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Balance Your Paid Search Campaign

Posted by Pete Stafford on April 5, 2017 at 9:41 AM

Search Engine MarketingNo matter the scale, running a paid search campaign can be demanding, as marketers must find a working balance between different keywords, calls to action and ad copy so the campaign runs efficiently. While it may be tempting to throw out a few split-tests and leave the rest to trial and error, there are concrete things marketers can do to run a balanced campaign that connects with consumers but doesn't break the bank.

Keyword Caution

Finding the right keywords can be a tricky business. You don't want keywords that are too popular, as your paid search campaign will be crowded out by similar businesses selling comparable products. However, pick something too niche, and searchers might not find you.

The easiest thing marketers can do is to use free tools such as Google's Keyword Planner to find medium-range keywords — both short- and long-tail — that are broad enough to attract a fair range of searches, but specific enough that they won't lead consumers right to your competition. For instance, if you own a secondhand electronics resale storefront, keywords like "buy TVs" or "used iPhone" could lead shoppers right to big-box stores. However, something like "TVs for sale in Atlanta" or "used iPhone for cheap" could yield more promising results.

Competitor Marketing

Speaking of competition, don't be afraid to take a look at what other businesses in your industry are doing with their marketing. While no marketer should ever plagiarize content from other businesses, it may help to take a look at how they're advertising and what campaigns work for them.

For instance, let's look at the secondhand electronics example above. If you see other electronics retailers adding a "Search Now" call to action for ads that use long-tail research-related keywords, try adding a similar call to action to your geo-targeted ads to compete directly with these larger retailers in a local market.

Platform Importance

In the decade since the first iPhone was released, the mobile platform experienced exponential growth, expanding from just a tiny percent of total usage at the start of the 2010s to a majority in 2017. In 2016, mobile searches surpassed desktop searches, now accounting for the majority of total searches taking place. That said, the desktop platform still plays an important role in purchasing decisions, meaning marketers should still take advantage of both mobile and desktop search activity. You shouldn't go all-in on either of these platforms, striking a balance is key.

While there are plenty of moving parts to paid search campaigns, taking practical steps to balance marketing efforts in this realm will help master your campaign.

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