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6 Display Campaign Lessons I Learned From My Mom

display campaign lessons from my momSome of the best advice I live by comes from my mom (hi, Mom!) and as much as it pained me to hear it as a child, there have been many moments in my adulthood when that advice came in handy, or would have come in handy if I had just listened. Like that one time I decided I was too tired to take the smelly trash out and the next morning, I awoke to the pungent smell of fish. Or that other time when I couldn’t keep my mouth shut and hurt someone’s feelings by accident. Or even better, that one time I bought a cute pair of shoes instead of food and wondered  why I was eating Ramen once again for dinner.

We’ve all been there at least once (twice, thrice…). Right?

Getting Started with AdWords Location Based Bid Adjustments

The Possimpible with AdWordsIf any of you are like me, you hear/read about a great idea but then you’re often left with the question – “But where do I start?” For me, it was the simple matter of using AdWords location-based bid adjustments. The theory is awesome: You set a positive or negative percentage on a city, state, or country that will tell AdWords to raise or lower your Max CPC bid on a keyword by that percent. So for example, if you wanted to raise your keyword bids 15% in New York City, you indicate it in the Campaign Location Settings by adding a 15% next to NYC. If you want to lower your keyword bids in Washington DC by 20% you indicate it by adding a -20% as the location adjustment. All of this sounds grand. But how do you actually discover a good percentage point to start with per city/state/country? Well I’ll get there, but first you need to discover what areas you are performing well in. (more…)

2013 PPC Resolution Check-in

PPC Resolution Check-InBack in December 2012, I wrote a blog post that covered my 2013 New Year’s Resolutions for PPC. And with the year nearly come and gone, I figured I could take stock of what I committed myself to – and it was a mixed bag. There are definitely a few items I can confidently check off my list, but with others I’m sad to say, I know I could do better. So I set out to grade myself.


The Quick and Dirty Rundown of AdWords Estimated Total Conversions

On October 1st, Google AdWords announced two new conversion types that are intrinsically tied together – Estimated cross-device conversions and Estimated Total Conversions. On November 12, Google also announced the newest Conversion roll out called Calls as Conversions. This is an unsurprising development since the debut of Enhanced campaigns and, more importantly, the change in Google’s privacy policy in early March. For us marketers, this is a pretty cool advancement in conversion tracking for AdWords. These two new conversion types will help us optimize campaigns in a new (and perhaps more effective) way than before. The ability to see how your audience finally completes a conversion is invaluable information. Below is a brief round-up of both types of conversions: (more…)

9 Rookie PPC Mistakes That Drive Me Crazy

We all make mistakes, that’s a given. And I’ve probably done at least a few of these on these least by accident in the early days of PPC management. Now that I have gained some sensei wisdom, I can say with some finality that there are just some mistakes that should never, ever happen. Go forth and learn.

1. Targeting display and search together – the gif sums it up pretty nicely. When you target these two networks together, Display will probably eat the lion-share of the budget, leaving little opportunity for Search to perform. You will see low CTR and low conversions. You’d have more fun throwing that cash-money out the window. (more…)

Sarah’s Favorite Things: Custom GA Reports and Segments for AdWords Traffic

Peanut Butter and JellyPeanut butter and jelly. Chocolate and marshmallows. Tequila and lime. Google Analytics and Google Adwords. In the colorful and delicious world of food (and data) pairings, some just stick out above the rest. And so it goes with GA and AdWords. In my time here at LunaMetrics, I’ve been lucky enough to learn a bunch of new tricks in GA for helping me to better analyze and understand how AdWords campaigns perform after the click. So on today’s show, I’d like to talk about a few of Sarah’s Favorite Things, namely, the go-to advanced segments and custom reports that I use to quickly parse and separate data for easier digestion. (more…)

Google AdWords Grant Account: 7 Tips for Every Manager

google adwords grant ad servingAre you a manager of a Google AdWords Grant account? If so, then you might be intimately aware (and perhaps even frustrated) at the many different rules that govern the use of Google AdWords for nonprofits. Maximizing spend can sometimes be the #1 issue that nonprofit AdWords managers face. With the $2 Max CPC rule, your ability to compete for some of the more popular keywords can be severely limited. While this $2 bid is some good news (previously it was only $1), the same announcement was tempered with the news that paying advertisers will have first dibs on top ad spots. Basically people who are paying out-of-pocket will have their ads shown over the nonprofit ads. Don’t get disheartened though – Google AdWords Grant is still an excellent program that grants nonprofits a $10,000/month budget in free advertising. FREE ads. And you can still capitalize on every dollar spent by taking the time to follow and implement these simple tips.

1. Have a cornucopia of keywords.

Long-tail keywords should be your best friend. Think of not just the WHAT of your service, but the HOW.

  • HOW do people find you?
  • HOW do people benefit?
  • HOW do you solve an issue?

Thinking of your service in this context can give you some more ideas for keyword research and expand your current roster of keywords that might not be getting a lot of clicks due to low ad position. (more…)

5 AdWords Filters You Can Use Right Now

As you journey on into the great adventure that is Google AdWords you might get overwhelmed with the simple fact that there are so many ways to look at data. Take it from me. AdWords can be full of nifty little tricks that you don’t pick up on right away,or might not be immediately intuitive, and as the seasoned PPC-er knows, as soon as you get used to something, Google might decide to take it away. One of the best tools within AdWords that can quickly and easily simplify your life is the Filter tool.

You can find the Filter tool at any level of management – Campaign, Ad group, Ads, Keywords, Audiences, Ad Extensions and Dimensions. It’s an innocuous little button nestled right next to the Columns button.

AdWords filter tool

While we speak to it in AdWords trainings, a lot of attendees ask for our favorite saved filters, so I thought I’d share the knowledge here. It was hard to pick only 5, but these 5 are the ones that I think every PPC manager should have in their back pocket. I usually apply these filters at the Keyword level.

High Cost, No Conversions – “Slash and burn”

Any keyword that has a high spend and no conversions is a keyword that I don’t need to hang on to for the time being. I don’t want one, or more than one keyword driving my Cost per Lead/Sale up or taking valuable funds away from other keywords in the ad group. As with any and all decisions in Paid Search, however, be careful when you blindly apply changes to keywords. Before pausing, carefully examine the effect that this keyword may have had on later conversions. Was this keyword an “opener” or “influencer” in some conversions?

One question we get frequently in trainings is, “but how do you know when X cost is too high?” Our usual response is, “Well. It depends.” It depends on what cost is sustainable to you, how important brand presence is to you and if you can reasonably maintain a keyword that might get good clicks, but no conversions. (more…)

Google Announces Display Network Impression Reporting

Google Analytics announced something pretty cool today – actually something AMAZINGLY cool. We can now get Display Network Impression Reporting in Analytics, including some nifty new features in the Multi-Channel Funnel Reports that allow advertisers to see the true effects of different ad types on users and their eventual conversions. If you’ve ever wondered about how display ads (and different ad types to boot) have concretely played a role in a conversion at the impression level, you’ll now know. Attribution never gets old.

Read the full blog announcement here:

For implementation, check out the GA support article here: Implementing Display Network Impression Reporting

How to Link AdWords and Analytics

I recently completed an AdWords Training in NYC and one topic that required some extra explanation and walk-through was actually linking AdWords and Analytics accounts. When first starting an AdWords account, this is a step that I highly encourage from the start. It only takes 5 minutes and is super easy. If you have an account already (maybe it’s been running for a while and you’ve just been given management), then checking to see that everything is linked correctly is an important step. I can’t stress enough how important it is to have AdWords and Analytics properly connected and “talking”. Your future optimizations absolutely depend on it!

Before we go any further, though, make sure that you have Administrative access to BOTH the AdWords account and the Google Analytics account with the same email log in. This is important since you can’t do squat with Admin access to only one or the other. (more…)