So, you’ve taken the plunge and hired a new PPC manager. Maybe you’ve decided to hire a PPC agency, or maybe you’re keeping PPC in-house but want someone to manage your program full time. Either way, congratulations on the new hire!
You’ll no doubt expect your new PPC manager to do keyword research, set up ad copy tests, manage bids, and track conversions. But PPC management goes way beyond keywords & ad copy. Here are seven questions to expect from your new PPC manager.
What are Your Goals for PPC?
The first thing your PPC manager should do, before he or she even logs into AdWords, is talk to you about your goals. A PPC campaign without goals is like traveling to a new city without a map. How will you find your way if you don’t know where you’re going?
Expect your new manager to ask specific questions about sales goals, cost per conversion targets, and overall business goals.
What are Your Key Products and Services?
If you’ve hired someone from within, they probably already know the answer to this question. Everyone else needs to ask it.
Even if your goal is just to use PPC to increase overall sales, it’s invaluable to know which products or services are your “must-haves.” This info is critical for prioritization, especially if you run low on budget and your PPC manager has to dial back your spend.
Who is Your Primary Target Audience?
Even your from-within hire should ask this question. Not only is it important for overall marketing strategy, it can also drive PPC tactics such as engine placement, geotargeting, and ad messaging.
For example, if your goal is to generate awareness of a new product targeted to women age 35-54, you might want to focus on Facebook ads. You’ll get zillions of impressions, and they’ll all be delivered to your target audience. If your goal is to reach business decision makers, you should try Bing – it works very well for B2B at a fraction of the cost of Google.
Are There any Specific Offers You’d Like to Promote?
Not all PPC is offer/promotion-based. But it’s still good to know what promotions and offers are out there so you can test them in PPC.
PPC is a great way to vet marketing messaging and get immediate response data without spending a lot of money on creative and traditional media.
You can use PPC to test offers and concepts before rolling it out to display and print. It’s an efficient way to see what resonates with the audience and avoid sinking money into messaging that doesn’t get attention.
What is Your Desired Cost per Conversion?
While this question is related to the goals question, it needs to be asked on its own. I’ve lost count of how many clients I’ve worked with over the years who have no idea how much they’re willing to pay to acquire a customer.
Sure, it’s possible to run PPC campaigns without a target CPA in mind – we’ll just try to get the lowest possible cost per conversion. But if you have even a ballpark number in mind, share it with your PPC manager!
I once had a client in a competitive vertical with CPCs upwards of $5/click. We were getting CPAs of around $15, and I was pretty happy with that. Turns out the client didn’t want to pay more than $5 per lead! We would have had to convert every visitor in that situation.
Get these thoughts out in the open before your campaign launches – you’ll both sleep better at night.
What Conversions are you Measuring, and How are You Measuring Them?
This is another question that a surprising number of advertisers answer with “I don’t know” and “we’re not.” If those are your responses, that’s OK. Your PPC manager can help you. But identifying key website conversion actions and setting up a way to track them will be their first order of business, before they even log in to AdWords.
If you're tracking conversions, that’s great! If you have more than one conversion you’re tracking, take things one step further and make sure your PPC manager knows the priority of each conversion.
If you’re in ecommerce, online sales will probably be your number one conversion; but you might also be interested in email signups, contact form submissions, phone calls, and other actions. Knowing the importance of each conversion will help your PPC manager optimize campaigns accordingly.
What’s a Good Time to Hold a Recurring Meeting?
Nobody wants more meetings. But regular communication with your PPC manager is crucial, whether the manager is in-house or at an agency.
Meetings don’t have to be in-person; I have 30-minute monthly calls with several of my clients, and we rarely cancel. That’s because the clients know that we’ll discuss progress toward their business goals, how well we’re reaching their target audience, promotional offer results, cost per conversion, and conversions by type.
Sound familiar? It should! We discuss all the questions I’ve outlined here. And we talk about other things too; but the primary agenda is usually the first six questions in this post.
Even if your PPC manager isn’t new, it’s a good idea to revisit these questions with them. You’ll be glad you did.