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When it comes to online advertising, especially for services based businesses and traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ businesses , we can do blanket marketing and put our marketing message out across the whole state or we could just define a radius around a certain location and then be the big fish in that small pond. So which makes more sense?
If you’re thinking small pond, then you’re on the right track.
Basically the first thing we need to do is define our geographical area. Think about that for your business. Where is the center, (and it’s probably where you’re located), and then think about how far people actually travel from where you are. Is it 20 kms, 25 kms, 50 kms ect. Maybe it’s even smaller? Getting too specific with your Geographical targeting though may hurt your reach potential because the reality is a lot of advertising tools like Facebook and Google Adwords just don’t work great if the targeting and therefore list size gets too small. So you’d want to aim for no smaller than a 15 km radius. The bigger you can make the radius, it’s kind of more effective (of course only if you’re still likely targeting people that are within reach of your business). Because there is also that tipping point…. if someone’s at the wrong side of the city or state, then they are not going to convert for you as realistically, they are too far away.
Before you Advertise and Increase Traffic…..
It doesn’t make great sense to pay to send traffic to your website before you’ve done any optimising there first, so these are the areas I would help my clients fix before we go ahead and start online campaigns and pay for traffic.
Build an effective website, designed for conversions with clear calls to action; ensure it has a desktop and a specific mobile design of the site, so it’s optimised no matter what device your user is on; create a main ‘sales’ or landing page for each service or product; create category pages and be churning out great blog content. Once that’s all done, we’re now at a stage ready to get our message out there, and here’s what order I’d approach that in:
Google AdWords is what creates the ads at the top of the page in google searches. I don’t really recommend people set it up themselves. I think it’s better off set up by a professional, because the reality is if you’re competing with someone who’s had it set up by someone like me, then you’re basically turning up to a gunfight with a knife. There are certainly things you can do yourself in Adwords, however, there are also things you need to pay a professional to set up. There is degrees of sophistication with Google AdWords search and AdWords search is going to give you one of the biggest hits.
The second tactic we want to run with is Google remarketing. If someone hits our website and then they leave, we can now start to show them video content. We can now start to show them banner ads. We can also show them Google responsive ads. The main thing with remarketing is to send the user off to more content to build trust or to get them to come back to our main product or services. Remarketing ads require Google tracking code to be installed on your website so you can segment who’s been to your site and how many days, weeks, moths ago ect, then, you’re good to go with the ad set up and creative.
The other thing in remarketing now is, Google remarketing can target people who reached other sites, not just your website. It’s very easy to define how long ago people reach you, wether it be 7 days, 14, 30 ect ect and then choose to show them ads based on that. You can get very sophisctad with remarketing nowadays and be showing Google banner ads, plus Facebook ads, all targeted at remarketing people who have interacted with your site or brand, but not taken any action.
Have you claimed your business listing on Google, in Google Maps? Once you claim your Google listing you can start to receive reviews to build up social proof and credibility. Google reviews also has a two pronged approach in that, the more reviews you have, the better you will turn up on that ranking if someone is searching for that local search like, “gym and suburb name,” for example. It’s very effective and it’s free.
Some could even argue this could be higher on the list. Let’s look at an example of a Gym business in Dandenong and how that would work in terms of Facebook advertising.
Once we have defined that geographical radius then there is no reason why we couldn’t be targeting people on Facebook who live in Dandenong plus in a 15 km radius around that area, who are between the ages of, say, 18 and 45 and who are interested in health, fitness, or these sports, those sports, ect. Or, it could even just be open to this demographic in that geographical circle and leave out interests.
The video content you would be putting out would be centred around something like “Hey, are you interested in getting fitter and healthier?” or “get in shape for summer? We have got a 12-week boot camp coming up.” “Apply free here today.” that that kind of messaging.
Because users on Facebook are not actively searching for it, it’s kind of a ‘disruption’ medium. Google is a little bit like the old white pages/yellow pages. People are going there to search for things, whereas Facebook is more like the coffee shop. They are going there to hang out, but if they see something cool, then they will get onto it. So adding Facebook video ads can be really powerful if the creative has enough cut through and the audience targeting is set up with enough thought.
Adding YouTube remarketing, can be really powerful now because people do go to YouTube all the time. So many people are now visting YouTube every week and Remarketing is really about the right message, for the right person, at the right time. Because someone may have seen your product or service page and you were exactly right for them, but it wasn’t the right time.
I often use my wife Jules as an example. At 3:00pm she has to run out the door and picks up the kids from school. So she could be your exact right target market, but if she saw the ad at the wrong time, 2:55 in the afternoon for example, she doesn’t have time to take action on your ad/buy your product/book your service. But if she gets back online later on and she logs in to Facebook and goes on YouTube and she sees a remarketing message from you, she’ll remember, “Ah, that’s right. That girl was great.” And then she clicks back to your website. So the right person on the right media at the right time is really what it’s all about and constructing campaigns to cover all your bases. Gone are the days of one touch marketing.
Just like how we spoke about with Facebook video ads, we can now define the exact same thing on YouTube within our geographical circle. So who in this circle is of this gender, between these ages, and who is interested in these things, and let’s start showing them these videos. All of a sudden, if you start to implement these things, people are saying, “Wow, these guys are everywhere.” And if you’re leading with value then they will be saying that you’re pretty great as well. Remember to offer value in your remarketing strategy and not just slam your lists with ads that are ‘asking’. Always give back and offer value as well.
Not a lot of people know how to do this one yet, but Instagram gives you the option to create square video or square image ads. You also have the option of Instagram stories which are like 15-second portrait orientation style videos that tell a really short story about your product or brand and that’s probably some of the cheapest traffic that we are getting at the moment.
Again as with other remarketing, If someone hits your website or they watched your videos and then now they go over to Instagram, they start to see your ads as well. Really powerful if you can set this up too if you think your target market will also be hanging out on Instagram.
Google Display is set up in Google AdWords, and it’s talking about the same thing. We have defined our geographical circle/radius, we have defined who our exact target audience is and now we can just be showing them banner ads. We are showing them banner ads to get them to go over to your website to consume your content or buy a product or book a service.
Remember how I mentioned at the beginning of this article before I start any paid traffic I would want to make sure on the website that each product or service has a good landing page? One of the main reasons why we would want to do this is because if there are too many things being talked about on a single page, then Google see’s it as nothing when it comes to organic ranking. If I go back to the gym business example, if we have a page which was all about ‘Group Personal Fitness Dandenong’, this page could rank organically if someone was searching for that term via Google. That’s why the rule of one page, one topic really helps your organic ranking.
Bing search engine is only about 9% of search traffic. Not a lot of people use it, but everyone who buys a Windows computer gets it by default, because Microsoft owns Bing. Unless people change it, if they go to search on their Windows computer, they are using Bing. It’s not a big platform and it’s not going to really move the needle a long way, but It does matter. It’s still more leads and it’s very cost effective. Bing ads are cheaper than Google and it’s just another thing that you can do within your geographical area so that they are really seeing you everywhere.
Just like what we talked about with Google, there is a map for Bing. So we can claim the business listing.
Traditional media such as TV and radio, newspapers and all that kind of stuff comes last and that’s because you can get much more defined with your targeting when it comes to all the other options and in most cases you’ll get a much better ROI.
So hopefully you can see now how to start from the ground up when it comes to putting in place a really effective and methodological online marketing strategy that will ensure you get seen by your target audience across a wide variety of platforms and get the most value for the dollars you spend.
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