Tuesday, February 24, 2009

PPC Management - Some Great Tips

By George Kristopher


It may seem like the following advice is only for real estate people, but the same concept applies in a variety of places. There are two kinds of people that are looking for your business:

1. A person who lives in your area-your city, your state-who types in "real estate," "dentist," "churches," or "restaurant" and expects that the results he sees will be area-only. You'll be there when he comes looking for you.

2. A person may not be in your area at all (or else Google's system can't tell where he is), but is still asking for your area's services. He goes to Google and types in "movers in Richmond," "Richmond real estate," or "hotels Richmond," hoping to get Richmond-only results. He may be traveling on holiday; he may be planning a move; he may be an investor...etc.

He may in fact be from Palo Alto. But he could be down in San Diego. Or way out in Orlando. Or in Montreal. Or Sydney, or Tokyo. But he's still searching on Google for you, and he identifies Palo Alto by name.

Either way, you want to be there, ready to open the door when he comes knocking.


Because you're aiming at these two kinds of people, you can set up two Google campaigns for them, not just one. So here's how. When you're first setting up your campaign, select regional targeting.

Next you must choose your country, followed by your state/province, and then a city or group of cities.


If you were advertising for real estate in California, you'd set up a nationwide campaign, possibly even an international campaign, but with local terms like "Visalia real estate" and "Yorba Linda real estate." After all, there are likely to be people from all over the country, and maybe even outside the country, who are doing searches on these terms.

So you'd grab a map or a listing of cities from a web site and create a keyword set like this:

California real estate LA real estate Healdsburg real estate Villa Real real estate Santa Monica real estate Buy homes California Buy homes San Francisco Buy homes Bakersfield Buy homes Sausalito

The very best way to do this would be to combine a large list of general keywords (the same ones you used on the regionally targeted campaign) with a large list of cities and towns. Then use a spreadsheet to mix and match them together.

Either way, you'll end up with a huge keyword list: 95 percent of them will never get searches, and the other 5 percent may only get a few. However, it doesn't cost anything to bid on these keywords if nobody clicks, and when people do click, they'll only be five or ten cents. Not much traffic, but what you do get will be bargain priced. You should still buy generic keywords in your local campaign, but these local keywords in a nationwide campaign will bring very cheap clicks, mostly.

Your real estate Google account would be arranged like this:

Campaign #1: California Targeting Only Group 1: Real estate Group 2: Buy homes

Campaign #2: National Targeting-entire USA Group 1: California real estate Group 2: Buy homes California

Now you have both bases covered, and you'll be getting as much traffic as possible for your local market. The key is that you're not leaving out people in other geographic locations who are seriously looking for what you offer.

You can also use your business's address or latitude and longitude, and target all searches within a radius that you select. Google even gives you the advanced option of choosing your own customized set of coordinates that you want to target.


An age-old advertising practice is to test ideas in a smaller market before you spend big bucks to try them out in a larger one. Nowadays, the risks of going national instantly if you have a good product may seem small because after all, you're paying for one click at a time, you can set a daily budget, and you can turn your traffic on and off at will. But that doesn't undo the value of trying your product in one small geographic area first.

For example, if you sell advice to investors, you might start just with investors in New York State. The advantage to this is that you don't need to worry nearly as much about your daily budget. If your cash reserves are limited, you can choose a smaller market to begin with, and if in the first few weeks or months it's not profitable, you do not have to shut the entire thing down for fear of going bankrupt. Make the sales process profitable in a smaller market first, and then go national.

At that point, you're able to take on the big boys in the worldwide market because you know that the mechanism works like clockwork in the small market, and every dollar you send out comes back with more dollars attached. This is also an excellent way to keep competitors from knowing what you're up to, if they don't live in the cities you're targeting. - 16651

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