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The Biggest Benefit of AdWords

Discussion in 'Sales, Marketing, Copywriting, Social Media' started by Andy Black, May 22, 2014.

  1. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    The Biggest Benefit of AdWords

    One of my friends is an electrician, and his work dried up when the economy tanked a few years ago.

    He had to hand his van back, and had a wife, two kids and another baby on the way.

    He would have known this was the beginning of the end for him.

    I wanted to learn how to build websites, and I asked him if he’d be my guinea pig.

    He bit my hand off down to my ankle.

    We built a simple site and got him ranked top for “kildare electrician” (Kildare being the county we live in here in Ireland).

    Nothing happened.

    Then one day a €50 AdWords voucher fell out of a book.

    I setup an account, and got a few ads running.

    Within a few days he rang saying “Andy, I’ve had a call!”

    I remember standing up and wandering around the office in a daze thinking “Wow, this actually works.”

    We were really excited, and sat in his kitchen working out a bigger list of things to bid on.

    We had new keywords such as “dublin electrician”, “wiring and rewiring”, and “fuse board replacement”.

    He was really excited about “smoke detector installation” because of all the landlords in Dublin that would need smoke detectors installed in their properties.

    We setup a “Services” page on his site and listed each of the services as bullet points.

    We bid on each keyword and fired traffic at it.

    He started getting calls and I remember him getting home late one Friday evening because he had been fixing a washing machine in a town nearby.

    He asked me to add “washing machine repairs” to the services page, saying that a lot of the people looked for an electrician because they wanted appliances repaired.

    We added that to his “Services” page, and created ads too.

    After a month of the campaign running, we looked at his stats and and found that his ads had shown 10,000 times.

    He’d had 300 clicks, and spent €75.

    He was more than happy spending that €75, because he’d had enough work to cover the costs and get some money in.

    Most people would use Google Analytics to find out what those 300 visitors did when they landed on the page, but I was more interested in the 9,700 people who had seen our ad and sailed past.

    When I analysed the 10,000 times his ad had shown, I found that 2,000 were to do with people searching for electricians, especially in Dublin (the biggest city in Ireland).

    We didn’t get much traffic though from these “electrician” searches, because every other electrician was also bidding on them and we were in a really low ad position.

    We had hardly any clicks for wiring and rewiring, and no calls at all. I guessed our site wasn’t professional enough for people who were about to spend quite a bit of money and probably price shopping.

    Our ads had shown only 12 times for “smoke detector installation”, so I told him that wasn’t going to work.

    What I did find out though, was that half of all his impressions (that’s 5,000 impressions!) were down to either washing machine repairs, cooker repairs, or oven repairs.

    He said he was absolutely swamped with all these appliance repairs calls.

    Not only were there loads of people searching for appliance repairs, but there was much less competition in AdWords, so we were in a really high ad position and getting a lot of clicks.

    Also, people looking to repair their washing machine or cooker are pretty desperate, and less likely to be price shopping because it’s a cheap job anyway.

    So we threw away dublin-electrical.com.

    And built a dublinwashingmachinerepairs site, a dublincookerrepairs site and a dublinovenrepairs site.

    And then a kildarewashingmachinerepairs site, a kildarecookerrepairs site, and a kildareovenrepairs site.

    We turned off all the other ads, and just sent traffic to the correct website depending on what people were searching for.

    His click-through-rate went from 4% to 8% overnight because someone searching for “dublin washing machine repairs” saw an ad from dublinwashingmachinerepairs.com instead of dublin-electrical.com

    When they landed on the site and it said “Dublin Washing Machine Repairs”, they didn’t wonder whether he fixed washing machines, or if he covered Dublin. They just wanted to find his number and ask him when he could come round.

    So his conversion rate also went up.

    Which meant we could afford to pay more per click.

    And get into top ad position.

    Which brought in even more traffic.

    The happy ending to the story is that my brother-in-law ended up getting a new van.

    And building a workshop in his back garden to fix all the washing machines.

    I’d never heard his dad speak, but he quietly bought me a drink at a family gathering.

    I also found out from the AdWords campaign that people were four times more likely to search for “electrician kildare”, than “kildare electrician”.

    So I’d wasted a lot of time getting him ranked for the wrong keyword.

    I should’ve ranked him for both, and for all the other ways people could type it in.

    To me, the biggest benefit of AdWords is not that you can buy traffic, but that you can find out what people are searching for, so that you can sell it to them.

    You can quickly test whether “cheap”, “reliable”, or “qualified” works better in an ad when someone is looking for an electrician.

    You can add the winner into the copy on your landing page.

    AdWords is the purest form of cold traffic.

    There is an intent behind every search.

    If you’re not using it to buy real time market intelligence, then you’re just buying traffic.

    The biggest benefit of AdWords is that it can help you to build products your market actually wants, rather than what you think it wants.


    (Video version of the story added later in this thread, plus a link to a radio interview expanding upon it.)
     
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2016
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  2. TedM
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    TedM Silver Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    did you really need a campaign for this? using the adwords keyword planner tool, or the adwords desktop tool (with various match types) - would that not also give you the same information?
     
  3. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    You don't need to do a campaign, you can estimate this. But often the Google Keyword Planner doesn't show volumes when there blatantly is, and you probably want to target a location or locations within a country rather than the whole country. You also won't know your average position, and your CPC, CTR, etc.

    I get keyword ideas from the Google Keyword Planner, and the search term report, and load them up to get the REAL data. :)
     
  4. TedM
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    TedM Silver Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    ok.

    i struggle w/a very nichy high end product, which has tiny search volume.

    How do you build your ad groups?

    Also, how do you use the match types?
     
  5. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Initially, one modified broad match keyword per adgroup. Campaign negatives as necessary.

    Then, if volumes justify it, another campaign for exact match keywords, with the negatives added to the modified broad match campaign.


    Nichy high end product with tiny search volume is a prime candidate for remarketing.
     
  6. TedM
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    TedM Silver Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    now, you HAD to know that i'd come back w/a follow up question on this one...Pray tell!!

    What do you mean by "modified"?
     
  7. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    ;) LOL.

    We're going off topic slightly so I will create separate posts to answers these.
     
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  8. TedM
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    TedM Silver Contributor FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Andy, thanks.

    Truth is - I think you'd best serve the forum w/one master thread, so people who want to - can rummage around in one place.
     
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  9. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Hmmm... maybe. I know I miss a lot of gold because it's buried in 40 page threads.

    Maybe the mods can advise? I don't want to "spam" the forum with info only a few people are interested in, but at the same time, it's harder for people who do want to learn something specific if it's in a thread that contains multiple conversations.

    I was thinking of doing an AMA ... but only after I've added most of my content in here, and linked to that content at the top of the AMA so that I don't answer the same stuff over and over.

    Thanks for the heads-up. I'll have a think now. :)
     
  10. Gaudeamus
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    Gaudeamus Three yards and a cloud of dust FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    @Andy Black , great post. Where do I find in depth information on how to find out if the idea for an information product has a market? I have ideas for information products based on my own (past or current) interests and needs, but what is the best way to find out if there is actual demand in the marketplace for my idea?
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2015
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  11. Gaudeamus
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    @TedM: Interesting - for me it's the other way round, I don't find a lot of valuable information excatly because it is buried in a long thread with dozens of pages, containing multiple topics. I found Andy's way of posting a summary thread ("Andy's Adword Posts") with links to the various adwords topcs he has been covering in the forum in his various threads extremely helpful. It lead me to this thread.
     
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  12. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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  13. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Thanks for the feedback @Gaudeamus @TedM

    I'm still unsure which way to go on this. I might add the content of all the posts into one big one, in the order that I think makes sense to read. I intended re-ordering the links out to each post in the "Andy's AdWords Posts" thread, but we can't change the contents of posts once they're over a certain age (which is a good thing btw).

    If it helps people to have all that content in one thread then I'll do that when I get some time.

    I dropped a lot of content in the last year and I'm starting to think I might be making AdWords more rather than less intimidating to people who have never used it.
     
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  14. EricZ
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    Thanks so much for this Andy!
    I recently made my first foray into adwords and it was a huge eye-opener (codeword=failure), but no, I did learn, however I didn't know what to learn. Now that I have my website up and am learning from my small audience, I've got my first product. Thanks to you I know what to do with the adwords!
    It's kind of like this - I did this for my AppSumo business course:
    Validation3.png


    So now the inevitable question:
    Have you tried facebook ads? They are the rage now (especially retargeting).
     
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  15. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    I tried them a few years ago, before Facebook went IPO. I couldn't get over the fact that I could upload 200k keywords and ads into AdWords when the guy sat next to me would be tearing his hair out trying to upload 1k ads. And that we'd have to keep changing Facebook ad creatives because of ad fatigue, whilst the AdWords paid search ads just keep running, and running, and running.

    I figure I'm better at getting really really good at one thing, than trying to get good at 2 things. If I was a 7/10 at 5 different traffic sources, then I'd be up against a different 10/10 guy in each traffic source. Granted, being a 7/10 at 5 different traffic sources is unique in its own right, but my brain understands search better than social media.

    If someone is searching for "plumbers dublin", then I know what they're looking for. I don't care where in Ireland they live, what sex they are, or their income bracket.

    If someone else is searching for "plumber jobs dublin", then I know what they're looking for too, and it isn't the same as the first searcher.

    I don't use Facebook myself personally either.

    So no, I've no plans to learn Facebook advertising. If I'm running something profitably with AdWords paid search and I want to use other channels, I'd hire them in.

    Hope that helps!
     
  16. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Here's the video version of my "founding story" in the OP.

     
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    I love this story :) and not just because my Dad was an electrician and this takes me back to helping him out about 10 years ago, although with a completely different problem.

    I've started working for a friends digital marketing and SEO company, and recently got my first client. Like you said, "project" is the wrong word. But it does fit. She is a lovely woman that I would do anything to help, and money is nowhere near the primary concern. I just want to really kick start her business. I can seriously visualise her making it successful nationally with her experience and contacts in the industry. I get the feeling she is a bit embarrassed that her digital presence is so poor when most of the people she has helped train over the years have done so well.

    Unfortunately, the guys that own the company have done a bit of a 180 on me lol. Already talking about how to go about tripling her spend with us before she has even renewed her first month or seen results. And by already I mean after 10 days. And even worse, want me to hit her up for a referral program for people that she trains in the industry (in her other gig as a high level trainer at a national academy). This is her competition...

    I have ZERO doubt that just helping her and gradually building her business up will result in more business for us. It's such a shame some people (despite how many times I have seen them get burned by this in the past!) don't follow this. F@#ks sake. At least I only work on commission and can ignore the bullshit.

    Just found the similarities funny, as I'm also about to start playing around testing things on adwords. Quite enjoyable actually!
     
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  18. Andy Black
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    Andy Black Any colour, as long as it's red. Staff Member LEGENDARY CONTRIBUTOR FASTLANE INSIDER Read The Millionaire Fastlane Speedway Pass

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    Thanks for your kind words and thanks for sharing this story.

    That's sad for the poor woman. I really hope she doesn't get fleeced. It sounds to me like they're trying to milk it until she realises what's happening. No wonder online marketers have such a bad rep amongst business owners.

    Be careful what you learn in that business. It sounds like their moral compass is skew, and they have zero empathy for their clients.



    Just be careful period.

    "How you do anything is how you do everything."

    I had a client who engaged in PPC arbitrage and other shenanigans. I was brought in to help them build a local lead gen arm to their business.

    I should have expected they'd never understand LTV, and would eventually end up wriggling out of payments to me.

    Feckers.




    Your friend's business isn't exhibiting smart business sense either.

    The most important formula in business is R + R = Profit, where R + R is Repeat Business and Referrals.

    The best way to get repeat business and referrals is to delight your clients, not fleece them.



    Generating more sales, revenue and profit for a business is just about the most sexy service you can provide to a business.

    It's a chance to become their new best friend, a chance to have them tell all their other business friends about you and your service.

    I've had tradesmen come running across the road unable to contain their grin while telling me how they're flat out and joke asking if I can slow the calls down.

    What a great service to provide. I love it.




    And final mindset shift for anyone providing an AdWords service: your client isn't paying you, their customers are.

    You have to get your client's customers to give their money to your client so that your client can share some of it with you.

    If you can't do this, then your client will ultimately have to stop paying you, because they can't or because they can no longer justify it.

    Of course there are ways around this, but if you're going to apply your ingenuity to anything, then apply it to getting your client positive ROI rather than apply it to keeping them paying you when they don't have positive ROI.

    At the end of the day, it's your client's customers that have your money.

    And at the end of the day they are all *people* with the same fears, hopes, and dreams as the rest of us.
     
  19. Andy Black
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  20. MattR82
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    Thanks for your reply Andy, did not mean to hijack this thread though.

    There's no way I would let her get fleeced, I'm still "campaign manager." It's just bitterly disappointing to realise that their values are so backwards. They are definitely not setting out to fleece people, they are good at what they do, but the lack of empathy (perfectly worded) and the fact that they prefer sales sales sales before results at the end of the day is so annoying now that I see it. I've actually not only left the city we were working together in, but the entire country lol. Saigon ---> Bali.

    Unfortunate, but a good learning experience.
     
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