Is Your AdWords Account Too Big?

It is a good plan to structure your AdWords account using themes with a different theme or service in each ad group, but make sure that when you are structuring your account that you plan to grow in an effective way.

I have seen in the last couple of weeks a few accounts that simply got carried away with the idea of creating new ad groups. One account had over 20 ad groups with several competing between themselves, another account did not group products together and had 50 ad groups with some that had only one or two keywords in the ad group. Another I reviews, had so many campaigns that the budget for some campaigns was so ridiculously low that it was no wonder that they had no impressions for the entire month.

If you self manage your AdWords account, you have the opportunity to create as many ad groups as you want, but when you have 15 to 20 ad groups and you want a professional such as myself to manage the program for you, you will pay your account manager to open each ad group and manage each program. It typically takes us three hours of our time per month to work on a program with 10 ad groups and that is on a once a week schedule. That’s after the account is really performing. If you have a program that is not performing, double that time for management – that’s six hours. You can just get carried away creating ad groups that you really don’t need that will bloat your account, parse your budget too many ways, and compete against each other.

When we create ad groups we definitely want themes, but also keep an eye on the budget and the time it will take to manage your program. We want your full AdWords program including management to be an investment in your success not to be an expense.


When Was the Last Time You Redesigned Your Website?

I am often asked to perform code optimization services on websites in an effort to improve organic search placement. One of our determining factors of if we will consider a project as a good match for us, is how recently the site had been created. If your website is three, four, or five years old, it is by far better to invest in a website redesign with a firm that focuses on organic placement than it is to try to put an SEO band-aid on an old website.

Content creation and optimization services are not inexpensive. It is not unusual for a 15 page website to cost over $2,500 to optimize plus including new website pages and content as part of the process. However if the website looks dated, is not using new technology, or is not built with reader and search engine friendly code, we will typically not take on the project as it is not providing good service to the client in the long run.

The look and feel of websites have changed over time and it is important that your website have a contemporary feel. Content is one of the most important factors in getting organic placement. If your website has very little content and has a website design that does not allow site growth (both in the navigation and amount of content on the page), the money that would have been earmarked for code optimization should be saved for redesign and new content creation.

Be smart about how you spend your money especially when it comes to your website.


So You Are Updating Facebook But How Can You Get More Fans?

So you are doing everything right, you are updating Facebook regularly and trying to interact with clients and customers there. You are sharing photos and occasional videos, but are concerned that your fan base is just not growing. What can you do?

First, your social community grows by a combined online and offline effort. Yes, it is important to make sure that you have something valuable for fans and potential fans to read when they hit your Facebook Business Page, but your fan base will not grow all by itself. To grow a Facebook fan base you need to be doing the following to drive traffic and create your own “buzz”.

1. Make sure you have a Facebook icon on your website and blog. You would be amazed at how many people forget this important step.

2. If you are blogging and you really should be, make sure you are blogging about what you are doing on Facebook and link in your posts as well.

3. In your newsletter, which you should be doing also, you need to link to Facebook and also talk about the valuable tips and tricks you are listing there or the other things you are routinely sharing on Facebook.

4. On Twitter, which you should be doing as well, you should be driving traffic to your Facebook page. Again talk about value and link to the videos or pictures you are sharing.

5. In your email signature you should be linking to all your online properties: website, blog, Facebook, and Twitter. Let everyone of your emails be an advertisement of how people can connect with you online.

6. If your fan base is still stagnant after aggressively pursing these avenues, now’s the time to consider a Facebook contest, giveaway, or even Facebook pay per click ads.

There is great value in building your Facebook fan base. Doing so allows you to market using the Facebook encapsulated email client directly to your fans’ inbox bypassing spam filters. You want to consider this access as a special trust. Don’t spam your users and really try to have your notes provide value as well as highlight service offerings.

The more you work your network, the more it will grow, but remember it does not grow over night, it does take time. If you need help getting started on Facebook, I invite you to check out our services.


How to Set Up a My Client Center in adCenter

If you are using Google AdWords for multiple accounts you are most likely using a Google AdWords My Client Center better known as a MCC. A MCC allows you to link and unlink many client accounts so that you can easily work on and navigate between many accounts with one login. Microsoft adCenter has this same set up but it is called Agency Management.

Here’s how to set up an adCenter account to be like a MCC to easily manage multiple accounts.

  1. First your own account which I will call the agency account must have been created after November 2009. Mine was created in 2005 so I had to create a new one. Any client accounts that are older will have to be re-created in order to link them. This is not a big deal as you can do this all with adCenter desktop.
  2. Go into your first client account and click the “Accounts & Billing” tab, then click the sub tab “Agency Management”.  Then in the body click the button “Invite Agency”. Enter in the customer number your agency has given you and an email address of one of the agency owners. The agency will find this customer number on their “Account & Billing” tab and it typically starts with a C.
  3. The agency will then receive an invitation to connect via email. Make sure that you respond by clicking the link. On doing so this new client will now appear in your agency account and you can see it when you click the “Agency Management” tab.
  4. Now here’s the tricky part that is not really covered clearly in the help instructions. You cannot see that account in your agency drop down menu until you do several things. First in your agency adCenter account go to the “Account & Billing” tab again. This time click the “Users” tab and set up a new name and email address as a user. You will not be able to use the same ID as that of the agency account.  Enter in all the personal information for the user. On that same screen but on the far left is a box called “Account Roles”, here instead of clicking “Super User” you should click the radio button next to “Client Admin” you will then see your new client account name and you will tick the box next to the client name to connect your new agency user with the client.
  5. The new agency user that you have set up will receive an email and a request to create a online access account with a password. This login is different from the Agency login. From this new agency user account, you will now see a list of clients and can easily click one to manage it.
  6. If you have multiple accounts, once you have finished managing one, just search in the top Right search box for the next client name to return to your master client account list to visit the next account.

The key to set up is to have really two accounts the agency account and then the agency user account. If you don’t create the user account and then tie it to the client you can’t see your client account at all. Hope this helps you get started.

Now, if you are looking for a savvy adCenter certified account manager, make sure to check out our services page for details and pricing.


Microsoft adCenter Customer Support Gets My Thumbs Up

Cathy H. at Microsoft adCenter gets a big thank you from me this last week for her help in resolving a problem. I want to say that in my experience adCenter has one of the most knowledgeable and tenacious when it comes to working with you to resolve a problem. I give them a big thumbs up!

Any client can call the adCenter 1-800 number to get help. Telephone support is not predicated on how much you spend as it is at Google AdWords. With Microsoft adCenter you can actually talk to a real person immediately. Not only will they work to help you then, but will call you back, allow you to speak to them personally on a second call (versus having to go into a phone tree and start all over with a new rep.), but they are smart and courteous on top of that.

Here is their contact information so if you have a need you can call too:

United States:
Telephone: (800) 518-5689 6:00am-18:00 pm PST seven days a week

If you are considering trying out adCenter for your pay per click advertising I recommend them to you. (I am not being paid for this blog post, just have had a great experience and wanted to share it with you.)


Windows Live Writer a Great Blogging Tool

nancy-2011If you blog occasionally or even if you blog a lot, Windows Live Writer may replace creating your blog post in the control panel as your blog editor of choice. I am finding that it is sometimes easier and faster to blog in Microsoft’s free Live Writer application than it is to write in Word when I am on the go or for that matter faster than working directly in my WordPress control panel.

These are the things I like about Windows Live Writer:

  • Ability to work offline and so I can blog while sitting in a waiting room.
  • Ability to easily add images from my clip art gallery to my blog posts.
  • Ability to save my blog post to my computer automatically without thought or a second action if I am working live.
  • I like the spell checker and word count feature. Particularly the word count feature!
  • I like the ability to set up multiple blog accounts and switch between them at will.

I have Windows Live Writer set up on my laptop so I can blog anywhere I go – the soccer field, the waiting room at the dentist, and in the car (if I am not driving). I have found that I like it so much that I am using it more and more just for blogging while I am sitting at my own computer. I find it significantly easier to quickly add photos and style text than when I am working live on my WordPress blog online.

To have it work, you will need your blog admin or user login but that is about it. You don’t even need FTP access.

If you want to check it out, you can get the free download here. You may find out like me that it becomes your application of choice.