I have now been a PPC Executive at Blueclaw since October 2018. With it being my first role after Uni, the world of Paid Media was completely new to me when I joined.
On competitive keywords, a square inch of the SERP often has a market price to rival that of a 5-bedroom townhouse in Kensington (ok maybe not quite) so it’s critical to squeeze the most out of the limited ad character allowances.
I have worked on accounts where CPC bids on terms can easily sneak up to the £50s, £60s, £70s and beyond, particularly in high-competition and high-value markets like betting and property. Because of this, it’s important to be as concise as possible and include the most crucial information and USPs to ensure clients see a return on their investment.
Having studied English Literature at Uni, this concept was initially quite foreign to me. Going from writing 9,000-word essays to 90 character description lines was somewhat of a challenge, but also satisfying.
In a PPC role, it is virtually impossible to run out ways to optimise the performance of an account. This could be by adding new keywords using Google’s keyword planner, running a Search Query Report to negative match irrelevant search terms, or simply adjusting keyword bids. But working for an agency, time and effort come at a price for clients. It’s important to consider their best interests and ask ‘Will the client get a return on investment if I spend time doing this?”. If the answer is “probably not”, then your time is better spent elsewhere.
This follows on nicely from my last point. Paid search is a quickly evolving area of marketing, and best practice is sometimes a grey area. This leaves lots of opportunities to test different tactics, be it by switching up the bidding strategy or testing the effectiveness of Responsive Search Ads against traditional Expanded Text Ads.
Luckily, there is a ‘Campaign Draft & Experiment’ tab in Google Ads and ‘Experiments’ tab in Bing Ads that make experimentation easy to do. In these sections of the interface, you can create duplicate campaigns to A/B split test a whole range of things such as landing page URLs, ad copy and bidding strategy.
And if you’ve tried out one strategy that hasn’t impacted the performance metrics in the way you had hoped – don’t worry, now you know! Just try something else.
Since working at Blueclaw I’ve developed a new-found appreciation for data. We pride ourselves on being a data-led agency; working within the PPC team, I analyse data daily. Pretty much everything I do should be informed by performance metrics.
One of the simplest ways to slice the thousands of puzzling rows of information downloaded from Google Ads or Bing Ads into something digestible is by using a Pivot Table. This feature in Excel reorganises and summarises selected columns and rows to show you the information you want to see.
There are countless metrics to measure the performance of a paid search account, from Impressions to Conversions to Cost-Per-Acquisition (CPA).
Prior to beginning work on an account, it’s important to pick one or two metrics (at most) that align with the client’s goals to effectively measure the success of your future blood, sweat and optimisations.
For example, on a brand awareness campaign, the metric of Impressions might be suitable, but on an account where the goal is to drive profit, harder metrics like Conversion Volume and CPA would need focus.
It’s also vital to manage client expectations. If a client asks to double their Conversion Volume within the next quarter, do your best to meet their request but also explain the expense required to make it happen. Often the situation the client asks for is possible, but not without conditions. Being clear from the get-go can avoid future disappointment and keep relationships strong.