AJ Schott is a partner at the G3 Group Agency and my delightful guest for this week. Based in Baltimore, Maryland the G3 Group is his Digital Marketing Company that focuses on helping clients with Internet marketing, conversion optimizat, on and web design. They provide strategy, design, implementation and execution of digital marketing campaigns that generate leads, sales and engagement. For more information, visit www.g3group.com.

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Many people think PPC advertising is a waste for branding since you already appear at the top of the organic results. But, the fact is, exposing your brand name in multiple positions on the search engine results pages (SERPs) is the best way to magnify your branding efforts. And, it is the only way to guarantee you appear in the top position.

Take Control of your Message

One of the pitfalls of relying on organic search is that you cannot completely control what displays for your brand. You can target specific keywords through SEO, but depending on how the SERPs display your listing, this may or may not fairly represent your brand message.

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As you can see in the picture, McCormick dominates the SERPs for their brand name. Even though they have the first organic listing, the message is about their menu Ideas instead of their branded products (spices). How did they solve the problem? They display a paid listing complete with sitelinks, ratings and a direct message about the branded products.

Three not so obvious reasons to bid on your brand name

  1. Your brand name keywords (and brand + product) will provide more ROAS since the cost per click is usually much less than non-branded keywords
  2. Studies have shown that PPC traffic often converts 4X higher than organic because you are in total control of the ad message and the landing page
  3. If you struggle to raise your quality scores, running a brand campaign (which will likely have an excellent CTR and quality score) will help boost your overall account quality score

The best reason to bid on your own brand terms

Keeping your competitors from buying that top spot should certainly be number one on your list, but, what do you do if they are already impeaching on your branded keywords? As per Google’s rules, advertisers can bid on competitor trademarks as long as they don’t use the competitor trademark in the ad copy itself.

Outbidding them is a good recourse. In any given auction for paid search, actual CPC is often less than max. CPC. The most you will pay (actual cost) is one cent more than the advertiser directly below you. Regardless of your actual bid amount; if the advertiser directly below you bids $1.00; you’ll only pay $1.01 to outrank him. This is assuming everything else (ad quality score, landing page, etc.) is equal.

Your quality score for branded terms is almost always going to be much higher than your competitor. This means they will pay more for the branded keyword bid than you will. You can use this to your advantage by raising your branded keyword bids to an extra high level – making it extremely expensive for your competition to ever outrank you in the auction.

Posted by Wendy Dessler

Wendy is a super connector who helps businesses find their audience online through outreach, partnerships and networking. She frequently writes about the latest advancements in digital marketing and focuses her efforts on developing customized marketing plans depending on the industry and competition.

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