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The Social Media Manipulation of the PPC Success Metric


As I am shaking my head in disbelief, I have to ask the question. Why is the online marketing industry becoming so clouded by pushing clicks/traffic as a success metric, while accepting the fact that actual conversions are now categorized as an “elite” metric? Has Social Media created a new landscape for PPC where basic metrics such as clicks are now being labeled as interactions and we are now forced to downplay standard conversions? Should we consider Conversions as a “BONUS” if those clicks led to actual revenue?

Here are some thoughts on how this movement might have evolved (not on it’s own)

 

The Clouding of Analytics:

When we add all of the online advertising targeting options these days (mobile, display, social media, traditional PPC, etc..) we are forced to rely on accurate Analytics and Attribution at a granular level. We need to connect the dots of all sources and identify (1)what worked, (2)what didn’t worked (3)why didn’t work and (4)what to try next. Furthermore, with all of this data-mining going on, we still need to focus on the biggest metric of all: $$$ Revenue $$$.

 

Kool-aid Case Studies:

Case Studies have always been the best propaganda tool put out by the advertising platforms in order to stimulate interest and convince advertisers to start spending Ad dollars with them. In some instances, there are obvious benefits of using these platforms (if used correctly). However, one must remember that no one is going to put out a Case Study that shows a “bad experience” and that often times, these documents manipulate the data in their favor. See my previous article “10 mistakes Startup Companies should avoid in PPC Marketing

 

Lifetime Value Over-Exaggeration:

There has been this “soft, fuzzy” Aura that all interactions within Social Media platforms will eventually lead to a customer later in the cycle. Unfortunately, this “fuzziness” has made its way into PPC and advertisers must realize (or remember) that PPC is a little more hardcore than that. PPC Marketing is a game of Money not so much long-term investment. Honestly, the client/advertiser has two (2) basic questions.

How much did I Spend? + How much did I Make?

 

In Conclusion:

All online advertisers need to realize that Social Media (even though cool and popular) is not the same as PPC Marketing. PPC is a different monster and it’s very deceptive for Google to have performance  metrics such as “Interactions” and “Interaction Rates” as options in their reporting columns, when all they are, are traditional clicks. Bottomline: Google is using Social Media interactions as a way to convince advertisers to continue to spend more money with them.

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