Finding the best PPC agency for your company is no easy task, but the potential ROI means it’s worth finding the right partner. Pay Per Click (or PPC) advertising is an effective way to drive traffic to your website, and target customers at the bottom of the sales funnel (those who are ready to buy). PPC ads encompass a wide range of different platforms, from ads on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) like Google, to social networks like Facebook, and video platforms like Youtube.
The name derives from the fact you will be charged for the ad only when it is clicked. However, you will be charged the same amount regardless of whether the click is followed by any kind of conversion. The key to successful PPC ad campaigns then is to target your marketing efforts effectively and ensure as many conversions as possible.
In this article, we’ll be looking at what great PPC agencies do, and how to know if you’re on the right track.
What is a PPC Agency?
On a basic level, a PPC agency manages the online paid advertising campaigns of its clients. However, to do this well, they will need to understand and integrate with the client’s larger marketing strategy, customer base, and buyer personas.
The best PPC agency will take the time to understand not just their client’s company but the larger landscape their client is competing in as well. An agency should analyze and understand its clients’ competitors both in the industry and specifically for keywords, and the ‘why’ behind their customer’s purchases.
They should also be able to carry out thorough keyword research, ensuring that ads have great SEO to improve their quality score. ‘Quality Score’ refers to the ranking system that Google uses to quantify the relevance of chosen keywords to the product within the ad. It is used to guide advertisers, not to rank ads, although if your advertisements frequently have a low quality score, that will affect your potential to win bids in future auctions.
It’s also important to continually experiment and adjust campaigns to determine what marketing is resonating.
Perhaps most surprisingly, however, is the fact that the best PPC agency will provide you with more than PPC advertising. Let’s explain.
Why the Best PPC Agency Won’t Just Offer PPC
The best PPC agency won’t just do PPC advertising. They’ll recognize that PPC ads can be far more powerful with strong content marketing behind them. Creating quality SEO content allows businesses to supplement their PPC ad traffic with organic traffic, and crucially, target buyers earlier on in the sales cycle.
There will be a large number of potential leads that are still weighing their options or even only vaguely aware of their need for your solution. These future customers likely won’t be moved by an ultra-direct advert. They will, however, be searching for information in your industry. And this is where well-written, high-value blogs can reach customers that PPC cannot.
Unlike PPC campaigns, once blogs are live, they don’t require continued financial investment, and ‘evergreen’ content – high-value articles on perpetually relevant subjects – can continue to rank highly for months and even years after publication.
Furthermore, well-optimized content can be the backbone of your entire marketing machine. Whitepapers, checklists, and ebooks can serve as valuable gated content to link to on your ads and landing pages – so even those who aren’t sold yet can be recorded and nurtured, so there are no wasted clicks. Over time, great content will also help establish you as a thought leader in your industry, creating positive brand awareness, while also backing up your ad campaigns.
The main challenge content marketing faces is it can be slow to get off the ground – 6-10 months to start seeing full results – and this is precisely why PPC advertising and content marketing complement each other so well. PPC allows you to quickly get your name at the top of Google search results, and content marketing gives you the strong brand positioning you need to demonstrate your knowledge and credibility.
The best PPC agency will recognize this and be eager to strategically implement other forms of marketing to maximize ROI.
What to Look for in a PPC Agency
Testimonials and Evidence of Success
When looking for the best PPC agency, testimonials from happy customers and a portfolio of relevant clientele are both great signs. Pay close attention also to how the agency conducts its personal marketing. If they aren’t appearing in keyword searches for relevant topics or ranking highly on search engines, or their landing pages are rudimentary and unpersuasive, they may not be able to give you the quality of work you need.
A Google Ads or Microsoft PPC certification both demonstrate the agency has taken the time to learn about PPC strategy, as do courses on PPC from SEMrush or Hubspot. As the Google and Microsoft courses are entirely free, the only investment the agency will have made is time and commitment to increasing their knowledge.
Beware agencies that offer little flexibility. Packages that promise to be instantly and universally successful or offer ‘Guaranteed SEO’ spell a world of trouble. No one can truly guarantee content will rank highly or ads will have a high click-through rate (CTR) – they can only use SEM best practices to comply with guidelines.
It’s also worth noting that PPC ads need to be carefully targeted, tested, and monitored to reach their full potential – the best PPC agency won’t oversimplify this, and will take the time to understand your company’s background, buyer personas, and overall goals before they get to work.
The best PPC agency can supercharge your marketing ROI. That’s the power behind paid ads – they get to work quickly, and can offer lasting results. To summarize, make sure your agency is:
- Using content to underpin your marketing efforts for long-term success.
- Working with a team that sets big-picture goals using granular tasks.
- Basing your campaigns on evidence from your competitor and keyword research.
- Understands SEO best practices to generate high-quality scores and content that ranks.
- Has evidence of past successes in the form of testimonials, a portfolio, and/or their own advertising efforts.
- Continually analyzing results from your campaigns and experimenting to truly resonate with your buyer.
Nituno is a marketing agency that uses a mix of methods including PPC ads, inbound, outbound and video marketing to help our clients fulfill their goals and get the most out of their marketing spend. Need PPC ads that drive traffic and increase conversions? Book a strategy meeting with us today.