PPC, or pay-per-click, is an advertising strategy that many franchisors use to attract attention from potential investors or franchisees. The great thing about PPC is that franchisors don’t need to know anything about customers except for their web search habits. They also don’t need to design elaborate flyers, brochures, or print advertisements. An eye-catching, keyword-rich headline, a short phrase of text, and a link to a high quality landing page can direct interested consumers to the franchise website.
Also, pay per click for franchises can be exceptionally cost-effective. A franchisor pays nothing unless consumers click on the displayed ad. While franchise PPC ads may seem like a no-brainer, many first-time PPC campaigners make simple mistakes that destroy a pay per click for franchises. Here are 8 costly mistakes that can be avoided simply by choosing an experienced franchise marketing agency like ClickTecs.
Generic Keywords that Attract the Disinterested
This is the biggest mistake that new marketers make when starting a PPC campaign. There is so much that is wrong with using generic keywords for a franchise PPC strategy, that it is hard to discuss the issues in a single blog post subheading, so this mistake is broken down into three sections: attracting the disinterested, increasing costs, and displaying ads in unrelated searches.
Many first-time marketers or franchisors assume that attracting customer attention means using the most general keyword terms possible. This line of thinking isn’t entirely illogical. After all, if a business uses general keyword terms, more people will probably search for those terms, and more people will see the ad.
Here are the problems, though, that franchisors don’t consider. First, by using generic keyword strings, a PPC ad will be exposed to larger number of consumers. “Wait a minute,” the franchisor says to himself. “Isn’t that what I want? More people seeing my ad?” The answer, surprisingly, is “no.” Increasing the exposure of a PPC ad is only valuable if the population of ad viewers is made up of interested consumers. If a franchise PPC ad is displaying to consumers who care nothing for investing in a franchise, each click is money slipping down the drain. Generic keywords may pop up on more web browsers, but they aren’t increasing conversions. They’re being shown to disinterested consumers who will click, reach the landing page, and immediately navigate away.
Generic Ads that Cost Too Much
The second problem is competition. PPC ad campaigns require a complicated bidding process. The ad with the highest bid per click is the ad that gets displayed. Franchisors who bid on generic keywords can expect to pay ten times the amount per click they would if they selected specific, long-tail keyword strings. Paying more when it’s not necessary is simply bad marketing.
Generic Ads that Pop Up in the Wrong Places
Here’s the final problem with generic PPC keyword ads: they can start popping up on unrelated keyword searches, and this is bad news for a brand. Search engines pay close attention to the PPC ads running on their sites. If a franchise pay per click campaign is too generic, and it starts putting ads on unrelated searches, the franchisor is going to be penalized. Search engines, above all, care about satisfying consumers with relevant searches. They will not tolerate spammy, unrelated, or misplaced ads on their search pages.
There’s a delicate balance required in creating a franchise pay per click campaign that uses keywords generic enough to get exposure and specific enough to avoid these issues. Using a professional marketing agency like ClickTecs is a great option that can help franchisors save money and avoid costly errors.
Ignoring the Landing Page
Franchise PPC campaigns will direct interested investors or entrepreneurs to a landing page created for the franchise. Many new franchisors make the mistake of investing time and energy into the ad without paying attention to the landing page. Consumers who click a keyword-rich ad want to see the content of that ad mirrored immediately on the site where they are directed. If the ad mentions a low-cost, profitable franchise opportunity, those words should be at the top of the landing page.
Skipping the Localized Keywords
Using geographically-specific PPC campaigns is a proven strategy. Consumers feel more comfortable about interacting with local businesses, and if they see an ad that mentions their specific city, their eye will be attracted to the ad. Local keywords also help to reduce competition, which can make the bid price per click much lower. ClickTecs is a professional marketing agency with experience in subdividing market populations into different locations for franchisors, and this is essential when using pay per click for franchises.
Skipping the Negative Keyword Field
All PPC franchise ad campaigns have fields for negative keywords. Negative keywords are search words that will prevent an ad from displaying. For example, if a franchisor is looking for serious entrepreneurs willing to invest in a franchise opportunity, he may want to add the word “free” to a negative keyword field. A person looking for a free opportunity won’t be a good fit, and there is no reason to pay for an ad directed toward that person. Negative keyword lists can also prevent a franchise PPC ad from popping up in unrelated search fields, which will please the search engines.
Failing to Bid for a Franchise Name
This mistake is a common one: franchise owners often fail to create pay per click franchise ads that feature their business name as one of the keywords. This is a crucial strategy for a couple of reasons. First, if a franchise owner doesn’t create PPC ads that feature the business name, a competitor might. What if consumers search for a specific franchise and see only ads for competitors? The result is predictably bad for the franchisor.
Second, PPC campaigns with brand names are great for monitoring how many consumers search for a specific franchise each month. It can be hard to track total searches for a franchise, but a PPC bid for brand name keywords can provide valuable information about brand recognition.
Failing to Analyze the Data
Finally, the biggest mistake that franchisors make that may destroy a PPC strategy is failure to analyze data. Marketing is a learning process. It changes from one minute to the next. Continuing to pour money into an ad strategy that is clearly not working will run a franchise into the ground. Only by using expert data tracking and analytic techniques can franchisors create customized, adaptable franchise PPC campaigns that will add value to the business.
Tracking data, creating high quality PPC ads, performing adequate keyword research, and developing effective pay per click for franchises can be an enormous challenge. Many franchisors simply avoid the task because the challenge seems insurmountable, and they don’t want to waste money. A better option, however, is hiring a professional marketing team with experience creating effective PPC ads. ClickTecs will help franchisors save money, reach new clients, and avoid the pitfalls listed above.
About the Author : Jamshaid (Jam) Hashmi
A serial entrepreneur with extensive background in franchising and interests in multiple online business channels, Jamshaid (Jam) Hashmi has played an instrumental role in the franchise development and success of a renowned international franchise company. His most recent entrepreneurial interests include launching ClickTecs, a Digital Marketing company specializing in Search Engine Marketing and Social Media Marketing as well as Website and Mobile Application development. In 2007 he co-founded WSI Search Result, an online marketing company that supplies services to Internet Marketing Consultants. A sought after public speaker, Jam has been the featured keynote at many franchise conferences and international summits. He regularly trains ‘C’ Level Executives and supports both new and seasoned business owners on Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Social Media Optimization, Mobile Marketing, Brand Reputation Management and Conversion & Measurement through web analytics. When he’s not scaling the heights of the Internet world, Jam ‘unwinds’ on extreme thrill-seeking adventures from the jungles of the Amazon to the highest summits. His passions include working with NGOs on humanitarian missions to areas around the world affected by disasters and poverty.