ChoyBoy Solutions: Why AdWords is a Waste of Time and Money; An Intro to Social Media Marketing

I apologize for the misleading title. At first glance, it may appear as if I hated AdWords, which really isn’t the case. AdWords is a great tool meant to drive traffic and create conversions but like any other tool, it’s only effective if you know how to use it. If you don’t know how to use it, you’re most likely wasting your time and time is money…so it’s like losing twice as much money! If you don’t know how to use AdWords, check out the 6 steps I use to set up my AdWords campaigns.

From the perspective of a small startup brand, AdWords may seem enticing to use to generate traffic and create conversions but all that money you’re shelling out could be used to create products and hold events and pretty much build your brand. Most brands are looking to create a following; a loyal group of people that absolutely loves what your company is about and would kill (not really) for the products you make. I’m sure you’ve all seen the long lines that wrap around corners for shoes or shirts from brands like Nike or The Hundreds. Love like that cannot be bought nor can it be replicated through the use of AdWords. It can only be built through the blood, sweat and tears of creating solid content through writing, YouTube videos and interacting with people face-to-face…then posting it on your blog for the world to see. But not everyone will see it. Not everyone would want to see it.

An extremely quick intro to marketing via Social Media.

1) If you haven’t already done so, create a blog (I use WordPress), Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr account. Pinterest is a big maybe for me because it’s not where my target market is BUT if you’re targeting women ages 16-35, go ahead and join Pinterest. Pinterest is heavily dominated by females so it will work to your advantage, just not mine. Spruce up all of those accounts to make it look like nice and consistent with your website. Make sure all your accounts are listed on each other. You want a link to your Twitter account to be on your Facebook and a link to your Facebook account on your Instagram and so on and so forth. Make sure they all link back to your online shop.

2) Download HootSuite or any other application to manage your accounts. Start sharing and start #hastagging. I know, I absolutely hate #hashtags but guess what, deal with it. They work. Hashtags allow you to search by that specific hashtag. Let’s say a fitness company wants to post a picture about legs. Hashtags for that would be something like #legday or #legpress. Well guess what, people who use hashtags use that hashtag. Just go ahead and search that hashtag and like the customer! Sometimes the customer will find you! But be selective when you choose hashtags. Nothing vague. Be specific to save time.

3) Start blogging. You know that WordPress account I told you to make. Use it. Start writing content and make sure they automatically post on to your other accounts to take reach the audience on those platforms. Make sure your blog posts are anywhere between 350 to 500 words. Make sure that all your efforts on social media can be collected onto your blogging platform. There’s plugins to make it happen so it’s not that difficult.

4) SEO plugins/Meta tagging. You need this. Rather than spending money on AdWords, building rich content and optimizing those pages with keywords is a smarter way to go. It may not produce the results as fast as you want but you’ll gain a following of avid readers who are genuinely interested in you and your company.

5) Engage your readers. Start asking questions. Start leaving comments. Start suggesting products. Don’t just set up your accounts and leave it be. The internet is dynamic, not static. There is no such thing as “if you build it, they will come.”

So what would you rather do? Spend money to gain random traffic or build a following through sharing your experiences? One may convert to sales, the other, no questions asked. It’ll work.


ChoyBoy Solutions: A Small Introduction to AdWords – 6 Steps to Get You Started

I don’t claim to be an AdWords expert but I’ve dabbled in it enough to admit that I know a few things. I’m not going to go in great depth because AdWords is actually quite simple to use but also quite complicated – it really depends how far you want to go. It takes a lot of trial and error to see what AdWords campaign works best for what I’m trying to accomplish. Is it to drive traffic or is it to create conversions? Do you want people to buy a product or do you want to create an audience for your blog? Its all unique. The internet is your friend. You can search for “AdWords Tutorial” and find a lot of information – many of which I found to be redundant. So I decided to write this blog up just for you to simplify it. Keep in mind that this is all coming from my experience and may not work with what you want.

1) You want every link on your site to redirect you to the correct page. If not, site-crawlers will see that it leads to no-where or someplace where it doesn’t match keywords and it’ll hurt your conversions and cost you on clicks.

2) Make sure you’re campaign has the correct settings. If you are targeting search results, you need to go into settings and change it to Search only. If you want to make a display campaign then you should make another campaign for only display. It matters. A lot.

3) Target the right location. So let’s say you have a brick & mortar business or a service based business and you want to find customers in your general area. The first thing you should do its limit the target geographic location to the area you want to reach…and be specific! For example, let’s say you run an A/C repair business in Los Angeles, CA and you want to target Beverly Hills, CA because of all the rich folk. You don’t want your business in Los Angeles, CA to target Beverly Hills, FL when you’re trying to reach Beverly Hills, CA all because you forgot to specify the state. It’s such a simple yet common mistake.

4) Keep your keywords to a minimum but tailor it to the segment you’re targeting. You don’t want people you don’t want to reach to be clicking on your link. Keywords are not cheap. There’s 7 billion people on the planet right now and a click from even 10% or even 1% of them will have you go over budget. You are however lucky enough to be capped $2,000 per AdWords account but $2,000 spent is still $2,000. And if you’re targeting the wrong people and not getting any conversions, you just wasted $2,000 and the time it took for you to set up your campaign. On another note, you don’t want broad keywords because they’ll clash with your other keywords and then your bids will go up and soon you’ll be broke (not really, you’ll reach your daily cap). After following step #3, try doing something like “+Beverly Hills +air conditioning +repair” rather than “Beverly Hills air conditioning repair” and “+Beverly Hills +air conditioning +repair”. (the +’s makes it so that those words HAVE to follow).

5) Don’t bid too high. Don’t bid too low. Now this is actual something that you’ll have to play with. You don’t need to be the first link of the search results, just be on the first page. See what works to get you there. Having your link on #2-#6 works best but you get there by doing AdWords right. If you don’t have much of a budget, see what works with you.

6) Get your hands dirty. Track your results. See what works with you. Make adjustments.

Good luck!