Online Marketing 101
Google has revolutionized the options that companies have when deploying capital that has been earmarked for marketing. Within the AdWords platform alone, there is a virtually infinite level of customization available for creating campaigns, and a powerful means of finding ways to optimize those campaigns.
This brings us to the question posed in the title of this blog, should you be running a pay-per-click marketing campaign (PPC – also referred to as CPC), or a display campaign (CPM – also referred to as CPM or cost-per-mille)?
A lot of rookie online marketers seem to be looking for the answer to this question, but there is another question that should be asked before even considering the former. That is, am I ready for paid advertising? The answer for a lot of online marketers is undoubtedly no. Using paid campaigns via Google AdWords can do wonders for your company, but it should be used as a turbo booster to help your marketing vehicle, not serve as the engine!
There is a growing misconception among rookie online marketers. They think that throwing money at Google AdWords, or FaceBook sponsored stories, or any advertising vehicle for that matter, will result in ROI. Even worse, they think the more money they throw, the higher their ROI will ultimately be. This couldn’t be further from the truth. Paid advertising should not be undertaken by any company that has not already put forth a very solid multi-month and possibly multi-year effort to get their online marketing off of the ground. For more information
on how to get started, I recommend checking out my former blog post about how to be found on google, which covers a lot of great information about how to get started in content marketing (which I believe to be the most effective form of internet marketing).
That being said, I digress back to the topic posed by the title of the blog.
Online Marketing – CPC or CPM?
Each has its advantages and disadvantages, but one thing is certain for both, neither will do any good for your company unless you spend time optimizing your campaigns. That being said, pay-per-click marketing should typically be used when the short-term goal of the campaign is to generate a conversion. A conversion, for our purposes, just means an action taken by the exposed person. A conversion can be a purchase, filling out a quote form, signing up for a news-letter, and as previously stated any action that can possibly be taken by the user.
Pay-per-click marketing is a better online marketing vehicle for conversion targeted campaigns because there is a guaranteed amount of click volume to the conversion point (if your text-ads are going to a landing page that has a conversion point that is). Google will not take your money unless someone clicks on your text-ad, hence, pay-per-click. This is paid website traffic at its core.
On the other hand, we have CPM or display online marketing. When taking on a CPC campaign, you are literally paying for traffic which is measured in clicks. By contrast, CPM campaigns are not focused on driving traffic, at least not in the eyes of Google AdWords administrators. Although driving traffic is the end goal of a CPM campaign, the way that campaigns are measured and paid for are by impression. CPM, which stands for cost per mille, literally means cost per thousand. In this case, one thousand impressions.
Why pay for an impression instead of a click? Short answer, it’s cheaper. Smart answer, if brand awareness is prioritized at your company over conversion, then CPM is not only cheaper but also the more effective online marketing tactic. CPM also offers a re-marketing feature, which allows online marketers to increase the brand awareness in select demographics of website visitors. Re-marketing is happening when you see advertisements for products or services on web-pages because you have expressed some kind of interest in those products/services on other web-pages.
For example, you see a pair of UGG slippers you like on slippers.com, click into the product page, but don’t make a purchase. Then you navigate to random website xyz.com, and see an advertisement for a pair of UGG slippers from slippers.com on xyz.com. Slippers.com doesn’t have an agreement with xyz.com for adspace, xyz.com and slippers.com both have an agreement with Google who has facilitated the single impression that has been logged for a CPM campaign.
Online marketing is important for any company whose website is a revenue driver in some capacity. In order to be successful in this hyper-competitive space, it is important to keep a watchful eye on Google. Read up on best practices from the law-makers, and you will have a prosperous online marketing journey.
Did you find this post helpful? If you did, you might be interested in checking out more informative WeSpotlight blogs about online marketing strategy and subscribing to our newsletter:
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