Food for thought

PPC is like going on the pull; Here’s how to get it right

By February 13, 2020 No Comments

It’s Valentine’s Day and it’s nearly the weekend, so if you’re single and acutely aware of it thanks to all the loved up couples you’re surrounded with, there’s every chance you’re figuring out how you can turn your fortunes this weekend when you’re smashing the doubles and dominating the dancefloor. And if you’re in digital marketing there’s a win-win here: the same tactics you bring to finding the love of your life in Popworld can be applied to your PPC campaigns too; bear with me and I’ll show you the path. And if you strike out on the weekend, at least your fantastic new PPC campaigns will make you rich and you can sulk somewhere fancy.

Step 1: Identify Your Audience

Some of us like to spend all night in Spoons, whilst others are always going to beeline for the biggest, flashest club we can find; to each their own. What’s important is to know where the people you’re interested in are going to be.

In much the same sense, different people use the web in different ways. Bing has a slightly older, more affluent, lower-consideration user base than Google so there are products which can do really well there. You know all those really weird bits of slang you hear other social circles using? You’ve got to make sure you’re going after the right audience, with the right language (in your keywords and your ads) on the right platform. You won’t meet the goth of your dreams in a mainstream nightclub. Probably. I don’t know your life.

True story for you: one of my mates approached a girl in a club on his friend’s behalf, to see if she wanted to get to know him because he wasn’t very confident. She turned the offer down, but she ended up going for my mate instead. There’s a metaphor for competitor bidding in there somewhere, but I’ll leave that to yourselves to flesh out.

Step 2: First Impressions Count

If you’re gonna take this seriously, you need to get your best gear on and make sure you’re turning heads. Fresh trim, new pair of shoes, you might even wash your boxers if you’re feeling really good. You only get one chance to catch someone’s eye so you need to make sure they like what they see.

When there’s a night out on payday so you drop half your wage flexing with designer gear

In much the same sense, you can’t stick a tired old piece of copy in a new campaign and expect it to thrive unless it’s been meticulously tested. Even then, it’s never a bad thing to spice it up. That new watch you bought to complete the look? The belt that goes perfectly? Those are your ad extensions. Nice way of giving people a little bit more to base their decision on, and catching more attention whilst you’re at it. Unlike your new garms though, extensions are free. Sometimes they even lower your CPC by improving your Quality Score.

When you first get to where you’re going, you scan the room for the talent. You know they’re scanning you too. Literally, the search is done and impressions are being recorded. Once you’ve been noticed it’s game on.

Step 3: Making Contact

Ever met someone who looks fantastic, a total dream, then they open their mouth and you just want to go back in time and never meet them ever? Thinking of you here Georgia (it’s a long story). Now imagine if you’d paid for that conversation (I haven’t got a personal experience there, promise).

You’ve done your search, you’ve seen an ad, liked it, clicked it, and now you’re on a landing page: this is your chat. If your chat is crap, it was all for nothing- it’s all to play for and you can still easily blow it at this stage.

You need to be engaging somehow. Whether you’re funny (brand allowing), informative, just a bit different, or charming whenever possible, you need to do something that sets you apart.

People have come to your page with an expectation and a problem they’re trying to solve; if you give them the impression you can’t do that, or you’re not the best person for the job, they’ll go looking for someone who is.

If you can sell your own offering, you’re almost there.

Step 4: Sealing The Deal

If you’ve ever ran lead gen, we all know that it’s getting those form fills that count. If you’re on the pull, the form probably looks a bit like this:

Well, maybe not quite like that. Phone numbers are a bit dated aren’t they, it’s more likely you’d try to get their Instagram handle and slide headfirst into their DMs like some kind of digital Evel Knievel. But bear with me here.

If you can get that lead form filled out, or if you’re transacting upfront (we’re class at ecomm by the way) then get those payment details (no first-hand experience I swear), you’re there. You want to make this as simple as possible. Don’t provide unnecessary resistance. If you ask for a whole ton of unnecessary fields people won’t take the time; if you make the checkout a nightmare people are just going to look for an easier one, even if it costs a little bit more. Imagine if instead of sharing a taxi back to your new squeeze’s house, they give you a map and an address. No thanks. I’m off for a pizza, don’t wait up.

So Here’s The Plan

Let’s recap: You’ve figured out where your crush hangs out, put on your best kit, made an introduction, charmed them to bits, and got what you wanted. 

If you follow all the same steps with your PPC campaigns, you’ll be off to a good start.

Sometimes though, it’s not always as straightforward as this. Things don’t always go right the first time, and you need to be able to react to that. Don’t worry; there are tricks we can try to get things back on track. I’ll quick-fire a few of these off for you.

Ever been chatting someone up, and they’re not that bothered until you buy them a drink and then it’s all go? Discount codes. Hit your basket abandoners with them to finish the task at hand. Not public ones if you can help it though; you don’t want to give your product away.

The notorious ‘u up?’ text- Remarketing To Past Converters. They’ve bought once, so let them know you’ve got something new they might like. Or the same again. Depends what you’re selling.

Avoiding your ex who always tracks you down and bad-mouths you to whoever you’re with now- Excluding Past Converters/People Who Bounced From The Site. Sometimes, you know that once a transaction’s done it’s staying done and there’s no point in trying to sell the same product again. It’ll be a waste of budget won’t it?

Ever been had a bit of success with someone, then gone a while without talking to them and thought their mate looked alright? Lookalike/Similar Audiences. Find people similar to your current converters (cause you know you’re to their taste), and make yourself known.

Now you can spend V-Day getting rich off PPC- drop us a line if you want to go straight to the experts, then mop up all the discount heart-shaped chocolate on the 15th, spend the weekend meeting your perfect match and live happily ever after.



Joe is BFBC's Paid Search Manager, and is the Obi-Wan to Ryan's Anakin. He hopes this doesn't mean he'll be required to cut off a traitorous Ryan's arms and legs one day, but he's prepared just in case. Joe loves coffee, donuts, quoting pop culture, lifting weights and anything else which can distract people from his personality. Not that he's a bad guy. The opposite really. To the point that it's too much for some people to handle, hence needing a distraction. He dislikes many things. Too many to mention. Spend half a day with him and you'll get the gist.

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