SEO is essential for driving traffic to your website, but some investment in online advertising can also boost and focus your marketing campaign.
So much of what we’ve talked about on this blog is on how to increase your contracting website’s Search Engine Optimization by improving your website itself; we’ve talked about fine-tuning each page, getting a secure server, and changing your website title. We’ve also spent a little bit of time just talking about SEO as a whole and why it matters for contractors. Today we’re not going to be looking at improving your website; instead, we’re going to be exploring the benefits of buying online advertising. Whether it’s to jumpstart your website’s reach or to connect with a new target market, we’ll cover it today. Enjoy!
1. Target Your Ideal Client
Paid online advertising gives you the power to target your ideal prospect. Taking all available data from people who are online will show you that it’s possible to place your ad in front of the exact person who needs to see it. This is a game changer for contractors.
You can show your ad to people living in a specific zip code, making a certain income, married with a specific number of children, owning their own home and who are interested in golf. Go back to our little exercise where you created your ideal customer profile. With online advertising, you can show your ads to those specific people.
2. Use Native Advertising
Native advertising is the ability to create ads that look and feel like the platform. For instance, if you’re advertising on Facebook, you’ll create an ad fitting into Facebook’s native format. Then while people are scrolling down it doesn’t feel like you’re shouting an advertisement at them. It feels more like you are joining the conversation they’re already having.
Instagram advertising works the same way. Create a short ad to be played or viewed on Instagram that appeals to your target audience and is like the types of videos/posts they regularly view. This allows your message to influence them without appearing pushy. Instagram also offers ads within Instagram stories. A very effective and attractive way to get attention.
3. Pay Only for Those Interested
You can advertise online and only pay if people are clicking on or watching your ad. You don’t have to waste money paying for advertising if people aren’t interested in your ad, and because you are using a targeted marketing strategy, your ad is not being seen by people who are not interested.
Most people today do their research on their smartphones. If your ad shows up on their smartphone screen and they want to call you, they can tap your ad and immediately place a call—they don’t even have to type in your phone number or visit your website.
This system removes all of the unnecessary middle steps—clicking, redirecting to your website, reading your message, getting your phone number, entering your phone number, calling you—making it much, much easier for the potential client to reach you. Furthermore, you can even add a tracking number to that ad so you will know exactly how many people clicked on it and placed a call.
5. Retarget Prospective Clients
Internet technology allows you to track the people clicking on your ads and follow them up with another ad. For instance, imagine you have a piece of content on your website that you want people to read, so you advertise that content. Someone clicks on your ad, and they are redirected to your website.
Now they are added to your retargeting list. These are the people who have heard about you and read your content—therefore you are going to show them a totally different ad which will take them a little bit deeper into your business.
It’s most effective to advertise to the people with whom you’ve previously engaged; in this case, you do not waste marketing cash on people who aren’t interested, but you’re showing your ad to people who’ve already encountered some of your expertise and inviting them to learn even more.
6. Analyze Metrics and Analytics
Digital advertising makes it easy to measure and track the performance of your ads. Tracking your ad-performance is powerful, because you can see what people are clicking on, what that click is leading them to, and the results of their searching. This will help you know which ads are effective in getting you the most new leads.
7. Improve Your Performance
After measuring your metrics, go in and tweak small portions of your ads to see if performance can improve. If your changes improve your ad’s reach, draw, or effectiveness—keep them. Continue to edit them over time and refine your advertising until it’s a powerful marketing machine.
Paid online ads are an investment, there’s no doubt about it. They take time and money to set up and streamline, but they can be an invaluable addition to your marketing scheme.
by Martin Holsinger