Paid Search: A Salesman’s Guide to Click Hunting

Each day I grow more enamored with the Paid Search Marketing business. I never imagined spending the day concocting new and creative ways of trapping… clicks. Clicks? It’s up there with searching for truth or fishing for compliments. What a business!

Coming from the carny-esque life of retail sales, this “click hunting” challenge presents the need for a completely different frame of mind. However, this new mode of thinking is somewhat congruent to the one I established in the masochistic magical business of retail sales.

Here is a short list of connections that can help bridge the jump from Salesman to Paid Search Project Manager.

1.Knowing your Product
There is no way you can present a product in all its splendor without knowing every important facet of its existence. The worst part (or best part if you’re morbid like me) about watching someone sell a product they don’t understand is seeing them flounder beneath the pile of questions that inevitably occur during a sale. Therefore, how can you write intriguing ad copy if you do not understand the product? Not possible. Go upstairs and do your homework, junior.

2.Qualifying the Customer
For sales, this happens when you take the initiative and ask the customer questions: What are your needs? Why do you need them? What do you think about this lovely Amish cookware set?

But online (enter the allegory of the Bachelor), you’re just another suitor in line, waving his bouquet at potentially interested women. How will you stand out?

First off, you have to get in the correct line. Establish what you offer, who is interested, and where to position yourself in order to reach those who are buying.

Next, you spray on some sweet-smelling keywords. Here is a breakdown of the different ways your keywords can reach out and snag the fairest consumer of them all.

    • Broad match is equivalent to hanging out at a four-story mega-discotheque, wandering around and dancing in front of random women. If you are looking for a particular type of gal, keep in mind that there are a lot of people seeing you but not enough information exchanged to garner the interest of specific demographics. Use this technique for “Branding”, thereby letting the place know who you are by displaying your slammin’ moves in the center of the dance floor. Oh, and remember, the drinks usually cost more.
    • Phrase match, however, is more of a controlled environment, like a themed establishment where you can expect to meet a specific type of person, i.e. biker bar = biker women.
    • Exact match is essentially Speed Dating.

3.Relevance
If you are selling neck-to-ankle dresses made completely of denim that do not reveal even a speck of skin, you would be remiss to include the phrase “Live like Lindsay Lohan in the sexiest of outerwear” in your advertising. The ad should encompass the complete nature of the situation. It should speak to the customer and speak to the product simultaneously.

It’s easier in ad copy to embellish, but that doesn’t make it any truer. Be eloquent yet factual. You can lead a horse to water, and he will drink it, as long as he doesn’t arrive to find it’s really Gatorade.

4.Call to Action
This is my favorite, because, in relation to SEM, it is essentially an attempt to close the sale. The single, biggest weakness of any salesperson is their fear of closing the sale. You have caught the customer’s attention (headline, position), you know that you have exactly what they want (keyword relevancy), what are you waiting for? Ask for the sale. You have earned the customer’s trust and, due to your masterful techniques, will solidify it with the swiftest path to their goal (landing page relevancy).

In summary, knowing your product is essential to the marketing of it; this will pave the way for you to qualifying your customers and then ask them for the sale, fearlessly, because you have kept the advertising content relevant to the landing page.

Hopefully, this abridged guide can properly assist all who have left the maddening world of retail sales to venture into the click-hunting, yet camouflage-free, forests of Paid Search.