How to make your ads stand apart from the crowd
So you want to run some text-based PPC (Pay per click) ads. But you also don't want to waste your marketing budget. If you've done your keyword research and figured out the right keywords to bid on and right bidding strategies for your business, the next step is writing an ad that generates clicks.
But that's easier said than done. So how do you write a search ad that gets results? Let's dig into the specifics.
Tip # 1: Target the viewer's desires
A person typed in a search term and your ad is the one on the top. Congratulations! That's a big win in and of itself. Now comes the real test.
If your ad isn't compelling enough, the first position isn’t going to do you much good. The objective here is for the text to mirror the end goal of a visitor.
This will not only help you stand out, but it will compel the visitor to click your link among all the others. This can be crucial to getting that click you so desperately want. Here’s a hypothetical example:
Imagine yourself searching for a weight loss product. You conducted a search and got these results:
Get weight loss products at a discount.
Check out our wide range of weight loss products with exclusive discounts.
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Medically approved loss products, with tips from health experts that are sure to yield results in one month.
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Now, decide for yourself. Would you rather choose the first result or one of the last two? The second one, in particular, sounds just about right. There's an attention grabbing that shows empathy and speaks to the visitor on a personal level. Next, the meta description offers a solution, with a brief introduction of the products and services that will get the user to their end goal. Plus, there's a timeframe that imposes a sense of urgency in the mind of the reader.
When you're writing an ad, always think about what the viewer ultimately wants. Think about the emotional state they want to achieve. They're not looking for a product. They're looking for a better version of themselves. Your ad copy should paint that picture for them.
Tip # 2: Do your keyword research
Keywords are everything in SEM campaigns. The keywords you target not only determine the price of your campaign, they're also a window into the minds of the people viewing your ads.
Before designing an ad for the PPC campaign, a proper and thorough search on keywords regarding the niche/product/service is necessary.
There are many free and advanced paid tools that can be used to do keyword research that can greatly improve the efficiency of the campaign. Correct placement of keywords is the key for the right ad to display at the right time, under the right search.
Not only do keywords need to be in the copy of the ad. You also need to decide which ad copy will display for which keywords. If you're targeting transactional keywords like "buy books online," your ad copy is going to be much more direct than if you're targeting informational keywords like "how do I lose weight?"
Tip # 3: Use numbers and special characters
A monotonous ad has a higher chance of being ignored compared to an ad with numbers and special characters. They're eye-catching, and convey information more efficiently than bare text. Read the following:
Discounted by half
Although the first one is more descriptive, the second one grabs the attention due to the use of numbers and special characters. It also conveys the information contained more precisely and efficiently.
Tip # 4: Add a countdown timer
It’s the final countdown!!! What a song, right? Well, a countdown also triggers a psychological response.
As humans, we're more motivated by the fear of loss than the thrill of gain. This is called “loss aversion,” but, to put it in the parlance of the times, you might have heard it called FOMO. The fear of missing out is a powerful motivator.
Luckily, Google has introduced a simple countdown timer that can be set with text ads. This will display a real-time countdown timer with your ad that will motivate the visitors to click the ad in response to the fear of missing out. You can use it to put a time limit on special offers and discounts, and bring in waves of FOMO-beset customers.
Tip # 5: Features and benefits
Let’s clarify one thing. Features are focused on your business or product. Some examples of features are free shipping, customized packaging, a 10% discount, free home delivery, etc.
Benefits are more customer-oriented. This is what truly attracts a customer and helps them make a decision. As we discussed before, benefits explain to the customer how their life will be better after using your product or service.
To make this even clearer, think of this example: Let's say you're advertising the aforementioned weight loss clinic. A feature might be 10 years of experience, or easy-to-follow recipes. A benefit would be the confidence, energy and health clients achieve after following your program.
Lead with benefits. Sell people a better version of themselves. Then use features to manage objections. For instance, "easy-to-follow, delicious recipes" handles the objection that weight loss requires a difficult, unpleasant diet.
So when writing an ad or having one written for you, make sure that the benefits and features are highlighted to immediately set you apart from the rest.
Tip # 6: Use social proof
Now, pay attention. Let's say you're searching for advice from a lawyer and you come across two ads.
The ad from the first lawyer states:
We provide advice on all matters pertaining to legal problems
The ad from the second lawyer states:
Get ABA-certified professional advice on your legal affairs. Successful cases for 200 happy clients just this year
So, have you decided yet or do you need a minute? Now, the first lawyer is almost certainly certified with the American Bar Association. And, for all we know, they've handled an even bigger caseload. But their ad doesn't tell us that.
Social proof is a tactic that uses the influence of peers and authority figures to lend credibility to your marketing claims. Note how the second ad uses the authority of the American Bar Association to lend an air of legitimacy. Then, it mentions 200 clients, which communicates to the viewer that their peers have given this lawyer their stamp of approval.
Tip # 7: Integrate your USP in your ads
Your unique selling proposition, or USP, is the fundamental aspect of your business that is unique to you. For example, you are the sole supplier of the cosmetic products of an international brand in your country. Use that to add weight to your ad statement.
So before you design an ad or have one designed for you, take out some time for brainstorming to organize a list of USPs that are going to make you stand out from the rest of the competition.
An easy way to do this is to draw a Venn diagram. In one circle, put your customers' needs. In the next, put the services offered by your competitor. In the third, put the services you offer. The overlap between the services you offer (which your competitor doesn't) and customer needs is your USP. Highlight it in your ads to make yourself stand apart from the crowd.
These essential tips are among the most popularly employed strategies that have been used by experts to form ads that get thousands of clicks on a daily basis. But writing and placing PPC ads can be complicated and time consuming. If you're still not confident in managing your own PPC campaigns, consider talking to an expert
who can help make sure your search engine marketing dollars are well spent.