Tawleen, aka Max, is a certified Search Engine Marketing Manager and has a passion for online consumer behaviour. He is a basketball fanatic and a football and squash addict. Tawleen has a holistic, 360 degree worldview attained largely through watching Netflix and YouTube documentaries.

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Why Do I Need to Pay for SEM Set-Up Again?

Why do I need to pay for SEM set-up again?


This question often comes from clients when launching seasonal Search Engine Marketing campaigns or re-starting digital marketing efforts after an extended period of time.

These are legitimate concerns; however, it’s important to understand why re-visiting campaign structure and set-up makes sense.

Can you really rely on old data?

Online Consumer Evolution: You might be selling the same product or service but your customer has evolved and they are not searching the same way they used to six months ago. Long tail and sophisticated search queries are on the rise. For example, someone that searched for ‘home builders’ six months ago has evolved and is now searching for ‘home builders south west calgary’. These changes in online consumer behaviour requires campaign refinement including, but not limited to: keyword bid adjustments, targeted ad copy, landing page optimization, and testing.

Device Preferences: There is a great shift happening in search traffic from desktop to mobile. By 2015, mobile search volume is expected to exceed desktop and by 2016, it will be approximately 30% higher. This shift will have serious implications on campaign performance if not addressed. Not only is consumer search behaviour different on mobile, ad placement and keyword bids require a different approach as well. This continuous shift requires executing changes in keyword bids, ad copy messaging, device targeting options, and many other campaign adjustments to succeed in the constantly changing mobile search landscape.

Competition: Evaluating competitors online marketing strategies is often neglected by many marketers when launching or re-launching a new AdWords campaign. It is very important to perform a competitor analysis before going live with your campaigns. Competitors that were bidding on similar keywords in the past might have become more or less aggressive this time around; they might even be bidding on your brand name. They might have better offerings and deals, maybe they introduced a new product or service. All of these changes can have a significant impact on your ad rank, keyword bids, ad copy, and landing pages. It is necessary to create a game plan and determine how you can outsmart them, to win more customers. Do you offer better service? Are you more value oriented? Are there different keywords you could be using? Can you offer a more clear Call to Action? All of these questions can be answered and actioned during set-up, which will guarantee smooth sailing in the future.

Geographic Targeting: It is very important to know where your target market is and understand which geographic area drives the majority of your revenue. That being said, when re-launching an old campaign it is always helpful to analyze the most (and least) successful geographic markets. You may wish to exclude low performing geographies and spend your budget in areas that drive revenue. To ensure that you are capitalizing on high demanding and high converting geographies, you might need to create new campaigns targeting niche geographic markets with targeted keywords and ad copy. For example, last year you ran a campaign with Alberta as your geo target, but after further analysis, you found out that Edmonton generated 70% of the revenue and keyword searches with ‘edmonton’ as a modifier were particularly effective—ie. ‘edmonton digital marketing’. Therefore, it makes sense to create a new campaign this year targeting Edmonton, bidding on keywords with ‘edmonton’ as a modifier, and writing ad copy highlighting that you are a local company with an office/branch in Edmonton. This will create a better user experience and lead to higher revenues.

Conversion Tracking: This is probably one of—if not the most—important reason to review campaign structure and set-up. Re-launching campaigns without conducting proper testing on all the goals being tracked is risky and could lead to an unsuccessful launch. Any changes to the website and goal tracking parameters need to be evaluated and implemented accurately to avoid any bumpy roads in the future when it comes to measuring campaign performance and overall success of online marketing efforts.

Search Engines: And now, last but not least, search engines like Google and Bing constantly refine their algorithms, change their technology, and introduce new ad units and products. Proper set-up involves incorporating any of these changes into your campaign so that your online marketing efforts stay on the cutting edge.

Letting it Go!

Re-launch campaign set-up must be carried out strategically to be effective and, when executed properly, it carries a wide array of benefits. Allocating a portion of the budget to reviewing and refining campaign structure ensures that campaign operates as cost effectively as possible. Back to the competitor intelligence point, there is a serious insight gained from carrying out the competitor analysis that can not only help you with your online marketing but also provide you useful information for any offline marketing efforts. The cost of set-up is vastly outweighed by the benefits, so don’t be shy and let us take your digital marketing campaigns to the next level.