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Looking for simple and effective ways to increase lead generation? Then, check out these 6 lead gen tips. Generating leads has never been so easy.

What do you do to bring in a continuous flow of qualified leads to your business on a daily basis?

Mapping out a lead generation strategy, learning how to nurture those leads and improve your conversion funnel over time, will help your business grow.

But if you’re ready to accelerate and grow your lead gen strategy, here are six fast and easy ways to increase your lead generation.

1. Choose the Right Social Media Platforms for Lead Generation

Social media is a powerful top-of-the-funnel approach to generating leads. Don’t invest time and money into every social media platform there is until you know what works for your business.

The key to social media for lead gen is not just your brand’s presence, but conversion rate. Basically, how prospects turn into leads.

If you’ve already established a presence on all platforms, see how much traffic each one drives to your landing pages via Google Analytics or a comprehensive social media management platform that allows for conversion tracking. What social media channels are consuming your content or bringing you the most traffic and leads?

Choosing the right social platforms for your lead gen efforts will directly impact your conversion rates and reduce your ad spend.

A Social Media Lead Generation Campaign Example

For those connections that are further along in their decision-making process, our conversion tracking efforts focus on those who join our email list, download a report, join our blog course, or complete a contact form.

We run a campaign that offers a free report for specific industries. Our large Twitter audience brought in the most clicks and leads. However, our data showed that LinkedIn leads convert at a higher rate than Twitter leads. As a result, we began focusing more on LinkedIn.

2. From TOFU to MOFU: Educate Your Buyer with Reports and Whitepapers

Offering free white papers, reports and ebooks are a great way to generate leads while making your prospects experts at buying your products. They are also a great way to create email marketing lists for those who are higher in the funnel (TOFU).

Many digital marketing agencies say, “if you provide something of value to prospects, they will give you their respect, time, loyalty, and ultimately their business.”

If it only were that easy.

At Conversion Sciences, oftentimes we use blog posts to test topics of interest to our clients’ audiences. We will prepare a live presentation or webinar on hot topics. These presentations get cast into case studies, blog posts, reports and social media posts.

But writing a report simply isn’t enough. Targeting your whitepapers to the right audience is key. You can earn a second chance to convert visitors (MOFU or Middle of the Funnel) with re-marketing ad campaigns. highly targeted and personalized email marketing campaigns.

Also, consider LinkedIn groups and  to test content offers to improve lead generation.


21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks to Skyrocket Conversions

21 Quick and Easy CRO Copywriting Hacks

Keep these proven copywriting hacks in mind to make your copy convert.

  • 43 Pages with Examples
  • Assumptive Phrasing
  • "We" vs. "You"
  • Pattern Interrupts
  • The Power of Three
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

3. Fast and Easy Ways to Increase Lead Generation with Social Video

On social networks, likes and shares have proven to be poor predictors of lead quality. And pretty bad at generating leads as well. Video views, on the other hand offer two benefits to B2B lead generation.

First if a visitor watches one or more of your videos posted to Facebook, Linkedin or Instagram – or embedded on your site – , they begin to build trust and affinity for your brand.

Second, when a visitor watches your video, they can be retargeted by ads and driven to your landing pages. These visitors tend to be more likely to click and to convert into qualified leads.

So in the lead generation game, optimizing for video views could be a better approach than strictly focusing clicks and conversions.

Two examples of Lead Generation and Lead Nurturing when Optimizing for Video Views

Prager U offers mini-courses up to 30-minutes in length to highlight their content. These videos aren’t posted to Youtube. They are run as long-form ads. Their ultimate goal is to generate donations. Meanwhile, they focus on brand exposure (video views).

I watched a 28 minute presentation from New York Times best selling author Jeremy Gutsche on creativity and culture. I notoriously skip ads on Youtube. Ultimately, Jeremy is hoping to get more speaking engagements and book sales.

Fast and easy ways to increase lead generation with video - Jeremy Gutsche ad.

Jeremy Gutsche ad.

4. How Facebook Ad Targeting and Retargeting Builds A Lead Magnetic Field

Did you know the Earth produces its own magnetic field which is important in navigation? It also shields the Earth’s atmosphere from solar winds that are capable of destroying humanity as we know it!

When it comes to ways to increase lead generation, you should think of your business as the Earth, Facebook Ads at the magnetic field, and your competition as the solar wind.

Facebook Ads will help discover and navigate your prospects to your lead-generating content, and bring them back to “Earth,” aka your business.

Let’s say you are a software business looking to build a sales lead pipeline for a new service for apparel companies. Placing a Facebook pixel on your website will help display your ads to people who visited your site, measure the effectiveness of your ads and gather data on the actions taken by these visitors on your site. You could craft an ad campaign to retarget those visitors that did not convert, or build a “lookalike” audience to reach people on Facebook with similar characteristics to those who did convert.

Facebook Retargeting Campaign Example: Google Fiber

Take Google Fiber for example. I was recently referred to its site by a friend who mentioned it will soon be available in the Austin area. I snooped around the site but lost interest, since it isn’t making itself available in my part of town. In the days following my visit, this is what I saw in my Facebook News Feed.

Google Fiber Facebook targeted ad.

I saw a retargeting ad about Google Fiber when I logged into Facebook

Their ads were smart enough to deliver geographically targeted content.

When I click on the “Sign Up” button. I’m directed to a landing page to enter my address to see whether Google Fiber will be in my neighborhood.

Total bummer though: it looks like they won’t be available for a little while, so I decided to sign up for their email list.
Guess what? I’m a lead now. They have my contact information and they can add me to their email remarketing campaign. Not exactly a bummer for Google Fiber.

Became a lead after signing up for alerts.

I’m now a lead because I’ve signed up for alerts.

5. More Lead Gen Tips for Twitter Ads with Hashtag Targeting

Hashtags are a great way to generate awareness to an interested audience for your brand or business. Create a Twitter Ads campaign and target people who are interested in relevant hashtags to drive qualified traffic to your site. Though Twitter ads are not for the faint of budget, they work!

6. Juicing Your Lead Generation Efforts With Content for Lead Nurturing

Creating relevant content, such as reports or whitepapers, and promoting them via organic and paid advertising campaigns, is just the tip of the iceberg in online lead generation. And bombarding them with offers or retargeting ads can only take you so far. You have to nurture those newly acquired leads.

By implementing an enriched content strategy in your marketing funnel, you will intrigue and engage your audience, as well as drive them further down the sales funnel. Infographics, videos, images, and podcasting are just a few content ideas that you may use. Think of your entire content marketing strategy as the great magnetic force that pulls in and nurtures new leads.

Only 48 percent of businesses have a documented content strategy.

According to a Content Marketing Institute study, only 48% of businesses have a documented Content Strategy.

A study from the Content Marketing Institute and Marketing Profs states that over 80% of B2B respondents use Content Marketing in their business practices, yet only 38% of these businesses say their strategies are effective.

However, the study also indicates that 48% of these businesses were not documenting their strategies effectively.
In the end, there’s no way of telling what practices are showing results, or hurting business. You need to test yours and discover what works with your potential market.

Here are a few creative examples on how we incorporate content marketing elements in our online lead generation strategy to ensure maximum results.

Webinars for Lead Generation Efforts

Webinars offer exclusive information and help grow your email list and lead base. Keep in mind, you will need to promote your webinars to get people to attend. We promote ours on LinkedIn groups.

On LinkedIn, you can target groups based on field of expertise, interests, or topics. Being in alignment with your audience avoids spammy sales letters and overbearing ads. WebinarNL says, “webinars generate a lower cost per lead and high level of engagement with prospective clients.” They also detail several benefits to hosting webinars including:

  • Direct contact with your target audience
  • Reaching your prospects both live and afterwards
  • Interaction with your target group

A Webinar Lead Gen Example: How webinars save time and money

So, we decided to put this to the test and hosted our very first webinar “UX vs. CRO: The Digital Fight of the Century” As a special incentive for attendees, we had them ask several questions on UX or CRO. The people with the most creative questions won a free website evaluation from Brian Massey himself.

We got 212 conversions in just 20 days of deploying our social media promotion campaign. That’s more leads in such a short period of time than any other way to improve lead generation we’ve executed.

To see how our first webinar panned out, watch the webinar replay.

Data from our webinar "UX vs CRO"

Data from our webinar “UX vs CRO”

Conversion data from our webinar "UX vs CRO"

Conversion data from our webinar “UX vs CRO”

Easy Ways to Increase Lead Generation: Podcasting

Perhaps the most underrated form of generating new warm business leads comes from podcasting. It’s free and accessible, and makes radio quality audio shows available for download through an RSS feed to a computer, MP3 player or mobile phone. Listeners only have to subscribe to a podcast once.

Rob Walch of Libsyn says that podcasts are “the opposite of Twitter.” Podcasts give you extended quality time with those members of your audience that listen.

First, you’ll need to conduct a topic search that will get your content noticed in the podcast world. Then, be sure to create blog posts to capture the reader’s attention, launch your podcast, and have them listen.

Interviewing an industry expert or hosting a panel debate can help maximize reach and listeners. Be sure to keep discussions focused on topics you can actively talk about with your prospective leads. This is the perfect way to begin establishing yourself as an industry thought leader.

“The goal of the business podcast is to create a conversational thread that you can pick up with your lead on the next call,” says Benchmark.

Think of this as the firsts experiences with future customers. You are building trust and proving them with valid information to nurture a business relationship.

Again, podcasts are easy to share via LinkedIn groups, Twitter hashtags, and Facebook Ads. Also, you can upload podcasts to your Facebook page, just check the option “Upload as video to Timeline”, so followers can listen in.

More Lead Generation Ideas: Guest Blogging

What does your business specialize in? Moving, fitness, prepping? Is it a rehab center, a college, or a consulting firm?

Writing a guest post for a related industry blog, you will show your subject knowledge and add credibility to your brand, while reaching an entirely new audience. This is also an opportunity to grow your follower base by crafting the perfect bio and byline.

Start by building a list of publications in your niche market that accept guest posts and understand what type of content would be a good fit for them, their audience and, consequently, for you. If their audience engages with your content, they may visit your website, interact with you and maybe even give you their email address. A smooth way to earn more leads.

Again, you want your prospects to know you are an expert or the best in your field, and drive them towards the top of your sales funnel.

Video Marketing

Did you know that 75% of executives told Forbes that they watch work-related videos on business websites at least once a week? The breakdown? 50% of these executives watch business-related videos on YouTube, and 65% stated they visit the marketer’s website after viewing a video.

Adding a compelling call to action will help you drive your viewers to your website of landing page. Tell them what to do and why. Something Free, if enticing enough, may do the trick. Make sure it’s something aligned with your business that the potential leads want.

Or you can promote your offer with YouTube Ads. Let’s take this Heineken YouTube Ad for example. Apparently, YouTube knows that people like me – people who are my age, have my interests, and share a similar browsing and search history to mine, for instance – love beer. Again, this is the whole idea of remarketing.

As I’m watching this ad, what do I see in the bottom of the video? It’s an annotation that says “Visit Advertiser’s Site”. Since I’m curious, I click on the link and low and behold, I’m on their site and enter for a chance to win in their sweepstakes.

Heineken lead generation YouTube ad.

Heineken lead generation YouTube ad.

The sad thing is, the campaign was over before I landed on the page, and Heineken missed its chance to get me on its email list. Will I see a remarketing ad in the future? Possibly!

Landing page for Heineken promotion lead gen campaign.

Landing page for Heineken promotion lead gen campaign.

Are You Ready To Try Some of these Fast and Easy Ways to Increase your Lead Generation Efforts?

Don’t just throw content out into the world and expect a beanstalk to grow in your backyard overnight. The business world is not a fairytale.

Incorporate just a few of these ideas into your overall lead generation plan today. Not only will you be able to grow your business, but you will start a snowball effect that brings in new prospects to your sales funnel.

Meanwhile, check out our lead generation solutions that deliver or contact us to generate more and better leads fast.

Are your PPC ads plaid and your landing pages polka dots? That is, are your PPC ads and landing pages in alignment? Check out these great tips and maximize conversions.

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising can be a highly effective way to get your products in front of new prospective customers and drive sales, but only when campaigns are set up with the right touch. Depending on what keywords you want to target with your bids, search ads are generally not prohibitively expensive, but it’s easy to fall into the trap of blowing through your budget on PPC without justifying your media spend with enough sales.

The PPC management mistakes that most commonly ruin advertisers’ chances of respectable ROI involve text mismatches. All too often, an ad’s keyword settings do not match the language used in the ad’s creative, or the landing page content does not match the language used in the ad’s creative.

Search marketing spending in the US from 2014 to 2019.

Search marketing spending in the US from 2014 to 2019.

Why Matching Terminology Matters

If you’re not matching terminology on your landing page to your PPC ads, you’re wasting money and losing clients.

Successful PPC marketing hinges on continuity across all touch points. Web searchers enter search terms into Google based on a need they are trying to fulfill. By the time users have formulated their queries as lines of text, they have already been forced to think about what they’re looking for as being specific to certain terminology. Thus, if your message is going to resonate with them, it has to use the very same terminology.

Google users naturally gravitate towards organic search results. To catch people’s eyes, your ad needs to convey that it addresses the exact issue that the searcher is trying to solve. What’s more, search terms that appear within ad copy appear in bold letters, adding to their visibility and click-throughs.

When people click on the ad, they are expecting to find a matching solution on the other end. You know that dirty feeling you get when you click on a content headline that over-promises and the article ultimately under-delivers? That’s a similar feeling to what happens when there’s a disconnect between search ad copy and landing page copy.

When you get that feeling, you’re unlikely to do business with whoever gave it to you. And that’s why it’s so important that the landing page refer to the exact need at hand and offer an appropriate solution, all using the same terminology. This is one of those landing page best practices that tends to be right every single time.

PPC Ads and Landing Pages in Alignment: The Power of Maximized Continuity

Lack of continuity will result in customers leaving your conversion funnel before opting in to your lead capture offer or purchasing your products.

If a customer searches for “cyan polo shirt summer sale” and you show him an ad for “men’s clothing,” he is not likely to click on it, even though your online store might very well offer cyan polo shirts in the men’s section. Even ad creative touting a “blue polo shirt” product won’t perform as well as the phrase “cyan polo shirt” would – the closer to an exact match you can get, the more effective your ads will be.

PPC ads and landing pages in alignment: Use the word "cyan" to describe the color of this shirt, not just "blue".

Use the word “cyan” to describe the color of this shirt, not just “blue”.

The same principle applies to matching ad copy with landing page copy. If your ad promises a “cyan polo shirt summer sale” but you send people to your homepage, where there are 25 different apparel products being showcased and no trace of any type of sale, the visitor is likely to bounce out extremely quickly.

Customized Ecommerce Text Variations

Using standardized language across your website is necessary to maintain an atmosphere of professional polish and so that your internal search engine will work well. On the other hand, when you set up your search ad campaigns, you should be performing some extensive keyword research to reveal all of the alternate wording that people use for the same thing.

Going back to the same example, you may learn that people often search for polo shirts that are “sapphire,” “teal,” or “turquoise,” which are all reasonably close matches to the “cyan” that appears on your product pages. It totally makes sense to bid on ads to appear on search results for “sapphire polo shirt,” but in cases like these, you may want to create alternate versions of your product pages that only visitors referred by this specific ad will see.

Just make sure to keep these variations out of sight of the search engines, so you won’t get penalized for duplicate content – and out of sight in the website navigation, so visitors do not get confused. Apply a meta “No Index” tag to the head of the landing page to make sure that variations don’t get indexed. Better yet, make sure all your PPC ad campaign landing pages are noindex, follow. Until you have chosen the one you would like to drive organic traffic to.

Dynamic Keyword Insertion

A helpful tool in this process is a Google Adwords feature called Dynamic Keyword Insertion (DKI). This tool will adjust your ad text to reflect keywords in the user’s search, potentially accomplishing the same goals we just discussed.

Wordstream ran a case study testing the effectiveness of DKI with a client, and found that using this strategy had the following results:

  • Impressions dropped 6%
  • Click-through-rate (CTR) increased by 55%
  • Conversions increased by an incredible 228%
DKI more than tripled conversions.

DKI more than tripled conversions.

The results speak for themselves.

In the context of continuity, the key is to have a very small number of keywords in your ad groups. For top performers, you may even want to use Single Keyword Ad Groups (SKAGS).

Customized Lead Capture Page Variations

If your offer is for a service, a B2B product or something otherwise relatively expensive, then you don’t need to send visitors to ecommerce-integrated product pages at all. In these cases, a sparser landing page is likely to perform better, and it’s easy and inexpensive to create new versions of your landing pages for each keyword combination that you bid for.

Landing pages like these are generally aimed at capturing leads rather than driving sales, since major purchases require more pre-sale relationship building to establish trust and to educate prospects. Many of the better marketing platforms available in the open market offer modules for both landing page creation and autoresponder marketing emails.

If lead capture is your goal, focus your Adwords strategy on your prospects’ pain points rather than your offer’s specifications. For instance, a financial consulting firm could run PPC ads for the search term “family budgeting help” or “debt advice.” These ads could lead to landing page variations for each search term, with each one offering visitors the option to download an eBook that provides practical tips on family budgeting and saving money on household bills.

A campaign of this type takes into account that the prospect is having trouble balancing his or her household budget, and it offers a quick and easy solution that also positions the advertiser as a trustworthy expert in the field of family finance. This paves the way for follow-up messaging.

Another benefit of this type of hyper-specific targeting is that it allows marketers to segment the entire customer journey and serve up nurturing emails that match the subscriber’s specific interests. A post-campaign analysis of the relevant conversion data can reveal which segments represent the advertiser’s most valuable customers, thereby informing subsequent marketing strategies.

Doesn’t Have to Be a Bottomless Pit

You do need a landing page for every important ad, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should set up hundreds of landing pages. Instead, focus your campaign on a select number of lead nurture audience personas (three or four) and create an ad that’s optimized to speak to each one of them. Create a unique landing page for each of these ads and set up an autoresponder to send follow-up emails with relevant content to each persona.

If you’re marketing an ecommerce property with a diverse product line and a shopping cart system, start by trying these tactics for just a few products. If it serves you well, then you can focus on making your work flow scalable down the road.

PPC campaigns that are set up for maximum terminology variations are likely to enjoy boosted conversion rates and revenues, so that ad dollars are less likely to go to waste.

Keep improving your paid ads: Google Ad Extensions to Improve your Customer Acquisition Efforts

Graph image by Statista (via Skitch)

Guest Post By Russel Cooke
Facebook has a new advertising network that has some people worried about their personal data online.
The new network, Atlas, uses data it collects from users on Facebook to serve ads on other websites based on what Facebook knows about its users. Facebook already uses personal data to serve up contextual and targeted ads within Facebook, but now Atlas gives them the ability to use this data on behalf of third-party websites and apps.

Atlas allows advertisers to follow users across devices and across the Internet.

Atlas allows advertisers to follow users across devices and across the Internet. Image Courtesy of Shutterstock


 
Facebook bought Atlas in 2013 for approximately $100 million and has entirely rebuilt it. The former Microsoft property will now serve as Facebook’s alternative to Google AdWords, allowing advertisers to follow users across devices and across the Internet.
For example, a beer company utilizing Atlas can use the platform to serve ads on sports websites or game apps that aren’t related to Facebook.

Cookies Aren’t Working

In a blog post, the head of Atlas, Erik Johnson, addressed the limitation of cookies, which had been the industry’s instrument for serving ads on desktop and tracking users.
He noted that cookies are becoming less accurate when it comes to demographic targeting and don’t work on mobile. Cookies also have trouble accurately measuring the customer purchase funnel across devices, browsers, and in the real world. He wrote that Atlas’ focus is on “people-based marketing.”
This type of advertising may make some users uncomfortable in relation to how their personal data is used. Yet, it presents a new opportunity for advertisers and offers up an alternative to Google AdWords management.
The platform will also help marketers and advertisers understand how their efforts across different networks and channels intersect and how they can bolster each other. Atlas eliminates the need for silos in advertising campaigns, which results in a more consistent advertising experience for the end-user.
Facebook’s existing advertising solution previously only used cookies to track the websites that users visited and targeted ads based on that data. As mentioned, Atlas does not rely on cookies to gather consumer information.
In the past if a user browsed the prices of a car on a dealer’s website they would probably see car ads in their News Feed. However, because cookies do not work on mobile, it would have been difficult for advertisers to fully and comprehensively track the behaviors and interests of users.
Atlas is not dependent on cookies and can track the third-party websites that people visit. This more robust information better allows advertisers to target ads around the interests and “likes” of Facebook users.

Tracking Sales Across Screens

The benefits of Atlas don’t end with tracking users and more efficiently targeting campaigns. It also has the ability to determine if a user purchased a product on a desktop after viewing an ad on a mobile device. It tracks the relationships between offline sales and the online advertising that spurred them on.
For example, if a person makes a purchase and gives their email address during the process Facebook would be able to let the store know that the person had viewed an ad online.
These connections will be invaluable to marketers and advertisers, as they will now be able to fully understand the relationship between their campaigns and real life sales activity. As the tracking grows and evolves, advertisers will create more compelling and powerfully targeted campaigns.
Atlas is making the advertising process more people-focused and the most successful advertisers will follow their lead.
Russel Cooke is a business consultant and writer from Baltimore, Maryland. He graduated from the University of Louisville, and worked in the Louisville area for over ten years before become an independent consultant and business writer. He recently relocated to Los Angeles, CA. You can follow Russel on Twitter @RusselCooke2.
 

Today we have a guest post by Derek Hooker, Chief of Search Marketing at White Shark Media™.
Google AdWords is a very impressive advertising platform. It provides us with numerous tools and features to work with and make our campaigns better. As long as you have the right mindset, resources and strategy, you can make your campaigns rock!
I’ve always said: “you just have to get creative and analytic with the tools you are provided with.”
So with that in mind, I decided to create this sort of guide with twelve ways to advertisers take their campaigns to the next level, especially when focusing on conversions. Please keep in mind that the features and techniques listed below are not sorted in any priority order. You decide which ones to implement first based on your specific case:

1. Start Rotating Ads to Optimize for Conversions

Ad Rotation is a basic feature that you put in place when you’ve already accrued a certain number of conversions (no specific number) and have started converting regularly. This feature gives you the power to rotate through several different ad versions to find out which works best for a given set of keywords.
It only makes sense to have your ads “Optimize for Conversions” when that is your main purpose, but when is it not? If you’re “Optimizing for Clicks”, you’re assuming all clicks turn into customers at the same rate. The ads that serve more and receiving the most clicks are not always the ones driving leads and customers.

2. Ad Scheduling Bid Adjustments

When it comes to e-commerce you may want to have your campaign running 24/7, since customers can complete a purchase online 24/7. However, certain times of day may generate lots of expensive clicks, but few purchases.
Use adwords to report on the hours of the day and days of the week to when your customers are really converting.
It may pay to schedule ads for e-commerce campaigns that exclude early hours of the day (after midnight and before dawn). I call this the “zombie hours” because I rarely see customers taking action during these hours. At these hours, customers just browsing around and this turns out to be a big expense that leads to higher cost per action (CPA) and lower return on ad investment (ROI).
You may see something different. It makes sense to exclude some hours and adjust bids based on the times you are experiencing more conversions.
For example, in the screenshot below you can see that I started doing ad scheduling (4 am – midnight), because in this particular case, there were very little to no conversions between these hours. Hence, I’ve raised bids on Tuesday and Friday to maximize the conversions on these days, since they convert very well, at a lower cost and lower position.

3. Location Target Bid Adjustments

If you’re running a nationwide campaign or one that is targeting multiple locations (states, cities, metro areas, etc.), take some time to figure out where most of your conversions are coming from. You would be surprised on how differently users behave from different locations, and it is sometimes best to target them geographically with targeted tactics.
The Adwords Dimensions tab gives you a good general insight on how each location contributes to your overall campaign’s performance. Use the “User Locations” View.
I guarantee you that if you have been running a campaign for a long time and have not taken the time to look into this, you will find locations that have a ridiculous cost/conversion or no conversions at all, representing an unnecessary expense for your campaign.
In this case, it is the best to exclude these locations from your existing campaign. If these locations are really important to your business and you want to really exploit them, you can target them on a separate campaign with a separate approach. All of these, after building an effective strategy based on that location’s user behavior and data pulled from Google analytics.

4. Bid Strategy: Enable Enhanced CPC

Enhanced CPC tells Google that they can raise your bids on ads that seem to generate more conversions. Use this feature carefully, because it works for some campaigns and not for others. Nevertheless, AdWords is all about testing, optimizing, analyzing results, and making decisions. Don’t be afraid to try new things, use features you have never used before or don’t understand very well. I always encourage everyone I talk to about AdWords to get creative and think out the box and get out of your comfort zone.
One of the best scenarios where I would recommend using this setting is when your campaign is in its early stages. If your campaign is converting regularly and has at least 15 conversions in the past 30 days, then it is probably eligible for Conversion Optimizer (which we will discuss further).
Enhanced CPC is 1 step away from Conversion Optimizer, which is why it is more reasonable to work with this setting if your campaign doesn’t have that much historical conversion data, yet you are looking forward to drive more conversions.

5. Implementing Conversion Optimizer

Some advertisers and business owners are skeptical about using the tool, because they are afraid of “giving Google control their bidding strategy”, which is why they take the conservative road and stick to manual bidding (this can also be the case of Enhanced CPC).
In order to have success with Conversion Optimizer, one must have solid knowledge of how it works and be careful how you set your CPA bids in order to obtain your goals
The Conversion Optimizer is a very powerful tool. There are essentially two bidding types:
Conversion Optimizer
Max CPA:
Use this bidding type when budget is not limited or your CPA (Cost per-acquisition) is not very high. The algorithm will try to maximize the amount of conversions based on the conversion data.
Upon selecting this option, it will suggest a Max CPA bid (the most you are willing to pay for a conversion) based on the historical conversion data.
 
Target CPA:
Use this bidding type when your CPA is too high and you want to make it more profitable. This option helps you to reduce the CPA while continuing to bring in the same or higher amount of conversions (Google AdWords will also suggest to start Target CPA bid based on your historical data).
Before choosing any of these bidding options, you need to figure out what exactly it is that you want to achieve; whether this is an increase in the amount of conversions while sacrificing a higher CPA, or if you are struggling to reduce your CPA and trying to find a solution on bringing this down.
Something very important is to remember that once you choose your bidding type, the selected CPA bid will be applied to all your ad groups. You would need to review this afterward and adjust it accordingly.
Typically, every ad group has a different CPA and it should not be set to the default CPA bid suggested by the system. Adjust it according to your criteria, based on what CPA is best for each ad group.

6. Focus on Converting Keywords and Ads

On a campaign that is performing very well, there are ad groups, keywords and ads that are the main drivers for these conversions. Sometimes, 1 to 3 ad groups are responsible for 60% of the campaign’s overall results. The other ad groups convert every now and again at a decent CPA, and that is why we decide to keep them running.

        

  • Once you’ve identified which are these keywords and ads, create variations, try to identify other potential keyword variations for your campaign based on the ones that have converted.
  •     

  • Create keyword variations in different match types to cover more ground.
  •     

  • Create ad variations based on the best performing ones, whether this is just changing the call to action, headlines or parts of your description lines – even small changes can have an impact.
  •     

  • Analyze how these elements are performing over time and perform bid adjustments based on what has been the best ad rank to work with.

These are just a few of the creative and analytic adjustments that you can do with your keywords and ads.

7. Implement the Best Converting Ad in Other Ad Groups that Are Applicable

I like to compare ads’ performance across my campaign. There is always one specific ad that is your “killer ad”. It is important that we identify why this ad does better than the others. Whether it is a result of the call to action, description line, or benefits mentioned in the ad.
Once you’ve identified the driving factor, compare this ad with ads in other ad groups. If all ad groups are promoting the same products or services, but with different keywords, it would be beneficial to start using this ad across all other ad groups that are applicable.

8. Pause Non Converting Keywords to Focus Your Budget on Converting Elements

A beneficial practice is to perform a campaign evaluation at the end of every month, every 3 months and every 6 months. This facilitates a better grasp of how the campaign is doing from time to time. Performing a monthly or quarterly assessment is important, because it helps you identify historical trends, spikes and areas of opportunities.
One of these areas of opportunities is reallocating your budget to focus on what is actually being productive. For instance, you might have a campaign with 200+ keywords, but less than 50% of those keywords are productive.
I encourage you to take a look at your campaign at a keyword level, create a customized filter to show only keywords that have not converted in the past 3 months, and another filter for keywords that have converted at a higher CPA than your actual goal (or above ideal CPA).
You will be surprised of how many keywords will show in that filter, and how much money has been wasted on them throughout the duration of your ads.
Once you make a full assessment and decide to pause most of these keywords, you will have space to exploit your budget and focus higher bids on productive keywords.

9. For E-commerce Campaigns: Use Google Analytics E-commerce Transactions

If you’re running a campaign for an e-commerce website, it is crucial that you work with Google Analytics and that the e-commerce transactions tracking is setup properly. Google Analytics will provide you with an abundance of data to assist you in the success of your ad campaign.
With E-commerce Transactions tracking, you have the most granular level data; data for strategic account management, and business driven decision making.
As long as your AdWords account is linked to Google Analytics and reporting accurately, you will be able to determine:

        

  • revenue driven per ad group
  •     

  • per keyword
  •     

  • per ad
  •     

  • bounce rate
  •     

  • visit duration
  •     

  • and more.

Analyzing an AdWords e-commerce campaign through Analytics can be eye opening. One can be under the impression that the ad group or keyword that drives the most conversions in AdWords is the most profitable one, but there are times when having more conversions doesn’t necessarily mean more revenue.
The prices for each product differ and that is why an evaluation in Analytics is indispensable. You will be able to determine which ad groups and keywords are producing the most revenue and which ones need improvement.

10. Add Converting Keywords from Analytics that Perform Well in Other Traffic Sources

With goals setup in either Analytics, or “Ecommerce Transactions Tracking”, you are able to analyze and determine which sources are more productive for you; whether this is Google Organic, Direct Channel, Google CPC, etc.
One of the most competitive sources is Google Organic, particularly if your client is doing SEO and has decent ranking in Google Organic SERP. This is something that you should exploit and add the benefits from that source to your AdWords campaign.
One approach is to review Google Organic Source to see what keywords are driving conversions. To do this:
Go to Analytics > Go to All Traffic > Select Google / Organic > as Primary Dimension, choose Keywords.
Select a larger time frame than just the last 30 days, and do a comparison with the keywords in your campaign and other keywords from this source to determine which ones you have not implemented. Add them to your campaign and you will see results if implemented with the best practices.

11. E-commerce: Focus on Top Converting Products

Another way to exploit Google Analytics and E-commerce Tracking is by easily identifying which your best selling products are, how much revenue they represent to your total and work with them accordingly.
In Analytics, under the Ecommerce Overview, you will see: Your top selling products
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Review this list however you want, within the interface or by doing a csv export, and run with it. Research the life of your campaign and see which of these products you are not advertising directly (as in using targeted keywords with the name of the products), include these in your campaign, tightly themed with some killer ads, you’re all set!

12. Explore Other Campaign Types Such as a Remarketing Campaign

From small to large companies, search campaign is one of the most effective online marketing efforts when your purpose is direct response. However, you can’t disregard the fact that there are other marketing channels to be explored and exploited.
Some marketers and business owners still are hesitant to expand their marketing efforts to other channels once they are doing well with a Search Marketing campaign. It only makes sense to invest more to get more. If you limit yourself with budget, you are limiting the reach of your success.
That is why expanding to other marketing efforts is so important, once you’ve already killed it with one channel.
There are so many other effective campaign types and efforts such as:

        

  • Remarketing – Remarketing lets you show ads to users who’ve previously visited your website as they browse the Web
  •     

  • Display Campaign -You can reach a wide range of customers with broad interests, choose which sites or pages to appear on, and engage users with appealing ad formats when ads are in the display network.
  •     

  • Product Listing Ads – A unique ad format that allows you to include rich product information like an image, title, price, promotional message, and your store or business name.
  •     

  • Shopping Campaigns – Shopping campaigns are a better way to manage and optimize Product Listing Ads to promote your products online using retail-centric tools.
  •     

  • Dynamic Search Ads – Dynamic Search Ads automatically show your ad based on the content of your website.

Don’t be afraid to expand and explore other marketing efforts, as you can see there are many options available to you.

Be Analytic, Creative and Always Think Out the Box

The Online Marketer that works on AdWords platform and doesn’t use Google Analytics for a better grasp on their user behavior analysis or to track ROI to produce measurable results, should now be expanding their marketing efforts with Google Analytics.
I encourage everyone who is still not working with the combination of these tools to get started – more than likely, you competition is using them already. If you are passionate about AdWords and Google Analytics, your deeper understanding and use of all that Google has to offer, you will stop at nothing short of success in your marketing efforts.

“Knowledge is only potential power. It becomes power only when, and if, it is organized into definite plans of action, and directed to a definite end.” – Napoleon Hill

Derek Hooker is Chief of Search Marketing at White Shark Media™. He is both Google AdWords Qualified and Bing Ads Accredited. Derek is determined in constantly providing his Clients top results via his a ROI/customer care-driven approach. He specializes in both eCommerce and local search campaigns. You connect with Derek on GooglePlus and LinkedIn.
 
 
For further reading on maximizing conversions through Google, please read the following articles:
It’s All About You: The Future of High Quality Link-building

A New Kind of Marketing Battery: Google’s New Smart Lists

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The Strongest Online Persuader You’ll Ever Encounter: Yourself

The things that make us effective marketers or stand in our way often aren’t external, but internal. Being a good marketer, copywriter or Conversion Scientist means coming to terms with our own demons, limitations and neuroses.

Dr. Aaron Balick maps out how our overburdened Ego does it’s best “while being goaded on by the Id and being told off by the Superego.”

Dr. Balick knows how to help us relate to these kind of issues in his latest article.
Read Aaron Balick’s article in its entirety here.

Why The New Google Search Ads Design Is a Subtle Work of Genius

If you didn’t know, Google has redesigned their search results pages recently. The change is primarily to the portion of the page that contains “sponsored content”, or ads.

The eye-tracking images provided by the folks at EyeQuant are telling.

The pages now drive more attention to the ads, taking attention away from the free results. Ironically, it also makes the ads more evident, with a bright icon beside each.

EyeQuant calls this “a Subtle Work of Genius”. What do you think?
Read this article in its entirety here.

11 A/B Split Testing Mistakes I See Businesses Make All The Time

Peep Laja has put into one blog post most of the hard lessons we’ve learned over the years of testing here in the Conversion Lab. Peep doesn’t mince words (“There is no best color”).

Don’t let all of this scare you. It’s better to try and learn from your mistakes than to not make any mistakes at all. Test away!
Read Peep Laja’s article in its entirety here.

Are you a CRO Junkie? It Could Ruin Your Split Tests

Do you get a shot of adrenaline every time you see an uptick in conversions? We do. However, we often find our early excitement tempered when a test turns out to be inconclusive.

It can be hard to announce to a customer that you didn’t find a winner. In fact, it’s a discipline here.

Find out what you can do to keep from getting addicted to good test results.
Read Stephen Da Cambra’s article in its entirety here.
 
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This is a guest post by Mike Tyler.

A leader without an audience is just a man yelling things.

There comes a time when every marketer faces the decision of whether to pursue video as part of their marketing strategy. The difficulties in this venture come in several forms. For example, you’ll need to determine what style of video to use, how you’re going to deliver it to your target demographic, and how you’re going to measure the success of the project.
This article is going to talk about a small but critical piece of your campaign’s success.
That is, how to build a better audience for your video.
After all, what’s the point of producing a Grammy worthy production if it sits hidden in the dark depths of YouTube?
Here are a week’s worth of tips that can help you engage more people (assuming you have a video already made).

Day 1

Write good copy. You need to create a headline that is engaging enough for people to open it. Why would people want to open your link? Be specific. If you’re selling baby shoes and people clicking your video don’t have kids, that is a misplaced resource. As cliché as it is, there are reasons why you still see ads that say “Lose 5 pounds today!” or…

New York Post

This also goes for descriptions. Explain the purpose of the video and what people can get if they watch it.
For more on how to do so, check out David Ogivly’s 6 tips on writing copy that sells.

Day 2

Upload your video to YouTube (the second largest search engine behind Google) and Vimeo, This is obviously an obvious step. However, a step that people often miss is using proper SEO formatting, annotations, and hashtags. Remind people to subscribe. If you have other videos, make sure they are in a playlist nearby. The crisper and clearer this is, the higher you will show up on search results.

Day 3

Share your video on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter. If you have a newsletter, add it in. If you have a blog, write a blog on it.
Video Marketing - The War Room
Get some friends to like and share it. This will exponentially increase your exposure.
Forbes states that 59% of executives would rather watch a video than read text. And that 75% of C-level executives watch at least one business video a week.

Day 4

Eliminate text from a page on your site and add your video instead.  Our opinion is that you should also A/B your site with a video and without.
Traffic Split A/B for Video
This will show you the effects a video has on your site. Studies have shown that video attracts 2-times as many monthly visitors, doubles time on your site, and has a 157% increase in organic traffic from search engines.

Day 5

Put aside a budget and use Google AdWords to drive traffic. In a study, Google found YouTube ads increased viewership to websites by 20%.
 

Google AdWords

or
Put aside a budget to use on YouTube Trueview. These are the ads that show up when people play YouTube videos. The way it works, you are only charged when a person watches the entire clip.

Day 6

Find ways to create backlinks to your video. Backlinks are links that bring a clicker to your website & video. The more backlinks there are, the most chances you have that someone will come see your video.
Another advantage of backlinks is that Google uses backlinks as part of their measurements that determine the pagerank of your site/video. The more backlinks you have, the higher your video will show up on keyword searches.

Day 7

See if you can benefit from YouTube Fan Finder. Depending on your video content and how often you create video, YouTube might even promote your channel for free.
You should create video often. A study claims that a YouTube partner who has been regularly uploading videos has increased his earnings by 300% over the course of 8 weeks.
Creating the universe in 7 days is pretty difficult. Finding an audience for your videos shouldn’t be.
Mike TylerAlways pushing his own limits,Mike Tyler, has a track record for success in both business and in the creative worlds. He found his inspiration to battle for what he believes in on a trip around the world. His dedication to perfection, professionalism and focus have helped put Mike on the map as a rising force. Traveling around the world following the surf and living like the locals can do wonderful things to a person. For Mike the people and places rekindled a passion that brought him back to Vancouver. Mike’s focus is people, with a peerlessly sharp eye for detail, Mike Tyler brings a personal touch to his client’s work. You can connect with Mike on LinkedIn or Google+.
 

Feb 11, 2013 12:05 pm

Comments:

  • PayPal is a preferred method of payment for many of your visitors. Even if you’ve got a merchant account and gateway all setup, you should consider PayPal as an alternative source.
    However, measuring transactions through PayPal is problematic. Or it was.
    Here is an excellent post on how to configure your PayPal account and Google Analytics for full-transaction tracking, includkng Ecommerce tracking. – Brian Massey

by: Brian Massey
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This is a guest post by Jason Wells of Convirza (formerly LogMyCalls), who has some interesting data on the power of phone calls – and good reasons to measure your web-influenced call traffic.
One of the byproducts of the mobile marketing explosion is an increase in the number of phone calls businesses receive. BIA/Kelsey, in a report released in mid-June, says that the number of phone calls most businesses receive will double by the end of 2013. You read that correctly. Most businesses will receive twice as many phone calls in 18 months.
It sounds staggering, but it makes sense.
Google says that 61% of mobile searches result in a phone call. xAd says that 52% of all mobile ads result in a phone call. Add those numbers to burgeoning smartphone penetration and it all equals more phone calls.
What Does this Mean For Conversions?
I can hear you, expert online marketer, panicking a bit here. Won’t this mess up your conversion rates for landing pages? Won’t it make things ‘messier’ to track if people start calling you more? Maybe. But it will also make your conversion rates go up.
Convirza tracks conversions resulting from phone calls, and here’s what our research shows us.
Inbound phone calls are 10-15 times more likely to convert than inbound web leads. In other words, someone that downloads a White Paper or attends a webinar is significantly less likely to receive a Demo of your product or buy from you than someone that calls your business.
Not surprisingly, the same BIA/Kelsey report notes that 61% of businesses rate their inbound phone calls as ‘excellent leads.’ Only 52% rate web leads as ‘excellent leads.’
Recently we ran 3 different email campaigns with 3 different advertisers. Each campaign advertised the same White Paper. Because we’re obsessed with marketing analytics, we tracked these campaigns fastidiously. We tracked how many people downloaded the White Paper and we tracked how many phone calls each landing page produced.
Here’s what we learned.

LogMyCalls Landing Page

This landing page saw a 47% click conversion rate and a 50% call conversion rate.


Campaign 1 – The landing page converted at 42.1%; a respectable, 11.7% of those leads wanted a demo of our product. We also placed a phone number prominently on the landing page. That phone number produced sixteen phone calls, ten of which resulted in demos. That means 62% of the phone calls resulted in a demo. That’s higher than 11.7% :-)
Campaign 2 – The landing page converted at 40.1%. And a reasonable 13.2% of the people that downloaded the White Paper ended up receiving a demo of our product. Again, this landing page also generated phone calls. Around 50% of those phone calls resulted in demos.
Campaign 3 – The landing page converted at 47.4%. And a very, very poor 3.6% of those leads wanted a demo (this campaign was conducted very recently so we expect that number to rise). Again, over 50% of the people who called via the landing page requested a demo.
Phone conversion rates are higher. It is just that simple.
Mobile Marketing Produces Calls, Conversions
Google says that pay-per-call mobile Adwords campaigns have 6% to 8% higher conversion rates than pay-per-click mobile Adwords campaigns. They also say that including phrases like ‘Call Now’ or Call us Today’ in the mobile ad copy improves conversion rates.
Calls are king.
The reason for these higher conversion rates for mobile is simple: it is natural for mobile searchers to call. After all, they are searching on a phone. Mobile callers also enter the sales funnel at a much lower point. Mobile searchers rarely do extensive research on their mobile device. Rather, mobile users search when they are looking for something they need immediately. This means action is more likely and a phone call is more likely.
What Does All This Mean?
The first thing it means is that a landing page conversion rate is simply not as ‘clean’ as it used to be. You have to factor calls into the equation. To ignore them is to ignore the highest performing element of the landing page. And that would be silly.
Second, it means that businesses need to be staffed and prepared to answer phone calls and answer them effectively. Because, just like a landing page, small tweaks to phone pitch can make a close rate go up or down.
Third, it means that you shouldn’t measure mobile conversions in the same way you’ve measured online conversions for the last 10 years. Mobile is not about pageviews and abandon rate.
Finally, we should point out that some businesses will be impacted by mobile more than others. We recognize this. But, keep this in mind: if you have a lead type (inbound phone call) that is converting 30%, 40% or 50% of the time, why wouldn’t you want to generate more leads of that type?
Watch Conversion Sciences free webinar to learn more about the importance of of mobile websites.

What are you afraid of?

The goal of my Ion Interactive presentation “What Can We Learn from the Bad Boys of Marketing?” was to shake things up a bit.

Conversion marketing is about bringing visitors to choice. B2B marketers carry this same burden.

Can marketers in more conservative industries use techniques proven to increase online leads and sales in B2C markets?

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Not only should B2B marketers try everything that B2C businesses are using, they risk irrelevance if they don’t.

In my Ion Interactive webinar, I use two B2B landing pages to illustrate how these B2C techniques can be used:Mary O’Brien Adwords Advantage landing page AdwordAdvantage.com and CoverActionPro.com.

  • Long copy
  • Bold headlines
  • Highlighting and bullets
  • “Johnson” boxes
  • Risk reversal
  • Testimonials
  • “Act” buttons
  • Signatures and postscripts

I go as far in the Webinar to state:

“Business to business copy sucks. It’s horrible to read. There is a need, that when someone recommends a site to their boss that you look professional, but it doesn’t mean you have to write like an idiot.”

Certainly you can deliver a high-converting experience without harming your online brand, like CoverActionPro.

You have to work harder. You can’t ask a committee of executives to review your pages. You have to know how your page is performing and how changes are affecting your results.

You can learn more about analytics and their proper application at my AEN Short Course “Web Analytics: Tools and Best Practices” on June 11, 2010.

Enjoy the Webinar and don’t miss Anna Talerico’s Conversations on Conversion podcast.

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