Monday, September 10, 2007

AdWords for Dummies: How to Make More Money with Google AdWords

The following is an interview with Howie Jacobson, author of AdWords for Dummies.

1. What are the three biggest mistakes beginners make when advertising via Google AdWords?

1. Muddying Results from Search and Content Networks - A person actively searching for your keyword should be marketed to differently from someone who was reading an article or blog post and happened to see your ad. Make sure you create separate campaigns for search traffic and content traffic, and speak to them differently and measure their response differently.

2. Ignoring the Principle of Relevance - Creating one giant ad group with hundreds of unrelated keywords all going to a single ad and a single landing page, rather than laser targeting small groups of tightly related keywords to specific ads and lots of "that's for me!" landing pages.

3. Not Split Testing - It's so easy to split test ads and landing pages using AdWords. Everyone who starts split testing becomes amazed at the surprising insights they gain into their market. Routinely, split testing can increase profits by 400 to 1200% over a few months.

2. What three elements make for a great Google ad?

1. Positioning - Saying something different and meaningful than the other ads. The Google Search Results Page is the most competitive advertising real estate on the planet. How is your offer different from the other 19+ offers on the same page? What makes you stand out?

2. Speaks to the Itch Behind the Search - If you know what your prospect is really thinking when they type a search term, you can market to their "little voice" in a subtle and powerful way. What triggered their search at that moment? What is the story they're telling themselves right now? How can you join the conversation already going on in their head?

3. Uses the Display URL - The display URL can be the most important line of your ad. Buy a bunch of domains and test them out. See if .com or .org makes you more attractive. Try memorable names, benefit-driven and problem-based names, generic and specific names. Your URL is the only part of your marketing that can't be copied. That's why is suing for copyright infringement.

3. If the term you'd like to rate high in costs too much for your campaign, how can you compete?

1. Optimize your campaign to get costs as low as possible.

a. Get your quality score to Great.
b. Improve the click-through rate through testing.
c. Use exact match and negative keywords to eliminate wasted clicks.
d. Test the content network for websites that convert well and bid on impressions rather than clicks (CPM for site-targeted campaigns).

2. Find related keywords that cost less.

a. Longer tail
b. Synonyms
c. Misspellings and typos

3. Spend the money on that keyword to determine conversion. If it converts well, consider organic search engine optimization.

4. Improve your website and back end so the high-priced keyword is worth it. Remember, AdWords is a stock market for keywords. Each keyword is priced at the market rate, determined by the average value of that keyword to advertisers. If it's too expensive for you, that means your competitors have figured out how to extract more value from that keyword than you have.

5. If you can't extract more value per click than your competitors, then approach them about buying their unconverted traffic, or being an additional part of their back end on an affiliate basis.

For a free download of the first chapter of Howie Jacobson's new book AdWords for Dummies, go to bookfiles/AdWords-For-Dummies-Chapter-1.pdf.
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