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10 tips for creating a successful Google AdWords campaign

Jennifer Lonoff Schiff | June 4, 2014
You don't have to spend a lot to get a lot. Google AdWords users and experts share hands-on advice on how you can improve the ROI on your AdWords campaigns.

As Google will (and does) tell you, you don't necessarily have to spend a lot on AdWords to get a lot out of the pay-per-click advertising. But even if you have a small daily budget, you want to make sure your money is not being wasted — or at least try to ensure that the right people are clicking on your AdWords campaigns.

So to find out how your business can improve the odds of your AdWords campaigns reaching your target audience or customers, Google AdWords users and experts offer their 10 top tips for AdWords success.

1. Have a clear goal. "The most important part of any SEM [search engine marketing] campaign is to have a clear goal in mind," says Michael Ortner, CEO, Capterra, which connects buyers and sellers of business software.

"The point of almost any AdWords campaign should be to grow sales, as opposed to merely generating brand awareness (which is more difficult to measure)," Ortner says.

"With that in mind," Ortner says, "the advertiser needs to know what specific action they are trying to get their target market to perform. Is it completing a lead form? Calling an 800 number? Making an online purchase? Before you go live with your campaign, make sure you've identified that goal and know how you'll measure the results."

2. Keep your target customer in mind when writing your ads. When "writing ads, follow the AIDAS principle of advertising," says Alexa Talpau, director of Online Marketing at Webs9, an Internet marketing company. That is, make sure your ads will "attract the Attention of your audience, raise customer Interest, convince customers that they Desire your product, lead customers towards taking Action (include a call-to-action) and [provide] Satisfaction if they end up choosing your website."

3. Don't mislead customers. "Your ads need to be entirely accurate for the landing page advertised," says Talpau. "Your top targeted keywords should be used in the content included on that landing page and in the ads text," she continues. Above all, "Don't mislead your audience! Make sure that each ad group is entirely relevant for the landing page you're promoting and [that] it's only being displayed for relevant queries."

4. Use negative keywords. "Always remember to include negative keyword targeting," says Susan Mirkin, online media specialist, Market Mentors, a full-service marketing agency. "Negative keywords are keywords related to other keywords in the campaign that are not related to what is being advertised," she says. "This further qualifies the ads within a campaign, ensuring ads do not show to users who would not find them relevant anyway."

"Negative keywords help to streamline your ad, presenting it on more relevant search result pages," says Beth Horodnyk, Marketing anf PR manager, I Think Security, which provides cloud-based data protection solutions. "This drives better quality traffic and leads to your landing pages, while also improving your Google AdWords Quality Score."


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