By John Eberhard

Pay per click (PPC) advertising means that you put up an ad somewhere and whenever someone clicks on the ad, you get charged. There are a number of options for pay per click advertising today.

Google Ads: This can be a very good advertising medium today, but your success depends on a couple of factors. Certainly there are enough people searching on Google to give you potential traffic.

But the problem with Google Ads is that the more advertisers there are for any given topic or group of keywords, the more you will spend for people to click on your ads. The whole system is based on bidding, so more advertisers tend to drive the bid prices up to levels where it doesn’t make sense to do it.

I managed Google Ads for a foundation repair guy in Los Angeles, and there are about a dozen of these guys in the LA area. Foundation repair is pretty expensive, so these guys can afford to pay more for a click, and they were very competitive in their bidding. But even for such a high ticket item, bids got up to the $40 per click range, requiring very smart management to make it financially viable.

But if you are in a market where few or no people are advertising on Google Ads, bid prices will be low and you can get great results.

YouTube Ads: You can make a relatively short video, then have it appear before other videos on YouTube. You only get charged if people watch more than a certain number of seconds of your video. YouTube is owned by Google, so you can manage this through Google Ads. You can choose what type of videos your video will display before.

Remarketing: This is where someone will visit a specific web page, then a cookie is placed on their computer. And they will then start to see banner ads for the product or service they viewed, as they go to other websites across the web. Google ads offers this and there are other companies that do it, such as Perfect Audience. It’s a great way to take people who visited your website, or specific pages of your website, and then put your message in front of them again. Presumably they are interested and are the right target audience if they visited your website.

Bing Ads: Bing has a PPC ad system very similar to Google. The clicks tend to be a little less expensive than Google, although their audience size is not nearly as big. I have run some campaigns there that actually did much better than on Google.

Facebook: Facebook has a PPC system as well. There are a couple ways to approach it. One way is to create a Facebook business page for your business, then get a lot of people to “like” it. Once people like your business page, you can post things on the page (for free) and a certain percentage of those people (15-20%) will see it. So it’s important to build up your likes to a high number. I usually like to target 1,000 to 2,000 likes or more. You can run an ad campaign on Facebook that gets people to like your page. I have one running for my business right now that is getting about 50 likes per week.

You can create ads on Facebook that are shown to people who have not liked your page. You can select who the ad will be targeted to, and there are some fairly sophisticated targeted options. You can select by geography and by various demographic factors. My experience has been that clicks on Facebook tend to be less expensive than on Google, although Facebook tends to work better for B2C (business to consumer) than for B2B (business to business) campaigns.

You can also post things on your business page, then “boost” them, either to all of the people who have liked your page, and/or to targeted people outside of your “like” group.