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EXECUTION Breaking In To PPC/Advertising Career- How did you do it?

Hassan

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Currently working a typical office 9-5 while in the early stages of my eCommerce/Amazon business. The problem is...

The daily morning drive fills me with dread.

The last 2 years have taught me nothing new, each day follows the same brain-rotting repetitive routine, and the pay is ok.

The goal now is switch to a path that interests me. A field which I enjoy enough to develop a marketable skill while growing my business over the next couple of years. For me, that's PPC marketing/advertising.

After sending my hopeful CVs out though, the response has been crickets chirping punctuated with rejection emails.

I've got experience freelance writing/content marketing online, which isn't highly relevant, but shows I'm no stranger to the digital marketing world.

This thread will be used to track my actions and progress towards breaking into the field.

What I am doing + What I plan on doing:
  1. Completed adwords fundamentals. Now working through Google analytics
  2. Brushing up my Microsoft Excel skills because they suck!
  3. Growing a Facebook page for my wife's tutoring biz
  4. Getting my feet wet with Amazon PPC for my product
  5. End of year objective: A close relative owns a used van dealership, 1-2 employees, 30k revenue, average copy, unoptimized CTAs, definitely room for improvement. I aim to use Google Ads to make a significant dent to his profits and ad this campaign to my portfolio.

Guys on the forum who are in the PPC/marketing game:

@Andy Black @CoreyinMN @eliquid

1) How did you get to where you are now?
2)What's the best way to transition into the field as newbie?
3) What's the number 1 thing to learn (show I know)

Here's a link to my current CV:
 

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ANR

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I'm not either of the three people that you mentioned but I have just done something similar so thought I would share.

I went to a talk in my final year at uni about digital marketing.

Two of the people that spoke really interested me talking about the data layer between the user interface and the backend which can be used for marketing.

At the end of the talk I went to say hello but everyone was swarming all over, so I went downstairs and waited by the entrance.

I saw the two people walking out on their own, so I grabbed my chance and went up to them.

I thought after talking for over an hour they would probably be thirsty so I said:

"Hey guys, that talk was awesome, want to grab a beer? There is a place just round the corner."

I hit the right note, they both smiled and said hell yeah. Thirsty work public speaking...

So we have a beer or two and i'm firing questions back and forth talking about some really awesome things I had never heard of before. We parted ways as friends and they both said keep in touch.

Finished my final year and wanted to go and learn what one of these guys was doing so called him up and said:

"Hey my uni will pay for me to come and work with you for two weeks, do you want to set something up?"

"Yeah I think we can do something..."

"Okay great."

Now I knew I had two weeks for show him that I was worth paying for once the uni funding was over.



Moral of the story, find thirsty people and give them beer.
 

IGP

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Currently working a typical office 9-5 while in the early stages of my eCommerce/Amazon business. The problem is...

The daily morning drive fills me with dread.

The last 2 years have taught me nothing new, each day follows the same brain-rotting repetitive routine, and the pay is ok.

The goal now is switch to a path that interests me. A field which I enjoy enough to develop a marketable skill while growing my business over the next couple of years. For me, that's PPC marketing/advertising.

After sending my hopeful CVs out though, the response has been crickets chirping punctuated with rejection emails.

I've got experience freelance writing/content marketing online, which isn't highly relevant, but shows I'm no stranger to the digital marketing world.

This thread will be used to track my actions and progress towards breaking into the field.

What I am doing + What I plan on doing:
  1. Completed adwords fundamentals. Now working through Google analytics
  2. Brushing up my Microsoft Excel skills because they suck!
  3. Growing a Facebook page for my wife's tutoring biz
  4. Getting my feet wet with Amazon PPC for my product
  5. End of year objective: A close relative owns a used van dealership, 1-2 employees, 30k revenue, average copy, unoptimized CTAs, definitely room for improvement. I aim to use Google Ads to make a significant dent to his profits and ad this campaign to my portfolio.

Guys on the forum who are in the PPC/marketing game:

@Andy Black @CoreyinMN @eliquid

1) How did you get to where you are now?
2)What's the best way to transition into the field as newbie?
3) What's the number 1 thing to learn (show I know)

Here's a link to my current CV:
You need to get a job doing PPC, learn the ropes, prove your worth and then expand out on your own if you still want that.

In the mean time, learn to write copy or sales letters, imaging/branding, etc.

Those are skills that will translate on any path you choose.
 

CoreyinMN

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@Andy Black @CoreyinMN @eliquid

1) How did you get to where you are now?
2)What's the best way to transition into the field as newbie?
3) What's the number 1 thing to learn (show I know)

Here's a link to my current CV:
Off the top of my head...

1. Learning. Doing. Asking good questions to the right people. Rinse and repeat.
2. Find/Create an offer to promote and run campaigns with your own money. Nothing will teach you faster than the pain/excitement of watching the dollars flow in and out of your own wallet.
3. Knowing what it costs to get a sale/customer. Because the only thing that matters is sales. Not how many clicks. How many impressions. Not a great quality score. Not the latest feature the Google Reps are trying to get you to turn on without testing. THE only thing that matters is putting your and/or your client's dollar in the machine and getting 2, 3 10 times out of it somewhere down the line.
 

Andy Black

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I tell my story a few times. I’ll link to them below.

In a nutshell:

Start with people you already know.

Keep letting people know what you’re “getting into”. You don’t need to be an expert, just willing to do the work.

Become known in your circles as the guy who does that online marketing stuff. Even “the guy who builds websites” is good enough to get conversations going.

Offer to run their ad campaigns for free, so long as they pay the ad spend. This makes sense if it’s a close relative as you’re in it to “help them out”, not make money from them.

Throw yourself into it and try your damnedest to make it work. You’re doing it to help you’re close relative or friend, NOT to learn XYZ or get a job as XYZ.

*** THIS IS THE ONLY WAY TO LEARN ***

Consider courses but only if they get you up and running asap. Yes, I will unashamedly recommend my course and suggest you read the copy in my marketplace ad. You don’t have to take my course but if you’re considering any other courses then please view them through the lense of my sales page.

(And for the love of God people, stop buying courses to “learn stuff”. Buy them to get results. The market doesn’t pay for activity or what you’ve learned. The market doesn’t gaf about your certifications. You can’t invoice for input. The market pays for results.)


Yes, consider jobs if you want to learn super fast. And yes, they’re more likely to take you on if you already have experience. I took a couple of jobs to reskill from IT to paid search. They were stepping stones.

In one job I managed a team spending €120k a day, and in another we built 120 million keywords and ads to acquire 15k signups a day.

Hard to get that experience as a newbie freelancer, but with that experience I have established authority and credibility. It helped me land freelance and contract work for the likes of Groupon and other large spenders.


Further reading/viewing/listening:
 

Andy Black

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What I am doing + What I plan on doing:
  1. Completed adwords fundamentals. Now working through Google analytics
  2. Brushing up my Microsoft Excel skills because they suck!
  3. Growing a Facebook page for my wife's tutoring biz
  4. Getting my feet wet with Amazon PPC for my product
  5. End of year objective: A close relative owns a used van dealership, 1-2 employees, 30k revenue, average copy, unoptimized CTAs, definitely room for improvement. I aim to use Google Ads to make a significant dent to his profits and ad this campaign to my portfolio.
I didn't spot this bit.

If you've already completed the AdWords fundamentals then why work through Google Analytics or brush up on Excel?

What if you could get your close relative a sale today by running some Google Ad campaigns TODAY?

If your goal was to help your close relative get more sales, then how would **learning** Google Analytics and Excel help?


Some more reading for you:
 

ANR

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In one job I managed a team spending €120k a day, and in another we built 120 million keywords and ads to acquire 15k signups a day.
HOLY MOLY that is allot of keywords...

I'm getting good at filtering through lists of 10,000 from SEMrush using the tools on sheets/excel but building 120 MILLION keywords is astonishing .

I can imagine someone who liked data would rip your arm off if you had said come have a look :)

@Hassan have a look at Whiteboard Friday on youtube by Rand Fishkin and Moz if you wanna learn some good SEO stuff... really well made videos
 

eliquid

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  • Completed adwords fundamentals. Now working through Google analytics
I didn't spot this bit.

If you've already competed the AdWords fundamentals then why work through Google Analytics or brush up on Excel?

What if you could get your close relative a sale today by running some Google Ad campaigns TODAY?

If your goal was to help your close relative get more sales, then how would **learning** Google Analytics and Excel help?
I think he may be wanting to do this because when looking at job postings, these 2 things come up a lot for "requirements" to know for the job.

Employers ask all kinds of things now-a-days, these 2 are generally at the top of the list.

I would agree though, in the grand scheme of things, these are some of the "last things" to know or do and that getting experience would rank higher than knowing "analytics" or "excel" ( both of which I suck at and I have made a career in PPC/digital marketing ).

.
 

Andy Black

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I think he may be wanting to do this because when looking at job postings, these 2 things come up a lot for "requirements" to know for the job.

Employers ask all kinds of things now-a-days, these 2 are generally at the top of the list.

I would agree though, in the grand scheme of things, these are some of the "last things" to know or do and that getting experience would rank higher than knowing "analytics" or "excel" ( both of which I suck at and I have made a career in PPC/digital marketing ).

.
Ah... good point about getting jobs.

I'm good with Excel, crap at Google Analytics - I just get other people to do the GA part.

I may do an Excel course and drop it into here sometime, maybe the Inside.
 

eliquid

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That resume won't land you a PPC gig more than likely.

What I would do:

1. Start running ads for your relative that does the van stuff.
2. Run some paid FB ads out of your pocket for your wife on FB
3. Run some Amazon PPC ads to your product

Then put all of that on your resume and take out the last gig on the page ( the 2016 one ).

No one needs to know the PPC ads you ran were for yourself, wife, and relative.
.
 
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Andy Black

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The videos in this thread might interest you if you're job-hunting via a CV:


Also... make sure your LinkedIn profile is up to scratch if you're job hunting.
 

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eliquid

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1) How did you get to where you are now?
2)What's the best way to transition into the field as newbie?
3) What's the number 1 thing to learn (show I know)
I'll start with #3 -

The biggest is Adwords ( Search, display, remarketing, shopping ) and Facebook. If you can learn those 2, you will be pretty much set for MOST projects. Not a lot of people go outside these 2.

Instagram, Bing, Adroll, Amazon, Gemini come in last in the pack. You don't find a lot of other platforms past this except for maybe native ad platforms. If you can learn Adwords and Facebook though, everything else will just come to you easily.

#2 - Just get the experience. It's kinda like a degree. While personally I think degrees are worthless for MOST careers ( nothing against people that get them ), employers will ask if you have a degree and you might have one.. but no one asks from what school or what grades you got. A Bach of Business from "joe schmo community college" will be different than from the the "University of Kentucky" which will be different than one from "Yale".

Also, what if you got a D all four years and got that degree? That would be different than someone that got an A all four years.

But no one asks these things. They just take the degree you got.

This is the same as me saying just get the experience above. Can you do PPC? Do you have experience? Get to where you can say YES about these questions. No one needs to know, "well it was just for my own product on Amazon or my wife's tutoring business she does on the side".

So if the only way you can get the experience is to do it on your own, then do that. That's the best way to start as a newbie. If no one will hire you, do it for free. Again employers don't need to know you did it for free for your relative with the van stuff.

#1 - I was greedy, egotistical, eager, and broke.

I had learned to design websites and then learned programming, but having these sites meant nothing if no one visited them.

Since I taught myself how to design and program, why not marketing too? I was also broke and couldn't afford to pay someone else and no one was really teaching how to do this back in the 90's, so I had to learn myself by trial and error, and on my own dime.

That lead me to going from buying penny clicks on "GoTo", to securing the PPC contract for a Billion dollar company just yesterday that everyone on this forum would know the name of and probably uses daily too.

You just need to get your hands dirty and your feet wet. No one typically cares the path you took to get your feet wet, just that you did.

.
 
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Hassan

Hassan

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So we have a beer or two and i'm firing questions back and forth talking about some really awesome things I had never heard of before. We parted ways as friends and they both said keep in touch.

Finished my final year and wanted to go and learn what one of these guys was doing so called him up and said:

"Hey my uni will pay for me to come and work with you for two weeks, do you want to set something up?"

"Yeah I think we can do something..."

"Okay great."

Now I knew I had two weeks for show him that I was worth paying for once the uni funding was over.
Moral of the story, find thirsty people and give them beer.
That's a damn good example of proactive networking. Good lesson for a shy dude like me too. How did this turn out for you by the way? Has it influenced what you do now?
 
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Hassan

Hassan

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I tell my story a few times. I’ll link to them below.

Throw yourself into it and try your damnedest to make it work. You’re doing it to help you’re close relative or friend, NOT to learn XYZ or get a job as XYZ.

*** THIS IS THE ONLY WAY TO LEARN ***
Thank you Andy!

This makes sense, and the fact that it's mentioned numerous times in this thread shows that intending to "learn more" at this stage is lipsticking the procrastination pig!


Consider courses but only if they get you up and running asap. Yes, I will unashamedly recommend my course and suggest you read the copy in my marketplace ad. You don’t have to take my course but if you’re considering any other courses then please view them through the lense of my sales page.

(And for the love of God people, stop buying courses to “learn stuff”. Buy them to get results. The market doesn’t pay for activity or what you’ve learned. The market doesn’t gaf about your certifications. You can’t invoice for input. The market pays for results.)


Yes, consider jobs if you want to learn super fast. And yes, they’re more likely to take you on if you already have experience. I took a couple of jobs to reskill from IT to paid search. They were stepping stones.

In one job I managed a team spending €120k a day, and in another we built 120 million keywords and ads to acquire 15k signups a day.

Hard to get that experience as a newbie freelancer, but with that experience I have established authority and credibility. It helped me land freelance and contract work for the likes of Groupon and other large spenders.


Further reading/viewing/listening:
 
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Hassan

Hassan

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Yes, consider jobs if you want to learn super fast. And yes, they’re more likely to take you on if you already have experience. I took a couple of jobs to reskill from IT to paid search. They were stepping stones.
Definitely want to go the job route to get solid record behind me. Doing it every day should be accelerate the learning curve significantly.

In one job I managed a team spending €120k a day, and in another we built 120 million keywords and ads to acquire 15k signups a day.
Wow. That sounds like a serious credibility booster. 15k signups must have generated a ton of business?



Thank you for these. Will check them out tonight. I'm listening to your chat with Contrarion while driving home at the moment.
 
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Hassan

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That resume won't land you a PPC gig more than likely.
I'm not surprised at all haha


What I would do:

1. Start running ads for your relative that does the van stuff.
2. Run some paid FB ads out of your pocket for your wife on FB
3. Run some Amazon PPC ads to your product
Thank you @eliquid . Sounds like a solid plan, I'll do it.

Started on the FB group already, still researching what content garners the most engagement from her audience.

Should see my van man this weekend, I'll fill him in on my dastardly plans to boost his sales then. :)
 

ANR

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That's a damn good example of proactive networking. Good lesson for a shy dude like me too. How did this turn out for you by the way? Has it influenced what you do now?
My goal is to be location independent so I can work overseas.

I'm about two weeks in and I bet you don't need any clues to guess who worked from home *cough* his bed *cough* today...

:) :palm::palm::palm::palm::palm:Here I come:palm::palm::palm::palm::palm::thumbsup:
 
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Hassan

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I think he may be wanting to do this because when looking at job postings, these 2 things come up a lot for "requirements" to know for the job.

Employers ask all kinds of things now-a-days, these 2 are generally at the top of the list.
This is exactly why. Seems to be on every posting, but as you said, who cares about that when you've got solid skills and experience with adwords/PPC to lay on the table.
 
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Hassan

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#1 - I was greedy, egotistical, eager, and broke.

That lead me to going from buying penny clicks on "GoTo", to securing the PPC contract for a Billion dollar company just yesterday that everyone on this forum would know the name of and probably uses daily too.
That's crazy, congratulations on the big win! Have you been going at it as a consultant from the beginning?

.

I had learned to design websites and then learned programming, but having these sites meant nothing if no one visited them.

Since I taught myself how to design and program, why not marketing too? I was also broke and couldn't afford to pay someone else and no one was really teaching how to do this back in the 90's, so I had to learn myself by trial and error, and on my own dime.
Seems like you've had quite a journey. Thank you for sharing and putting things into perspective there's a wealth of takeaways for me to execute on.
 

Andy Black

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For Excel I have a few videos in various places where I analyse campaigns, analyse keywords, and create campaigns. Check out my list of AdWords posts in my signature.

Look up Pivot-Tables, and get to learn how to concatenate contents of cells together (e.g. cell C2 could contain formula a2&” “&b2).

Excel with AdWords Editor will be your friend.
 

Andy Black

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15k signups must have generated a ton of business?
Nope. Not one penny. Another story for another day. Let’s just say that I now actively despise startups and startup culture.
 

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eliquid

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That's crazy, congratulations on the big win! Have you been going at it as a consultant from the beginning?
Nope.

Been a mix of employee ( buying ads for the employer ), buying ads for myself as an affiliate and product owner, and buying ads as a consultant for others ( clients/agencies ) the whole time.

I spend more time in the product owner and consultant role now though. Not so much as an employee or affiliate anymore.

.
 

Andy Black

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For Excel I have a few videos in various places where I analyse campaigns, analyse keywords, and create campaigns. Check out my list of AdWords posts in my signature.

Look up Pivot-Tables, and get to learn how to concatenate contents of cells together (e.g. cell C2 could contain formula a2&” “&b2).

Excel with AdWords Editor will be your friend.
Here's an Excel video:
 

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I spent my money, learned enough, then spend other people's money, learned more, now I'm spending a lot more of other people's money.

Pretty simple really. Just takes a little while. But why do you want a PPC career?
 
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Hassan

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But why do you want a PPC career?
To immerse myself and get my hands dirty in digital marketing while developing a marketable skill, I guess...
 

Andy Black

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To immerse myself and get my hands dirty in digital marketing while developing a marketable skill, I guess...
I think it’s a pretty damn good technical skill to have. Couple that with good commercial skills and you’ll go far.
 

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