Google AdWords into 2015

By John Eberhard

I recently became Google AdWords Certified and a Google Partner. As part of that cycle I did some training in current AdWords features and had to take two rather grueling tests. I survived.

So I thought I would kind of summarize where Google AdWords is heading and talk about some features that are not necessarily new, but that you might not be aware of.

First I will say that AdWords is very effective in generating leads for high ticket items, meaning items that cost say $500 or more. I have had some success with campaigns geared to less expensive items, but most of the successful campaigns I have managed have been promoting high ticket items.

You choose keywords where you want your ads to appear when someone types in those keywords. You choose your bid, meaning the maximum you will get charged when someone clicks on your ad and comes to your site. You also choose your daily budget, so you can control how much money you are spending and change it at any time.

You can choose where your ads will appear geographically. You can run text ads or banner ads.

It is best, in my experience and in the general consensus in the online marketing industry, to create customized landing pages for people to land on, not have them land on your home page.

Remarketing

Remarketing is relatively new for AdWords, say within the last 2-3 years. You work hard to drive people to your web site. But only a small percentage of them ever respond to you. There is now a new method that allows you to get your message out to those people again, after they leave your site, called “remarketing.”

Remarketing is a brilliant tool that can be used to improve the marketing of your products and services online. Here’s how it works:

Let’s say you’re interested in buying a widget. So you visit the web site for Tom’s Widgets. But you don’t buy anything right away.

You go on your way to visit other web sites. But when you visited the site for Tom’s Widgets, a cookie was placed on your computer (via special code on their web site) that identifies you as someone who has visited that site.

Now, when you visit other web sites that allow advertising and are part of one of the big advertising networks, you will see a banner ad or text ad for Tom’s Widgets (sometimes more than one ad on a page). And you will continue seeing ads for Tom’s Widgets as you browse the Internet, for a specified period of time, usually between 30 and 90 days.

You may have noticed this phenomena lately when you visited some site, and then started seeing ads for that company everywhere, over and over again, wherever you went online.

Recently I implemented remarketing for California DanceArts. Here you can see their ads appearing via remarketing, with a banner appearing on the ESPN web site, and on Townhall.com.

You can choose in what geographical areas you want your remarketing ads to appear. You can also choose specific sites within the network where your ads will appear.

You can see that this is potentially a very powerful tool. People visit your web site and so they are theoretically the right public to buy your products or services. Remarketing allows you to target them repeatedly with banner ads or text ads, enticing them to come back to your site and buy something.

Google Video Ads

One of the newer AdWords features and one that I think people should jump on right now is Google Video Ads.

Basically you can run a Google AdWords campaign that gets someone to click on the ad and then go to a video for your company on YouTube. And the cost per click for this type of ad is ranging in the 12 to 17 cents per click range, compared to most Google AdWords regular pay per click campaigns where the cost per click can range from $1.00 on up to over $20.00 in some industries.

Here’s how it works:

  1. Your video can be shown as a “pre-roll,” i.e. it is shown on YouTube before another video that someone went to see. You pay if they watch your video past 30 seconds.
  2. When someone does a search on YouTube and what they are searching for matches what your video is about, your video will show up near the top of the listings. You pay if they click on the listing and go to your video.
  3. Your video can show up in the suggested videos area on YouTube.
  4. The video can show up on other sites through the Google Display Network.

Of course whether this works for you or not depends on whether you have a video for your company. And video has to be compelling and do a good job of selling your company, and have a good call to action at the end (i.e. call us now at ____), and a good offer. Also it helps to optimize your video, with the proper information in the description and in other ways.

My Google rep told me that this is a unique opportunity in that the cost for these types of ads are very low at the moment. This is because not many people know about them and the competition for them is not very high. But the cost per click will go up as more and more people start doing these ads.

If you have a video that sells your company I would recommend considering these video ads. If you do not have a video, consider having one made. And I think this option works well even for companies that do not sell high ticket items. Contact me to see if this is a good fit for your company.

In summary, Google AdWords has some interesting features that can work for a variety of companies.