How to set PPC Marketing Goals

Search & Discovery | May 10, 2013

What are your PPC marketing goals?

Whether managing PPC marketing yourself or hiring an agency, before you start spending money advertising on search engines, carefully consider what you are trying to achieve.

Of course everyone wants sales but unless you are running an e-commerce site where visitors can buy from you right then and there, you should ask yourself what you expect in return for your PPC marketing investment. Look at how you advertise today, consider what works and what doesn’t and then think about how can you carry a successful sales model into a place where you get to advertise directly to prospects who are already interested in what you are selling.

Let’s review a few basics of Search Engine Pay per Click marketing.

  1. PPC provides any company the opportunity to place ads in front of businesses and individual consumers based upon specific search queries.
  2. It is a pay-to-play bidding platform that rewards companies who are willing to pay more and/or dedicate more time with better ad placement and performance.
  3. Ads positioned at the top of the search results page perform better than ads appearing elsewhere.
  4. When an ad is displayed on the screen for a person who uses a search engine to type a search query, it is called an impression. Impressions are free but in order to get them you must be willing to pay  more than your competitor.
  5. Pay per click… you only pay when someone clicks on your ad.
  6. What you pay is determined by a number of factors including what your competitors are willing to pay, how well your ad is written, how relevant your ad is, how well your landing page performs and how successful your ad is.
  7. As with all web based marketing, you need a good website. The more informative, relevant, compelling and encouraging your website is for your target audience the better your PPC marketing will perform.

What should my PPC marketing goal be?

This question is important because without a goal, you cannot measure whether your PPC marketing investment is working for you. Over the years, I have created thousands of campaigns for customers and although the goals may be similar, they are never exactly the same for each campaign. Every business need is unique. Every marketing goal should be unique your business needs.

Is your goal to increase sales, get more leads or expand your brand?

If you answered yes (don’t worry, everyone does) you are partly right, but you need more specificity. Lofty goals are great, but in the real world success more often comes from setting goals that are realistic, achievable and measurable. Are you capable of running a four minute mile? What about a marathon? Although most people could never run a four minute mile (the unrealistic goal), most people could finish a marathon if they were willing to make the investment in time, resources, dedication and perseverance. The same holds true for PPC marketing. Just like dedicating yourself to running a marathon, dedicate yourself to investing the time it takes to set goals, learn what works for your unique business and adjust your goals as you move ahead.

What are some examples?

What is your goal when advertising? Is it to put your ad in front of people who are in your market and are in need of your services to pick up the phone and call you? What about setting a goal for the number of people you want calling or when you want them to call? Do you put a value on each call? Do you break it down by the type of service they are interested in?

Each business will have their own unique set of PPC goals. Some example search engine PPC goals are:

  1. Track when someone clicks on an ad and completes a lead form.
  2. Keep the cost per conversion from PPC less than $25 each.
  3. PPC should drive 15 new leads per month from my website’s contact form.
  4. PPC should get us 50 call leads per month.
  5. With a small budget, the average cost per click (CPC) cannot exceed $5
  6. My website is not doing well in some organic search results and I want to be sure my business is listed on the first page of Google for those search terms.
  7. Average PPC visitor time on the website is more than the time spent by organic site visitors.
  8. Maintain visibility in search engines along with my key competitors.
  9. Be easily discovered in search engines for a variety of relevant keywords.
  10. Target mobile users only.

What if I fail to achieve my goal(s)?

In life, people often fail in achieving their goal because they look at how far they have to go instead of looking at how far they have come. PPC marketing is both an art and a science. You may not be successful the first time but unlike offline marketing activities you have the option to stop what you are doing, change direction, change your goal or simply pause your campaigns while you consider your next move.

Don’t let the fear of failing stop you from reaching your PPC marketing destination. Don’t be afraid to set specific goals because you might fail. And don’t give up if you do fail. Learn from your failure, reset your goals and keep moving forward.

Keep moving forward!

PPC marketing can be like casting a net. Sometimes success comes from using a fishing pole and catching one fish at a time. In other words, the more specific your PPC goals are with campaigns that align with them, the better your results will be.  Be sure to contact us if you would like to learn more or subscribe to our blog to get the next post in my series, measuring PPC success.

About the Author
Adept at overcoming business challenges with a technical and entrepreneurial spirit, David has held various sales, marketing and operational leadership roles throughout his 25+ year career. David has always been responsible for delivering B2B tech services to his clients. Since joining Find and Convert in 2012 as our Director of Digital Services, David has been finding new ways of delivering services to our clients.

1 Comment to How to set PPC Marketing Goals

  1. by Kevin

    On May 10, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    I just ran my second PPC campaign and wish I had read this post first. As a newbie, I was just `testing the waters`, but didn`t have a specific goal. I`ll definitely keep these ideas in mind for the next one. Thanks for the post.

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