Pay-per-Click (PPC) Advertising is considered as one of the most potent tool in the search engine marketing arena. The most popular platforms would be Google Adwords, and the soon to be merged Yahoo Search Marketing Solutions and Microsoft Ad Center.
Currently, PPC advertising has three well known divisions.
- The search marketing (Google, Yahoo, MSN, and their search partners along with second tier search engines).
- The contextual or content and display network (again Google, Yahoo, MSN, and their partners as well as other content network advertising platforms such as Fox Advertising Network)
- The email advertising network such as Adkowledge
PPC campaign management is not as easy as it seems to be though. Learning the basics alone would require a lot of time, and mastering the craft would take much more longer. I have been into the PPC management field for around four years now, and although I can say I have mastered the craft already, everyday is still a learning curve. I have maintained account budgets ranging from $1000 per month to half a million US dollars ($500,000) per month.
These PPC accounts are scattered in different businees niches. Health products, book publishing, marketing, online gambling, just to name a few. And these campaigns require a unique approach for each one of them. what works in one niche always wouldn’t work for the others. So everyday, every account is a challenge.
The basics are practically the same though. First, you need to know the business. What are the keywords to use? Who are the targets? What are the deliverables? Is it lead generation? Is it for an e-commerce site? Then another set of questions. what’s the budget? what’s the target ROI? who are yur competitors? What are they doing?
When all targets and deliverables are in place, it’s time for the nitty-gritty part of the business. Setting up the campaigns. As I have mentioned earlier, each niche is unique yet the basics are practically the same. You get your keywords, group them into tight groups based on your ad copies, and it’s the start of a long and ardous journey.
The questions each business decision maker should consider is whether to do the PPC advertising campaign management in-house or outsource it. Each has it’s pros and cons. Like, do you have in-house talents to do the job? Would your campaign be better if done in-house for total control? Or can you live with your campaigns being managed by experts in the field that are not in your team? Would your budget accommodate a new member in the team?
One thing is for sure though. If your business needs PPC advertising, you should go for it.