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The Fear - Loathing - and Art of Automating PPC by Andrew Goodman


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From the SMX East 2014 Conference in New York City, NY. SESSION: Automating Your PPC Campaigns. PRESENTATION: The Fear - Loathing - and Art of Automating PPC - Given by Andrew Goodman, @andrew_goodman, President - Page Zero Media. #SMX #34B

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The Fear - Loathing - and Art of Automating PPC by Andrew Goodman

  1. 1. Automating PPC: Fear, loathing –and art SMX East 2014--Andrew Goodman
  2. 2. Automation, a job-killer?
  3. 3. Do we need yet another hero?
  4. 4. Narratives contaminate computation •Human tendency to err by fabricating stories about everything we see. –Nonperforming segments are “naughty”: we overreact (pause, spend less, etc.) –Morality: click “fraud” vs. well-priced clicks / market –Past performance is just that: past. Is it the best predictor? –Vanity: Getting too caught up in hoping one’s ad creative is the best –Action for its own sake, because you are the hero in all of your narratives: “daypartingwill fix it!” (Sometimes, it will. Prove it.)
  5. 5. Analysis is always potentially actionable(with or without tools)
  6. 6. Deep, powerful multi-channel analytics… but “actionable” in name only?
  7. 7. PPC bid management: weird reasons it came to pass •First bid management software was invented to fix a single problem: “bid gaps”. •“Bid jamming” and bidding to favored positions were also popular •Bid discounter and modern Quality Score auction complexity make these tactics redundant •Pain of managing “multiple PPC engines” gave way to a “Google first” world •These third party solutions were often byzantine and proprietary; best theyrun it for you. Now you’ve picked them as your agency.
  8. 8. Marketing automation vendors: worth their cachet?
  9. 9. Marketing automation vendors: worth their cachet? •In general, great. SaaS scales and can transform outdated practices. •But is bid tech indispensible? And are they also de facto agencies? •How relevant are they to your situation? Is your account HUGE? •“Non GAAP loss from operations”: $28 million 2014.
  10. 10. Little fish, swimming fast. (P.S., API costs are way down!!)
  11. 11. The t-shirt people. I MAKE THE RULES.
  12. 12. First-party automation: AdWords “Automate” button. *Must set up conversion tracking*!!
  13. 13. Using AdWordsfilters to bid…and more (why & how)
  14. 14. Filter #1: “Quality Score as Wise Tea Leaves” •Clicks > 4 •Sort campaign in order of Quality Score –low to high •Pause duds •Or bid up, down, or no change, based on: –Judgment of likely commercial intent or “bleeder” –Assumption that Quality Score is currently wrong –Wish to increase impressions to “give keyword a fair shot” –Wish to decrease impressions to avoid saddling the account with a poor QS history
  15. 15. Filter #2: Scapegoating Broad Match!
  16. 16. Filter #3: Keyword intent myth-buster
  17. 17. Filter #4: Breathe life into sleepy keywords •Jackpot! 82 keywords found… drifted “off radar” •Big enough to move the needle, small enough to decide on one by one •Over 60 of these needed to be bumped up
  18. 18. Filter #5: Poor Engagement Long Tail: avg. visit less than 15 secs.
  19. 19. You mustcraft your own rules. You must make art!
  20. 20. Which KPI? When is test won?
  21. 21. My absolute favorite thing #1: Bid adjustments by geo segment
  22. 22. My absolute favorite thing #2: Bid adjustments by day & time
  23. 23. Visualizing hour of week performance
  24. 24. “Intent sculpting” opportunitiescry out for automation
  25. 25. Machine learning: DSA
  26. 26. Another filter: Check SQR by theme
  27. 27. SaaS for reporting. Automation = happy client + profitable agency. win-win!! •Sales Forces: Salesforce •Architectural / Design Software •Legal Practice Management: Clio •Small Business Accounting: Wave Accounting •Acquisio: “I Hate Doing This Shit” reports (custom) •The key is not just our time or profitability, it’s improved communications and forcing ourselves to better understand data and follow long term strategies.
  28. 28. Are we telling the right storiesfor the right purposes?
  29. 29. “We are not contemplatinglayoffs at this time”