Yesterday on Search Engine Land, George Michie wrote an excellent piece describing why the long tail of PPC is most definitely worth managing. I agree wholeheartedly and just wanted to chip in my $0.02.
Message Match & Intent
The first point that George debunks is the idea that you don’t need to worry about all those tail terms because your broad-matched head terms are picking them up anyway. While this may be true, the more accurate messaging (both in the ad and the landing page) will produce a more qualified lead or more sales. Face-to-face salespeople are always customizing the message based on what the customer lets them know. You know what the person searched, so do something with that information!
For the inexperienced PPC manager, the time requirement for maintaining a good tail strategy is often the biggest hurdle. While experience will help, properly leveraging certain tools is vital to your success. Here are a couple to start out with:
- Search Query Reports – The new AdWords interface made this super easy. Go to the Keywords tab and then select the drop-down box labeled “See search terms…” Click the “All” option and Voila! You have a keyword report of the actual terms triggering your ads. Find top-performers that you don’t already have in your keyword lists and then give them a little extra TLC.
- Excel – This is the benchmark by which all PPC tools are mentioned. You don’t have to be a wizard, but the basic functionality of Excel will allow you to digest a lot of information much more easily.
- Keyword Tools – Google has a couple flavors (the search-based keyword tool and the old keyword tool), Wordtracker has one and there are plenty more. Use these to help you find new keywords that you might have missed otherwise.
What tools do you use and how do you use them?