Internet Marketing Tips, Suggestions, & Ramblings

Bizarro SEO: Pay Per Click Advertising

Welcome to the Bizarro World, where all the rules are exactly the opposite of what you’d expect. Up is down, black is white, and OJ Simpson is a free man.

I do PPC management here in the Bizarro world and it’s one of the easiest things you could ever do. Some may say that my methods best practices have no place in a non-Bizarro world, but I disagree. In fact, I’m sure a lot of you out there are using some of these techniques already in your PPC accounts. So if you want a taste of the kind of things you should be doing to your PPC account to get it up to Bizarro standards, read on.

Here are 5 steps to PPC campaign management in the exact opposite way of what you would probably deem ‘successful’:

1. Lump It All Together.

Paid search is mostly made up of keywords. You pick the keywords you want to bid on, and you set your price. That’s really all you need to know. So why bother with “campaigns” and “adgroups”? As long as all the keywords you want in your account are there, what difference does it make if they’re organized or classified? I have the same thought process when I eat. If it’s all going to the same place, what difference does it make if it’s mixed together?

Sure, throwing a lot of keywords together into one adgroup may make things difficult to find, but isn’t that why there’s a “Search” button? And yeah, you won’t be able to deliver specific messaging in your ads or be able to use relevant landing pages and it’ll probably mess up your Quality Scores, but those are pretty useless too. And speaking of landing pages…

2. Landing Pages: OVERRATED

Here in the Bizarro World, we know the truth about landing pages in paid search, and that truth is that they’re useless. Why waste your time finding specific landing pages that are relevant to the adgroups and keywords you have in your campaign? Last time I checked, your website has a perfectly good homepage that you can direct all of your traffic to. In Bizarro paid search, we just assume that the people clicking your ads are not only as smart as we are, but know their way around your website as well as you do. Just stick them on the homepage every time they click one of your ads, no matter what the keyword is. They’ll eventually find what they’re looking for. Except if it’s Bono. Even in Bizarro World, that guy still hasn’t found what he’s looking for.

3. Ad Testing Wastes My Time

This one sort of ties in to my previous point. Why write multiple ads for ad copy testing for your adgroup when all you really need is one? The more general you can get with your ads, the less work there is for you to do. For example, if you sell ice cream online, you could write one ad saying you sell chocolate ice cream and another ad saying you sell vanilla. Or you could just write one ad that just says that you sell ‘ice cream’. Customers will see that and just assume that the kind of ice cream they want falls under that umbrella. And don’t even think about writing two ads for the same adgroup and testing them against each other! If you’ve got one ad and it’s getting clicks, that’s all you need. You’re getting traffic, so why mess with what’s working, even if it’s only working marginally well? And selling ice cream online? Really? Hey, that’s your own personal business decision, but I don’t think that kind of thing would even make sense in Bizarro World.

4. Assume That 100% Of Your Traffic Is Awesome

People put in keywords. People see your ads. People click on your ads. Done deal, right? You may think it’s a good idea to “qualify your traffic” and make sure that the people clicking on your ads are the people looking for what you’re offering them. This can be done by using negative keywords to prevent your ads from generating for search queries that may not have anything to do with what you’re offering. You can also try more specific ads to turn away unqualified clicks. But really, all you’re doing is just turning away potential customers. Qualified or unqualified, everyone is a potential customer, whether they know it or not. Let’s say you sell trips on an Alaskan cruise. Now let’s say that someone with an interest in extraterrestrials does a search on “Tom Cruise” and finds your ad because you don’t have “Tom” as one of your negative keywords. Sure, they weren’t looking for your website and you may think of the $5.00 click you just got charged as a waste of money, but I guarantee you that years from now when that person wants to take an Alaskan cruise, they’re going to remember your site. And since the economy here in Bizarro World is better than it’s ever been, cruises are definitely in demand. Ice cream? Not so much.

Everyone knows that traffic alone is the #1 most important thing for a website. Who cares how someone found you? The point is that they found you. “Qualifying your traffic” is just fancy-speak for “Making your website less popular”.

5. ‘Setup’ Is A Singular Word

If you’re like I am here in Bizarro World, you know that setting up a paid search campaign is a one-time thing, right? You open your account, set things up, and you’re set for life! Now if you have a lot of changes on your website, whether it’s re-organization or constantly adding or taking away products, you may feel the need to just step back from the mess your paid search account has become and possibly re-organize things. RESIST THIS URGE AT ALL COSTS. You’ve already organized things once, so why do it again? It’s just going to get jumbled up again most likely. Feel free to keep adding in new campaigns, moving keywords back and forth between adgroups and just assuming that everything is in the right place. Sure, there may be a more efficient way of organizing things, but who’s got the time to do that? It’s much easier to just let things run their own course.

I use this same philosophy in my apartment. Why make my bed when there’s a good chance that it’s just going to get messed up again? Why clean when it’s just going to get messy later?

On a related note, you do not want to see my bathroom.

About Garry Grant

Garry Grant is a veteran expert in search engine optimization and the digital marketing industry. With nearly 20 years of experience, Garry has successfully built a multi-service operation at SEO, Inc., developing proprietary technologies through complex strategic solutions. He has extensive experience in key initiatives and operational responsibilities grounded in information technology and performance management.

Garry’s expertise and esteemed reputation, coupled with SEO Inc.’s impressive client success record has earned him such accolades as Entrepreneur Magazine's 2005 Hot List for the Hottest Internet Property, Inc. 500 2007 Honorary award for Fastest Growing Private Company in America, an Inc. 500 top 50 Company in San Diego, and interviews with The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, WIRED, Entrepreneur and The Huffington Post.

Garry Grant began his online career in 1993 creating strategic Web and e-business solutions for Homepage.com, The Rush Limbaugh Show, Premiere Radio Networks, Clear Channel Communications, EarthLink and Artisan Motion Pictures. Today, Garry and SEO Inc.’s highly skilled digital strategists develop proprietary technology and strategic digital marketing direction for Fortune 500 companies including, SC Johnson, McAfee, Entrepreneur.com., Inc Magazine, IGN, Tacorri, LPL Financial, National Kidney Foundation, G4 TV, Fuel TV and Sony, just to name a few.