A long time ago I realized that “PPC strategies” aren’t just tactics to be applied to ads or keywords. I also realized that the most successful PPC managers are a special breed of people.
PPC managers have to be good with numbers, analysis, and planning. They have to be creative and have a strong grasp of marketing fundamentals. And more to the point, PPC managers also have to be good with people and have a knack for handling client communication.
If client communication isn’t included in your arsenal of “PPC strategies,” all of the other tactics you employ are for naught. Communication allows you to build stronger client relationships and keep those clients for the long haul.
Communication can take many forms. Phone calls. Emails. Reports.
For every client, you should have a communication plan in place. Be transparent with your clients regarding call or report schedules, but remember to stick to your schedules! If you miss phone calls or forget to send a report, you may lose a client because of it.
So what kind of communication plan should you put in place? Here are a few recommendations:
Regularly Scheduled Phone Calls
- Talking with your clients on the phone is very important for building rapport, building trust, and trading ideas.
- Create a schedule. My agency plans for a weekly call in the first month of an engagement and then switching to bi-weekly or monthly (depending on client’s comfort level) for the remainder of the relationship.
- Have a tech-savvy client? Try video chat instead! This way you get the benefits of face-to-face communication, too. Try iMeet, Skype or even Google+ Hangouts.
Regularly Scheduled Reports
- Your clients want to know how their PPC accounts are performing. Make it easy for them by providing regularly scheduled reports.
- Create a weekly report of basic, high-level data if you can. Most third party tools like Acquisio give you the ability to automate these types of reports.
- Create a detailed monthly report. But not all reports should be delivered to your client as-is. A monthly report is a great time to include a written summary to give the data context.
Respond to Emails & Calls
- This should be a no-brainer, but it’s worth mentioning as a reminder. If your client emails or calls with a question or concern, you should respond in a timely manner.
- Any time your client feels neglected or ignored, only bad things will happen!
- While it is important to have a schedule, communicating with your client spontaneously is good, too.
- Send your client proactive communication. Did something bad happen or did you make a mistake? Let your client know before they find out for themselves. Did something great happen? Let your client know (without bragging, of course).
- These little pieces of proactive communication will remind your client of why they hired you in the first place!
Get Out There and Communicate With Your Clients
I urge all of you to take stock of your current PPC client relationships and consider how well you’re communicating with them.
Are you already providing a great service and communicating well with your clients? Well, thanks for reading this far.
Did you read this article and realize that maybe you could be doing more? Then my job here is done.
Now go be the PPC rock star that you are!
Photo is used courtesy of P Shanks via Flickr and the Creative Commons License.
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