Listen or Read Local Gold’s Monthly Podcast Interview!
Topic: Search Engine Advertising
Below you will find an easy to read transcript of Jared Graves’ interview on the razorcast™ monthly podcast. You can either watch the video to listen to the podcast or simply read the easy to follow transcript below. Enjoy!
RC: Hello everyone, this is Liz Harvey coming to you from our razorcast™ studios in New York City where we are dedicated to bringing you top quality advice from many of the leading expert professionals across the United States.
In today’s episode, we are speaking with Jared Graves. Jared is the VP of Business Development at Local Gold, a Digital Marketing company based out of New Jersey. He is most known for his media buying & traffic acquisition expertise, having helped drive over half a billion dollars in sales for some of the largest Fortune 500 rated companies in the world.
Jared is also the co-founder of razorcast™ and serves on our national network of professional experts.
Today we are going to talk about a very important topic:
Search Engine Advertising
Hey Jared, how are you today?
Jared Graves: I’m doing fantastic Liz, thanks.
RC: Great. Well thank you so much for being here today. Let’s just jump in.
Question 1: What is the #1 thing USA business owners can do to compete and win with SEARCH ENGINE ADVERTISING?
RC: You’ve been purchasing search engine pay-per-click advertising since about 2004. Having spent over (I think it is ) 25 million dollars in capital testing your strategies, what is the number one thing U.S. business owners can do to compete and win with search engine advertising?
Jared Graves: That’s actually a very good question right off the bat. What I would recommend, and I see this with a lot of clients that we work with, is that you need to take a multi-faceted approach to search engine advertising – more specifically pay-per-click advertising.
The problem with a lot of what I see is people think that just simply sending traffic and visitors to their website is going to be enough. It’s actually going to set you up for failure.
I have a 3-key system when it comes to pay-per-click marketing:
1. Quality of the Traffic – keywords you’re actually bidding on and sending to your website. You want to make sure that you have relevant keywords that are going to convert and turn into new patients or new clients or new sales depending on what type of business you are promoting.
2. Quality of the Website and Backend System – you need (not only to send quality traffic to your website) a website that is actually going to take that quality traffic and convert it into new business. Part of that is your actual business itself. If you are driving phone calls (a doctor and you want to drive new patients) and you don’t have quality people answering those phones and turning those calls into patients, you can get all the quality traffic in the world to your website and all the quality calls in the world to your business, but it’s just not going to work out for you.
3. Geographical and Dayparting – you don’t want to be sending calls to your business at midnight. A lot of people make the mistake of not actually running their ads only when they have people who are there to take the phone calls or take the new business.
If you are in New York City, you are going to have a lot smaller of a range that you are going to target people because a couple miles away from New York City can be a long commute. Whereas if you’re in the suburbs, a couple of miles are nothing and you want to increase the area of coverage that you’re actually showing your advertising.
So keep it in mind: traffic, the quality of your website and backend, as well as making sure you’re geographically and time dayparting your advertising will be the best thing that people can do to ensure success. So keep a multifaceted approach to your search engine marketing.
RC: Okay great!
Question 2: What is the biggest mistake our listeners should AVOID?
RC: On the flip side. What is the biggest mistake our listeners should really avoid?
Jared Graves: Sure that is actually an easy question to answer. I’d say anywhere from 90-95% of clients that I handle who have an existing pay-per-click account are all bidding in what’s called the “content or display network.” A lot of people don’t understand what that is because they sign up for a Google pay-per-click account and they will get a call from a Google rep who will handle their advertising for them. What happens is that these Google reps are twenty-two year olds straight out of college, they go through a quick tutorial on how to increase the revenue for Google and that involves putting your ads on places that aren’t necessarily going to work, that are just going to increase the traffic flow.
You’ll hear a lot of times them saying,”We can get more visitors to your website. Let’s get more visitors to your website.” But, these visitors are complete garbage. Now the “display or content network” is not when people search in the actual search engine. So what will happen is, you’ll show up on relevant sites.
So if you’re a lawyer and you want to do pay-per-click advertising and you’re in the display network, you may show up on www.answers.com, an article on law and you’ll show up on the page of a banner advertisement and you’ll get a lot of erroneous clicks that way.
So, in the display or content network you’ll see that you’ll get the majority of your clicks from there; you’ll get the majority of your budget spent in there; and I guarantee you’re not getting any new business from the display network.
Now there are instances where that does work but in the case of local business, it does not. The display network is more for branding, some sort of retargeting that some people do as well as it can work in ecommerce if it is done right but it requires a lot of money burnt learning where to run.
It also requires a lot of optimization and that’s just a whole other level of pay-per-click advertising. But more on the local level (which is what I deal with on a daily basis), just know you have to stay out, opt out.
“Search” (network) only if you want people who are proactively looking for your service to land on your website. So, get off the content or display network, it’s your biggest mistake.
RC: Alright, that is really great advice and pretty easy for people to opt out of that when they’re in the Google AdWords so that is great advice for everyone.
Question 3: How has the “search” landscape changed since you started pay-per-click advertising over 10 years ago?
RC: Moving on, how has the “search” landscape changed since you started pay-per-click advertising over ten years ago?
Jared Graves: A couple of ways. There are actually two major ways in which it changed. The first is it used to go to the highest bidder and it would be very transparent. Yahoo used to be called Overture and when you would be bidding for keywords in there, if you were the highest bidder, you’d show up first on the page. Well that’s just not the case anymore. They want to show quality advertisements so there are a lot more factors that come into play.
With a good quality optimized website, you can actually get clicks a lot cheaper than you would if you had a bad website. They do what’s called a “quality score” across your website so now it’s a little more intricate in how you rank and what you pay. It was a lot simpler back then.
I’d say the biggest change by far is it’s completely saturated now. It’s extremely competitive, the landscape. You used to be able to get very cheap business using pay-per-click; it’s not the case anymore. It has forced everyone to become a lot more adept at search engine advertising, as well as, put a lot more work into the actual site and the quality of what they are distributing across the ad networks.
So it’s just not an easy thing to do anymore – it’s become a little more complicated, a little harder. Most importantly you need a very solid backend and a very solid business structure to take those leads that you get from the search engine advertising and convert them because it is a lot more expensive nowadays.
RC: Okay great.
Question 4: How do you see search engine advertising evolving over the next 5 years?
RC: Looking ahead, how do you see search engine advertising evolving over the next five or so years?
Jared Graves: It’s all going mobile. Currently, it is about 60-65% mobile traffic and that’s up from about 40% just a couple years ago. And if you go back ten years, it was pretty much about 5%. So I would surmise you’re going to see mobile and tablet take about 80% of the search engine pay-per-click advertising share within the next 5-10 years. So you’ll be seeing a lot more people are on their phones so you have to optimize your websites to be mobile friendly.
There are also ways in which if you are trying to drive phone calls, you can actually create ads that click straight to a phone call rather than click to your website itself. So you just have to be very, very conscious and aware that everything is going mobile and you have to have your content edited correctly so that it shows well on mobile.
You also have to cut your content down a little. A lot of websites used to have a ton of content on them but on a cell phone that becomes a very long page with not a lot of opportunities to have a call to action and drive people to actually make an action towards giving you new business. So I would say, cut your content down a little. Optimize for the mobile and that’s what you will be seeing as we move forward.
RC: Great that’s more really good advice. Thank you.
Question 5: What tips or recommendations do you have for getting started with search engine advertising?
RC: Last question that we can leave off with our listeners. What tips or recommendations do you have for our listeners who are just getting started with or thinking about getting started with search engine advertising?
Jared Graves: Sure. I would always say start small. You can always increase as you get your feet wet. You want to focus on the most premium keywords and ad placements that you possibly can.
So let’s take an example. If you are a chiropractor in a rural city in the state of New Jersey, well you would start off with premium keywords and you would start off with a small radius and you would fill your budget with that smaller and more premium placements and keyword selection.
Then as you grow and as you are able to convert that business, you would progressively increase not only your keyword selection but your geographical targeting so that you can grow and figure it out. But I always say dip a toe in before you jump in the water when it comes to pay-per-click advertising.
RC: Fabulous. Thank you so much for talking with us today Jared, you have some really good advice and we really appreciate it.
Jared Graves: It’s my pleasure. I’ve always had a passion for this. I’ve been doing it since back in the early 2000’s when it was the Wild West and seeing the maturation of pay-per-click advertising and seeing how it’s kind of changing so quickly and rapidly.
It is certainly something that we always have an eye on and it’s a great way for local business owners to drive business. But I will warn you, it’s always a way for them to waste a lot of money if it is not done correctly. There are plenty of resources in which you can look up and figure out how to do it properly if you don’t want to hire a professional. But I would not let any Google representative or anyone just half- hazardly put your campaign up. It will be set for failure. So you have to be pretty smart about how you do things.
RC: Great and we know we have you to turn to if we need that expert in our corner to work with us. So thanks so much.
For our listeners across the country, if you are interested in speaking with Jared you can either go online at www.localgold.com or call 800-850-0493 to schedule an appointment.
On behalf of our entire team at razorcast™, we want to thank you for listening and we look forward to bringing you more top quality content from our country’s leading industry professionals.