Critical Injuries That Will Take You Out of the Game

By Amanda West-Bookwalter | @Amanda_WestBook | Senior Account Manager at Hanapin Marketing

As we’re working to keep with a football theme this week, I wanted to tackle what I first think of when football comes to mind: injuries. It may be because I have a son that will one day hate me when I tell him there’s no way he’s playing football, or maybe it’s because I have no real knowledge of the game outside of Friday Night Lights (Street! Nooo!). For PPC accounts, we get “injured” for the same reasons as many football players do: we over-exert ourselves.


Here are the top three ways you can injure your account through over-exertion, which will surely take you out of the game:


Increasing Bids Within Limited Budget Campaigns


Every good account manager does frequent bid changes, right? Maybe you even have automated rules in place that make total sense, like increasing bids on keywords that convert in low average positions. However, if you’re working in campaigns that are at all limited by budget, you’re not doing yourself any favors by raising bids.


Raising bids will increase click costs, which will spend more budget for less clicks. Unless you’re compensating for these increases by pausing other keywords/ad groups, you’re just giving yourself less opportunities to convert by increasing bids in a limited by budget campaign.


Instead, if you see keywords that could convert a lot of higher bids, create a new campaign with a separate budget. I call these campaigns “top tier” campaigns. This will allow special budget for keywords that can eat a lot of budget, but can also convert a lot. This gives all the other keywords a chance to capture clicks without these budget hogs around.


Launching Too Many Changes at Once


A big part of our job is data analysis. We need to be able to dig into the data and find patterns, averages, etc. We should be able to see exactly what affect our optimizations are having. However, it’s really easy to get too excited about optimizations and do too many at once.


If you enable too many optimizations at once, you’re left scratching your head over which really impacted your account. Click-through rates skyrocketed? Great! But, was that because of the ad copy updates, the bid increases, or the change in targeting? You may never be able to fully segment your data enough to know when you enable too many changes at once.


The best thing to do is to do one optimization at a time, which allows you to gather enough data to analyze in order to tell if this was the right optimization for your account or not. Keep track of these changes and results in a spreadsheet for further ease of organization and future reference!


Spreading Budgets Too Thin


Similar to pushing too many optimizations live at once, we’ve all gotten excited after a particularly inspiring client call or when kicking off management with a new client. We just want to test everything: remarketing, in-market segments, youtube ads, remarketing for search…the list of available options is seemingly endless!


However, reality sets in and you realize you’ve got 20 campaigns with a $5,000 budget. That’s like $5 a day for each campaign! You’ll never be able to gather the data you need for proper testing and optimizations on that budget.


Instead, pick the top things you’d like to test, that you think will make the most impact. Figure out how much budget you have, and decide how many campaigns to test based on how much you’d need for proper data accrual. Make sure to discuss this with the client, because they might have their own priorities!


In Conclusion


There are lots of ways an over-exerted account can cause injuries, but hopefully now you can avoid these three fairly common ones. Now, just remember to stretch, and you should be fine!