When your company finally made the leap and signed up for AdWords it was likely the decision of someone in marketing or on the executive team. We all hear the stories of people who sit at home in their pajamas and make thousand if not millions of dollars using AdWords. We see the ads of our competitors and think “I need to be here or I’m losing business.” So the decision is made and the initiative is given to 1) someone who used it a little one time or 2) the low man on the totem pole who can’t delegate it to someone else. Here lies the sin.
Inexperience in AdWords
Inexperience as a deadly sin has an extremely high mortality rate. Very few accounts will survive the next quarterly budget meeting with a newbie at the helm. The first reason, somewhat circular I know, is because this person will commit many other deadly sins and quickly kill the account. The second reason is that AdWords is a demanding mistress, easily as complicated and delicate as any woman. So how does one avoid this deadly sin?
Don’t interpret this as a suggestion to hire an Indian firm to handle your PPC. The nuances of the English language are tricky and can make or break an ad. However, I am suggesting you look seriously at a PPC agency. They specialize in this medium and will be able to make improvements much faster than your inexperienced person. Look for a firm or individual that is certified with Google, Yahoo and MSN to assure they’re knowledgeable and make sure they send you regular reports. Reporting is very robust in AdWords and if they don’t deliver results, cut them loose. This is one area of advertising where you should know exactly what your dollars are delivering.
One caveat I’ll mention here is billing at agencies. The industry standard is percentage of ad spend (6-10%). I personally don’t like this model because it incentivizes your manager to spend more and more to make more and more, not necessarily deliver better results. The agency I work for, Vizad Inc., favors a set monthly fee. This works into your budgets more easily and motivates me to be ever increasing your results or I know you’ll stop using me.
The Paradox of Learning
If you are critical like me, you’re probably thinking “But how do I train my new guy to be a good AdWords manager so I don’t have to continually pay an agency?” Great question. The most common answer is to have them read books, browse websites and learn by trial and error. This works (it’s how I learned) but will require your patience and $$$. There are services, like Clickable, that can assist you, but don’t help you learn since the whole process is a “black box.” However, I’ll make you an offer for reading my blog.
The Robert Hour
I will give you 1 hour of my time to help you get started on the right path/get back on the right path with your AdWords account. Simply email me, firstname.lastname@example.org, to get started. You’ll need to grant me access to your account (I won’t make any changes, promise!) and then I’ll spend 1 hour of my time analyzing your account and making recommendations on how you can improve your AdWords account. I’ll send you my recommendations in an email and you implement as many or few as you deem valuable. I will do this for free as long as I can keep up with the amount of requests. You pay me what you feel the improvements are worth. I am confident they’ll save you hundreds of dollars.