Welcome to Digital Homesteading.
This collection of resources from 9 Clouds helps you build your business and community.
It’s a great day to be a marketer. In addition to having virtually endless ways to reach our customers, we also have endless ways to improve our tactics.
Every month, our team creates hundreds of online ads for our clients and ourselves, and we want to help your business benefit from what we’ve learned over the years.
It can sometimes be technical, tedious, and confusing to run your digital ads without a plan. But by following a few easy steps, you can get more clicks and more visits from the right people.
Here’s how to make some gloriously clickable ads.
1. Make a Goal — and Write It Down
Before you start crafting your ad, you need to identify what your goal is.
I know what you’re thinking: Clicks, right? Duh.
But who’s doing the clicking? Where are they in your sales funnel? Have they been to your site before?
The answers to all of these questions will help you craft a succinct, measurable goal for your digital advertising.
For example, if you’re a coffee roaster and you have a killer new dark roast to promote, your goal might look something like:
“Bring 300 new coffee shoppers to the dark roast page in March.”
The number of shoppers should correspond with your conversion rate. So, if you know that you need 30 dark roast orders a month, and your product pages convert 10% of visitors, then you need 300 caffeine-addicted folks to get there.
You also want to say “coffee shoppers” because you need to modify your keywords (or retargeting parameters) to reach only the relevant audience. Tea drinkers are snobs, right?
The point here is that, in order to make an effective digital ad, you’re going to need a SMART goal to reach with it. SMART goals are awesome because they define exactly what the finish line is:
- Specific (“new coffee shoppers”)
- Measureable (“300”)
- Attainable (you had 275 last month, so 300 is realistic)
- Relevant (“the dark roast page” — because you need to move some dark roast!)
- Time-bound (“in March”)
Write your SMART goal down — and hold yourself and your marketing team accountable for reaching it.
2. Get Specific with Your Audience
The number-one digital marketing mistake I see companies make is running everything wide open. That is, they don’t target specifically enough to be effective. If your customers represent 3% of the total population in your market, don’t waste your time and money on the other 97%.
When it comes to digital marketing in 2016, “anyone” and “everyone” are always wrong answers. No matter what you sell — with the exception of general healthcare, maybe — most of your customers will embody a certain persona. Even if you don’t know what that persona is, it’s important to define what you want it to be.
Here are some questions to get you started: What are the demographics of your potential customers? Do they watch Downton Abbey? Do they live in rural areas? Are they recent college grads? Do they enjoy irreverent humor? When do they go online?
The key here is to pick your audience before tailoring your ads. Even if you have the most eloquent, concise message in your ad, it’s not going to resonate unless it speaks to a specific type of person.
3. Be as Relevant as Possible
After you have your goal and audience defined, you need to show up in the right places. Most digital advertising platforms (Google AdWords, Facebook, Bing, etc.) allow your ads to show at specific times, with specific keywords, or with specific targeting. Emphasis on specific.
For example, when 9 Clouds creates digital ads for a Chevy dealership, we segment them so that certain ads show to certain people. Truck shoppers will see the current offers on a new 2016 Silverado for sale less than 20 miles from their home. People who need oil changes will stumble upon that dealership’s ad for service specials. Those who just bought a sweet new Corvette Stingray will see the dealer’s ad for aftermarket performance parts.
The thoughtfulness of your ad is more important than ever. Google and Facebook both prioritize relevance with quality scores and relevance scores, respectively. These new metrics look forward to predict the volume of positive and negative feedback your ad will get, along with its expected amount of interactions.
The more targeted your ad is, the higher-quality traffic you will get from it. So instead of appealing to everyone, it will bring that certain type of person who really, really loves dark roast coffee directly to the most relevant page on your site.
Need Help with Your Digital Advertising?
We want to help.
9 Clouds offers free resources for business who want to get more traction online. In fact, we published a special course just for digital advertising on Facebook. If you liked this blog post, this course will be perfect for you.