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» Google Adwords, Online Strategy, Paid Search in General » 10 Things The Adwords Certification Cannot Teach You

10 Things The Adwords Certification Cannot Teach You


Being Google Adwords Certified can only be a good thing to have under your belt. However, it’s hard to believe that just because you are certified, doesn’t make you successful, nor reputable. In fact, much of the “needle moving” of campaign success is not based on an exam question. It’s comprised of experience, strategy and an intimate understanding of the client’s goals, objectives and knowledge of their product or service. So below are 10 things that the certification does not teach you (they are in no particular order)


#1 How to develop a Successful Workflow/Process
In order to be successful in PPC Marketing, you must create a process in which you carry out your strategy, implementation, optimization, and more. Everyone has a different mentality on how they manage clients. Once the process is established and working efficiently, everything will fall into place.


#2 Deciding what Questions need to be answered during the Discovery Phase
Asking the right questions is key to a successful client relationship through PPC. The Strategy is the single most important element of any PPC project. These questions go far beyond the basic goals and objectives and should be “tweaked” for every client on an ongoing basis.


#3 Understand and utilize 3rd party PPC Tools and Software
Yeah, sounds like a no-brainer, but just because you have a Certification, doesn’t mean you have the expertise to navigate through PPC Software Tools and platforms. You need to learn that one your own and apply your knowledge of the “blocking and tackling” to the platform.


#4 Compliment Offline Advertising
This is an important one that can make a big impact on PPC Success. If a client is running TV, Radio or Print Ads, having support at the PPC level to “re-engage them” and continue the branding from both mediums, is crucial to the overall experience. Strategies that come to mind are personalizing text ads based on terms that were mentioned in the Ad, the source of where the Ad was created (Magazines, TV Stations, etc…)


#5 Improve Qualified Lead Generation
Many PPC Marketers tend lose focus on when they are driving leads to their clients through PPC. Quite often, the client does not see the value in the leads unless they are “real leads” that generate “real revenue”. It’s a double edged sword that requires some “outside the box” thinking and continued discussions with the client to understand where and how the leads are being generated. Strategies to overcome this are Survey’s, creating a “POINT SYSTEM” based on the questions and applying it to Conversion Tracking (Subtotal Sales).


#6 How to develop a well performing landing page
Everyone it seems is an expert on Landing Pages. Too much Content, not enough above the fold, bad choice of photos, etc…. It is this continuous “tweaking” and identifying with the client’s specific audience is what requires experience and understanding of the client’s audience.


#7 How to create Overall Campaign Strategies
Bidding on Brand Terms as well as Products/Services is not enough. Depending on the depth of the client, there needs to be a complete strategy encompassing every possible search term that would relate to the client’s audience. This would a wide range of keyword segmentation, Network selection, Geographic and Demographic targeting, different mobile devices, etc…


#8 How to set the Correct Expectations with a Client
Explaining to a client how this whole process works can be a very difficult thing to manage over time. Google does not teach you how to communicate and manage their expectations effectively. Much of this success is based purely on experience of being in the Industry.


#9 How to identify “indirect” search terms from Generation Gaps
We live in an age where they are many different generations searching online. When someone types in Home Phone, and another Residential Phone and another Land-line Phone, the PPC Marketer better be aware that all of these terms are related to the same particular product or service. If they don’t prepare for this, it’s money left on the table.


#10 How to handle Resellers and Affiliate Hi-Jacking of Branded Terms
One of the most annoying and troublesome tasks of a PPC Marketer is dealing with a client who has an aggressive Affiliate and Reseller program that is penetrating the PPC landscape. Furthermore, the client wants to keep it “status quo” because they are making money and their revenues are fine. All Google tells you is to file a complaint. What a PPC Marketer should do is communicate to the client that there are ways to change the affiliate/reseller agreements on bidding on brand terms on PPC. If they don’t follow, then they can be removed from the program.

Filed under: Google Adwords, Online Strategy, Paid Search in General

4 Responses to "10 Things The Adwords Certification Cannot Teach You"

  1. Wordstream says:

    See how your AdWords campaign is really doing. Get your campaign graded and compared with competitors – http://www.wordstream.com/google-adwords

  2. Katie Saxon says:

    Agree with all of the above – particularly #3, some of the AdWords tools Are great, but to make the most of them you need to be working with other tools as well.

    Case in point, Aquisio’s broad match modifier tool is still the quickest and easiest I’ve found for modifiying big lists in one go, while Editor still lags behind..

  3. […] bin zufällig auf einen Beitrag von SEM Geek gestoßen und habe mich auch durch den letzten SEO Podcast von Marco Janck dazu inspiriert […]

  4. AverageJoe says:

    Totally agree with the title of this article. People have misconception that a piece of paper can get you to the top. Nothing can beat years of experience!

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