There’s no shortage of arguments for and against paid vs. organic traffic. They both have advantages, associated costs, and expected outcomes (when done right). For Channel Partners considering PPC for their Channel Partner marketing strategy, it can be frustrating, time-consuming, and daunting to learn the nuances of PPC. However, if they execute a marketing strategy for PPC before fully understanding where to begin, it can be an enormous waste of money.
Vendors can help educate Partners on the value of PPC by starting with the biggest advantages of paid over organic:
Quick ROI: Especially when used for lead generation, prospects that click through on paid ads are typically further along their buyer’s journey, which results in shorter sales cycles. On the flip side, those who swear by organic tactics say, paid ads require a huge spend to keep the wheels churning particularly in technology, where keywords are competitive and expensive.
Track-ability: Search platform analytics make it easy to course-correct keywords, campaigns, platforms, and track success. Even though search-bots constantly index websites, many factors play into rankings making it a “slow and steady wins the race” marketing tactic.
Vendors Compete with Partners for PPC Keywords– Now What?
Vendors have larger marketing budgets and PPC is a big part of their strategy. When you’re a Partner, this poses a problem because the fight for keywords is a bidding war and you can’t afford to compete against a Vendor for PPC ranking on their solutions or brand keywords.
Vendors can provide Channel Partners with their PPC keywords list and help Channel Partners amplify their brand without competing by educating them to:
Choose keywords that take advantage of local search
Avoid Vendor brand keywords and focus on “phrase matching” by combining their name with the Vendor’s or solution's name
Focus on the Partner’s brand keywords and business outcomes they sell
Combine all – local phrase matching for business outcomes!
Partner Marketing Strategy for PPC - Things to Know.
Which platform: Google dominates the PPC space at 75% of the market. Bing owns 7% and the crowd on Google is younger. Bing’s PPC may be less expensive and if your audience is older, it works well.
Search network vs. display ads: Search network are ads you see at the top and bottom of Google search results and they’re delivered based on keywords. They look similar to organic listings except for the “ad” signifier.
Display ads are typically images or videos that display across various advertiser websites and are targeted based on demographics, interests, and other targeting options.
Map campaigns to goals: Before executing a PPC campaign, decide the outcome. Does the Partner marketing strategy involve building awareness or driving leads through a contact form? Are they trying to build a subscriber list or increase blog readership? The options for outcomes are vast and knowing the outcome helps map the campaign to those results.
Keywords matching: Once keywords are established, matching is how you help Partners differentiate themselves to prevent competition with your keywords. When loading the ad, there will be a selection for “match type:”
Broad match: is the default, reaches the widest audience, and is at most risk of Partner-Vendor competition
Phrase match: offers more versatility while giving Partners a higher level of control and is good for combining Partner and Vendor brands
Include “power words” such as learn, tips, save, easiest, compare, and opportunity
A/B testing: When starting on PPC, we recommend a test budget of at least $25 per day and tracking conversions across search and display ad types, keywords, campaigns, and goals. Without an established track record of success, skipping this step can result in wasted money.
Looking for more ways to help educate Channel Partners on marketing strategy? We’re here to help!
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