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Do Economic Recessions Result in “Dirtier Than Normal” PPC Strategies?

As more and more companies cut back their online advertising budgets, the traditional multi-faceted strategy filled with testing new untested verticals and the high volume, low ROAS% campaign which breaks even or at a loss just to own that search real estate, are being put on HOLD. However, no matter how big or small the campaign strategy, the Brand campaign will most likely be the most profitable and all or most online competitors should already know this and will increase their visibility in the "piggy-backing" game of bidding on brand names to get the most bang for the buck.

Here are two reasons why the Brand campaign is always KING!

  1. All of the historically invested and hard earned "offline" and "online" advertising and branding over the years.
  2. Those Thousands of dollars that were spent advertising your brand in Paid Search over the past years using "non-brand", high priced, competitive search terms, which did not result in a direct conversion, but somehow magically re-invested itself into your Brand campaign (Noticed your Bookmark/Type-ins and/or Brand Campaigns clicks increased steadily.)

Those are just a few reasons why the Brand Campaign is always KING and why more and more Advertisers would be "piggybacking" off the trademarked brand search terms and less on the generics. In this economy, I can only expect this strategy to get worse.

The Brand Campaign usually consists of the following KPIs:

  • Highest CTR%
  • Highest Conversion Rate
  • Best ROAS% or ROI%
  • Lowest CPC

The hard choices that need to be made:

Advertisers most likely have campaigns and adgroups that are either considered "Sacred Cows"; Realized Lifetime Value; others just hovering around the breaking even point or even at a loss are now being pushed to the forefront of the PPC "cut 'em loose" strategy.

What can advertisers do to protect themselves?
Well, even though Google allows for bidding on Trademark terms, Advertisers can protect their brand in the text Ads by applying for the Google Trademark Authorization Form (see previous article on SemGeek about Trademark Policy).Furthermore, if Advertisers feel their Trademark is being abused, they can file a Google Trademark Complaint Procedure Form.

The Bottom-line:
Protecting your Brand is more important than ever during these troubling economic times because more and more competitors cannot afford to continue to spend the same amount of PPC budget for mass testing and customer acquisition on generic audiences.

Filed under: Paid Search in General

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