Search Engine Marketing (or SEM), also known as pay-per-click (or PPC) marketing, has been looked at with disdain by many business executives and marketing professionals. Why? It’s easy to spend a large marketing budget and not see a return on investment.
Like any type of marketing, SEM is not something you build and walk away from and hoping to keep seeing a return. Rather, an effective SEM campaign must be something that evolves, and conforms to the trends of current search traffic. Here are a few surefire ways to make sure your SEM program is at peak performance:
Have quantitative measures of ROI. There are many metrics you can look when analyzing an SEM program. You can look at ad impressions, ad clicks, cost per click and many other numbers. The most important, however, is conversion. To measure conversion, you must have the program setup correctly. While conversions are easy to measure for eCommerce sites or sites where the primary call-to-action is a form completion, it is more difficult to measure conversions through phone calls. This is where having a tracking phone number is helpful. This does increase the cost of your campaign slightly, but gives you much better insight into how effective your campaign has been so you can more wisely spend those marketing dollars.
Optimize your campaigns. This is the opposite of walking away. Optimizing a campaign means looking at how your ads are performing, tweaking ad content, adding ad variations, changing keyword match types, adding new keywords, and removing low performing keywords. Needless to say, optimizing an SEM campaign takes a commitment to time and expert knowledge.
Develop expert partnerships. Developing partnerships with experts who can aid in your effectiveness is worth the investment. Increasing the ROI for your marketing campaign and decreasing your time needed to achieve effectiveness is the goal of ever marketing executive. These partnerships should be based on quantitative effectiveness and demonstrated experience.
Stop wasting time and money on SEM campaigns that aren’t producing and start looking for the expert partner who will help you achieve a significant return on your marketing investment.