When I was first getting into the search marketing industry, I was weary of the ad representatives from Google and Bing who would reach out to me regarding my clients’ accounts. Having little to no experience with them, I didn’t always believe that their recommendations had my clients’ best interests at heart, and often disregarded their presence.
However, managing PPC for a wide range of clients over the last several years, I have learned that although these reps may seem as though they are not putting my clients’ best interest first by doing things such as working to increase media spend and offering questionable recommendations, they can also be extremely helpful.
As such, I am providing an Ad Rep Survival Guide:
What You Need
In order to have a beneficial relationship with your representative, you have to be willing to spend an upfront cost of your time. Your representative needs time to understand how you, your team and your organization or clients function. When they reach out to you with a call or an email, don’t get annoyed and ignore it. Instead, take the time to meet each other and explain your work so you can both identify if the relationship will be beneficial and move forward from there.
Just as you don’t want to have your time wasted, you don’t want to waste the time of your representatives. If you provide them priorities (i.e. which accounts or campaigns are most important to your organization or clients) it will allow for more focused efforts.
After your priorities have been identified and understood, you can plan meetings that are more action-focused, rather than wasting time discussing low priority items that won’t move the needle anyway.
Similar to having and explaining your priorities to your rep, you have to be able to explain the goals of each of your accounts or campaigns. This will help your management skills by identifying the purpose and desired outcomes of your account and also will help your representative understand that specific campaigns or accounts have specific purposes. As a result, they will be able to provide recommendations that are designed to improve that final goal.
For example, if you let your representative know that a campaign is designed for brand awareness, they will focus their recommendations around growing your overall visibility, using original metrics as a baseline.
What to Avoid
Despite taking the time to introduce your business to your representative in addition to prioritizing and identifying goals, no one knows your business or your clients as well as you do. Be cautious about giving 100% trust to the representatives.
Having a couple negative experiences- for example, my rep recommended and helped me set up a remarketing campaign (including taking my client’s time to add code and create image ads), it turned out my client’s product violated Google’s remarketing regulations and my ads never showed… – I know better than to completely give the reigns to the rep, while digesting their recommendations.
Lack of Boundaries
As I mentioned earlier, in order to have a beneficial relationship with your ad reps, you need to be patient and spend time explaining who your clients are, how your organization works and where your priorities lay. In addition, it is your responsibility to make boundaries clear so your reps don’t overstep in ways such as reaching out to your client directly.
At the end of the day, search engine reps are your direct connection to these ad platforms. The better relationship you have with them the more you allow them to understand your process and goals and the more they can and will want to help you.