PPC Engine Vendor Panel

Nov 11, 2008 • 2:14 pm | comments (0) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under WebmasterWorld PubCon 2008 Las Vegas
 

Is the PPC channel part of your online marketing campaign? Are you interested in advertising with Google AdWords, Yahoo Search Marketing, Microsoft adCenter, or Ask? Do you want to see the latest and greatest from these PPC engines? Do you have any questions for the PPC engines? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this session is for you.

Moderator: Brad Geddes Speakers: Patrizio Spagnoletto, Sr. Director of Marketing, Yahoo! Search Marketing Frederick Vallaeys, SR. Product Specialist for AdWords, Google Dustin Kwan, Senior Product Manager. Ask Sponsored Listings, Ask.com Doug Stotland, Director, AdCenter, Microsoft Live Search

First up is Dustin from Ask.com:

The big question: Why should we advertise on multiple search networks, and why Ask?

Who are we: We provide paid search ads to 90+ premium partners. We are like the Prius of search. The focus is not to be the big luxury vehicle. We carry all the essentials - but focus our is to be the most economical and cost efficient.

In comparison to other players, we have the lowest average CPCs and CPAs. Big question often asked is why should we advertise on multiple networks? With small budgets and limited time - why advertise anywhere else but Google?

There is value in every top search network. Plenty of search volume. Because people switch from one engine to another - you get duplication, and that increases brand awareness. Key feedback from Ask users - 25% of users came from another search engine. Many users use multiple search engines. 1/6 of Google users use another search engine.

Combined power of paid search: The more networks you generally use, the stronger your clicks will be, the better your ROI will be.

Not a lot of work to advertise across the engines. All have similar campaign structures - accounts, campaigns, ad groups, keywords, etc. Can easily import campaigns via bulk uploads / spreadsheets or use API. Or Ask.com will do the work for you.

Key takeaways - Ask can increase your reach and performance. Lot' of value in Tier 1 and even in Tier 2 engines. Make sure you use tools for easy management and optimizing campaigns.

Next is Frederick of Google, the Adwords Evangelist.

How do you respond to a bad economy? Want to continue marketing because you will find yourself behind when the market picks up again. The investments you make today will pay off down the road. Online marketing is the most measurable and typically the most profitable. Consumers are increasingly comparison shopping in tough times. Large retailer metrics have shown that in store sales have dropped, but online sales were up 21%. Consumers have less money, so they go online looking for bargains. Also, since gas prices went up, less people traveling to brick and mortar stores to make purchases.

Shows search volume chart for term "safe investments". Big spike when Lehman went under. Also, "fuel efficient cars" had a big spike when fuel was at an all time high. Google Insights for Search will give you this trend data for you to capitalize off these consumer queries. If nothing else, it's a fun tool to see what consumers are doing.

Focus on value proposition. Consumers want bargains. Highlight this. Focus on keywords that people are searching for today, vs. the past. Also, build trust. For example, there is a loss in trust for banks nowadays. Offer something for bargain hunters. Google product feeds is a great way to get products in front of comparison shoppers. Consumers are still buying, but doing more research. Capture emails to start relationships, because conversion cycle is longer.

Holiday season: Starts at black Friday - conversion rates go up. A few days before Christmas, sales drop because retailer can't ship in time for Xmas. Google Trends shows that people are shopping online earlier than in the past. More time spent comparison shopping.

New: First page bids. Most activity on page 1. Enhanced the Conversion Optimizer - lowered threshold of how many conversions in order to participate. More detailed metrics. Now can see where clicks are coming from - Geo-reports. Helps make campaigns more efficient. Broken up search stats between Google and partner networks. New display ad builder tool, new enhancements in analytics, and changes to optimizer tool.

Next up is Doug from Microsoft.

Launched adCenter about 3 years ago. Feedback has shown that quality of clicks converts well. Also hears that there is not enough inventory. At Microsoft, divided up tasks for improving adCenter into "sexy" and "non sexy" column. We will focus on the "non-sexy" column.

The "Non Sexy": More granular campaigns - when are ads inactive or active? Improved editorial review - speed and quality, and do whatever needs to be done to fix creatives and make it easier to act on. On content ads, want to be able to update bids quicker, and see how they perform in an easier format. Sat down with customers to figure out 150 things to improve the product. Examples included location based targeting - easier. Making the application quicker, peppier. Improved dashboard and reporting.

CPC's on the rise: Demand is higher than the supply. Offline dollars shifting to online. Plus you have people bidding blindly. And you have those excellent search marketers that are doing a great job achieving higher ROI. If just buying on Google and Yahoo, harder to create a mix of higher quality clicks.

MSN makes it easy to take the knowledge you have about your customers the demographics - men or women - age groups - the ability to target them is an example of technological innovation. If use that data, you can be more competitive. People that are thinking beyond the post click conversion - the cross sell, the up sell - are making their bids based on that additional revenue. Knowledge is your best tool. Good marketing is important. Knowing who your customers are. Ask yourself - which end of the big ROI gap are you on?

Finally, give your feedback to MSN. Easy to do so via Facebook and Twitter. Go to AdCenterCommunity.com to get into the conversation.

Last but not least is Patrizio from Yahoo!:

8 year veteran of Yahoo. Started in Goto/Overture days.

SEM has by far the highest growth rate of online spending. Most advertisers are still spending on traditional media, and there is still lots of opportunity online. Still plenty room for growth.

People come to Yahoo! for their many products (mail, finance, etc.) which gives the unique opportunity to understand the audience.

Yahoo!'s reach: Important to use all the major engines. Missed opportunities. Spread dollars across all the engines. American Idol - reaches 22 million Americans. Yahoo!'s reach is about twice that! Shows the immense size of Yahoo!'s reach.

One of the things he recommends for holiday advertisers is to use newly enhanced features - geo targeting is now down to the zip code level.

Need to balance quality of leads and quantity of leads. Over targeting - might not have enough volume.

Another newer feature is ad testing - single most powerful feature across all engines. Enables testing multiple descriptions at the same time. A/B testing - the listing that gets the most click through rate serves the most ads.

Reporting is only as good as how much action you take out of them. You need the data to support marketing decisions. Work with agencies that make this very easy if you don't have the time to spend looking at this data.

Content match: The ability to put the listing along articles, product reviews, etc. Very different product than search. Not an engaged user. Different experience - have a different campaign, bid differently, and monitor differently. If you have a limited budget, go for search - because the ROI is typically stronger. In this economy, SEM spending has stayed relatively strong because it works better than any other marketing vehicle. As we go into this holiday period - need to start now.

Coverage provided by Avi A. Wilensky of Promedia Corp, a Manhattan based online marketing agency.

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