Four keyword research tools a PPC specialist would use and other keyword tips.
Traditionally, the worlds of online display advertising and search marketing have mainly operated in silos. The two tactics may both be part of the bigger online strategy, but the people involved with search generally do not really work in or understand display and vice-versa. Lately however, it feels like there's a greater interest in fusing the two worlds together, maybe fueled by the diversion of traffic away from search and into social media and/or Google's rebranding of its Content Network into Display Network. Regardless, when the search and display professionals come together, a lot can be gained from the sharing of information. Today, let me give my media planning brethren some tips from the search side.
Keywords Tell a Lot
For the online media strategist, an existing PPC campaign can be a goldmine of information. Keyword performance can help sculpt various directions of the campaign from its creative concepts, messaging and copywriting to identifying sites to target for placements or new niche opportunities. Don't have an existing PPC campaign to turn to? Consider a bit of keyword research in the vein of a start-up PPC campaign for all the same insights mentioned previously.
Begin by using the same keyword research tools a PPC specialist would:
Useful Information From Competitive Search
In addition to datamining existing advertiser and generic public assets, it can be useful to apply the same techniques as above to some of the free and paid competitive search tools. Google AdWords' Analyze Competition feature, SEMRush, and SpyFu are all free or quasi-free tools. The Search Monitor, a for-fee platform, gives all kinds of juicy information about competitors as well as trademark infringements and affiliate miscreants. AdGooroo, also a for-fee platform, has some similar elements as The Search Monitor along with a "Display Insight" feature which can definitely be exploited by a media planner/buyer.
Another Thing You Can Do With Keywords
I'm a big fan of contextual advertising, much of which is based on keywords, so your campaign may only perform as well as you've compiled a sound list of proven keywords to provide to your vendors. Your contextual network representative can tell you not only how many impressions they estimate, but also what related keywords you might have missed and other opportunities to exploit your list.
Want to hear more on this topic? Come hear me speak on the "Crossing the Digital Divide: The Leap from Search to Display" panel at the Search Engine Strategies Conference in New York next month!
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A ClickZ expert columnist since 2005, Hollis Thomases (@hollisthomases) is president and founder of Maryland-based WebAdvantage.net, an online marketing company that provides results-centric, strategic Internet marketing services, including online media planning, SEO, PPC campaign management, social media marketing, and Internet consulting. Author of Twitter Marketing: An Hour a Day and an award-winning entrepreneur, Hollis is the Maryland 2007 SBA Small Business Person of the Year. Hollis speaks extensively on online marketing, having presented for ClickZ, the American Marketing Association, SES, The Newsletter and Electronic Publishers Association, The Kelsey Group, and the Vocus Worldwide User Forum. WebAdvantage.net's client list has included Nokia USA, Nature Made Vitamins, Johns Hopkins University, ENDO Pharmaceuticals, K'NEX Construction Toys, and Visit Baltimore. The agency was recognized as a "Small Giant" by the Greater Baltimore Tech Council and was chosen as a "Best Place for Business Women to Work" by "Smart Woman Magazine."
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