Category Archives: Online Marketing

LinkedIn Direct Ads – Test 2

Testing 1-2-3 – Again…

In November I began a test run of LinkedIn Direct Ads and wrote about it in this blog post. In the post I committed to posting an update. Here  it is…

The success of the campaign was not as desirable as I had hoped.  I was pleased with the number of impressions but the CTR was extremely low. On many levels I expected this because my audience size was very small (started with about 1000).  

If you read my blog you know that I believe in the Review and Revise philosophy.  You will not get the results you want unless you continually review campaign performance and make revisions to improve results.  I turned my LinkedIn campaign off for a month or so and recently turned it back on with the following significant changes.

  • Deactivated 2 out of 4 ad variations that did not get any results
  • Changed headline on one of the remaining ad variations
  • Created a new ad variation with a new headline and slightly revised copy
  • Increased my audience size from 1000 to 3300
  • Increased my bid (still deciding if I think leads from LinkedIn are worth the CPC rate)

I’ll post another update in a few weeks.  In the meantime, I will continue to review and revise the campaign to achieve optimal results. I would love to hear your experience with LinkedIn Direct Ads. Post your comments.

Looking for results…

~KK

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LinkedIn Direct Ads

Testing 1-2-3

I am a PPC veteran.  This and a buck fifty might get me a cup of coffee.  The online marketing and social media landscape changes so rapidly that you can be an expert in something in six months and a dinosaur in 10 seconds.

In an effort to promote my business as a marketing coach I am running a small test campaign LinkedIn Direct Ads geo-targeted to small business owners in my local area.  This pool is very small (about 1000 LinkedIn members). 

Clearly defining your goal before begin any marketing campaign is critical.  I have two:

  • Gain more readers for this blog
  • Find additional clients for my coaching and consulting business

Four ad variations, four headlines and two images are being tested in this campaign.  It has been up for about 24 hours and three of the four ad variations have about 250 impressions each- so far no clicks. I just added the fourth variation based on my results to date.  At some point I will review my campaign and revise where needed.  The method of review and revise for all types of marketing campaigns is a key element for success. 

As I mentioned my CTR (click through rate) is currently zero.  Here are some potential reasons why this is the case. Part of my review and revise methodology is to look at this list and determine what fits given all the factors involved.

Some possible reasons could be:

  • My ads are not compelling enough to illicit the desired response
  • My audience pool is too small
  • LinkedIn is not the right advertising venue for my services
  • The campaign has not had enough time for my audience to feel compelled to click through
  • A combination of any of these reasons
  • A multitude of other reasons

As a PPC veteran I am very aware that there are many reasons why a campaign might succeed or fail.  Sometimes it is about trial and error.  It helps when you have an experienced marketing professional who can coach you along the way.  If you are the coach you had better take your own advice.

I’ll keep you posted…

-KK


Affiliate Marketing Programs Basics: Is affiliate marketing appropriate for my business? (Post 2 of 5)

Affiliate Program – Yes or No?

Properly planned and managed affiliate programs can become an additional revenue stream for your business. If you read this blog you know that I believe proper planning is a key element to a success strategy. 

Before you dive into an affiliate marketing program it is important to make sure you are educated on the basics.  Failure to fully assess which advertising mediums are best for your company will cause your entire marketing plan to not make the grade. Depending on the type of product you sell, an affiliate program may be an excellent idea or it may be a terrible one. As part of your planning process make sure you know where you fall on this continuum.

Is an affiliate program right for my company?

Affiliate programs can be successful for a wide range of advertisers. Consider an affiliate program if you offer…

  1. Product or services that have broad appeal
    1. Find a network with a large, mass audience
      1. hint: start with a few select targets – go too broad & it is more difficult to manage
  2. Specialized or niche products or services
    1. Find a specialized network geared for your niche market
  3. Business to business products or services
    1. You can build a successful program with an affiliate provider that has a strong B2B network

If you are still uncertain whether an affiliate program is right for our organization contact your marketing coach. Feel free to drop me a line for general questions. I may blog about your questions.

The next blog will unpack some of the terms used in affiliate marketing.

-KK

Note: Companies that produce or sell raw/unfinished materials or extremely high-ticket items may not be the best candidates for an affiliate program.

Affiliate Marketing Programs Basics: Affiliate Marketing Defined (Post 1 of 5)

As a small business owner there are more online marketing options available than one can keep up with. Not every marketing channel is appropriate for every company.

An affiliate marketing program may provide an additional revenue stream for your business – if it is the right fit.

What is an affiliate marketing program?  

(Also called Affiliate Marketing, Advertising, Performance Marketing, Partner Marketing, CPA, or Associate Program) In an affiliate marketing program, a publisher receives a commission for generating a transaction, such as a lead or sale, for an advertiser that the publisher is promoting. The advertiser provides its ads to publishers and assigns a commission for each action it wants to accomplish. Publishers place the tracking code for these ads on their Web sites, in their email campaigns, or in search listings. Whenever a visitor uses these links to generate an action on the advertiser site, that transaction is tracked online. If a product or service is purchased, the customer pays the advertiser directly, and the publisher is paid a commission for that transaction.
Source: Commission Junction

Many affiliate program providers have a self-managed option or the program can be totally managed for you. If you have a marketing coach or a marketing person on staff I would recommend the self-managed option.  You will pay a premium for the managed version, however if you do not have the right person who can devote the necessary time to building your program then the managed version would be worthwhile.

Why would I want an affiliate program?

Properly planned and managed affiliate programs can become an additional revenue stream for your business. Success metrics for affiliate programs are easy to establish and measure. Since affiliate programs can directly generate revenue measuring ROI becomes easier.

Educate Yourself

If you think your company could benefit from an affiliate program it is important to fully educate yourself before making this decision.  Being educated about the good, the bad and the ugly sides of affiliate marketing is a key element to a successful program. As with many forms of online marketing and advertising set up can be a daunting task. Once the program is set-up strong, regular maintenance is required however; it will not be as intense as the initial set up process can be. Make sure you have done the necessary research and understand affiliate marketing before starting the actually process.  I learned from experience this will save you time. If you have someone in mind you can run your affiliate program for you, make sure they have experience or are going through the education process with you.

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5-Part Blog Series on Affiliate Marketing Programs

To coach you along and help in your education process there will be four more posts related to Affiliate Marketing.  I hope you will read them all and then consult your marketing coach for more information.

Affiliate Marketing Program Basics
  • Post 1 – Affiliate Marketing Defined
  • Post 2 – Is affiliate marketing appropriate for my business?
  • Post 3 – Affiliate marketing terms
  • Post 4 – Choosing an Affiliate Program network
  • Post 5 – Self-managed vs. Managed program

Helping you get affiliated…

-KK


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