Pay per click (PPC) advertising has become an exciting field, as the biggest, smartest companies in tech, advertising, and publishing race to offer the best platforms, as well as the best content and social environments for the ads. Companies are shifting ever more of their ad spend budgets into digital advertising that drives instantly measurable results.

With the increased opportunity, choices, and sheer marketing power available to us in PPC marketing comes increased complexity. We are managing campaigns for clients in Google AdWords, Bing & Yahoo, LinkedIn, and Facebook. We are investigating opportunities with Twitter, Pinterest, and Reddit. And within each of these, the options are expanding as well. Here is a very top-level overview of your choices.

Google AdWords

Click to call - A key component of pay per click advertising for mobileGoogle still commands nearly 70 percent of user search queries, and this represents a vast audience around the globe. But Google’s AdWords PPC platform also encompasses YouTube, Gmail, and a huge partner site network.

Text-based search-page ad marketing is still Google’s bread-and-butter, but Google is on the leading edge for reaching users as they become more mobile, and use multiple devices. For example, Google recently rolled out “enhanced campaigns” that better accommodate our multi-device world.

“People are constantly connected and moving from one device to another to communicate, shop and stay entertained. In fact, a recent study of multi-device consumers found that 90% move sequentially between several screens to accomplish a task,” states Google.

Google enhanced campaigns are helping us easily integrate smartphones and iPads into client campaigns, including precision geotargeting (tailoring the message to the users’ physical location) and other features, such as click-to-call. In fact, one of our clients receives the majority of its PPC leads from smartphone click-to-call.

Google AdWords Remarketing

While text-based search ads remain effective and relevant, and increasingly reach across devices, Google has also significantly improved its display advertising options.

For example, banner advertising has been made much more effective and compelling for marketers, with the addition of advanced retargeting, also known as remarketing capability. Remarketing technology places a cookie on a visitor’s browser when they visit your website, and subsequently shows the visitor customized messaging when they browse other sites across Google’s vast partner network.

It’s not unusual for our retargeting clients to have ads showing on some of the biggest and most prestigious sites on the web, all for just the cost of clickthroughs. Remarketing also creates an asset for the client where there was none before. One of our clients has a list of more than 70,000 remarketing visitors in and “audience” group it can reach with any message at any time. Additionally, remarketing can be broken out by visitors who have visited only certain pages on your site, or who have completed a lead form (or not) or completed a purchase (or not). It’s a remarkable capability with a lot of depth.

YouTube Video

There are more options than ever to place PPC ads in and around YouTube videos. These include TrueView, which lets you attract users to your own posted video; text or graphics ads that appear in-video, or alongside affinity videos; in-stream ads that are like television-style ads, and more. A number of our clients are running successful YouTube campaigns.

LinkedIn

LinkedIn has become a power in pay-per-click advertising as it steadily improved its advertising platform. LinkedIn has proven very valuable to our business-to-business clients. Think about having the power to reach potential clients by company name, job title, professional interest group, school, or skills, plus the normal geotargeting options and demographic selects. Using LinkedIn, we are regularly able to precision-target ads to highly select, specialized, and valuable professional audiences, again just for the price of pay per click.

Facebook

Facebook PPC isn’t right for every client, but it provides incredible reach and the ability to micro-select interest groups and audience demographics. For example, we were able to identify a specific category of musicians for a client, deliver high-performance ads, and quickly build a large, opted-in prospect list, in just two weeks. If you sell any type of consumer product or service, consider how your message might match up with Facebook audience selects, and give us a call.

As people around the world become more connected, and use more devices to stay connected, and cross devices as they shop for goods and services, pay per click advertising will continue to be at the leading edge of technology for reach, effectiveness, and measurability. Contact me for a free consultation about your needs in this exciting arena.