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.
PPC is appealing because every acquisition channel agrees that it works. But it is also intimidating because you have to spend a lot of money, not just for the ads themselves, but for the management as well.
If you are at a level where you’re considering a marketing budget, then you should probably think about whether some of that budget is going into PPC. If you’re a freelancer, and maybe you work off referrals, PPC might not be a good fit for you. But it helps if you have a business. Even if you’re a small company, very local, and you’re just starting, if you’re thinking about allocating $200 to your overall marketing budget, some of that should go to PPC.
PPC doesn’t have an entry barrier or level. However, it does vary per industry. Specific industries are more restricted in terms of cost. But most companies should consider investing in PPC as part of the general strategy because it’s not only effective or efficient, but it is one of the few channels where you’re targeting people with a significantly higher intent than any other channel.
If you do SEO, it is very similar, but it takes longer. But if you think about other traditional marketing channels, like billboards, or email marketing, or even Facebook for that matter, there’s a lot of outbound approaches going on. You’re trying to reach someone who you think would be interested, and you are hoping to engage with them, and they come back. But that’s not the smoothest journey, and it’s not necessarily the most efficient.
If you’re talking about core search campaigns, you’re only going to show up when someone is looking for you. It’s as strong in terms of intent as it gets; you’re just at the right place at the right time.
For example, if you have $20 to invest, make sure you invest them in a channel that will allow you to be there when someone is asking for you. If someone’s knocking on the door, make sure you pay $20 to have someone open the door and talk to that potential customer.
In terms of the size of the companies and the stages, almost any business out there that has a marketing budget should be investing in digital, and most specifically in PPC. Either that is at least a small branded campaign or a very small core campaign. But you want to be there in those specific moments where potential customers are looking for you. Because even if you don’t do it, most of your competitors are doing it anyway.
Also, a good indicator is that if you want to know if advertising would make sense for you, look for yourself and your services online and see what shows up. And if it’s not you, then you should probably invest because someone else will do the same and they won’t find you, they’ll find someone else. And that’s an opportunity you don’t want to miss.