicked. Where else can you track an ad campaign like that? Maybe coupons but no other traditional media can.

Whether you are a first timer or already advertising online please be realistic with your expectations. Remember every impression counts in the advertising world and if your program is performing at or above the national click thru average stick with it. Be consistent, change the call to action from time to time and this type of advertising will become an important part of your marketing strategy. Give it a year and you will see results with a decent ROI.

Follow me on twitter @geoffjosey

Previous blogs

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/11/26/is-cross-border-online-shopping-becoming-canadian-retailers-biggest-threat/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/print-advertising-is-dead-i-guess-i-missed-the-memo/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/03/tis-the-season-if-you-work-in-advertising/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/23/online-advertising-its-about-more-than-just-the-click/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/17/multimedia-blog/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/17/have-local-business-interests-get-involved-in-the-community/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/12/using-twitter-as-a-business-tool/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/08/07/extreme-couponing-in-canada/

https://geoffjosey.wordpress.com/2014/09/27/why-all-small-and-medium-size-businesses-need-a-content-marketing-strategy/