How PPC fits in inbound marketing

How PPC Fits in Inbound Marketing

By Manuela Vulpescu

PPC ideally works in conjunction with other marketing channels. When you smartly place it into your digital marketing strategy instead of using it as a stand-alone tactic, it can favorably impact how your brand is perceived among users.

There are several main phases to focus on to ensure you get positive inbound marketing results. The first one is to drive traffic to your site. This works via PPC, SEO, Emailing, Social Media, and so on. Once people reach out to your web page, you will want to be as engaging as possible to turn them into happy customers. As soon as they become part of your community, you’ll get busy keeping them around. Finally, you’ll use analytics to see how all went and review whatever necessary to create better experiences for your audience. All these pieces are tied together, and that’s why it’s worth looking at strategies and tactics from a more complex perspective instead of approaching each one separately.

How PPC and Email work together

Let’s see how these two help each other. With email, it’s generally not so easy to test things quickly. You can only check one variable at a time while using A/B testing tools and then adapt progressively. If you only focus on email, it will take you longer to find what works and whatnot.

On the other hand, PPC allows speed testing of different messages and calls to action. It also helps with checking performing ads and landing pages. Once the results are clear, you can “import the winners” into the emailing campaigns and fastly boost your ROI while communicating in ways that resonate best with your prospects.

PPC is also often used to build up your email lists as you may be willing to create lead generation campaigns and offer, for instance, valuable information in the form of white papers or case studies in exchange for more qualified data.

How PPC and SEO work together

In reality, often seen as competitors, PPC and SEO complement each other. Your PPC ad is a listing designed to induce a user to take action and see your brand. Basically, the SEO headline that is meant for ranking purposes and better CTRs has the same goal as the PPC one, which is to inform the users about the company and invite them to visit your web page.

The amazing part is that while you can not test SEO headlines, you can test PPC ones. As soon as you find out what works in PPC, you can decide what to use for SEO title tags.

Furthermore, your paid and organic reports from PPC can help you document your keyword strategy for SEO. As all PPC data is transparent, you can see what terms and expressions drive the most conversions and support your complementary efforts accordingly.

PPC and Social Media

You can use PPC to amplify your social media attempts while running ads across blog posts or white papers to increase sharing. You can also use PPC to increase your community, basically sustaining the most common goal you may have on social media, which is to create brand awareness.

PPC and Conversion Optimization

These two belong together. They should absolutely get married. In conversion optimization, PPC helps you direct specific traffic to the appropriate landing pages and allows you to test layouts and messages. You may also find it useful to experiment with headlines and CTAs to implement on your website those that work and bring the highest conversions.

PPC and Branding

PPC is beneficial for branding. Being in the top ad position can positively impact your brand. Not only the search network but also the display one is a great source to reinforce your messages in front of your audience.

PPC, Big Data and Machine Learning

Do you wonder how PPC will evolve?

Basically, two main trends are already influencing it: Big Data and Machine Learning. We have started to rely on machines to play a bigger role in managing our PPC accounts. As computers are quicker in processing huge amounts of information and getting better at making decisions on our behalf, we will have to learn to trust them and improve our work together in the next period.

However, as PPC relies on creativity and understanding how to really connect with other humans, we may envision that these strategic elements of the process will still be around for many years to be managed by people.

Changes will also affect how we’ll use voice search and create campaigns based on it. The focus will switch from what’s going on in the “queries area” to what’s happening on the SERP side of things.

More personalization options will be available in the form of additional ad extensions. Customization will be managed easier without needing changes in the targeting process. Automated recommendations are already familiar to us, but companies will start using machine learning also automatically to implement these suggested changes.

With features like Dynamic Search Ads, search engines look at your website to find keywords and fill ad copy based on your site’s content. We already use this for remarketing purposes. Soon we’ll leverage machine learning to show search ads based upon users' interests, even if words are not present on the website.

The PPC campaigns' overall focus was always on understanding the analytics data, having a good account structure, and having marketing goals set in place. From now on, we will pay more and more attention to the ad creative and communication components and try to generate better experiences for our audiences.


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