According to Google, 90% of B2B researchers who are online use search specifically to research business purchases. And did you know, on average B2B researchers do 12 searches prior to engaging on a specific brand’s site.
That means B2B businesses and marketers ignore Pay Per Click (PPC) Search marketing at their own peril. In fact, businesses that are harnessing the power of Search are seeing tremendous results in their lead generation efforts. And they are achieving that by being available when their target markets are actively searching.
There are number of ways to take advantage of this, and I’ve listed here 8 tips for effective PPC lead generation:
Differentiate your ads
Most ads on google are drowning in a “sea of sameness”. They have no benefits or unique selling points to differentiate from competitor ads and so they fail to achieve good ROI.
Your ads should stand out from the competition and should describe the benefits that prospects get from your business.
So, avoid talking about features, which is what your product or service is; and avoid talking about functions, which is what your product does. Instead, talk about how your product or service helps the prospect, which is the benefit.
Provide multiple Calls To Action (CTA)
Most B2B businesses have multiple calls to action like a phone number to call, a white paper to download, a product to purchase, a contact form to fill out and a host of others. These should be strategically placed throughout the website and should be linked appropriately from the PPC Ads.
Each CTA type serves a different purpose and should be targeted to the different audiences that arrive on your site. A white paper for example is an essential piece in the Awareness stage of the buying process.
It should be targeted at new visitors and should be promoted in your Adwords Ads.
And the keywords you choose should be more generic and should target people looking for information and not necessarily to make a sale
Use bid modifiers
Particularly for device targeting, considering that your market will likely be searching during normal working hours and on a desktop. If you that is the case, then add a bid modifier to increase positions for people searching on desktop.
This will lead to an increase from this target audience and should hopefully lead to more enquiries for your business.
Don’t turn off Ads
It’s important to be always present as people research and search. Don’t turn off ads because you have got all the leads you need. It will affect future lead gen targets. For b2c it is often ok to turn ads off when products are out of stock.
However, with the long sales cycle that is characteristic of B2B sales, it’s important to realise that it could be weeks or months before a sale is completed. So, turning off ads now because you are busy and don’t require more customers at the moment, could dry up your sales pipeline and affect business down the line.
Be visible when it matters
Most B2B advertisers will run ads during normal working hours and that makes sense because that is when the target audience is most likely to be searching.
However, appearing in search results in the evenings and over the weekend is important too despite it being outside of working hours. That is because many small business owners do Search at odd hours and days. And then they can use the contact forms or call the business during open hours.
Choose the right keywords
Keyword selection could make or break your Adwords strategy. This is the most error-prone part of Adwords advertising and many advertisers get it wrong from the start and throughout their advertising lifecycle.
It’s important to start with thorough keyword research to identify both primary and long tail keywords that are descriptive of what your market is looking for. There are many resources to use for keyword research including:
⁃ the keyword planner tool in Google AdWords
⁃ Your websites content pages
⁃ Your competitors content pages
⁃ Magazine and books related to your industry
Many B2B companies use shopping listings and search ads to promote their products. And it’s often effective to bid on part and model numbers, that normally sell well and have lots of searches.
Structure campaigns for success
Due to the research-heavy nature of B2B, it’s a good idea to put your keywords in campaigns and ad groups that address the various stages of the purchase funnel.
So have campaigns or ad groups for the Awareness, Consideration and Decision stages of the buying funnel. In the Awareness stage for example, you will focus on general keywords that have higher volumes and are targeted at people who are not ready to buy, but are still researching.
For keywords related to the Decision stage, you will bid on keywords with the words “buy” or “download” in them. These will often be long tail keywords with fewer search volumes individually, but high purchase intent.
Structuring the ads and keywords according to the various stages will help you manage your account more effectively and boost ROI.
Use the right Call-to-action (CTA)
You would rarely use ‘buy now’ or ‘order now’ as CTAs for B2B. More appropriate CTAs are enquire now, learn more, get quote and so on and you would include these in your ads in different ways for testing purposes.
B2B Advertising requires a long view, especially when compared to the wham-bam world of B2C PPC.