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The Online Marketing Trifecta; PPC, SEO, and Social Media


Posted by on September 30, 2008

(can you identify the image? and no it’s not from Turkey)

PPC

PPC stands or pay-per-click, these are the ads that you see on the side or top of search engines such as Google, they are paid advertisements that you can target toward your audience. You can select to have your ads show up when people type in a particular keyword or phrase, that way you are showing them ads for something that they already want to see. For example if you sell ipods and someone types “ipod nano” into Google; you can make your ads show up for the phrase “ipod nanos.” PPC is a great way to target large groups of people on either a broad or niche level. PPC works on a bidding system therefore you bid against competitors who are seeking to show up for the same terms that you are. It’s easy to lose money in PPC if your visitors aren’t converting. Meaning you pay money for them to click on your site but then they just leave, so you’re paying for ads and not getting a return. That being said, a properly optimized PPC campaign can be very effective, but the overall conversion rates are usually quite low.

SEO

I’m going to put up another post about the multi facets of SEO but for now I will keep it simple. SEO is the process and strategy for ranking well for a particular keyword or phrase. For example if you sell ibm laptops then you probably want to rank well in search engines for terms like “ibm laptops, ibm laptop, ibm notebook, etc.” This is where SEO comes into play in making sure you rank well for your target phrases. Contrary to what people may tell you, SEO is not based on any relationship with Google, if a company calls you and tells you that they can rank you #1 for a term because they have a relationship with Google, they are lying. SEO seeks to understand how a search engines scores, evaluates, and ranks a page (and relevancy) and is actually far more complex then what the so called SEO “experts” say. SEO is an extremely effective and powerful way to get traffic and conversions by showing up for target keyterms. The top 4 spots are usually the most trafficked, so if you sell ibm laptops you want to use SEO to make sure that you show up in the top four spots for your terms. SEO can be used to go after niches or broad topics. Ideally you want to have every page on your site target 1-2 keywords or phrases that way your pages are extremely targeted towards your users. There is no point in having your Policy page show up #1 for “ibm laptops” if people are looking to make a purchase. I’ve been involved in SEO strategy consulting for many years and now work with a team of Technical SEOs to provide SEO strategy to clients from around the world.

Social Media

Social media is about building relationships with your visitors or consumers. You don’t want to have people just come to your site and leave. You want to interact with them to find out what they want and what they need. If you build a relationship with your users they will become your best customers and your best brand evangelists. When talking about online marketing a lot of people neglect the social media aspect which is a mistake. The whole marketing industry is based upon relationships, understanding your users, and giving them what they want. You must have the two way interaction with your visitors in order to have a complete and effective online marketing strategy.

This was meant to be a high level overview of three powerful online marketing tools. Just to recap, we have PPC which is targeted advertising, we have SEO which is ranking well in search engines for your desired keyterms or phrases, and we have social media for building relationships with the people that visit your site. Together these three online marketing tools can come together to form a killer online marketing strategy. If you can run an effective advertising campaign through PPC while capturing the audience search for your product or service through SEO while simultaneously building relationships with your visitors, then you will have a very effective online marketing strategy that is sure to yield positive results.

What else would you ad to the mix? Do you have another powerful online marketing tactic or tool that I missed?

Thanks for reading

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  • http://www.gearyi.com/fresh Holly M

    I think for a fully integrated campaign….use all of the above and the tactics that fall under their umbrella….and also do some banner media buys on a selected target of sites. Depending on the campaign these can result in major traffic and conversions :)

    • http://www.thefutureorganization.com jacobmorgan

      hey molly, absolutely. you have to use all three and together you can really get some solid results. of course you need to make sure that you get some who knows how to drive one or all of the above aspects of an online marketing campaign. you can succeed or you can lose quite a bit.

      thanks for reading and commenting!

  • http://www.ericpratum.com Eric S Pratum

    I have been thinking a bit recently about the effectiveness of local search buys. I read somewhere recently that 8/10 people that use local search follow the online search with a phone call.

    On another note, Hubspot just had a great post today related to this: http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/433

    • http://www.thefutureorganization.com jacobmorgan

      hey eric thanks for the link i will take a look. local search is a great to build relationships, of course sites like yelp and citysearch which are local aggregators are also very effective. were these people using local search just for telemarketing purposes?

      thanks for reading and commenting!

      • ericpratum

        It's been awhile since I read that, but if I recall correctly, the firms were using it mainly to gather a larger share of the local market, and they said that some people prefer to use local search rather than things like Google because they know the results will be more directed towards what they're looking for.

        • http://www.thefutureorganization.com jacobmorgan

          that makes sense, but then again you can use google for local search by typing in a geographic location

  • lindsay

    3 graces :)

    • http://www.thefutureorganization.com jacobmorgan

      yes they are my dear :) how nice of you to stop by!

  • http://www.ericpratum.com Eric Pratum

    It's been awhile since I read that, but if I recall correctly, the firms were using it mainly to gather a larger share of the local market, and they said that some people prefer to use local search rather than things like Google because they know the results will be more directed towards what they're looking for.

  • http://www.thefutureorganization.com jacobmorgan

    that makes sense, but then again you can use google for local search by typing in a geographic location