The Many Different Strategies of Pay-Per-Click Marketing
For many of us, PPC is perceived and utilized as a fast and sometimes cost efficient way to drive qualified visitors and conversions to a advertiser’s website. Many PPC agencies and Freelancers spend their time optimizing and strategizing around improving conversions and improving ROI%. However, over the years PPC has evolved itself not only in traditional uses, but also has established itself as a multi-faceted platform that has been used to protect company/personal reputations, defending political agendas and driving awareness to issues outside of the online world. In this article, I will discuss the other benefits of PPC and why we should consider these initiatives more often.
We have seen this most recently in Political jabbering amongst candidates at all levels as well as National and Global level for incidences such as the BP Oil Spill Disaster where everyone is leveraging PPC as a fast and efficient way to protect themselves from negative and positive online and offline news coverage.
If you remember, BP was using PPC for reputation management from all of the bad PR they were getting all over the world and were using Text Ads as a sounding board to tell the public that BP is working hard everyday to make sure they were doing everything they could to “make it right”.
Website Usability Testing
How many times have you heard from a potential prospect saying “I’m not ready for PPC yet because we want to redesign the website and when were done, we’ll give you a call?” Well, traditionally that makes sense from an CEO’s perspective, but what many people fail to realize is that PPC can open the door to testing many different designs and usability layouts before they commit thousands of dollars to something that has not been tested or seen by the public, hence making it a risky decision.
I have encouraged many prospects to look at PPC as a testing vehicle before shelling out the money for a complete overhaul of a website.
New Audience Testing
Imagine a typical retailer and/or manufacturer who is eager to test a new target audience because they have a product or service that can be distributed to a wider market. If this testing was done offline such as in TV, Radio and Print it would costly and could not have the support of highly detailed analytics to pinpoint how it is being perceived. Moreover, PPC can not only enable companies to do all of this testing much more affordably it also allow for much more detailed analytics beyond overall online perception and adoption. It also provides much better “message testing” which can then be used in any other offline strategy.
New Product Retailer Advantage
Getting an advantage on the competition is sometimes a very difficult task to accomplish. Usually, its improving customer service, lowering prices, offering free shipping, etc… On the other hand, many retailers cannot start promoting new products until the shipments come in to make it available to their customers. But, here is where PPC can be a powerful tool to get a leg up on the competition. For example, a creative Merchandising team can leverage PPC to get those products to the mass public before any of their competitors by offering the product as a Pre-Order item. This tactic was a huge success in the past and quickly became a merchandising “must do.
Offline Influence and Promotion
This strategy has been mostly triggered by what we have seen on TV, listened on the radio or read in a newspaper or magazine. It’s the holistic behavior of migrating from offline to online in order to get that personal “branded” engagement for more information. In fact, more and more TV shows and even commercials are telling their audiences to go online to get more information. This is significant for marketers because they can use PPC to leverage offline awareness from news events, upcoming trends and other offline buzz.
In a nutshell, PPC has evolved itself into having many more benefits for advertisers other than just driving traffic and increasing conversions. It’s now making a name for itself in the overall marketing strategy for both offline and online initiatives. The more we start looking to PPC to increase awareness, the better we can measure its effectiveness.