Google Adwords Case Study (not trying to sell a WSO with this one :)

3 replies
background:
I manage automotive advertising accounts on a regional and local level. Paid search is probably about 40% of my total monthly billings. My average paid search campaign is 8-10k/mo in spend (includes a 35% management fee/margin)



typically when I build paid search campaigns, I use google keyword planner, plus historical data, to build out large campaigns.

I usually have separate segments for each make and model vehicle for my auto clients, so for example, a ford dealer would have its own segment for a ford fusion, ford f150, etc.., with its own 3 sets of ads, and a group of possibly around 60 keyword variations that I've found work well as a cookie cutter approach such as ford fusion sales, etc.

from there, I run it about a month and begin tweaking.


Recently I tested a lease pull ahead campaign that I built. However, I sourced the keywords in different way to spitball a theory with a guy I work with.

I went to google's search page, and used the autocomplete/predictive search to find all the different variants of lease pull ahead/early lease termination searches. Did it the hard way, with multiple searches, instead of using a search engine to find all versions for me. That is one way to automate this if you repeat it.

I had a small list, maybe 20 or so keywords. I polished the list after with variations of broad vs phrase matches, wrote some simple ad copy "AIDA" style, and then dropped them on a specially built lease landing page on the client's site, that lands on a lease terminaton "FAQ" type deal, and a form fill.

on average, most traditional auto searches see CTR around 2% in paid search campaigns that we work with.

In this new segment, by only using keywords I sourced from google's auto-complete, I was able to see a 5% CTR after only a week of testing, and a 8/10 quality score.


30 days later, Im at an 8% CTR, performance is consistently improving week over week.

thoughts, questions, comments?
#adwords #case #google #sell #study #wso
  • Profile picture of the author Oziboomer
    I think the target market who are searching is hungry for information regarding the early termination and they may want to research prior to possibly talking to their financing company.

    By providing an information based landing page that specifically matches the search terms and by having a congruent approach of using a targeted ad that is based on a narrow band of searches should yield a higher CTR and also therefore help improve quality score and help lower acquisition costs.

    You may want to try a similar approach with some of your other segments.

    I know if I was looking for a new vehicle and I wasn't "brand loyal"...or even if I was....I'd want to compare features and benefits between different brands in the same class to help me justify my decision to purchase.

    You couldn't necessarily send traffic to a Ford dealer and then have other brands on the same page but you could do like I've done in some niches where you send the traffic to a review page where you segment the visitor and then pass the lead along or use different detail pages for specify brands that visitors click through to after the landing page and then use retargeting pixels to brand identify and then you can come back with search retargeting later.
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      I have said for years screw all of that technical check this and check that. Start with a core word, in your case "Ford" and start allowing Google to make the long tails for you.

      Those "Suggested listings" are mathematical probabilities of your next search to refine your results.

      I have tried some of the programs that are supposed to do this search for you and if you do an automated one, and then pull one the "hard way" the "hard way" wins every time.

      Once you really understand an audience, you can go back in and rebuild your list with a base of known "buyer" keyword chains. it gets retarded after that. In some cases you can get in there and do it a 3rd time and I have seen CTR's in the 15%+ range

      This thread should be deleted now! LOL
      Signature
      Success is an ACT not an idea
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    • Profile picture of the author AleksanderSuave
      Originally Posted by Oziboomer View Post

      I think the target market who are searching is hungry for information regarding the early termination and they may want to research prior to possibly talking to their financing company.

      By providing an information based landing page that specifically matches the search terms and by having a congruent approach of using a targeted ad that is based on a narrow band of searches should yield a higher CTR and also therefore help improve quality score and help lower acquisition costs.

      You may want to try a similar approach with some of your other segments.

      I know if I was looking for a new vehicle and I wasn't "brand loyal"...or even if I was....I'd want to compare features and benefits between different brands in the same class to help me justify my decision to purchase.

      You couldn't necessarily send traffic to a Ford dealer and then have other brands on the same page but you could do like I've done in some niches where you send the traffic to a review page where you segment the visitor and then pass the lead along or use different detail pages for specify brands that visitors click through to after the landing page and then use retargeting pixels to brand identify and then you can come back with search retargeting later.
      Ozi, you bring up a lot of good points. You sound more educated on auto-buyers than a lot of my peers, LOL.

      first thing to cover - brand loyalty. Detroit area is an anomaly in the devoted brand loyalty. I don't think brand loyalty 'doesn't exist in other markets the way it does here, but I believe its above-average. This comes from a population where greater than 40% of all people living within detroit metro are or were employed by the Big 3, or had/have family that are.

      second, google conducted a pretty strong study on automotive buying behavior, and found some interesting facts. These are all strictly auto but I'm sure the numbers are similar in other verticals.

      63% of buyers start online research with a brand in mind. We subconsciously qualify/disqualify brands.

      only 20% (or 1 in 5, for easy math) of buyers end up buying the brand that was first on that initial list.

      almost 75% of all car shopping involves brand cross/shopping. So every 3/4 buyers is actively shopping competitor dealerships, competitor vehicles.

      the sweet spot is 4+ brands. If they're cross shopping 4+ brands, the average vehicle purchased in price is over 40k, in almost 40% of all of those purchase. IN this category, people are more likely to have switched from another brand. This one is kinda a no-brainer. If your experience with your previous brand was great, you're less likely to fall into researching 4+ brands.

      as for the particulars, current CPC is pretty low, $2.00 range (for auto terms this is low), and that includes margin.

      I have added branded and non branded lease-pull-ahead terms into this segment.

      savidge, I don't think there's much danger. As you've said, this is the "hard way". Majority of people don't want to do things the hard way.
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