3 Simple But Powerful Search Ads Strategies To Use Right Now

Man seeing search ads on screen.

As we continue to weather uncertain times, many businesses are reviewing their current advertising. Recent reports show search ad spending is down as much as $8 billion. Even Google slashed its marketing budget by 50% in the last week.

Not every industry is going to be impacted in the same way. Indeed, some sectors are seeing increased volume and performance.

Regardless, Google is rallying to help businesses affected, including $340 million in Google Ads credits for SMBs.

Right now, there is one thing that all industries have in common: the ability to use ads to their advantage. As I’ve outlined previously, now is not the time to completely stop marketing or advertising.

Even if you’re in a sector that is almost at a complete halt, you can use search ads to keep in touch, stay on top of mind, and drive conversions.

1. Pivot Your Offerings

In response to current conditions, many businesses are pivoting their focus completely, or offering free or low-cost versions of their products and services.

For example, booze makers are turning to hand-sanitizing products amidst the shortage. Others are now offering free shipping.

Microsoft Advertising released insights and trends that include specific advice for certain industries. The auto industry, for example, should be focusing on deals and incentives right now.

Whatever it is that is changing with your business, you’re going to need to communicate it, and you can do that with search ads.

2. Change Your Messaging

Now is the time to revamp your messaging if you haven’t already. For many businesses, ads are on autopilot. But you need to make sure your messaging matches the current tone of the crisis.

For airlines and hotels, that may mean discussing future travel plans. For restaurants, you may want to highlight delivery and pick-up options, and how you are ensuring food safety.

For some, that means promoting top-of-the-funnel content in your search ads. This could include videos, podcasts, webinars, and other marketing initiatives. It might be as simple as driving ad traffic to landing pages with COVID-19-specific information.

And yes, you can use PPC for crisis communications. The manufacturers of Corona beer would have had the perfect opportunity to do so when people stopped buying Corona beer after the coronavirus outbreak.

So think about it. What key information do you need to disseminate when someone searches for your brand online right now? Use the search ads channel to your advantage as people are still searching online, albeit in different ways.

3. Consider Location Targeting

Make sure you think about how the current crisis will impact your location targeting now and in the future.

It’s no surprise that 20 percent of advertisers have decreased their local geotargeting as a result of COVID-19.

But what about the future? In a recent post, I talked about how the current crisis will change the way we live and search. And that can have huge implications for search advertising.

In the future, city centers may see a dramatic decrease in foot and car traffic, impacting local businesses. Local neighborhood businesses, on the other hand, have the potential to reign as a result of a new work-from-home economy.

For both categories of local businesses, a customer’s first touch point is likely to be a Google search (versus the normal kind of traffic that local businesses tend to see).

In conclusion, yes, we’re in uncertain times. But one thing we have control over is how we add value now and communicate that to our audience. Search ads are just one way we can show our audience we are still here.

Interested in helping manage your PPC search marketing? Contact us for a free consultation.

FAQ: What trends should I consider for location targeting in a changing landscape?

Location targeting has become a cornerstone of successful marketing campaigns. With consumer behavior and technology constantly evolving, it’s essential to stay ahead of the curve. Here, we’ll explore the key trends you should consider for location targeting in this changing landscape.

  1. Hyper-Personalization is King

In a world inundated with marketing messages, hyper-personalization stands out. Leveraging user data, you can tailor your content and offers to individual preferences. This not only enhances customer engagement but also boosts conversion rates. Utilize advanced analytics tools to gather insights into consumer behavior, enabling you to create highly targeted campaigns.

  1. Privacy Matters More than Ever

With increasing concerns about data privacy, it’s crucial to prioritize user consent and data security. Transparency in data collection and usage builds trust with your audience. Ensure compliance with data protection regulations like GDPR and CCPA to avoid hefty fines and maintain a positive brand reputation.

  1. Geofencing for Precision Targeting

Geofencing allows you to draw virtual boundaries around specific geographic areas, triggering personalized content or offers when users enter or exit these zones. This trend is particularly valuable for local businesses seeking to attract nearby customers. Ensure your geofencing strategy aligns with your target audience’s movements.

  1. AI and Machine Learning Integration

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) technologies can analyze vast datasets and provide real-time insights. Implement AI-driven algorithms to predict user behavior and automate decision-making processes, optimizing your location targeting efforts.

  1. Augmented Reality (AR) Experiences

AR is gaining ground in location-based marketing. Brands are using AR to create interactive, immersive experiences for customers. By integrating AR elements into your campaigns, you can engage users in novel ways and leave a lasting impression.

The landscape of location targeting is ever-changing, but by staying informed about these trends, you can position your marketing efforts for success. Hyper-personalization, data privacy, geofencing, AI, and AR experiences are all pivotal aspects of this dynamic field. Embrace these trends, adapt your strategies, and watch your marketing campaigns thrive in the changing landscape.

Step-by-Step Procedure:

  1. Begin by understanding the importance of location targeting in modern marketing.
  2. Embrace hyper-personalization as a core strategy, utilizing advanced analytics for insights.
  3. Prioritize user data privacy and comply with relevant data protection regulations.
  4. Explore geofencing techniques to engage local audiences effectively.
  5. Implement AI and ML technologies to optimize your location targeting efforts.
  6. Consider integrating AR experiences into your campaigns for enhanced engagement.
  7. Continuously monitor industry trends and adapt your strategies accordingly.

By following these steps, you can effectively leverage location targeting trends to stay competitive in the ever-evolving marketing landscape.

Bruce Clay is founder and president of Bruce Clay Inc., a global digital marketing firm providing search engine optimization, pay-per-click, social media marketing, SEO-friendly web architecture, and SEO tools and education. Connect with him on LinkedIn or through the BruceClay.com website.

See Bruce's author page for links to connect on social media.

Comments (3)
Still on the hunt for actionable tips and insights? Each of these recent PPC/Pay-Per-Click posts is better than the last!

3 Replies to “3 Simple But Powerful Search Ads Strategies To Use Right Now”

Absolutely true. Messaging is very crucial for any Google ads campaign. Because people get attracted to click on an Ad after reading the copy. I think it is better to convert the unique value proposition of the brand and other benefits/ advantages in the Ad description.

Comment *
thanks for an educative strategies I found them helpful and when applied to an add search it will have an added value to add and to the searcher

my wish is to work with you Mr Bruce

Let me check my ads!

Thank you :)


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