google ads

How to Utilize Google Advertising to Help Your Business Grow

Gene Marks

Welcome to our weekly podcast segment with Gene Marks. Gene discusses how to navigate advertising on Google and gives helpful keyword tips.

Hey everybody. This is Gene Marks and welcome to the Small Biz Ahead podcast. This week, let’s talk about advertising on Google. Say you’re a plumber somewhere, or you’re running a pizza shop somewhere or just in some type of small business. You have to admit there’s definitely a lot of upside to advertising on Google. For starters, it’s definitely a lot less expensive than advertising on television and radio, for example. Those kinds of advertising can be really, really costly. And what’s really beautiful about advertising online is that you can, you can target your ad to specific buyers, and clicks can be measured and tracked. If you take out an advertisement on a television program, it’s just being blasted out to the world.

You don’t even know if they are even targets for running a pizza shop. For all you know, somebody is allergic to pizza dough. You don’t even know that, but if you are advertising online in Google, you can really be specific because people are putting in keywords to search for the kinds of things that you’re selling for. And you can really hit them this way. And like I said, there’s a bunch of really great analytical tools as well that can help you really track to see how effective your advertising. And just so you know, 90% of people who use the internet, see Google ads, according to research and 63% of people that search on Google or likely to click on those ads. So again, it’s a powerful way to advertise, so it should definitely be considered. You can control the budget that you’re using.

Google: How to Succeed in This Competitive Environment

You can get good metrics for it. You can target who you are, but you know, like anything else succeeding on Google is not easy. You know, it’s a competitive environment. My company sells CRM products, like for example, Salesforce. Well if you put in a keyword, if you’ve searched for Salesforce before you even find my company is like 12 pages down the list. If I do any averages, that the cost Salesforce owns that keyword, you know, big brands and competitors they’re fighting for the more popular keywords. So a small business like mine, like yours can really be kind of left out. Which is why local advertising is really, really good when you’re on Google. Google, if you’re a local business like a plumber in Devin, Pennsylvania, or a you’re a pizza shop in Atlantic city, New Jersey.

Then the people that you’re competing against are much fewer and far between, and plus your local other pizza shops, they might not be spending as much to advertise for their pizza shop in Atlantic City, New Jersey. So it definitely gives you some options if you really want to focus on local advertising. And that’s where Google is really, really good. So let’s assume that’s the case. Let’s assume that you want to do something with Google ads and you do want to advertise locally. So the question is, if I’m going to do that, what steps should I take? You know, what advice do you have? So here’s the advice that I have for you. First of all, you want to determine what your objective is like, why are you advertising on Google as well?

Determine Your Advertising Objective

When somebody clicks on the ad, what do you want to happen? Are you trying to sell them products online? Do you want prospective customers to actually call you, visit your restaurant or your pizza shop or register for an event that you’re doing or request more information. I mean, you have to know exactly what you want, and then you have to closely track the clicks. So you can determine whether or not your campaign is getting you the right results. You know what I mean? This does not happen overnight guys. It requires testing and testing and more testing, which is why most social media experts that I talked to say, a campaign needs anywhere from 60 to 90 days, just to see what variation of it will start showing results. You got to put in some time to do this, you know?

Getting Results Can Take Time

So just bear in mind that if someone’s looking for a pizza or they need a gift for their mom, or they have a broken pipe, people are searching because they have a problem they’re looking to solve. Your message needs to speak to them. So have that objective. Okay, next you have to ask yourself, what are those keywords? I mean, you know, because at its core, Google is just a search engine for someone to see your ad. You know, they have to be searching based on a word or phrase. So the more popular the phrase, the more buyers there are for the keyword and therefore the higher the cost. I mean, finding the right and affordable keyword or phrase, it’s both science and it’s art, and it will be critical to the success of your campaign. So, you know, to come up with keywords, there are a lot of tools that are out there.

Determining the Right Keywords is Critical

Some that I recommend, one is called SEMrush. Another is made by a company called Moz. And there’s another tool that I like called SpyFu. Those three tools. You can Google for those tools and you’ll find their sites and you can download them. They’re free. You can sign up, they will help you identify good search words for the things that you’re going to get hits for in your ads. But in the end, it’s all going to be about testing and testing and testing. Just be aware, there are some tricks that experienced marketers also use when it comes to search terms. Some like to create campaigns that include both keywords and what’s called negative keywords. Which are words that are excluded from a search such as like a competitor name, which could lead to matches that may not be relevant.

Test, Test, Test

So you want to test out new words, you want to pause your tests. You want to try out new combinations. All of this is going to be trial and error over the time. But again, when you finally find those key words or phrase or combination of keywords that’s working, then you can scale it up. Finally. So you’ve come up with your objective. You’ve determined the keywords, all of this takes time. I mean, you’re talking about a two-three months worth of time, figuring this out. You’ve got to ask yourself, what is your targeted return on investments? Like, why are you advertising on Google? You don’t want to spend more money than you’re going to get back by making the sale. But it’s a math question. Most social media experts that I talk to say that typical campaigns should be anywhere from 500 to a thousand bucks a month, and it can easily be more.

Be Mindful of Your Budget

And remember, they get eaten up. When people start clicking on your keywords or viewing you, viewing your ads, just getting in front of their eyeballs. So you really have to be careful with your budget. And you have to determine what that return on investment is going to be. I mean, you may not see the dollars right away, but say you’re a pest control company or a plumber. You know, a customer can stay for years and spend thousands of dollars. So if you’ve got a campaign going and you might spend a couple thousand dollars just to get that one lead. Well, if you go back and you’re a plumber and you’re like, all right, well, it’s a couple thousand bucks, but over the course of five or seven years, I’ll probably get 10 or $15,000 worth of work out of this guy. So it may really, really be worth it.

So you have to think about that. It’s the same thing we’re selling pizzas. I mean, you know, if you’re going to spend $500 to get a click on a pizza for 10 bucks, that’s not a really great investment. So you have to really pay attention to the money and pay attention to the math. Okay. One final thing, which always makes me laugh. I mean, we’ve talked about having an objective, we talked about finding the right keywords. We’ve talked about finding out the right, determining your return on investment. But, you know, I spoken to a bunch of social media experts about this topic and you know, what they tell me the number one problem they have with their clients. It’s following up on the leads. If you can believe that I had one guy complained to me that they ran the successful campaign.

Follow Up on Leads

They were getting a bunch of leads. People like clicking and filling out a form for more information or calling the business. And the clients were just like ignoring them, or they didn’t have enough time to promptly follow up on the leads. So for goodness sake, if you’re going to be making the investment in Google advertising, you want to make sure that you’ve got a process in place for when those leads do come in and they will come in, because if you put enough work into it, you’ll get those leads. You got to make sure that you’re following up with them on a timely basis. Otherwise, why are you even doing this? I mean, be prepared to scale when you find out that a campaign is working and you build it up, scale it and be prepared. If you can show a profit for a small number of leads generated, you’ll be ready to really take advantage and profit from Google ads in the future.

Target Your Local Community to See Results

So those are my thoughts on Google ads. It’s absolutely a worthwhile place to be for a lot of businesses. Think local, though, if you’re trying to advertise on a national basis, you really are going to have a lot of challenges, budgetary challenges when you are facing some competition from big brands. But if you’re a local business serving a local community, you can really hone in those keywords with some of your local, identifications, you know, cities, towns, zip codes, that kind of stuff. It could really pay off for you. And you can get found through Google ads.

I hope this information helps. My name is Gene Marks. You’ve been listening to the Small Biz Ahead podcast. If you need advice, tips, thoughts on help running your business. Please visit us at We’ll see you again next week. Take care.

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