5 Reasons Your PPC Advertising Campaigns Fail

Pay-per-click (PPC) ads can be an incredibly powerful lead generation tool, so it's no wonder that the average SMB spends up to $120,000 per year on this tactic. That investment shouldn't come without a return! 

But what if your PPC campaigns are falling flat? There are five key reasons your PPC ads might fail--and some simple steps you can take to fix them. 


Quitting Before You’re Ahead

Your PPC campaign isn’t a “one-and-done,” type of advertisement, and it will require you to stay on top of your marketing for continuous periods of time. If you are not consistent with your advertising and make it easily adaptable, customers will lose interest quickly and your conversion rate will plummet.

To combat this, try adding calls to action on your page to keep on top of customer interest. Newsletters, mailing lists, free downloadable content, and creating a space to schedule an appointment or consultation are great ways to keep your customers interested after their initial click.

Once you've attracted your potential lead to stay on your page, it's time for them to convert to first-time, and hopeful loyal, customers. The best way to optimize your conversion rate in your ad campaign is to understand the customer journey and buyer persona of your most involved demographic. Understanding what makes people want to buy your product and the type of people who buy it is the most valuable information you can have.

Your Keywords Are Betraying You

All issues with your campaigns can be traced back to not understanding your buyer persona well. Knowing the demographic that you are appealing to can help you choose keywords that will trigger your ad to be shown. Showing your ads to specific groups is more likely to get you clicks and conversions as opposed to unspecific general terms.

Your campaign should also include negative keywords. Negative keywords are words that ensure your ad will not be shown during a certain search phrase. Including negative keywords helps you to laser focus your ad presentations on relevant searches. In turn, this will result in more conversions and fewer wasted clicks.

Bouncing the Basics

Understanding your customers is key to a successful marketing campaign but there's more to it than just specialized content. Ensuring the right persona for your business will automatically curate the right search words but it may not always be enough to initially attract your lead to your website. There's a chance that your customers will not be up to date on all of the current marketing buzzwords and won’t have the same appreciation for a complex campaign structure that you do.

A simple, well-organized campaign will look much less chaotic and be easier to follow. Minimalism is preferred by almost all age demographics and helps to keep your ad information relevant and attractive.

An effective campaign includes starting with a goal, having keywords that reflect a certain theme, and an ad that is attractive and relevant to the ad campaign’s goal.

Your Landing Page is a Huge Miss

Your website is the focal point of your online presence and is where you will be able to get your message across best. Don’t neglect specialized landing pages for the current product or service that you are trying to promote. Landing pages are an easy way to get as much relevant information to the buyer in a user-friendly format as possible without having an actual conversation with them.

A prime example of how to improve your landing page(s) is by using colors, layouts, and designs that are most appealing to your target audience. On your landing page, you should include anything that is vital to what you are trying to sell. Include easy-to-digest infographics, detailed product descriptions, customer reviews, and a form of call-to-action media that will encourage the consumer to follow through with the buying process.

You’re Not Using Social Media

In today's world, everyone has at least one social media account. Mom, dad, Grandma, and even the neighbor's dog are on some sort of social platform constantly consuming countless hours of mindless information. So why not take advantage of that?

Instagram and Facebook, to name a few, show ads of products mixed into a person's “feed” making it easy to attract the right audience and generate an abundance of clicks. If you're in the B2B space, LinkedIn ads might yield the best results. 

You can also use tools that are embedded in these platforms to retarget your audience when they leave the platform. Retargeting on social platforms is easy and done in a few simple steps. This allows you to follow the potential lead to their next search engine in hopes to recapture their attention and convert them into a customer.

So… What’s The Plan Here?

Your campaign should be an organized and well-thought-out effort with a clear goal, motive, plan of action, schedule, and a metric by which you can determine your success rate. The small details that will pull your campaign together will fall into place once you have the big picture outlined. Before you can even begin doing customer research, you must know what the objective of your campaign is, why you’re going to do it, and how it is going to help your company.

Understanding your buyer persona helps you with your plan of action. Once you’ve acquired consumer data you can begin polishing your campaign to fit their needs. Focusing on improving your conversion and return on investment rates is how to determine if your ad campaign is successful or not. Yet all of this becomes exponentially easier when you have a goal. Your goal allows you to stay on top of your campaign and easily make amends when it is not working how you would like it to. Instead of spending months wasting money, you are able to quickly tweak your keywords, your ad aesthetic, your landing page, and any other issues to improve your conversion rate.

With PPC advertising, there is a very fine line between a favorable outcome and failure. This form of advertising can be a great asset to spreading your brand identity, getting new clients into your funnel, improving your conversion rate, and growing your company. By understanding what does and does not work in the world of PPC advertising, you can ensure that your campaign reaches its full potential.


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Serena graduated from Christopher Newport University with a B.S in Biology and is currently pursuing her Doctor of Physical Therapy degree. Born and raised in Sicily, she is always looking to soak up some sun and find the best slice of pizza around!

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