Have you ever tried to use a PPC campaign to steal customers from your competitors and failed? If so, consider trying a campaign on Google’s display network in conjunction with your search campaign. It might just deliver the results you’re looking for.
After running a successful PPC campaign for some time, it can be difficult to gain additional traffic beyond your branded and non-branded industry terms. Often, the next step is to try to gain market share from your competitors. However, this can be tricky—and unfruitful—because consumers are actively looking for your competitors. As a result, click-through-rates are low and cost-per-click is high.
However, Google’s display network can provide marketers with a solution to this situation. Specifically, the network’s coupon sites are a great way to gain customers who may not be brand loyal and who are looking for a deal. By creating campaigns around your competitors’ branded terms on coupon sites, you can offer users an enticing deal to try your product.
Case in point
Earlier this year a consumer packaged goods marketer wanted to focus its PPC efforts on stealing users from competitors via a coupon offer. Initially, the company ran the offer on the search network, but saw few clicks and conversions, not to mention high CPAs. As an alternative, they decided to focus efforts on coupon sites on Google’s display network. Given that coupon redemption increased by 29% in 2009, targeting these value-conscious consumers was a great area of opportunity to gain users. Ultimately, the new display network strategy boosted their conversion rate 400 percent, and reduced CPA by 70 percent.
Here are a few tips to help you leverage the display network to gain market share from your competitors:
Entice customers to switch brands. Setting up this type of competitor campaign is incredibly simple, but you will need something to offer customers to lure them away from the competition. Since you will be focusing your efforts on couponing websites in an effort to steal away non-brand loyal customers looking for a deal, make sure you have what they are looking for: coupons! Make sure to also bid on your brand terms so you do not lose your current customers who are looking for a deal from a competitor with a similar game plan.
Research a comprehensive keyword list. Set up ad groups focused around each of your competitors individually so you know which one is providing you with the most value. Make sure that your keyword set includes not only competitor branded terms, but also coupons, offers, deals, and so on so you show up on the sites you want in the display network when you begin running with automatic placements. Get specific right from the start, as your coupon offer won’t have much of an impact if it ends up next to a blog post touting a competitor’s product.
Get in Google’s display network. Create a separate campaign for the display network so you can compare how your competitor ad groups are performing more easily. Make sure that you are opted into the display network initially with automatic placements. As the campaign runs, continually monitor your placement report to make sure you are showing up on coupon sites and not irrelevant blogs. Since there are so many couponing sites and blogs out there, this is a good way to get an idea of what sites are talking about your products—and your competitors’—so you can then further optimize your campaign.
Add placements. Once you have a good idea of the specific display network sites you want to target, bid on those placements individually so you control how much you spend for each visitor. Additionally, there are a lot of coupon sites with areas for specific verticals, so get more detailed and target those sub domains or directories with your managed placements. This will help you avoid showing up on pages for unrelated goods or services. If all else fails, Google’s placement tool has a category just for “coupons & rebates” to help you find additional coupon websites to show your ads in the Google display network.
Continue refining. Once you are successfully managing the placements that get great results through managed placements and finding other sites through automatic placements, keep refining. Add keywords to make the campaigns more specific, remove sites that are irrelevant, and continue to look for those sweet spots where your coupon cannot be downloaded enough.
Overall, coupon sites on the display network can be an effective means to help marketers gain market share. Savvy marketers will develop enticing offers and start luring away their competitors’ customers today.
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