I've since paused my Adwords campaign because the CPC is too high (going to wait until I set aside time to optimize my quality score to turn it back on) but last year about a third of our closed projects came in from Google Adwords.
Here's a few pictures:
Quick note about why I'm writing this blog post: This blog is mostly about me doing stuff and sharing the results; for those of you who already know Adwords you can pretty much skip this post, but for many it could be a fun tactic to try out.
My motivation to try Adwords came from understanding that one of the keys to business success is to reach out to someone who is more successful than you, ask them what is working for them, and try the tactics they give you.
Two years ago I sent an email to Ryan Spanger, who runs a video agency in Australia called Dream Engine and asked him for advice, one of the tactics he recommended was Adwords.
Notice the brevity of his email.
Shortly after, I somehow stumbled onto Local Client Takeover, which I recommend checking out. They have really good free tutorials on SEO and PPC. I followed the seven-part tutorial by Jan Schroder, and basically slapped it together following his directions without really understanding Adwords. I just dumped all the keywords I thought people would search for into one campaign, and wrote very basic copy.
A big lesson I learned early on is the importance of setting negative keywords. Not knowing about negative keywords is the reason I think many people who try Adwords for the first time fail and get mad thinking Google trying to suck their pockets dry.
What you do is you click on the search terms tab to see what searches your potential audience is making, and add all of the search terms that don't make sense into your negative keywords.
All in all Google Adwords is worth it but its expensive. When I first implemented it two years ago it was $5 a click, now its about $8-$15 at least for keywords like "San Francisco Video Production".
If you provide a niche service that has little competition (or if the competition is likely to be unsophisticated at marketing) I would definitely recommend trying Adwords, for example I feel like a florist would do really well running Adwords. If you're thinking about trying Adwords for the first time I recommend setting aside $800 bucks and following the guides in Local Client Takeover. Once you get it working and you see some progress, one of my friends Guillaume wrote an in-depth knowledge base on Adwords, and I would follow that to optimize.
Lastly, reading and understanding Adwords is kind of arduous if you're just getting started I'd recommend taking a look at different blog posts for different perspectives. I recommend this post by Patrick Mckenzie since he's very good at writing about technical things and making them understandable.
Also, thought it would be worth mentioning I've run Facebook, Yelp and LinkedIn ads, they haven't worked for me at all.
When you’re consuming content, you typically value the practical stuff more. Stuff that teaches you how to do things, or gives you techniques on improving things you’re already doing. We value this stuff because its applicable..
But you hear people tell you that you shouldn’t focus on tactics, you should focus on strategy. Personally, I agree and I think we’re trying too hard to look for the implemental things. Really, its not just tactics vs. strategy, there are a lot of different levels.
From philosophy to mindset to habits and theory to strategy all the way to tactics, we should aim to consume the entire spectrum of content. Each level is important and learning from each level helps you understand the whole picture.
I run a video production agency. What I would like is an action guide on doing Linkedin lead generation or google adwords. These things would benefit me right away, but I would be missing out if I didn’t read Built to Sell and learned to productize my services. I would be missing out if I didn’t attend a mastermind about systems and scaling. It doesn’t stop there. I could take it a step higher and listen to Tony Robbins talk about mindset. I would be missing out, yet still, if I didn’t watch Tristan’s videos on Purpose and Spiritual balance.
Each piece of content has merit on its own level. Knowing this, the best way to consume content is to think about where you are in your trajectory and what pieces of information you’re missing, then fill in the gaps in that information. Funny enough, the only way to realize which info is missing is to consume content on life balance from a woo-woo life coach guru (I’m being slightly facetious). What I mean is to pull back to a hyper birds-eye-view of your life and understand what true balance is. Only then can you zone in on your business and know that the actions you’re taking today will benefit you the most long-term.
September 11th, 2012. Taipei, Taiwan. Dante Coffee in Guting. 8:34AM
My inbox. Oh, I don't really like that subject line. Well, click it --
I hate to push back yet again, but I can hardly get anything done right now. Let me finish UI + client project first.
Also, my concentration is complete shit. This money thing still fucks me up.
And then, epiphany strikes, the lights come on, the darkness recedes, and all is clear.