marketing your local business with online advertising

Marketing Your Local Business: Paid Advertising

Recently we published our in-depth guide to marketing your local business from an organic search perspective. This week we’re looking at paid advertising and how you can use pay per click strategies to attract new customers through a different channel. Read on to learn when you should consider utilize paid advertising, where you can go for advertising opportunities, how to get started with your first ppc campaign, and how to measure and define success.

Should You Pay for Website Traffic?

Online advertising isn’t a good fit for every business. However, if keyword research shows volumes for your products and services, then paying for clicks might be a great way to generate traffic and leads to your website from keywords you need to rank for right now, especially local keywords (phrases with a geo-modifier in them, like “online marketing Denver”). Questions to ask yourself to see if paying for online ads might work for you:

  • Is my brand relatively unknown in my market area?
  • Do my sales consultants need more leads?
  • Does my site have good visibility in organic or local pack search results?

If you answer yes to the first two questions and no to the third — and keyword research shows potential search engine traffic from users in the Denver area looking for your products and services — paid advertising could be a vital brand awareness and lead generation channel when marketing your local business. Here’s a quick guide for local businesses looking to perform some initial keyword research for a pay per click campaign: how to do keyword research for your local business

Local Paid Advertising Strategies: Different Ways to Play

If you’ve decided to take the plunge, the next step is to define your goals. The type of goals you identify will determine what type of bidding methodology you should use. Need to generate brand awareness? Use CPM Bidding: Cost per 1000 impressions Need to generate leads? Use CPC (Cost per click) Bidding or CPA (Cost per acquisition)

Setting Up a Simple PPC Campaign

Text advertisements appear on search engine results pages, on the top and bottom. They are an effective way to gain consideration for your products/services. Let’s look at how to set up a simple PPC campaign around a local set of keywords.

Step 1: Pick a Search Engine

To begin, you need to decide where you’re going to advertise. The top three search engines are Google, Yahoo, and Bing. When in doubt, go with Google’s AdWords platform — it’s by far the most popular search engine, so it can connect you with more potential customers.

Step 2: Find AdWords

Visit or Google Search ‘Google AdWords’ to get the process started. marketing your local business

Step 3: Set Your Budget

When you’re just starting out with paid advertising, it’s wise to keep things simple and small. Getting clicks can be competitive and expensive in many markets. As you set your budget, keep this in mind: Aim small, miss small. You can always amp up the spending once you’ve established you can generate positive ROI from your campaign.

Step 4: Choose Targets

Set your campaign up to target the entire metro Denver area, just the city of Denver itself, or even a specific zip code. You can also specify what keywords are most important to your business.

Step 5: Your First Ad

Creating your first ad is easy. You just need a bit of text and a website URL. Basic format: Headline 1 – 30 characters Headline 2 – 30 characters Description 1 – 80 characters Here’s advice direct from Google on how to write effective text ads.

Step 6: Set the Bid

Set your bid as automatic or manually enter how much you’re willing to pay per click.

Step 7: Billing Info

After setting up your first campaign, add your billing information. Before your ads can run, you need to provide Google with your credit card number. You won’t be charged upfront, but your info has to be on file.

Step 8: Go Live!

Getting started is really as simple as that. After billing info is added, you’re good to go and you’re now paying for a new stream of traffic to your website.

More on Keyword Research

After you’ve successfully set up your first campaign and account, you get full access to the keyword planner tool in AdWords. Here, with a little research and creativity, you can find more potential keywords to add to your campaign. Keep in mind, you don’t need to boil the ocean!

Use keyword planning tools to find a small chunk of relevant keywords (usually about 10, but somewhere between 6-36 to keep it manageable). Look for keywords with local qualifiers, traffic volumes, and reasonable suggested bids.

Other Ways to Advertise

Text ads in search engine results aren’t the only way to use advertising for marketing your local business. Other possibilities to explore include: Display Ads with Google
  • Advertise to people within Google’s Display Network (Google claims over 2 million sites in network accounting for over 90% of search traffic)
  • Many targeting options and creative formats
  • Great for brand awareness
Remarketing Ads with Google
  • follow people around the internet after they visit your site.
  • Same as display ads
  • Great for bringing people back into sales cycle?
Social Network Ads While Facebook isn’t for everyone, it does allow you to target a specific audience with ads and sponsored posts based on demographics.
  • Low cost investment for high return on activity
  • Demographic and geographic targeting
  • Measuring Results

    Before you start spending like crazy on online advertising, ask yourself: how will I measure performance? Tracking campaign performance with Google Analytics or a third-party analytics platform integration is a must. Once you’re measuring performance you can determine whether or not your paid efforts translated into success. Paid marketing is a short-term strategy. You should see results relatively soon after you start buying keywords. There’s no lengthy ramp up time like organic marketing efforts. Review performance metrics at least weekly to start. After achieving profitability, it’s typically safe to move to a monthly review schedule. Important metrics to review:
    • Impressions
    • Clicks
    • Click Through Rate
    • Conversions
    • Conversion Rates
    • Win/Loss Ratios
    • Spend
    Benchmark performance against historical statistics. If historical statistics aren’t available, use industry averages for CTR and conversion rate.

    Get Started with Paid Advertising

    If your website has poor visibility in organic search results for the keyword phrases most important to your business, investing in online advertising could be a vital tactic to you while you work on building up organic success. Even with excellent results from SEO, you can use paid strategies like remarketing or social ads to reach new heights. Want to start marketing your local business with paid ads? Talk to the online advertising experts at 1bg about your goals. We can help you effectively balance your focus between local SEO in Denver and paid strategies.

    Call 855-793-7855 today for a free consultation!

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Published by

Matt Buys

Matt Buys is a Digital Marketing Specialist at 1bg. He writes about SEO, content marketing, and online advertising from the perspective of someone with 8 years of experience working for marketing agencies and serving all types clients.