When Image is Everything

Normally with copywriting it is all about the headline and then the copy. However if you are considering facebook advertising it is all about the image.

However when you think about it there is a fundamental difference from a Facebook user to a google searcher. One is (or you can determine) actively looking for information or to buy a product or solve a problem and the other is simply looking to hook up with friends and share their feelings/thoughts etc. The bottom line is this, you have no idea if they are looking to buy your product or service.

So you need to re-think your ads, you might not be able to sell them on your product or service but you might be able to get them to ‘Like’ your page which is setup specifically to promote your product or service. Once they are a fan you can then build that relationship and monetise later. The key here is, and my initial testing has found that you can significantly boost your click through rates, create a fan base and drive down your cost per clicks.

Negative Keyword Matching

The point of this blog is to share my marketing wisdom as I leave behind my work as a developer. I have a free course on udemy which covers essential tips which I have learned from running adwords campaigns since 2006. The course is free and is available <a title=”Google Adwords Essential Tips” href=”https://www.udemy.com/google-adwords-essential-tips-for-profitable-campaigns/” target=”_blank”>here</a>.

I stumbled across an old customer last week who is paying for google adwords. Now the key thing is they are paying for their ads to be displayed for something <em>completely unrelated to their business</em>.

I was searching for a term related to something to do with software development. This particular tool has a name which also happens to be one of their product names too. So anyone looking for this keyword in the context of software development has no interest whatsoever in what he is selling (actually a small percentage might). But the point is this; the effectiveness of your ads is measured by the click through rate (CTR). So if your ads are showing for searches completely unrelated to your niche then your CTR is going to come down, and, even worse, your cost per click is going to go UP!

So how do you determine what negative keywords to include in your campaign?

Simple, use the google keyword planner and take some of the sites that are showing in the organic listings and run them through the keyword tool. This will give you a list of keywords you need to include in your negative keyword matches. So in our example this would be






If you aren’t including negative keyword matches in your campaigns then you really should investigate that the keywords you are bidding on are not triggered by some unrelated searches.

Understanding Customer Analytics

I do courses on Udemy and this particular one is what underpins what I do. The bringing together of marketing and IT to automate/measure the effectiveness and/or communicate your relevant message to your target audience.

Most small businesses have a mine of useful data already locked up in their accounting system. By using this data and segmenting it, it can be used to create compelling, relevant offers or perhaps reinvigorate potentially lost customers.

You can access the course here.

Are you Measuring the Effectiveness of your Campaigns?

There has been a huge uptake in customer relationship management (CRM) systems over the last couple of years. All businesses from small to large have been clamouring to select, buy and implement CRM as it is seen as a ‘must-have’. But I wonder, how many businesses have actually measured their return on that investment? How is your CRM system delivering benefit not just in operational process but in additional sales and new customers? Sure your CRM will tell you how many leads have been won, the status of those leads, which salesperson brought in that lead. It will also tell you how many and the potential value of any opportunities arising from that lead. But of course the real crux of the matter is you need to measure/test/refine/repeat the effectiveness of your campaigns.

And there lies the problem, whilst most CRM systems on the market allow you to create a campaign against a list of customers it is the segmentation of your customers that falls down. Why? because even if you do have an integrated CRM and financials system the chances are you cannot create what I would term as dynamic campaigns. I had this very request a few weeks ago from a Sage CRM customer. “We want to be able to create a campaign based around customers who have bought product x”. Can the system do it? No! Can it be made do it? Absolutely. Here are 4 examples, from hundreds of possible, dynamic campaigns you could be using (but probably won’t be);

  • Customers who bought product x
  • Customers who have spent more than (or less than) x pounds, dollars, euros
  • Customers who have bought within the last 180 days but not within the last 90 days
  • Customers who have only bought once from you

So the key is getting at your financials data and using it to create customer segments that are meaningful (and hopefully responsive!) to an offer in the campaign.

What is a cost-effective Email Marketing Solution?

This is from an original post I made way back in April 2008 on my technology blog but its still as valid today.

The flippent answer would be one that generates a definative and repeatable return on investment! There is going to be a cost for any email marketing, whether it be the design of the layout of the email if you need to make it look enticing, or using a third party service which charges a subscription fee. Before you do anything though consider;

  • How targetted are the prospects on the list?
  • How well written is the copy? Are you starting with a compelling, benefit oriented headline?
  • How compelling is the actual offer?

Always remember to do small scale tests first. if you have a list of 10,000 prospects why not come up with two different emails (same offer, different copy in the email) and send email A to 100, and B to another 100 and compare the results.

If you are going to use a third party service then check they offer costs on a ‘per subscriber’ and not ‘per email’ basis. If you are being charged per subscriber it means you can email the list several times for no additional cost. One great service which does that and offers a whole lot more besides is mailchimp.