Rick: Yes. Paid media dollars are being moved to Search (Google//Bing), Facebook, and LinkedIn. Search always seems to be a steady driver of clicks and usually if examining the whole funnel search usually plays a role in influencing end clicks elsewhere in the funnel. FB and LI, have great results because of their ability to deliver more engaging content/creative and have powerful targeting capabilities. For all channels I would recommend leveraging custom audiences and re-marketing where you can.
Q2: What kind of landing page work should you do before starting a Paid Search campaign?
Rick: We see best results with a Clear top of page/above the fold CTA. If you at driving to leads to gated content, I recommend testing that to see if it works with your audience and campaigns. Search works best with as few steps to an end action as possible.
Q3: What is the minimum budget you need to make a Paid Search program worthwhile? How much for media, how much to hire help?
Rick: This is a difficult question as it has a lot of dependencies. Vertical, Keywords, brand awareness, and competition. depending on your KPI. You can allocate your funds in equal proportion and as your campaign runs you begin to shift budgets to media that perform better. But avoid the “last click” measurement model, try to measure and take into consideration the value search has on a FB click, even if search doesn’t get the last click.
For search you can use Google’s keyword planner and get an idea of search query volume and average CPC and then project that over the QTR then year. initially you want use this figure and add an additional 10-20% to it and run for 3-6 months and measure the results. You may find you cannot spend the money, or it may not be enough and will require additional investment. As far as staff resources, depending on account size, you may need a minimum of two people. one for PPC and one for Social. One can do it but they are two different practices that are involved enough to be a challenge for a single individual. But there are plenty of Agencies that handle any size business, so that is an option.
Q4: What are some ballpark Paid Search CPC and CPM rates these days for different industries?
Rick: Again this is a difficult question to answer. You can find a lot of info here https://trends.google.com/trends/ . CPC is effected by brand/non-brand keyword mix, Brand power, competition and quality score. etc. We have $40 keywords and keywords as low as $1 on branded terms. so again these are hard numbers to pin down.
Have more questions for Rick? Shoot me an email or find him on LinkedIn..