Ways to Target Clients in any SEM Campaign

When companies buy traditional print advertising, they are supposedly paying for the number of people estimated to see the ad. This is a bit different when it comes to search engine marketing management, or SEM. Companies using SEM typically participate in a Pay Per Click or PPC program to get traffic to their sites as well as make a bit of money at the same time. When using PPC programs like Google's AdWords or Overture, the search engines are collecting money from them every time people click on their ads.
sem campaigns
sem campaigns

Eight Ways to Target Prospective Clients in any SEM Campaign

This is a system that seems to be closer to an ad program that is more performance-based as the companies using the PPC are only paying to get seen and get some buying customers into their web sites. The problem with this is that Internet visitors who only want to browse but not buy something can use up an ad budget very quickly.

Fortunately, there is help for this expanding problem. Smart SEO's or their advertising agencies should start pre qualifying visitors by creating listings to concentrate their attention on what the real needs are. When these are written the right way, the ad listings will offer a better hint as to what can be found on your web site. Done the right way, these ad listings invite people to buy the services or products you are offering rather than just browsing around. Following are eight ways to put this into action and make it a success:
  1. Be descriptive of a real benefit or feature. One of the most vital steps when it comes to attracting real customers who are going to spend money and not just look around, it is sometimes overlooked. Make a careful list of all of the most important benefits and features visitors can expect to find when they click on your ad listing.
  2. Offer an incentive. Not surprising is the fact of how well a price discount works when trying to attract customers. The main rule here is that this incentive cannot outweigh the benefits and features mentioned in Step One. An incentive is geared to make people act immediately rather than waiting. A wonderful incentive is offering something free for an immediate purchase. For example, you could offer free delivery or subscription to your newsletter free of charge. When people see the word "free" they typically sit up and pay attention.
  3. Target your specific audience. Write your ad listing content directed to the audience you are trying to reach. For example, you would write your ad differently to reach workers in a manufacturing plant than you would if you were trying to reach the president or CEO of the same plant. When you do this, it insures that your ad listing brings the desired audience to your site. In addition, you should write a new ad listing for each keyword used in the ad campaign. The exception to that is if you sell hundreds of different products.
  4. Make your listings stand out from the competition. Before you even start writing your ad listings, you should have a look at what your competitors' ads look like. Your ads should show a message that is unique and distinctive. If your company has a service or product that is really different, you should definitely state that in your ad. This will attract visitors who will focus on what you have to offer and will make them want to click on your ad.
  5. Create a sense of urgency in your ad. So many people use search engines to find what they want so it is important that you create a sense of urgency to make them feel they MUST click your ads NOW rather than later. Tell your visitors WHY they must click on your ad RIGHT NOW and not wait. You need to target that sensitive and emotional area of your audience to get them to do what you want. You can always accomplish this just by limiting the time on your offer.
  6. Keywords need to be integrated correctly. This is not something that needs to be done with traditional print advertising. However, it is very important when it comes to search engine marketing. Always include your keywords in all of your ad listings.
  7. Use a strong call to action. This is one of the most important, yet most misunderstood steps in SEM. When you follow each of the other steps, you are now ready to implement a strong call to action. Since having a little "click here" button does not usually work in getting your ad clicked on, by adding a button or link saying "BUY NOW" will be seen as an invitation to buy something. However, even this may not be enough to get them to act. A strong call to action is a benefit or feature that your audience will have access to only after they click on your ad listing. Test different calls to action so see which seems to be more prevalent for your marketing campaigns. Some good calls to action requests more information, buys a product or service, downloads a particular document, asks for an appointment, refers the site to a friend, completes an online survey, or registers a warranty for a product. When you implement a strong call to action, use a brightly colored button, and maybe even make it flash. Using a text link is fine, but you will not get the same results as you will from using a large and brightly colored button. Include the appropriate text in the button for the best results.
  8. Monitor your results. You must remember to carefully monitor your SEM to make sure that everything you are doing is working, or seeing where they are not working. Web analytics and other measurement tools can aid you immensely in daily monitoring of your online ad campaigns.
Web analytics are sort of like a dashboard. It can also give you some vital clues about what is going on under the hood of your web site. This information includes tracking what search engine sent which visitor to your site which is going to be very important to the overall success of your campaign.

It can be quite simple to target better sales in any SEM campaign especially if you can follow the steps outlined above. Your ultimate goal should be improving your sales and at the same time increasing your market share. When you are in doubt about how it is all working, have a look at the things your competition is doing. Research the way they write their ad listings. If you like the way some of them are written and they seem to be doing well, you may want to use similar writing techniques.

Search engine marketing is all about trial and error. However, once you get it right, it all gets a lot easier and more profitable for you in the long run.