Grow with Google
In October, Babson welcomed Sanmay Ved MBA ’16, Kevin Milani, and Phil Goodhart to campus to lead a “Grow With Google” event. Mr. Ved is an Agency Development Manager for Google Marketing Solutions, and Mr. Milani and Mr. Goodhart are Google Premier Partners. The session, focused on tackling the digital marketing landscape for both startups and established businesses, was broken into four sections: “Existence,” “ROI & Cash Flow,” “Consideration & Prospecting,” and “Awareness & Brand Equity.” These are the four stages of growth for any startup or business that wants a digital presence. The presentation wanted to address the common problem that businesses have in which a portion of their advertising is wasted but they are unsure what changes to make.
- Existence: Website speed, UI, Encryption & Tags
You want to create a positive and exciting web presence.
Website speed and user interface: Even if you are not investing in marketing, your company needs to be known. However, if your website takes too long to load, potential customers will lose patience. In fact, 40% of customers will abandon a site that takes more than 3 seconds to load, and 1 in 5 dissatisfied customers will never return to a website where problems have occurred. The absolute maximum load-time, or page speed, for any of your pages should be six seconds. If it takes longer, invest in optimizing your website before spending on marketing. This load-time must be consistent across desktop and mobile devices because 90% of consumers start an activity on one device and finish it on another. Test your desktop and mobile page speed here: https://developers.google.com/speed/pagespeed/insights/. Any score higher than the benchmark of 70 is good. You can even measure individual pages within your website.
SSL Encryption: Beginning in October 2017, Google Chrome began to label HTTP pages as insecure if users could input data on the website, including a search box. In addition, HTTPS boosts your SEO! Make sure your pages are HTTPS secured as soon as possible. It’s inexpensive and increases people’s confidence about your website. Learn more about HTTPS here: https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/6073543?hl=en.
Tags: Use Google Tag Manager to quickly add and update your tags and ensure that they all work. Google Tag Manager supports all Google and third-party tags. To learn more: https://www.google.com/analytics/tag-manager/.
- ROI and Cash Flow: Branded Search and Top Keywords
You want to maintain a positive cash flow.
Branded search: Invest in search ads for your brand. When someone searches for your brand, you should appear both the top paid and top organic result. For example, when you Google “Sephora,” the first result is a paid advertisement for Sephora and the second is the organic result that directs users to Sephora’s website. One study has found that when search ads are paused, clicks to organic search results do not make up for lost traffic. Don’t miss out on traffic to your website- spend time working on SEO and pay for search ads.
Keywords: Create a keyword strategy for return on ad spend (RoAS). Start by identifying the top 5-10 most relevant search queries for your business. Be specific to what is immediately relevant to your business. Research Google search traffic to ensure that people are using these keywords to find you and/or your competitors, and ensure that you have 100% reach for those keywords. This strategy guarantees that you are spending money on traffic that gives you a positive RoAS. Google Keyword Planner is a free tool that provides ideas for the best keywords. Websites such as Adgooroo also helps analyze the success of your keywords and shares the keywords your competitors are using.
- Consideration & Prospecting: Remarketing, Similar Audiences & Placements
Make sure potential customers consider your business.
Remarketing: Remarketing allows you to connect with people who have visited your website but did not make a purchase. These ads are shown on various websites to people in this specific audience segment. It is important to reach the right people with the right message, pay the right amount for the right moment, and scale your sales data to similar audiences. Start by looking at the top organic results for your most relevant search query.
Scale users on your original list by seven times to include people with similar characteristics. These people may not be searching for you specifically but they may end up purchasing from you if your ad shows up at the right time. Learn more about remarketing here: https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2453998?hl=en.
Prospecting: Look at the top five organic results for your most relevant search query and check if they are part of the Google Display Network using Google Planner. If they are, you can target your advertisements on specific pages of those websites. For example, a doctor in Wellesley can show his ad to nearby users who are looking at an article related to dental implants on www.webmd.com.
Be sure to align your bidding strategy with your marketing goals. For example, if your campaign goal is conversions or sales, focus on CPC (Cost Per Click) or CPA (Cost Per Action). If your goal is revenue, make sure to have a high RoAS. The goal of your campaign should directly determine your marketing strategy.
- Awareness & Brand Equity: YouTube Bumper Ads
You have cash coming in and want to grow your brand.
Bumper Ads Did you know that people are three times more likely to pay attention to video advertisements online than on TV? Harness the simple yet effective power of six-second bumper ads. These brief videos keep your brand top-of-mind. You can specifically remarket to people who have visited your website but not bought anything, or people who have already viewed your 30-second ads. Watching a bumper ad will dramatically raise these potential customers’ purchase intent. Even if your goal is to show ads on TV, try soft-launching them on YouTube. Before releasing full TV ad campaigns, many Fortune 500 companies will first launch the videos on Facebook and YouTube to see their impact on specific age groups.
This extremely informative session was full of excellent advice and online resources for business owners at all stages. We look forward to seeing everyone’s exceptional websites and advertisements in the future!