The following insight came from my podcast interview with Francisco Lacayo, where he talked about how PPC (pay-per-click) is different from other traditional marketing leads.
What everyone needs to understand is that PPC is a changing world. So what I say about PPC right now might not be what makes sense in six months. And this happens all the time because there are changes that occur across the networks.
When Google comes up with a new campaign type or a new product to reach customers, there are industry changes. For example, there’s a considerable debate right now about privacy, third-party cookies, and how to reach customers. But more importantly, there’s the change in consumer psychology and how people are going towards buying a service or product.
If you think about how we used to approach and go for service maybe five or ten years ago, you would probably find a friend that knew someone that could provide whatever you’re looking for. Perhaps that would also be your referral. But, right now, if you want to hire a service, you’re going to have many touch points before you get to that one server that you want to get through. Also, you’re going to research several competitors, wait, come back a week after, and do some more research. You’re going to find other things that you didn’t know. You’re going to learn about the service and the product. It is such a complex journey. And it changes so much through time that everyone needs to understand that PPC is a changing beast.
Another critical component here is that, because the journeys now are so complex, most PPC products now offer different products or channels for each of those journeys. For example, if you want to do brand awareness, you can do YouTube ads or a display campaign so that people can learn about your brand. If you want to generate sales, you can do shopping campaigns or a more core focus search campaign. If you want to have a more specific b2b approach, you can use LinkedIn audiences through Microsoft because that works with LinkedIn profiles and for LinkedIn information. So there is not a one size fits all solution.
There would be PPC because the journey is complex. You have all these tools that are available to try to capture every moment of the journey. When you don’t have experience with PPC or haven’t worked campaigns before, that can be hard to grasp because you have to understand your whole journey.
PPC is forcing you to understand your clients better. So it’s not just about your potential customers using these keywords to look for you but also about what your potential customer is doing after they go to your website. Are they going to your competitors? What’s changing their mind? Why are they leaving it? Are they looking for more added value somewhere else?
So if you want to focus on PPC, you have to understand your client base and prospects. But you also have to understand your brand and your journey and the storytelling you’re going to roll out for that particular prospect base.
PPC is a very technical tool for setting up things in particular channels so that people can find you. But the human component behind that is what’s going to make the difference. So suppose you’re telling the right story if you’re setting the tool to show it the right place at the right time. With PPC, you can also measure most of what’s happening in the platform, track the ROI, track the cost per conversion, and you can understand if it makes financial sense for you.
So if your investment makes sense and is relevant, those are some of the critical elements you need to consider before jumping to water. Then, once you decide to jump into the water and launch PPC campaigns, talk to an expert. You don’t necessarily need to hire an agency but talk to someone who knows about the product and can advise you on how to navigate the technical part. And then try to learn more about your business and how to tell the story better to your potential customers, and you’ll probably be successful with the product.