The famous 80/20 ratio applies in business and sales: 20% of clients tend to make up 80% of revenues. This ratio also applies in Google AdWords and other PPC campaigns, according to Jospeh Kerschbaum. While many campaign managers are happy to rest on their laurels with 80/20, this strategy is not without risk. What works today can be obsolete tomorrow; however, diversification can be your insurance policy against such slips. Kerschbaum’s Search Engine Watch article profiled a number of suggestions for diversifying a PPC campaign for performance reliability. Here are some of the highlights:
1. Don’t Be Lazy
All too many PPC accounts rely too heavily on the “broad match” way of generating keywords to bring in traffic. While it is easy, you’re giving away all your power to the search engine. Instead, be proactive: continually identify the keywords with the highest potential, then make them into exact match keywords. Lather, rinse, then repeat.
2. Promote Different Items
While it’s tempting to promote just “the 20%,” i.e. your most popular products and services, try and stay abreast of market trends that could lend themselves to some of your other items. Create ads and campaigns geared toward a variety of your offerings and experiment with rotating them seasonally or based upon what’s trending.
3. Changing Channels
Are you making the most of geographic targeting for your ads, products and services? This is another area that could be ripe for diversification. Try out new markets and configurations. Push the envelope and see what’s possible. Try different distribution channels within Google such as the Display Network, Sponsored Promotions via Gmail and YouTube. Experiment with different ad formats as well.
4. Watch the 20%
All of that said, you should also keep an eye on your top-performing keywords. Segment them into specific ad groups so that you can monitor them, tweak the list and optimize them for performance. Glean candidates for the exact match approach regularly.
5. Test, Test, Test
Lastly, but significantly, you’ll want to develop a method for testing results. You’ll need designated ad funds committed to this testing process. Try out new approaches separate from your primary campaign so that a true side by side comparison is possible.
Yes, testing new approaches does cost time and resources; however, not making the investment is the greater risk. Why not spread your wings, diversify, and see what’s possible?