There was a time when enterprises took pride in their ability to generate traffic, social media followers, leads, and conversions organically. They regarded those who had to advertise their products and services as beneath them—they saw these advertisements as the work of a body not established or well-known enough to draw in traffic without having to pay.
Times have changed. Those who still hold this mentality are going to be left behind in the last decade. Fortunately, the majority of the finance industry isn’t this way. Online advertising has become an essential for financial lead generation.
The Internet, for all its helpfulness, levels the playing field for competing financial advisors. It gives small agencies and independent agents the ability to reach audiences who were once monopolized by the bigger and more popular companies. Google Ads (formerly Google Adwords), the most widely used platform for search engine advertising, also designed its platform in such a way that allows individuals to single-handedly launch hundreds of campaigns without breaking a sweat.
“PPC Is Easy Peasy!”
Many believe that PPC is simple enough to manage on their own. As a result, – even enterprises with thousands of dollars in marketing budget sometimes do PPC advertising in-house instead of hiring a third-party agency to oversee their campaigns. Money is no doubt a factor: they believe they can save by using the fees for third-party service providers to fund PPC ads instead.
But, is this move cost-effective in the long-run? Will it generate leads for financial advisors, and will their net income justify their online marketing investment?
Yes, these are all possible; the question is whether you have the skills and knowledge to make it happen without the assistance of PPC specialists.
PPC Requires Strategy
The PPC process is often oversimplified: compile a list of high-search volume keywords, separate them into ad groups, create compelling ad copies, come up with a budget for each, and then launch the ad campaigns. In truth, there’s so much more to this process:
- Creating a PPC campaign is systematic. It needs a well-developed process to generate satisfying results. An ad cycle must have these core stages: research, implementation, and optimization.
- Ad spaces in search engine results pages are limited, so Google Ads determines which ads land on each location based on Ad Rank scores. The entire process is like an automatic bidding system where the highest scorers get the best ad locations (e.g., above the number one organic spot in the SERPs, at the bottom of Page 1 in the SERPs).
- Keywords and long-tail keywords can fetch different prices, even if they belong to the same niche or industry. The higher their user search volumes, the more expensive they are.
- Ads are given quality scores based on many different factors. Additionally, you get quality scores on the keyword level, ad group level, and account level. The higher your quality scores, the higher your possible returns on investment (ROI).
- Bidding on keywords is not just setting the highest amount you’re willing to pay for each ad click. There’s actually a lot of Math involved. You need to set profitability goals, identify return on ad spend (ROAS), enhanced cost per click (ECPC), average cost-per-click (Ave. CPC), and more. If you don’t monitor these numbers, you could exhaust your ad budget before you know it or get minimal returns.
- The work doesn’t end with the launch of an ad. In fact, it’s only the beginning for the next stage of the campaign, which includes monitoring, auditing, and optimization.
- You may need to do A/B testing to find out which ads are worth continuing, and which ones are not.
- The PPC landscape can change rapidly. Strategies that currently work may not produce the same satisfying results a month after.
- Every ad needs a corresponding landing page, and the content for both pages must be in sync so you can generate leads and conversions.
- Your ad copy and landing pages must be search engine optimized, and their contents updated.
These are just ten of the many matters that PPC managers need to look into. Considering also that the finance industry is one of the most competitive markets in Google Ads, inexperienced campaign managers will have their work cut out for them.
We’re not going to delve deeper into all of the above, nor do we want to create the impression that PPC is a massive burden. We’re just telling it like it is. After all, it’s better to get a clear picture of what it means to manage PPC campaigns before committing to the responsibility.
Hiring a PPC Agency Is a Must When…
The main advantage of hiring professional PPC specialists is they offer efficiency and expertise. You can get an audit and a PPC campaign strategy, launch ads, and earn revenue with no time wasted. It is, therefore, best to hire an agency or PPC specialist if there’s an urgent need for more high-quality leads and conversions.
Another valid reason would be when you have a fixed budget. It’s like gambling on a low-risk investment: better to allocate a portion of your budget to pay a professional who can generate returns than to beef up your PPC budget and risk losing money due to clumsy campaign management.
Already tried PPC advertising but lost more than you earned? A specialist can find out what went wrong with those campaigns and set them on the right track. We’ve seen this once bitten, twice-shy scenario a lot of times at ScalingYou. Financial advisors who have had a bad experience with PPC come to us warily, saying PPC didn’t do them any good. We find out later that their Google Ads accounts have many issues that need correcting, such as:
- A poorly organized account structure
- Mish-mashed ad group themes
- Duplicate keywords
- Repetitive bids on plural and singular versions of keywords
- Mismatched live ads and landing pages
- No negative keywords
Depending on the severity of the problem and scope of the work that needs to be done, we can decide to tweak the existing campaigns or build a new one from scratch.
Hiring an agency to manage your PPC campaigns removes the burden and pressure of generating leads for your financial services from your shoulders. You can instead dedicate your time and energy to serving existing clients and nurturing those relationships for the long-term. This is how you lay the groundwork for growing your customer base and scaling up your business.
PPC campaign management can be learned, but if you don’t have the luxury of time, it’s best if you outsource the job to competent professionals.
Get in touch with ScalingYou: we specialize in digital marketing for financial companies and professionals. Contact us to schedule a free consultation.