For business owners looking to maximize their company’s online exposure and more importantly, online growth and ROI, the best results in my experience have been attained by businesses who advocate a consistent and balanced yet targeted allocation of their Internet marketing budget and company resources across all of the major aspects of Internet marketing and online promotion, which include the following:
* Pay per click advertising: primarily Google and Bing but also Facebook and some smaller more niche-oriented platforms depending on the business model and overall budget.
* Search engine optimization: ie: taking a holistic approach to SEO which involves on-site SEO, content development + traditional link building, guest blogging etc.
* On-site content: improving landing page segmentation, action-oriented messaging and other important calls to action (ie: conversion optimization)
* Social media: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram etc.
..and then using the data from each of these separate initiatives to cross-optimize the others. ie: maximizing ROI. Here are some thoughts on particulars of each of these different initiatives and how they can be used to improve the overall effectiveness of the others as well as the bottom-line results of the Internet marketing campaign as a whole.
While ongoing SEO initiatives are usually focused on but a handful of search terms of high importance to your company’s bottom line, the primary advantage of pay per click advertising data in comparison to organic search data is the breadth of data acquired by your company’s presence on the first page of hundreds if not thousands of search terms relevant to your company’s products and services. This enhanced and immediate online presence brings with it not just an influx of new leads and sales that you are currently not and most likely will never attain though organic search rankings alone but also a wealth of proprietary (ie: specific to your business model) data that gives you a much more complete picture of where your new clients or customers are coming from and what searches they are using in finding you and more importantly in doing business with you.
This conversion, click rate and sales/ROI (if applicable) data can then be used to further refine and enhance your SEO efforts by shifting emphasis towards long-tail and niche search terms that more often than not have little or no competition and thus for whom top organic search rankings can be attained more quickly and easily with comparatively little effort (and cost to you). The bottom line here is that if your prime Internet
real estate, acquired via paid advertising, is delivering favorable ROI then the logical conclusion follows that you would want to increase your presence here by also having your website claim a greater share of this
limited first page presence in the face of this same target market. PPC conversion data allows you to do just this, over relying on just organic search term reporting alone.
Organic search term data can be utilized in several ways to enhance and optimize the performance of your pay per click campaigns. For starters, the keyword and negative keyword content in your PPC accounts can be supplemented with the many long tail search terms found in these organic search term reports. We recommend running one on a monthly basis to identify new opportunities for cross-analyzing and adjusting the keyword content in your PPC accounts. Furthermore, the conversion data from organic search should be used to adjust positions and bid levels on those same PPC search terms as they give you a more complete assessment of what the true ROI and cost per lead/sale impact of those searches is on your company’s bottom line.
A/B ad copy testing is an important part of delivering optimal results in your PPC account, on a landing page by landing page and product/service basis if your account was set up properly. Likewise,A/B landing page testing of header text and action oriented messaging and other calls to action are an important part of the landing page optimization process. With sufficient data (overall exposure of each ad), your PPC manager should be able to determine the optimal combination of ad header and body text for each specific product or service. This ad text provides important clues about what types of messaging resonate best with your target market and should be utilized and tested on your landing pages as well.
Because landing page copy doesn’t have the character limitations found in PPC ad text, the variation and descriptive aspects of this messaging can be expanded upon on your website to deliver a more complete overall message to your end user, which should utilize both the core keywords and search terms they are using to trigger your ads as well as speaking to the overall sentiment behind the words they are using in Internet search to find what they are looking for. Showing the end user closely or exactly what they are looking for in both your PPC ad copy as well as the landing page you are sending them to once they click on your ad are critical elements in maximizing visitor conversion rates and thus leads, sales and PPC ROI for you business.
The combination of organic search, paid search and overall experience you’ve had as a business owner tell you exactly who your customers are, what they want, and how they are finding your products and services in addition to WHY they choose to do business with you over your competition. So show them what they and new prospective customers want, over and over again, via social media, promotional offers and how-to or features and benefits content, ie: invest and over-invest time and resources into whats working and in addressing questions and point of differentiation and confusion past visitors and customers have had with your products and services relative to those of your competitors. Bulk up your FAQ page every time a new question is raised by a customer, create a how it works video to further clarify and address what people want and need to know about your company, test promotional discounts on products or services through email marketing and social media to further assess and optimize pricing relative to sales and ROI. What works in PPC, email marketing and on-site messaging will mostly likely deliver favorable results in social media as well.
In sum, taking a holistic approach to your Internet marketing efforts gives you the greatest amount of data and best overall picture of who your customers are, what they want and how they are finding you. This breadth of knowledge can be used to your advantage in further optimizing each individual aspect of the overall marketing and messaging effort (including print and other mediums) in helping your business to maximize growth and optimize profitability. An experienced Internet marketer should be able to identify these niche opportunities and cross-optimize your Internet marketing campaigns by utilizing this wealth of proprietary data.