Nobody wants to get digital advertising wrong. This goes doubly so for manufacturers who are investing in their first pay-per-click (PPC) ad campaigns. How do you pick the right keywords? What if a hundred people click on yours ads but no one contacts me?
There are answers to these questions below.
What is PPC advertising?
Before we dive in, let’s take a step back and explain what PPC is. When you buy PPC ads, search engines and social media platforms agree to place your ads in their search results, and you agree to pay a certain fee every time someone clicks one of those ads.
For example, one of our clients has set up a PPC advertising with Google. Any time someone searches for “Contract labeling services New Jersey” (and a dozen other phrases), Google will display Pro-Motion’s ad near the top of the search results page. Every time someone clicks on the ad, Google deducts a small fee from that account’s budget.
When you invest in social-media-based PPC, you can create campaigns that display ads based on certain audience demographics instead of keyword searches. Instead of targeting people who search “labeling services” you could show your ads only to New Jersey residents, between 25 and 50 of whom are small-business owners.
When does PPC outweigh SEO?
Getting your company to appear near the top of the search results is of the utmost importance when trying to generate inbound traffic. But at what point does it become more profitable to concentrate on PPC rather than organic search results (the ones that Google lists for free because it thinks they’re the most useful)?
Part of that equation depends on the size of your industry. If you operate within a niche subset and have relatively little competition, search engine optimization (SEO) will probably work just fine, as the organic search results will be less crowded.
For instance, a company that manufactures specialist parts for medical equipment and is competing against only one or two other companies will probably be able to get the top spot on Google fairly easily with careful keyword selection and good content.
On the other hand, a company that manufactures goods in a highly competitive industry such as health supplements, will almost certainly benefit from PPC ads on Google that give them an edge over competitors who rely solely on SEO.
Another factor that may influence your decision is how quickly you want to see results. If you’re willing to wait and play a long-term game, SEO is the best bet. If you want to focus on generating more traffic immediately, paying for advertising makes more sense.
Of course, there’s nothing to stop you from investing in both. In fact, that is probably the best option for an industrial manufacturer that is just venturing into digital marketing. Invest the bulk of your budget into SEO, leaving aside a small amount to kickstart things with PPC.
Do you want more targeted traffic?
If you want to direct specific types of people to specific product and service pages, PPC is the way to go. Google Adwords allows you to target web users from a certain location or just those using a mobile device, for example. FaceBook PPC ads will allow you to define target profiles, like those who work in a certain field or have a particular educational background.
This laser-focused style of marketing can be highly beneficial to manufacturing or engineering companies. You can pinpoint people within your niche or target area and create ads that appeal directly to them, targeting specific product ads to procurement managers from relevant industries, for example.
As long as you’re linking your ads to “landing pages” that are specially crafted for each campaign’s message, you’re guaranteed to get higher-quality leads.
Can you afford PPC?
PPC advertising costs vary depending on your field or niche. Cost-per-click (CPC) pricing can range anywhere from one dollar per click up to and beyond $20. Equipment manufacturers that are selling high-ticket items might have an ad budget that can accommodate competitive keywords, but smaller shops will need to make sure that they’re bidding on search phrases they can afford.
Pronto Marketing offers a fully managed PPC service and we usually recommend $100 monthly minimum for a new campaign. However, with a $500 monthly budget you can start to see the ROI of your paid ads make a huge difference.
Do you want more marketing insights?
Aside from increased site traffic, another major benefit of PPC advertising is the amount of actionable data that can be extracted from it. You can get insights into the effectiveness of your marketing and an incredibly clear picture of what types of content, promotions and strategies work the best.
You will be able to extract data telling you the number of clicks, leads, and sales generated by each ad. This level of granularity will help inform your marketing decisions and focus them far more than traditional forms of advertising.
Does PPC fit with your overall strategy?
The most important thing about digital marketing is to have a strategy. You need to know what you want from any marketing activity, and not just a vague idea such as ‘generate more leads.’
You need to get specific. How many more leads do you want to generate and in what time-span? What about the quality of those leads? Will you be combining PPC with other marketing efforts? Do you have a persuasive landing page written up?
All of these factors will determine your overall strategy. If you just want to drive more traffic to your website so they can get in touch with you if they like, then stick with SEO and traditional advertising. If you’re looking to improve the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of your advertising, then PPC will deliver.