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Andy Black

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I found this forum today when another member (tengen) linked to my blog and I spotted someone coming through from here in my Google Analytics account.

Wow, what a find. Not only is it a subject I love (growing your business - ethically), but it's a paid forum run in Xenforo.

I've just started a Xenforo paid forum about a month ago and have 4 signups so far. So this is like killing two birds with one stone. :)

I specialise in AdWords paid search, which I've been doing since 2009 ish. I was in a team of 35 AdWords specialists buying 1m clicks a day for €120k a day. I was their geek in the corner for a while, and then I managed the team for a bit. I then worked for a startup and built 120m keywords and ads to help them acquire 15k new signups a day.

I love demystifying AdWords paid search for people, and believe the biggest benefit of AdWords is not the traffic you can buy, but that you get to find out what your market actually wants, so you can sell it to them.

I'll order the book and read that, and probably pay into the Insiders as it seems amazing value.

I'm busy enough in my own forum, and in IMGrind and a few others but am very interested in learning from you guys and gals, as well as seeing how a Xenforo forum works.

Looking forward to learning and contributing.

Andy
 

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Y.B.

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Welcome to the forums

Just curious, how do you go about using adwords to find out what your market actually wants...by looking at the keywords that driving clicks (the ones that don't relate to what you're already selling)? Also what's your blog that tengen linked to?
 
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Andy Black

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Welcome to the forums

Just curious, how do you go about using adwords to find out what your market actually wants...by looking at the keywords that driving clicks (the ones that don't relate to what you're already selling)? Also what's your blog that tengen linked to?

Thanks for the welcome Yury.

It's not just the keywords driving clicks. That's looking at the small % of visitors that you got when people clicked on your ad.

If you're ad CTR was 3%, and you had 10,000 impressions in the month, then you'd have 300 clicks.

Most people will just analyse the 300 clicks and use Google Analytics to work out what they were doing on their site.

But what about the 9,700 that saw your ad and sailed on by? Which of your products or services received the most impressions?

And if your impression share was only 25% (meaning your ads showed 25% of the time that they could have shown), then you can actually work backwards and know that there were 40,000 eligible searches that your ads could have shown for. And you can determine the impression share and impressions for each of your products...


An example I did in the past was to load up "solicitors" and 40,000 locations in the UK.

I set a budget of £10 to run the next day from 8am. The budget was used up by 9am. We couldn't tell how long it took to use up the budget since the lowest reporting granularity for AdWords is an hour.

In under an hour we bought 13 clicks, and 700 impressions. Working backwards, we knew there were 4,000 searches.

With a blanket bid price for all 40,000 ad groups we could tell which locations had more competition (we were in a lower ad position).

We could have predicted that the most popular location was London, and this would be extremely competitive.

And that Birmingham would be next.

But what locations do you think appeared in the top for volumes?

And what locations had decent volumes and a decent ad position so that we'd be able to get clicks for this cheap bid price?

We bought a lot of data for £10 :)



My blog, if I'm allowed to link to it, is www.andyblack.net

Moderators... delete away if I'm not allowed to link to anything yet.
 
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adoredunchin

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Welcome! There is plenty to learn here. I hope you enjoy your stay here

@JasonR maybe he knows how to increase your 5k budget :)
 
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Andy Black

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Welcome! There is plenty to learn here. I hope you enjoy your stay here

@JasonR maybe he knows how to increase your 5k budget :)

Thanks for the welcome also kaloenneli.

Hmmm... is someone trying to spend more? I hate calling it a "budget" btw... it's "spend" or "cost", hopefully "investment". It's a running battle I have with clients' accounts departments - "So you want us to stop the campaigns now that we've hit *budget* for the month? Even though we're positive ROI?"

The short answer is to increase CTR so you get more clicks (unless you've increased it by reducing impressions of course).

The best answer is to increase EPCs, so you can bid more.


EDIT: Holy cr@p, but this forum is busy! I'm off to bed, great to be in such a busy forum. :)
 

adoredunchin

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I didn't see anything in the thread about a $5k budget. What am I missing?
maybe I'm not up-to-date but last time I checked your thread you said you have a 5k limit in your adsense account?
Andy says he had 120k budget per day. So I thought he might give you some tipps. But perhaps I have a bad memory :)
 

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Ah - I misunderstood.

My budget is $15k right now. Thanks man. :)
 

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Ah - I misunderstood.
My budget is $15k right now. Thanks man. :)

How do you up this? Adwords takes $350 out of my account every couple of days. Not that it makes my life harder, but I would prefer an end-of-month withdrawal instead.
 

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frieden70

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Great intro and welcome to the forums @Andy Black!

Do you have much experience with search and mobile?

I specialize in mobile display advertising (my day job) but haven't tried hitting search yet. It's been about 4 years since I bought traffic on search and we have some big clients that are interested in that traffic.

If you have experience there, how is mobile search different than web? Are there any different restrictions? Can we direct link straight to our advertisers' app store page/lead form/whatever?

Appreciate any input you have and if you have any questions on mobile display, feel free to ask or PM me.
 
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Andy Black

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How do you up this? Adwords takes $350 out of my account every couple of days. Not that it makes my life harder, but I would prefer an end-of-month withdrawal instead.
Not sure you can change this. It will depend on your history of spend.

I know that for a company I worked for, they were able to pay their Google bill after their Yahoo revenue came in. Nice for cashflow...
 
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Andy Black

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Great intro and welcome to the forums @Andy Black!

Do you have much experience with search and mobile?

I specialize in mobile display advertising (my day job) but haven't tried hitting search yet. It's been about 4 years since I bought traffic on search and we have some big clients that are interested in that traffic.

If you have experience there, how is mobile search different than web? Are there any different restrictions? Can we direct link straight to our advertisers' app store page/lead form/whatever?

Appreciate any input you have and if you have any questions on mobile display, feel free to ask or PM me.

Thanks for the welcome frieden70

I just do search, and across all the devices. I haven't done any mobile display advertising, and only limited web/desktop display advertising.

I prefer search as I get to see where my ads are placed, what they look like compared to the competitors', and my simple brain understands search intent - when someone looks for "plumber jobs dublin", then I have a good idea what they're looking for! :) I need it plain and simple like that... I'm just a dumb bloke who can't work out what his wife means when she says "yes, that's nice".

I also prefer search as I think this is the best form of (cold) traffic. If you can't sell to someone who's actively looking for your solution, then how can you sell to tire-kickers? Search traffic is also incredibly consistent (if you get your match types right), so I think it's the best traffic to use to find and fix the leaks in your funnel, before you send other traffic down it. I actually think this is a bigger benefit than getting traffic - use it to hone your funnels, and then you can almost turn off AdWords and get traffic in via other channels.


"Direct link"... I'm not even sure what that means to tell you the truth. You can point to where-ever you want. How does Google know whether you own the domain or not? There are of course problems linking to a domain you don't own:

1) If there are lots of other advertisers (affiliates) linking to the same domain, then you're all competing with each other for the impressions (since Google won't show more than one ad per domain).

2) You're screwed if the landing page is non-compliant, since you can't change it to make it compliant.



I'd love to learn a bit more about mobile display. Maybe we can do a Skype session with screenshare and swap notes? :)
 

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Man this is great, I am really trying to get educated on this stuff right now as it is the next natural step for my business - and also totally new for me.

Thanks for bringing the value right up front. I looked at your blog for a few and it looks like it is also totally based on value to the reader.

Thanks again
 
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Andy Black

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Man this is great, I am really trying to get educated on this stuff right now as it is the next natural step for my business - and also totally new for me.

Thanks for bringing the value right up front. I looked at your blog for a few and it looks like it is also totally based on value to the reader.

Thanks again

You're welcome man.

The secret to paid search? Give people what they are looking for.

So I have to take my own medicine and do the same. ;)
 

frieden70

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I'll PM you so we can chat a bit more to see if we can provide eachother value but some of the points you bring up could be of value to other peeps here :)

Thanks for the welcome frieden70

"Direct link"... I'm not even sure what that means to tell you the truth. You can point to where-ever you want. How does Google know whether you own the domain or not? There are of course problems linking to a domain you don't own:

"Direct Link" refers to linking directly to the advertiser's web page/offer/etc. So no landing page or splash page. I know google banned a lot of that practice (or at least made it much more difficult) than it used to be. This of course, makes sense since they don't want a shit ton of the same advertisers showing up for the same search terms. You pointed that out in 1) below ;)

2) You're screwed if the landing page is non-compliant, since you can't change it to make it compliant.

Absolutely. I'm curious to see what is and isn't compliant as far as mobile is concerned.

BTW, is your search experience solely adwords or do you work with other search partners?

Thanks and take care!
 
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Andy Black

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From one Adwords dude to another - welcome aboard ;)

(Did you ever hang out on Wickedfire too?)

Thanks man.

I don't think I ever hung out on wickedfire. I've been on IMGrind for a while, and a few other paid forums (mind you, IMGrind is free now).
 

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Welcome to the Fastlane, Andy!

I have actually been reading your blog, which I found through IMGrind (which, in turn, I found on here), so it's a big circle!

Glad you have you here, hope you enjoy the boards (I see you're an Insider already, yay!) and if you have any questions or anything, feel free to PM me and I'll see what I can do for you. :)
 

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Went on IMGrind recently for the first time, information overload. I'll revisit it once I need help on a specific need I help with...otherwise it's impossible to keep up with all the great content that's produced every day.
 

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I also prefer search as I think this is the best form of (cold) traffic. If you can't sell to someone who's actively looking for your solution, then how can you sell to tire-kickers?

Great stuff! It's obvious if you think about it but you are right. You helped me on my project thx
 
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Andy Black

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is your search experience solely adwords or do you work with other search partners?

I just use AdWords, and paid search. I prefer to get really really good at one thing. :)
 
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Andy Black

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Welcome to the Fastlane, Andy!

I have actually been reading your blog, which I found through IMGrind (which, in turn, I found on here), so it's a big circle!

Glad you have you here, hope you enjoy the boards (I see you're an Insider already, yay!) and if you have any questions or anything, feel free to PM me and I'll see what I can do for you. :)

Thanks Fiona. Yes, I recognise your avatar from IMGrind.

Funny how you found my blog before I signed up in here. Big circles like you say.

I'm not used to thinking in circles... everything for me is a straight line and direct response. I shall have to mull this over and see what I can learn from it.
 
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Andy Black

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I'll trade ya adwords knowledge for seo knowledge :)

Lol... no thanks.

Paid search first, SEO a distant distant second. When you've worked out what search terms are bringing in the money, and how much each click costs, and how much a place on the organic results is worth for you, then you might want to bring in the SEO guns. I'd rather invest my time and money into increasing the conversion rates and average life-time-value (LTV) so that I can bid more.


Most people are attracted to the free clicks from SEO

... because they don't put a value on their time!


It's also much harder to work out the ROI for SEO because you don't see the cost-per-click. So you're tempted to keep doing something that isn't working and should have been shot a long while ago.

And if you think about the data that you can buy with AdWords, and so fast, that you can buy impressions using a crappy landing page and decide that the idea isn't worth persuing, then you'll realise that the biggest benefit of paid search is the market intelligence you gather, not the traffic you're buying. (Go read this post: Are You Only Buying Traffic?)

SEO takes so bleeding long.

Sooo, with all due respect, bollix to SEO. :)
 
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Went on IMGrind recently for the first time, information overload. I'll revisit it once I need help on a specific need I help with...otherwise it's impossible to keep up with all the great content that's produced every day.

IMGrind is a gold mine, but be careful - gold has a habit of distracting you from what you planned to do.

The most dangerous distraction is opportunity, because it comes disguised...

EDIT: But seriously, it's an absolute gold mine!
 
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Lol... no thanks.
Sooo, with all due respect, bollix to SEO. :)

I agree completely, which is why I am trying to find niches to serve with PPC.

Have you ever tried to generate leads for a niche using a basic landing page, take that contact information and try to sell it to local businesses?

It's an idea I am thinking of trying, and was wondering if you worked on it before.
 
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Andy Black

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I agree completely, which is why I am trying to find niches to serve with PPC.

Have you ever tried to generate leads for a niche using a basic landing page, take that contact information and try to sell it to local businesses?

It's an idea I am thinking of trying, and was wondering if you worked on it before.
Aha... local lead gen is my thing... Yes, that's exactly where I'd like to go.
 
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Andy Black

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For people wondering how I get local businesses as clients (which I don't have many of by the way):

I don't consider myself an expert at face to face sales by any means, but off the top of my head...

Search Engine Marketing is all about being found by the people already looking for you. They are the easiest to sell to.

Once I started taking my own medicine and only taking inbound leads (word of mouth referrals, people finding me on LinkedIn), then everything fell into place.

Forget "selling"... it's all about helping them. If you focus on what they want, and not on what you want, then they see that and you're pushing against an open door. See how my about page is written: www.digitalinsight.ie/about-me

Oh, and I know the website looks crap, but that's not the point. I only want to deal with people who are interested in the content, not the prettiness of the site. I will eventually beautify it, but it's not a high enough priority for me at the moment.

I am always open to meet businesses for a coffee. They buy me lunch, I waffle. It helps me to hone my stories.

I like telling stories. People remember stories, and I always tell the story about my brother-in-law.

I'm crap at closing, but I think that's mostly because I'm not really chasing the sale. If they're interested, they will circle back. If they aren't interested, I don't want to waste my time.

You *really* need to make sure you're not wasting your time on the wrong prospects.

Find out as quickly as you can whether they see the value in what you do, or the cost.

If the conversation is all about costs, then run. They will NEVER change, and they will always be squeezing you.

If their eyes light up because you provide exactly what they have been looking for, then you're in business (if you want it).

It's just then a case of working out HOW to align both your interests.

I've ended up going down the flat monthly rate route because that's how they mostly want to pay, and it's easiest for both parties.

Most small businesses have zero tracking, and most have a "budget" mentality rather than an "ROI" mentality.

"Let your customer pay you however they want to" was a line I read somewhere.

At the end of the day, a flat rate, % of PPC costs, pay-per-lead, pay-per-sale, % of profits, etc are all just different ways HOW to do the same thing.

Also, you're going to spend a lot of time dealing with them, so trust your gut, and only work with people you enjoy the company of.

(The reality is that I like producing content, and coaching and training. So rather than run campaigns for small businesses, I'd rather create some sort of info product and/or subscription based coaching site that helps them to get better themselves. If I can get to 50% creating content/coaching and 50% managing campaigns, then I'll be happy.)
 
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