February 21, 2013 By adamlu,
There are many tests in life ranging from correctly entering the code in Contra (up,up, down, down, left, right, start) to the SAT's. My test right now is to pass the AdWords test. Here at Digital Operative we set goals per quarter, and my goal this quarter is to get re-certified in Google AdWords. I received my certification about a year and a half ago but - like the yogurt in my fridge - my certification has expired. In preparation for this test I use Evernote to take notes while I read, “Advanced Google AdWords” by Brad Geddes. Though this book is a little dry in that it is like reading a 500-page technical manual, it is also a good reminder of the many aspects of Google AdWords. Geddes goes out of his way to provide interesting ideas in a boring way as how to better use Google AdWords. Along my journey I will be offering my insight from reading the book in my aptly named monthly series: Things I learned by reading 'Advanced Google AdWords' in preparation for my AdWords exam recertification.

1. Don’t serve up ads, serve up answers.

Geddes suggests that people do not pay attention to ads, they pay attention to answers. He provides the example of driving along the freeway where a driver sees billboard after billboard and pays attention to none of them. The reason for the driver's lack of attentiveness is because he sees the billboards as advertisements and his mind is not looking for the information they are offering. However, part of the way into the drive he begins to get hungry and wants to stop and eat, at this point the driver begins to notice the billboards. The billboards have ceased to be advertisements and instead have become valuable information (delicious places to eat). This is how Geddes suggests AdWords ads and landing pages be thought of – they are answers to questions. Geddes states that it cannot be an ad, if it provides valuable information.

2. Align your goals.

Unlike the LA Lakers, advertisers in the AdWords ecosystem work together. Each part of the AdWords ecosystem has a unique goal, but all parts work together to make this one of the most efficient advertising systems ever created. Geddes suggests it is important to think of all parties' goals when creating the advertising campaign.

a. The User

The user has a question that needs to be answered. The user goes to Google and looks for a specific answer. Whether the answer comes from organic search or a paid ad, the user will be happy if their question is answered. The user supports Google’s goals by searching on Google as well as by clicking on the ad. The user supports the advertiser goals by going to the site and completing a conversion.

b. Google

Google's goal is to supply the user with a good answer to their question so they will keep coming back. If Google supplies a good answer then the user will return. Google only gets paid when someone clicks on the ad, as such it is important for Google to serve up ads that a user will want to click on. Lastly, Google supports the user’s goals with an answer to their question and supports the advertiser’s goals by sending a potential customer to the site.

c. Advertisers

Advertisers want to deliver ads that answer the user's question and the advertiser's goal is to get users to convert on their site. This is the advertiser’s chance to get traffic to the site and hopefully make a conversion. The advertiser will want to serve up an ad that is relevant as well because the advertiser has to pay for every click. There is little point in getting irrelevant traffic to the site. The advertiser supports the user’s goals by giving them the answer that they need and supports Google’s by paying for the click and providing a relevant answer that will make the user happy.

Adam Lundquist plans on getting re-certified....soon... Connect with Adam on Google+.

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