It’s easy to launch a pay-per-click (PPC) campaign, but it takes some effort to get real results. Many companies struggle to craft paid media campaigns that are budgeted effectively, leverage the right keywords and are focused on a clear goal, leading to missed opportunities and wasted marketing spend.
Third-party partnerships can take the burden off your shoulders and make your campaigns more successful in a few ways. Here are three reasons why:
- Safely test campaign strategies
- Find your target audience
- Optimize landing pages
1. Safely test campaign strategies
It can be difficult to see quick returns on your investment when you start a paid campaign. Your budget can run dry halfway through the campaign or your landing pages may fail to move the needle the way you wanted.
Your campaign may be driven by a particular goal or based on a specific budget. Both types of campaigns require careful monitoring of metrics to understand success.
The success of these campaigns is tied to a specific metric, such as cost-per-acquisition (CPA) or profit, or simply to drive awareness (using engagement metrics). The budget will be flexible in these cases.
Key metrics: Total revenue, number of conversions, profit margin, qualification rate or CPA (depending on purpose).
Sometimes a campaign is designed to get as much engagement as possible with the ads while spending an allotted amount of money as efficiently as possible.
Key metrics: CPA or engagement metrics that convey return on investment (ROI) of campaign.
Marketing experts can help manage these metrics and identify opportunities that drive more clicks or contribute to your campaign goal. Kristina McMurray, marketing program manager at Gartner Digital Markets, says working with a partner is a great approach for businesses just starting out to create a budget and test keywords.
She recommends making notes of which parts of your campaign move the needle toward your goal, and focus on understanding the most effective factors that impact your budget spend and overall success. “You can start out low with your budget, and dip your toe in the water to see if you’re getting movement in the metrics you need,” McMurray says, “then you can spend a bit more.”
2. Find your target audience
Even the most carefully crafted PPC campaign needs to find the right audience. Many companies choose to start on some of the broadest search or social media platforms available, but then struggle to narrow down their messaging. A simpler way to quickly get your message in front of the right people is to find a partner who has already carved out the online audience you want. For just about any product or service, a base of potential customers is waiting.
For example, our three Gartner Digital Markets sites attract thousands of software buyers every month looking to evaluate their options and connect with vendors. In addition, we offer helpful marketing services such as assistance to optimize landing pages and recruit reviews, tools to analyze data trends for performance and a team of advisors to personally qualify highly tailored leads.
Specialized platforms with services such as these instill confidence that your PPC bids are driving connections with real prospective customers and that your budget is being spent on the right audience. Locate the platform your audience frequents to get started. If you don’t have any previous data to work with, these platforms will give you the most immediate ROI from campaigns.
3. Optimize landing pages
An important part of the PPC puzzle is how people are guided after they click. Instead of sending potential customers to a generic place on your site, it’s always effective to craft a custom landing page.
“Sometimes a campaign isn’t successful because the landing page isn’t targeting the right audience,” says Kelsey Tu, senior marketing specialist at Gartner Digital Markets. “So you should make sure the message is consistent.”