There are so many options today to get exposure online, so make sure you pick the right one for your business. Here you can not only look into the different online advertising channels, but also understand the metrics when investing in this channel.
- [Instructor] All right, our next program is SEM, which is search engine marketing. It's actually different than SEO. SEM is that paid search, or we also call pay per click or PPC. You're going to hear it mentioned in a number of different ways. So, either SEM or PPC for pay per click and essentially, that's exactly what it is. You are paying for every click that goes from Google to your website. But again, this only in the Sponsored Ad section. So, this brings you up to the top of the page instead of the organic listings, where you don't have as much control over, but some. Here, you actually have control 'cause you're actually buy position one, position two, position three. You're going to bid on words and you're going to pay for every click that you get and a word can cost, a keyword can cost anywhere between a couple of cents and ten dollars or more, right? So, it can be very expensive. Average keyword is like, 80 cents to a dollar. Sometimes, there's a range. Kind of two to three dollars and three to four dollars. So, they kind of vary in that range. So, you got to be very careful in terms of how you buy this. You're going to need some expertise in that. So, all you're doing is you're buying paid words from Google or other search engines out there as part of the SEM program. Again, this can be a very effective program. Why would you use it? Well, first of it, it's one of the best forms of advertising for running a business. I would say even for local businesses, I have talked to a lot of local businesses and they get most of their business from paid search now in today. This is kind of the old, where you used to go to your newspaper and you used to advertise in newspaper. For the Millennials out there, if you remember what that is, we used to buy display ads. This has kind of replaced this a little bit in kind of the new form of marketing. So, if I'm a new business, I'm probably going to use some SEM. Especially if I'm a local business, 'cause you can target to the very local community that you want to get to. So here, in my town here of Petaluma, I can target just to Petaluma residents, which is a great thing, right? Now, if I have a restaurant or a local shop here, that's going to be a highly effective form of marketing. Also, I want you to keep in mind, in terms of what it's not great for. It's not great for branding. This is, you don't use SEM to help create your brand overall. That's not a good use for SEM. It's great for direct selling businesses. So, if you have an online business where you can click and you can buy or you can click and you can submit a lead, that's also very, very good. It can be highly competitive, so you have to watch out. If you're in a highly competitive business, this can be very expensive as well in order to really get that lift that you're looking for. So, here's some keys to success when you're implementing a SEM program or a pay per click program. First of all, be very careful in terms of how much you spend and what results. You've got to track this to the penny because you can really let this get out of control if you don't watch it closely. Set your budget limits, which you can do in Google and other ad serving technologies out there, but you got to be very diligent in terms of what you're doing there. Also, measure everything. The great things about SEM is you can tell exactly where your customers are coming from, you can tell exactly how productive these ads are being, you can adjust and change accordingly. That's the great thing with a lot of digital marking activities as well. Also, know your cost per keyword, because it varies widely. So, what I do sometimes when I'm picking this is I might actually pick longer keywords. I might put two or three keywords together, which actually brings down the cost because they're not used as much, or I might look for alternative keywords than, for instance, on The Entrepreneur Network, buying the work entrepreneur is very expensive, so I might provide the word of start a business or launching a business or other things that might be actually, a little bit cheaper. Know your conversion rate on PPC. Like I said, you can measure everything. You got to know your conversion rate. And then, considering hiring a firm to actually run your SEM program. They can cost a little bit more money, but they can be highly effective 'cause it's a very specialized area to do and to master, so you may not want to master that on your own. If you want to get started with it, you can start buying keywords by just literally signing up for an account on Google and starting there. By the way, Google isn't the only system out there. There are a lot of other systems that you can kind of plug into, including Bing and other types of search engines that can also be effective as well. So, let's take a look at an example. We're going to flash a paid search on screen. You can see, it's at the top of the screen and usually, it's taking up positing one, two, or three and in a lot of cases, it's indicated as an ad. Now, I will tell you that SEO, which falls below that, actually has higher conversion rates than SEM does, but you can control the positioning in SEM. So, what I like to do is actually balance the two, is I might start by trying to buy some words until my SEO starts to grow up, get up higher in the list, and then I'll pull the paid search and I'll just let my organic search work from there. That can be, actually, a good strategy to balance that. I always like to start with SEO if I can. But if I can't, then we start with SEM, we kind of plant the seeds, we let it grow a little bit, and then we switch over to SEO, right? As that word comes up in the ranking. It's a good strategy. All right, cost effectiveness. This is really, actually can vary. It can vary widely in terms of your industry, how competitive your industry is, how much people are bidding for those keywords. So, I'm going to leave it to that and for you to do your own research. We're going to guide you through some of the research in later learning streams, but right now, you have to be very careful in terms of how you look at that. And other associated programs would be like, online display ads. Something to take a look at in terms of online display ads might be Instagram ads, which I absolutely love. I love Instagram ads. They're very effective. They're a bit pricey, but they're very effective. Facebook ads, retargeting, and other types of things that we can look at here. And then, what to measure. Well, this is pretty easy. You measure your cost per word, your click through rates, your conversion rates or conversion to lead or conversion to buy, either one. It could be very effective. Our next program is affiliate marketing. I love this program for startups. This is one of the greatest programs for startups. In fact, I'm using it at The Entrepreneur Network right now because affiliate programs are essentially people out there. They're marketers out there that are great at digital marketing and they've created all these programs that you can plug right into and they will market your product or service. You pay them a fee or a marketing fee to do that. Now, that fee can vary widely, which we'll get into in just a moment. However, it is a source that you only have to pay them if and in fact you either get the lead or the sale, right? So, if you're actually trying to convert somebody in a direct way, once you get the sale, then you pay your affiliate fee. That's a great thing. All right, some things, reasons to use this. Why would you want to use this? First of all, it's commission-based selling, right? So, it's a great way to start up with a low, if you don't have a lot of money, this is a great way to start up. It can be costly, though. You're actually going to spend more for that lead or that sale than you probably would have by getting it your own, but you don't have to shell out up front money. You only pay if they perform. It's another one of the things I love about digital marketing. I just love it, okay? It's great. Some keys to success with this. First of all, develop an affiliate strategy. I like to think about how you're going to develop that overall strategy, the type of affiliates you want, how you're going to attract those affiliates, what commission rate you're going to pay for them, what you're not going to take on, what sites will you not go on or what affiliates will you not work with. Who are these affiliates anyway? They tend to be bloggers. They're putting up search engine marketing pages, they're putting up infographics and other things out, their articles, guides, whatever they can to feed the search engines to get traffic to their individual content or pages that they've put up that they're going to refer right back over to you to get them to convert. They also might even be putting up explicit ads. They might be buying ads as well, because they make that investment 'cause they know they're going to get a great return. Also, you need to set a goal. You need to set a goal on how you want to grow your affiliate program. That's what I do. I think it's very important. Create a program around what I call closely held affiliates. These are affiliates that you know really well, that are your top producers, and you manage them on a one-off basis. You might even pick up the phone, God forbid we actually talk on the phone today, or write an email to them and you have a one-on-one relationship as opposed to just a network effect of a bunch of affiliates that can sell for you and if they sell for you, they get a commission. Now, the great thing about this is there's software and you want to use software to manage your affiliate program. You don't want to try to do this on your own. The good thing is it's all trackable and the software isn't very expensive. If you want to do it on your own, you can issue out source codes on your own and you can do the payouts yourself, but it's so much easier. There's a lot of inexpensive software and they'll also help you get affiliates as well based on your criteria. We've popped on screen here an actual article from an affiliate, and this article is intended specifically to get them to click over to your site. That's why they wrote the article. It's like, you know, your top five ways of doing something or top 10 list to do this or what have you with a link on the bottom that then drives them over to your website to actually make a purchase or at least, potentially make a purchase. Your effectiveness ratio on this. I actually think your effectiveness ratio when you're early in your business is very, very high, meaning this is a very effective way of marketing. Your costs are relatively low. I'll say your costs are low in terms of your startup costs, so the amount of money you need to put out, but I will say, it can be a more expensive way of acquiring customers because commission rates might be 20, 30, 40, 50% or higher. So, you have to have enough margin in your business in order to do that, in order to make those payouts and you have to assess that yourself. Now, some things that you want to measure: Number of affiliates in your program, the effectiveness of each affiliate. I always like to serial rank my affiliates so that I know the top producers or the top 10 producers. Also, the conversion rates and also, the average payout that you're going after. Those are some of the things that you want to measure when you're building an affiliate program.
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- How marketing programs impact budgets
- Measuring the success of marketing programs
- Identifying the timeframe for your chosen programs
- Fitting marketing in with you other business strategies