It’s easy enough to learn how to launch a PPC campaign (or any campaign). It’s hard to do (and learn) how to optimize campaigns
Let’s say you launch a search campaign on Google or Bing. You do your keyword research, pick a few keywords to begin with, and then you’d create ads.
Hopefully, you are linking those ads to message matching landing pages that convey the same message or give out the same offer as the one you are making on the ads.
Let’s say you launch the campaign and let it run for a few days.
Up until this point, almost anyone with fingers, a keyboard, and access to Google or Bing can do this.
There’s no expertise needed.
Real expertise — and real learning — comes from optimizing campaigns and doing A/B testing.
You might or might not get conversions but what exactly do you do to help optimize your campaign?
A lot of people “talk” about campaign optimization but almost no one gets it right. Either they don’t know, don’t care, or just don’t have the time or patience to what’s really needed at this point.
If you don’t optimize your PPC campaigns, you are leaving money on the table.
Here’s are the various elements that you should be managing and optimizing your campaigns with:
There’s no such thing as a good ad or a bad ad. You only have ads that work and ads that don’t work.
What you think about the ads won’t matter. It doesn’t matter if you got Shakespeare to write your ads for you (and those won’t work anyway).
Cute ad copy almost never works. With the limited real estate on your ad, you can’t afford to try to be smart either.
The way you’d know if one ad works better than the other is to test those ads against each other.
On search campaigns, start with two ads always. If you are using Google Adwords, pick the option to “rotate ads” evenly (instead of the default option that lets Google show ads that are most likely to be clicked) for a certain period of time so that you can pick winners.
Testing Landing Pages
Rule# 1: Don’t ever launch Adwords campaigns without landing pages. Not even for your initial trials.
Rule#1: Read Rule #1.
Since there’s nothing that a visitor can do on a landing page except click on the CTA or signup, landing pages give your visitors a way to take focused action (in some cases, this focused action puts money into your pocket).
Landing pages also give you a tremendous opportunity to optimize your pages, test your landing pages against one another, and more.
You can also collect leads so that market to your subscribers later using email marketing. By using landing pages, you are also not likely to attract Google’s attention that’s uncalled for. Then, you’d be able to use smart digital marketing strategies such as Retargeting and audience building (on Facebook).
Testing Workflows & autoresponders
Email marketing is the big (but open) secret to millions, and that holds good for affiliate marketing too. If you collect signups or subscribers with your affiliate marketing campaigns, you’ll come to depend on the power of email marketing to make your business happen.
The issue today is that “just some autoresponder email” won’t do. Customers are plagued by an ever-increasing load of email in their inboxes and they don’t want any more of the same crap they usually see.
To get email marketing right and to ensure a certain level of automation, you’d need to test your workflows.
Are the autoresponders being delivered alright?
What are the open rates, click through rates, clicks, and how many people unsubscribe usually?
Does this subject line work better or the other one?
How does this email content perform over another piece of content?
A/B testing and optimization are not limited to ads, landing pages, and workflows. You can test entire websites, Twitter messages, pop-ups, and more. The more you test, the better the results are off your optimization efforts.
How do you employ A/B testing and optimization? Tell us all about it.