Pay-per-click campaigns are often the fastest and most effective way to promote affiliate offers. They are generally affordable and can be targeted to reach the desired audience quite easily.
As the name suggests, you’re only paying when someone clicks on your ad, and since the ads are directed at consumers who are most likely to be interested already, PPC advertising usually helps you generate sales more effectively.
But (there’s always a but), when something seems this easy, there are a million ways to do it wrong. Often, affiliates think if they put the ad out there, the sales will just happen. There is no real thought put into writing the ad so it is appealing and effective at getting the click you need.
Today, I want to take you through a bit of PPC training that will help you create a compelling ad. More clicks = more sales, right?
Do Your Research
Research to create a compelling PPC ad takes two main forms: keyword research and competitive research.
Before you even start writing your ad, its important to do extensive keyword research for your campaign. You can use the Google Adwords Keyword Planner, ubersuggest or any other keyword tool to do your research. If you'd rather not worry about keyword research at all, AffiloJetpack can help you out with lists of keywords for various niches. These keywords will definitely give you a competitive edge.
Once you've done your keyword research, you will have a good idea of the terms people are using to search for sites like yours. Using these keywords in your ads is important, as you will be bidding on them for your campaign.
Apart from keyword research, it's also important to look into your competitors and see what you're up against. Bring up the list of keywords you found from your research. Then, conduct a Google search using some of these keywords to see who is advertising for these terms.
For example, imagine you're researching the term "whey protein." The first step in this process is to Google it to see who is advertising for the term.
Take a look at the ads that appear and save screenshots of them for easy reference when you start writing your ads. I'm not saying you should copy these ads (sometimes competitor ads are terrible!); I'm saying it's good to be aware of what your competitors are doing.
When doing competitive research, I also like to use the Google Ad Preview Tool instead of just using Google.com. You can set the Google domain you want and the location (country/city) you want to research, then search for your keyword. I think these results are often better than the results you see on Google alone. The search engine results will often be personalized to you based on your Internet history.
What are the Benefits?
When you've completed your research, the next step is to outline the benefits/advantages of your offer. To do this, some questions you could ask yourself would include the following:
- What is the benefit of my offer?
- What is the key differentiator between me and my competitor?
- Am I solving a customer problem?
- Am I filling a gap in the market?
- Does my customer gain anything by purchasing from me?
It's important to write down these answers because you will need to use these benefits when writing your ad.
For example, this ad for Zappos clearly spells out that I should buy from them for several reasons:
- "Tons of women's boots": I will be spoiled for choice.
- Free shipping: Who doesn't like free shipping?
Use the Right Language
To create PPC ads that convert well, you need to pay attention to the language of your ad.
The language you use to describe your product must match the language your customers use. Ads full of boring corporate jargon will never resonate with your customers.
The above ad for concert tickets for Lorde works well because it uses simple language. When people go to see a concert they usually do talk about "awesome seats at great prices." They don't say "I was sitting in Row 5A."
Right Style and Tone
The tone of your ad must inspire action. Your potential customers must feel the need to click on your ad and make the most of your valuable offer right away! To inspire this action, the language you use must be active.
Use clear words and language that evokes imagery for the ultimate effect. Keep it short, keep it snappy. The more commanding your language, the more like you are to get the click.
A Killer CTA
A crucial part of your ad is also using a great call to action (CTA). Combined with the right style and tone, a good call to action will drive the click to your site. The most common CTA is probably "Buy Now," but remember your CTA doesn't have to be a sales pitch. It can be anything that tells your potential customer what to do next.
CTAs usually create a sense of urgency in some way, but this doesn't always have to be a pushy "buy now before it's too late" response.
This ad for Call of Duty uses great language ("epic") and a non-pushy CTA ("available now") but manages to create an urgency to get the game right away. Who wants epic maps and hybrid weapons if they're not available to you right away?
Relevant Display URL
The Display URL is often overlooked when creating an ad, but really you should be paying more attention to it. The display URL appears just underneath your headline and it tells your potential customer where they will land once they click on your ad.
If I were searching for "bootcut jeans" and I saw the above ads, I would much prefer to go to Zappos because it looks like I will see the jeans as soon as I hit the site. With Lee, I feel like I will have to do a bit of searching around myself. It's not a lot of work, but if you simplify the search process even a little bit, your customers will appreciate it.
Just remember though, don't promise something in your display URL and then not deliver on it on your landing page. If your landing page doesn't match, your bounce rates are likely to be high and this will eventually affect your quality score.
Use Ad Extensions
Once you've got your text ready, add more meat to your ad with ad extensions. Remember when we were talking about where the PPC industry is headed? I mentioned that ad extensions were going to become even bigger and better.
Using ad extensions means more screen real estate to tell your product story, so why wouldn't you do this?
Today we've covered some basic PPC training to get you started on creating powerful PPC ads that drive conversions for your site. Of course, what works for one offer may not always work for a different offer. It's important to continually test your ads. This will help you determine what is most compelling for your audience.
What about you? What are your tips for creating a compelling PPC ad? Let me know in the comments!