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Mailbag: Questions About Tweaking Google Adwords

Questions About Tweaking Google Adwords

Google Adwords Troubleshooting

Dipping into the mailbag again. These last two weeks were dominated by one thing: Google Adwords.

There were equal parts “how do we do this?” and “how do we do this better?” questions.

I’ll run you through a high level approach to both questions. First, let’s revisit How Decisions are Made.

4 Step Decision Process

Making Decisions

Starts with a problem with limitless solutions and ends with searches for specific solutions. Read more about it here and here.

The searches that happen on Google fall into this grid. Starting with “What/How/Who” questions and ending with solution searches like “best/cheapest/closest”.

So, to address my acquaintance who wonders how to start on Adwords, we start by looking at who is advertising now. If I sell “adwords management software”, I’ll start there. Who is advertising on the solution? What are they saying? What do their landing pages look like etc?

Solution Search

Then we move back in the decision process. How did they get there? Sticking with Adwords management software, let’s pick a problem that may have initiated the search for a solution: “how to integrate data from Adwords, Excel and Analytics”

The actual problem isn’t as important as what happens when you search:

problem search

Notice how in both instances the ads are are grasping at why you’re there? It’s like walking down the midway at a carnival. They assume you’re there to spend some money and the carneys bark out calls to action. The problem search is a little better, but most of the ads are keyed off “data integration” and not Adwords or Analytics. Google has it figured out – organic search result #1 is a forum post on “plugins” for Excel/Adwords and result #2 is a product that seems to fit the search perfectly.

Armed with this information, I’ll conclude that there are leads that can come from a Paid Search campaign and move to big step 2.

How much do we want to pay for these leads?

To label this metric, we’re after a Cost Per Acquisition. If my software friends are doing other business development activities, we’ll use those as an example. Do they sell through resellers? If so, what do they pay for that sale? For instance, if the software sells for $1500 and they pay a 10% commission, a range for an effective CPA would be in the $150 range.

Rough, but do you see where I’m going? In order to start or fix an Adwords campaign, we ultimately come back to “what are we trying to accomplish?”

After that, it’s all tactics.

Summary: to start or fix a Google Adwords campaign, take a fresh look at how people are searching and confirm that you should be there, then set a metric for success.

Good stuff.

About the Author: Greg Chambers is Chambers Pivot Industries. Get more business development ideas from Greg on Twitter.