Creating Quality Ads for PPC

Instructor: Beth Hendricks

Beth holds a master's degree in integrated marketing communications, and has worked in journalism and marketing throughout her career.

Pay-Per-Click advertising can be an effective way to reach your target audience. In this lesson, you'll learn how to craft a high-quality, compelling ad.

You're No. 1!

Every four years, the Summer Olympics thrill and delight us with outstanding competition and incredible stories of personal triumph and overcoming of adversity. The goal of each Olympian is to finish at the top: to climb the highest platform in the medal ceremony and capture an elusive gold, silver, or bronze. It's all about being named No. 1.

Creating a quality ad with compelling copy can move your Quality Score to the top.
Creating a quality ad with compelling copy can move your Quality Score to the top.

Creating content for a pay-per-click campaign comes with a similar desire. You want to show that you're the best and earn that coveted 'gold,' 'silver,' or 'bronze' position in terms of ad placement. The higher you appear in search results, the more likely you'll be seen. And, the more you're seen, the greater the chance you'll create new customers and generate new leads from your advertising efforts.

What is Pay-Per-Click?

Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising is a form of search engine marketing. As the marketer, you create an ad with relevant content and keywords, tell the search engine company how much you're willing to pay for each click your ad might receive, and serve your ad alongside a user's organic search results. Pay-per-click ads generally appear at the top and to the right of regular search results, enhancing your visibility and creating interest (and hopefully clicks) for your brand.

Enhancing Your PPC Ads

Creating a quality ad for a PPC campaign takes a bit of effort, however. Let's look at a few ways you can enhance your PPC advertising skills to craft a memorable and relevant campaign for your audience.

Key components:

Eye-catching headline: Your headline is displayed in a larger font than the rest of your ad, so this is a good opportunity to make it really stand out. Include the most important information here, such as, consumer benefits, limited-time offers, and other text that will grab the viewer's attention. If you're offering a special promotion, include something like, 'free trial,' 'free download,' or 'limited-time coupon.'

Strong keywords: Keywords are the crown jewel of a pay-per-click ad. They determine whether your target audience will even see your ad, let alone click on it. Think about your audience's goal when they're searching for a particular topic. For example, if they are looking for information on how to reduce their utility costs, you could use phrases such as 'reduce cost,' 'save money,' and 'lower utility bill'.

Compelling copy: Your advertising copy, or the text you use, is also an important component of a quality ad. Because you are limited in space to only about 130 characters, each one must be relevant and important. Use copy that mirrors your campaign objectives - if you want people to 'Buy Now!' then include that. Set yourself apart from the competition by explaining why your brand is better than the brand in the ad below you. For example, if you offer a free 14-day trial and your competitor doesn't, highlight that unique option. If your offer is for a limited time only, be certain to include 'limited time only' or 'offer expires in seven days' to your ad copy. Consider getting specific as well, particularly if your offer is only good for seven days or your item is priced below your competition. Use those tidbits to show users the benefits they can expect from your company.

Bold call-to-action: Great keywords and ad copy are pointless if you don't tell people what to do next. Is the goal to download a free eBook? Visit your website? Make a purchase? Start a free trial? Whatever the desired result, make the next step straightforward and with a clear call-to-action that motivates people to click and accept your offer. A good call-to-action might be 'Download your free eBook now!' or 'Start your free trial now!'

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