Category: Paid Ads

Paid Ads

How to Create Local Services Ads

Did you know roughly a third of U.S. shoppers check out local business listings online daily? To me, this means there’s a real opportunity to grow your business if you find a way to quickly and reliably connect with the best leads.

How do you achieve this?

By creating a Local Services Ad. Let’s dive in and explore why these ads are such an invaluable tool for finding customers and building your brand.

What Are Local Services Ads?

Local Services Ads connect you to local customers searching for the services you offer, whether you’re a tradesperson or small business owner.

  • They’re pay-per-lead rather than pay-per-click, meaning you only pay if someone contacts you through the ad.
  • Using these ads means you’re Google guaranteed; if someone’s unhappy with your work, Google refunds the cost.
  • Ads “rank” based on the number of positive reviews and customers served.

Here’s an example. When customers Google a search term like “New York plumber,” businesses running Local Services Ads appear at the top of the search results.

Local Services Ads Listings Lead Management Google Ads

If you click to see more plumbers, multiple listings show up.

Local Services Ads Google My Business Google Ads

To be clear, Local Services Ads aren’t the same as Google Ads or Google My Business.

  • Google Ads are pay-per-click, not pay-per-lead. This means you pay whenever someone clicks the ad, even if they don’t contact you or take action.
  • Google My Business lets you verify your business online and add contact details, including a website link. It’s not an ad.

You can use all three features, or opt for just one. It’s up to you!

How Do Local Services Ads Work?

Think of Local Services Ads as a fast-track ticket to positive leads. A few stats will show you why.

  • Four in five people want to see local ads when they’re searching for goods or services online. Local ads mean you’re giving users what they want, which, as good marketers know, makes your business all the more appealing.
  • Roughly 75 percent of local searches end in a phone call. In other words, these users are actively looking for goods or services, so you want to be one of the first listings to catch their eye.
  • 76 percent of customers visit a business within 24 hours of searching for them online. Local ads help you connect with these leads in the quickest time possible by putting you among the top search options.

In short, these local ads help you find leads who are primed to become paying customers. They’re a highly cost-effective and efficient way to market your business at the local level.

Let’s now return to our plumbing example above and work through the features of a typical listing. If we click on “Petri Plumbing & Heating,” here’s what the listing looks like:

Local Services Ads Local SEO Search Engine

This plumber has a 4.6 out of 5-star rating with 504 reviews, they’re accepting customers, and there’s a telephone number to lead potential clients to take the next step.

If we go down further, there’s a business overview. This is where you can set out:

  • Which services you offer
  • Your opening hours
  • The ZIP codes or area you work in
  • Business highlights, e.g., if you’re locally-owned or have a BBB A+ rating

Finally, there’s a section where customers can leave a review or read reviews left by others.

Local Services Ads - Reviews

If someone books a job through your listing and leaves a review, it’s verified by Google as legitimate. Long term, this reassures prospects that you are a legitimate, trustworthy business.

Managing Local Services Ad Leads and Pricing

Do you need to take every job the ad brings your way? No.

  • If a customer contacts you with a job you’re not interested in, you can reject it without penalty. You’ll still pay for the lead, though.
  • You can pause your ad for a short period. Since no one’s contacting you through the ad, you won’t be charged anything during this time.

Simply put, you’re still free to choose the jobs you want, and you only pay for the ad when there’s a high chance of conversion, i.e., a prospect contacts you.

Steps to Create a Local Services Ad

Ready to create your own ad? Let’s work through the setup process together, starting with the basics.

1. Check Your Eligibility

Local Services Ads aren’t available for everyone just yet, so the first step is checking your eligibility. It’s really quick and easy to do.

Click the “Get Started” button on Google’s local service homepage.

Next, select your country, ZIP code, and job categories from the drop-down menus.

Local Services Ads - Check Your Eligibility

If Local Service Ads are available to you, move on to the next step.

2. Create a Local Services Ad Profile

Congratulations, you can set up a Local Services Ad! Now it’s time to write a great profile. Your profile determines, among other things:

  • Who finds your listing
  • Which jobs come your way

In other words, it’s important to get it right.

First, input basic details, including your business name and contact details. You need to provide your own name, too, but it won’t show up on the listing.

Once you’ve completed the first screen, it’s time to add specific details about what services you offer, how much you charge, and the ZIP codes you service.

For instance, if you’re a plumber, here are possible services you can offer:

Local Services Ads - Create Your Profile

So, if you can’t repair sewers or garbage disposals (or you don’t want to offer these services), you can remove these options.

This lets prospective customers know what to expect before they contact you, meaning there’s less chance of you sifting through jobs you don’t want.

You’ll also note the important caveat at the bottom of the screen: You shouldn’t offer services that you aren’t qualified to complete safely. It’s also your responsibility to ensure you have the right licenses to work legally.

One other thing: Even if you’re registered for other Google services, like Google My Business, you still need to create a separate profile for Local Services Ads.

3. Submit Relevant Paperwork

To improve service quality, Google needs you to upload various documents. You must prove you’re:

  • Qualified to work in your chosen industry
  • Licensed to work in the jurisdiction

Why must you upload these documents? Well, it’s all part of the Google Guarantee. Google won’t cover you unless you can prove you’re properly licensed.

Before you complete this section, verify your paperwork is accurate. I’d also suggest double-checking which licenses you need in your jurisdiction to make sure you upload the right documents.

How do you know which documents to provide? Google has a list. If we stick with our plumber example, here are which documents you need:

Local Services Ads - Submit Relevant Paperwork

4. Complete the Background Check

If you’re based in the U.S. or Canada, you and all your employees must complete a background check before you can visit customers at their home address or workplace.

Again, it’s a fairly simple process. Google’s background check partner contacts you, and they’ll ask for relevant information. They’ll cross-check the info you and your team provide against national registries, and they’ll confirm your Social Security numbers are valid.

Do you pay for this background check? Thankfully, no.

5. Manage Your Budget

Once you complete your business profile and pass the background check, you’re ready to start advertising. There’s still one essential box to tick, and that’s setting your budget.

Here’s how it works.

  • You decide how many leads you want in a week or month. This determines how much you’re prepared to spend. For example, if you don’t want to pay for more than 20 leads per month, don’t set a budget for 30.
  • You’re only charged for each lead you generate through these ads, so if you only receive 10 leads, you won’t spend your whole budget that month.
  • It’s easy to tweak your budget if you want more or fewer leads at any time.

To start, it’s probably best to set a modest budget and lead target. You can test the waters this way and increase your budget over time if you feel it’s a good service for you.

6. Review Ad Leads

Just remember, “leads” aren’t customers until you book a job. That’s why it’s key to stay ahead of your leads and follow up on them.

You can review your leads on your desktop inbox or through the mobile app. You’ll always be notified of a new lead anyway, but viewing them this way may make it easier to take action on them.

Best Practices for Local Services Ads

Not sure what to include in your Local Services Ad? Don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. Here are my five top tips for writing an effective ad and generating the best possible leads for your business.

1. Personalize Local Services Ads

First, make sure your local listing showcases your company’s plus points. Here’s what I mean.

  • Explain why you stand out from the competition. What makes you the right service provider for the job?
  • Highlight selling points. For example, if you offer emergency callouts or out-of-hours services, state this in your ad.
  • Use short sentences where possible. They’re easier to read.

The more information you provide, the more likely prospects are to contact you.

2. Include Relevant Details in Local Services Ads

Think about this from a customer’s perspective. What other details do they need to decide to use your business? Here are some examples.

  • Be really clear about which ZIP codes you serve and if your services vary between areas.
  • Set out working hours in a user-friendly format.

What’s relevant varies from business to business, so give it some thought before you complete your listing.

3. Respond to Leads Promptly

Remember, these leads are users actively looking for the services you provide, so don’t let them go cold. Here are some tips to manage your inbox.

  • If you miss a call, return it as soon as possible, even if you’re rejecting the job. Frequently missed or unreturned calls can lower your ad ranking.
  • Set aside blocks of time throughout the day to return messages and follow up on emails.

Most people don’t expect an instant reply, because good service providers are usually busy! However, if your goal is to book jobs and build your business through Local Services Ads, you need to keep a close eye on your dashboard.

4. Encourage Customer Reviews

According to Google, customer reviews directly influence your ad ranking. How do you get those all-important positive reviews? Well, great service is a must, but you also need to ask for them. Here’s how.

  • There’s an “ask for review” button next to each job. Click it to send a review link to the customer.
  • Or, once you book a lead and mark it as completed, ask the customer for a review.

One other point: The top search results, whether it’s a paid ad or organic result, draw over 75 percent of the traffic, so get those positive reviews rolling in.

Local Services Ads - Encourage Customer Reviews

5. Review for Accuracy

Have you moved premises? Do you need to change your opening hours?

Make sure you update your Local Services Ad to reflect changes like these. Otherwise, you might deter potential customers from working with you.

Finally, keep details consistent across all your profiles, including, for example, Google My Business.

Why is consistency so important? Well, it helps potential customers find you more easily, and it might even build some trust in your brand.


Over 46 percent of Google searches are local, and Local Services Ads can really help you tap into this huge potential customer base. I highly recommend using these listings as part of a diverse, well-rounded digital marketing strategy.

Just remember to keep your information accurate and respond to leads promptly to make the most of your ads.

If you’re unsure where to get started with Google ads or digital marketing more generally, check out my consulting services and free SEO analyzer.

Are you using Local Services Ads to find customers? How are they working for you?

The post How to Create Local Services Ads appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

What is a Retail Media Network?

The marketing and advertising industry is a fast-paced industry.

With technology evolving rapidly, people have found it more convenient to do their shopping and other transactions online.

With digital interactions overtaking in-person activities, this shift in people’s lifestyles means one thing for businesses — they need to pivot fast. Failure to do so can only lead to losing customers.

Enter retail media networks.

What is a Retail Media Network?

With more and more people shopping online, retail media just makes sense.

But what exactly is a retail media network?

A retail media network is when retailers set up an advertising platform on their website, app, or other digital platforms within their network. This allows the store, and other brands, to advertise to customers on sites like CVS or Walgreens. It’s a form of in-store advertising in a digital format.

Here’s an example from CVS’s homepage. Notice the “sponsored” tag in the bottom right corner — this isn’t just a product listing; it’s an ad from a face mask company right on CVS’s website.

retail media CVS example

Ads on retail media networks can be displayed on many pages, including:

  • The home page
  • Category page
  • Search page
  • Product detail page

This enables advertisers to reach shoppers at the various stages of their buyer journey.

The reason retail media works so well is that shoppers are more receptive to ads when shopping than when they’re carrying out other non-shopping related activities.

Pros and Cons of Retail Media

Retail media is changing the way shoppers and brands interact. But is this new form of advertising and marketing a good thing or not?

Well, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of retail media and find out.

Pros of Retail Media

We’ll start by looking at the advantages of retail media and breaking them down according to the players involved.

For Retailers

The most significant advantage of retail media for retailers is that it creates a new revenue stream. Advertising is big business, and a retail media network enables retailers to tap into this $560 billion industry.

Profit margins on consumer packaged goods (CPG) have taken a tumble in the past few years. The revenue generated by retail media has been a lifeline for retailers looking to boost their profits.

Retailers that leverage retail media have become the new media moguls, thanks to the rise of e-commerce. This has opened up a new world of possibilities in how they can generate revenue.

For Consumers

Shoppers also benefit from retail media in a few ways.

The first benefit is it offers better price control for customers. With retailers generating revenue from ads, they won’t be as quick to raise their prices. An increase in pricing could result in a drop in traffic, spiraling into reduced ad revenue.

Secondly, retail media benefits shoppers by offering a better customer experience (CX). Sure, ads can be annoying. But if done well, they can help shoppers make better purchase decisions. They can also remind shoppers about related products they may want.

For Advertisers

One of the biggest advantages of retail media for advertisers is that it gives them access to first-party data.

First-party data is data collected and owned by the website owner, and in this case, that’s the retailer. It’s clean and more reliable than third-party data collected by other methods such as cookies.

The best part of first-party data is that it’s collected right at the point of sale, giving you better insight into buyer behavior.  

Why is this so important?

One word: personalization.

Personalization plays a huge role in designing and executing ad campaigns that convert. To do this, you need accurate data.

Another reason first-party data has become so valuable is because of the impending death of cookies.  

For Brands

For brands that advertise on retail media networks, the most significant advantage is that it’s easier to tie ad spend to sales. Because sales happen closer to the ads, it’s easier to attribute a sale to a specific ad and action. This is crucial to strategic decisions such as resource allocation.

Another advantage for brands is that these ads increase visibility, which helps drive sales.

Even though it’s still in its infancy, retail media is already proving to be a powerful form of advertising set to change the future of online shopping experiences.

Cons of Retail Media

With retail media looking so good, could it have any disadvantages?

One of the biggest disadvantages of retail media is that it gives more power to brands that are already big. It creates an uneven playing field for smaller brands that don’t have the traffic, budget, and infrastructure to set up retail media networks of their own.

Another disadvantage of retail media is that it’s a new field that requires infrastructure that most retailers don’t have. Because of that, it’s a learning curve for all the parties involved.

The Rise of Retail Media: Explained

Many brands had already jumped on the digital transformation bandwagon before retail media networks came on the field. They invested in mobile apps where customers could shop for products and get delivery right to their homes.

When the pandemic hit, these websites and apps became instrumental in generating sales for retailers. Research shows that 80% of people are now doing over half of their shopping online. The same study reveals that 60% of respondents said they’d continue shopping online even after the pandemic.

What does this have to do with retail media networks?


This shift in traffic to retailer websites and apps birthed a new form of advertising.

That new form of advertising comes in the form of retailer media networks.

In short, this means brands advertising on retailers’ websites and apps. These can be brands that sell directly on the store or brands that want to reach that store’s audience.

Leveraging already warm traffic to create retail media networks is powerful. That’s because these networks benefit everyone involved, from the retailer to the brands advertising to the shoppers.

Brands with Retail Media Networks

Interested to know which brands have their own retail media networks and how they do it?

Let’s look at three brands that caught the shift early and are seeing great results with their retail media.


Originally known as the Consumer Value Store, CVS has become a force to reckon with on the American retail scene.

CVS retail media example

CVS is one of the first brands to launch its own retail media network, dubbed the CVS Media Exchange (CMX).

CMX allows brands to place their products on channels informed by CV’s first data. This includes off-site as well as on-site targeted ads. When it comes to customer data, CVS has the edge over most retail ad networks, thanks to their:

  • Close to 10,000 locations nationwide
  • Decades of consumer data through their loyalty programs
  • High-traffic online platforms

With this huge data bank at their disposal, advertisers are better equipped to create personalized ads and place them strategically for optimum visibility.


Walgreens is not green behind the ears when it comes to executing digital ad campaigns for other brands.

Retail media walgreens example

So it’s no surprise that Walgreens has decided to formalize things and launch a retail media network called Walgreens Advertising Group (Wag).

Wag offers ad placement on their online store, in their brick-and-mortar stores, as well as on other digital platforms such as social media and Google.


Retail and e-commerce giant Amazon is another brand that has mastered retail media and runs its own network.

It’s called Amazon Advertising.

Brands with Retail Media Networks Amazon Advertising

Thanks to its massive digital footprint, Amazon can offer brands more in terms of the kind of campaigns they want to run. It also gives them access to one of the world’s largest customer data banks as well as a massive audience (over 200 million in the U.S alone).

Amazon Advertising works much like Google Ads. Brands that want to be found have to bid for keywords and pay each time their ad is clicked.

Retail Media Advertisers

Since most retailers don’t have the infrastructure and know-how to run retail media networks, how do they pull it off?

Most of them get external help. Here are some of the top retail media advertisers who are powering the retail media movement:


Criteo is one of the leading retail media advertising platforms around. They make it easy for media buyers to purchase retail media with ease, thanks to their end-to-end service platform.

Retail Media Advertisers Criteo

The platform gives brands and retailers full control of their campaigns and easy access to data and analytics. Robust APIs also allow you to use your marketing tool of choice.

One thing Criteo boasts of is its transparent platform. For retailers, this makes it easier to grow their retail media network, while brands have more flexibility when it comes to choosing the retailers they want to partner with.

Promote IQ

Another retail media advertiser that enables brands to advertise their products on retailers’ websites is Promote IQ.

Retail Media Advertisers Promote IQ

Acquired by Microsoft in 2019, Promote IQ gives retailers full control of the end-user experience. This helps make the retail media seamlessly blend in with the retailer’s website.

Promote IQ claims they can help retailers generate 5X their revenue by cutting out the middleman and working directly with brands through their platform. Promote IQ also provides automation capabilities to streamline and increase your campaigns’ effectiveness.

Brands get more visibility and higher conversions thanks to Promote IQ’s powerful data and analytics platform. This helps create hyper-targeted ads that resonate with shoppers, driving up conversions.


Another advertiser shaking up the retail media world is Elevaate.

Retail Media Advertisers Elevaate

Elevaate understands the hassle retailers face setting up a retail media network. That’s why they designed a platform that’s as easy to set up as it is effective in generating revenue. With Elevaate, retailers can maximize their digital real estate profits without compromising their shoppers’ experience.

Elevaate promises increased visibility and high return on ad spend (ROAS) by offering precise targeting.

How to Create a Retail Media Network for Your Brand

So how can you create a retail media network to boost sales for your brand? If your brand has a large amount of traffic, consider using one of the tools above, like Criteo or Elevaate.  

After all, they have the infrastructure in place to help your retail network up and running quickly. Which means you’ll have more time to spend on your business.

With most of them, the process is as simple as applying to join their program. Once approved, you upload your product feed, and the ad network does the rest.


The world is changing rapidly.

For businesses to succeed in the future, they need to adapt to the changing landscape and buyer behavior.

This is why you must consider the retail media bandwagon if you haven’t yet — either by creating your own or advertising on major sites like CVS and Walgreens.

Not only will it give you an edge over the competition, but it will help you tap into audiences you can’t reach on your own. It will also help you maximize your marketing budget, ensuring you get the best ROAS.

Have you used retail media for your brand? What was your experience like?

The post What is a Retail Media Network? appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

How to Pull More PPC Ad Data

We’re losing PPC ad data.

While it used to show you almost all terms, Google AdWords now only offers specific keywords that meet a certain volume threshold. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) has limited data from European traffic, and more restrictions could be on the way.

This lack of visibility makes it harder to know what’s working and what’s not in PPC. Whether you’re seeking increased conversions, more organic traffic, or a surge in referrals, it’s your PPC data that should tell you if you’re on track or if you need to adapt.

How can you navigate these limitations and overcome limited data?

Doing More With Less: How to Cope With Google’s Changing Data Transparency

More than 80% of U.S. consumers are worried about sharing their data. The EU has passed stringent laws regarding what information websites can gather—and what they can do with that data.

When you consider this, it’s easy to understand why Google and other organizations restrict data access.

The problem is that data is crucial to understanding how effective your PPC and SEO campaigns are.

What terms drew in the most users? Where are people finding your website? These answers are a lot less evident today than they were in the past.

So what do you do? Throw in the towel, give up on PPC ads?

I mean, you could.

Or, you could adapt to the new normal and find ways to work around the current restrictions.

Here’s the thing—PPC ad data is going to get less clear over time. You could wait, use what you have now, and hope for the best.

You could also figure out workarounds that help now so you are in a better position in the months (and years) to come.

Today, I’ll share several methods that could help you find the data you need for effective targeting and potentially make up for the shortfall in information left by PPC ad data restrictions.

Use Tools to Pull More Data

Google wants to give you less data—but they aren’t the only sheriff in town. There are plenty of other places to find PPC data. You just have to dig a bit.  

Here are a few tools where you can get your hands on more data, including a few of their top features and the data you’ll find.


If you need reliable keyword data, our Ubersuggest platform is an all-in-one tool allowing you to research individual keywords, track competitors, and adjust your PPC strategy accordingly.

ubersuggest ppc ad data

Here’s how to use Ubersuggest to uncover PPC data.

Head over to Ubersuggest and enter your URL, a competitor, or a keyword you want to research. For this example, we’re going to use the term “PPC data.”

ubersuggest screenshot for ppc ad data

Take a look at the left sidebar. You’ll see Keyword Overview, Keyword Ideas, Content Ideas, competitor reports, and SEO Explorer.

We’re going to start with the keyword ideas.

Ubersuggest offers 36 keyword ideas, 18 related terms, and questions, which we could use in SEO or maybe address in our ads — those might be key pain points.

Ubersuggest keyword ideas PPC ad data

Focus on a specific term, and you’ll see search volume, cost per click, paid difficulty, and SEO difficulty.

ubersuggest find PPC ad data

As you can see, PPC data has a pretty low search volume, CPC volume, and paid difficulty. That’s likely because people searching “what is PPC data” are unlikely to convert—it’s not an ideal term for paid ads.

But, if you saw this same data for a high intent key term, like “buy SEO course,” it would indicate a great opportunity.

Other features Ubersuggest offers include:

  • Top SEO pages reports
  • Domain overviews
  • Backlink data
  • Content ideas

Individual plans start at just $29 a month, but you can see limited data for free.  


SpyFu is an Arizona-based search analytics company founded in 2005. So, they’ve been around the block a few times. For $33 a month, you can access unlimited SEO and PPC data, keyword research, and competitive analysis tools.

The competitive analysis feature is their core offering, and it’s worth the cost on its own.

This tool will help you see what types of pages your competitors rank with, where they’ve lost ranking, what today’s top keywords are, and more.

spyfu for ppc ad data

This data is useful data for SEO, but it can also help guide your PPC campaign. And they have a lot of other features that are useful for PPC, including:

  • Most successful paid keywords
  • Adword history
  • Top AdWords buy recommendations
  • PPC keyword grouper
  • Ad history and ad templates
  • PPC keyword research and suggestions  

Google Trends

You might think of Google Trends for looking up ideas for blog posts, but it can be used for PPC information as well. Google Trends analyzes the top search queries across geographical areas—and over time.  

Want to know what people in Florida were searching for in October 2020? Google Trends will tell you.

However, you may not be so familiar with it as a PPC tool.

ppc ad data google trends

With Google Trends, you can identify:

  • Valuable PPC keywords
  • Historic popularity
  • Keyword search trends

You can use Google trends for keyword expansion by finding key terms related to those you’re already using. Then, use those terms in your A/B testing or to improve relevancy.

google trends related topics for ppc ad data

Another area wherein Google Trends comes to the rescue is budgeting. You can compare year over year search volume and see monthly or seasonal spikes in interest for key terms, then appropriately adjust your ad budget.

For example, searches for “gift guides” tend to peak in December. It wouldn’t make much sense to dump a ton of ad budget on ads promoting a gift guide in June.

use google trends for ppc ad data

Google Trends is also an excellent resource for geographical targeting, as you can see the exact terms people use in specific areas. For example, terms like “pool cleaning” are likely to be more prevalent in Florida and Arizona than in Alaska.

Geographical areas can impact words used when searching for specific things. For instance, people in New England might use a different word to talk about carbonated beverages than people in Georgia. 

AdWords Grader Plus

The free tool from WordStream allows you to compare how well your ads are performing against competitors.

WordStream analyzed over $3 million in Google Ads spend to set benchmarks and find the most accurate KPIs out there. wordstream tool for ppc ad data

It also provides a “Performance Tracker,” which tracks and measures your Google Ads performance over time so you can see which metrics are going up—and which are going down.  

Additional features include:

  • PPC Mobile Readiness Score
  • Quality Score tracking
  • Tracking and calculating wasted PPC spend

The best part is that this PPC audit is free, and you can have it in your hands in about five minutes.

Follow Search Query Patterns Instead of Individual Search Terms

As a marketer, you are likely familiar with individual search terms. However, Google’s announcement may mean it’s best to emphasize search queries.

What’s the difference? Rather than focusing on a single word, you’ll want to concentrate on patterns or real-world queries from searchers. Then base your ads around them.

How is this different from long-tail key terms? Long-tail keywords are phrases that include key terms, like “buy warm running socks.”

Search query patterns go a step further by helping you find the underlying reasons why people are performing those searches so you can use that same language in your ads.

If we type “warm running socks” into Ubersuggest, here’s what we get:

ubersuggest to find search query pattern for PPC ad data

What do those searches tell you? People are looking to keep their feet warm while running. That’s the search query pattern.

As Kacie Gaudiose of Search Engine Journal writes, search query patterns can help to:

  • Highlight trends
  • Discover new search behavior nuances
  • Assess opportunities in your chosen category
  • Better understand intent

Gaudiose adds:

From those patterns, we can further categorize our queries into buckets of interests specific to our target users…With enough data, this categorization helps us create detailed topics and subtopics that we know interest in our searchers.

Get the Most Out of Imperfect Data

You might have heard the term “imperfect data” before. However, perhaps you’re not sure of the exact definition. It’s data that isn’t perfect, right? Sure—but it goes a bit deeper.

Here’s a definition from data scientist Lewis Beischer:

Imperfect data is a generic problem in which the information extraction and decision making is a very difficult task as that particular datasets have faults and is not exactly as you would like it to be.

Common imperfections can include:

  • Incomplete data sets
  • Corrupt data
  • Biased information
  • A lack of stability
  • Fraudulent data

This probably sounds pretty familiar. So what do you do about it?

The first thing to remember is there’s no such thing as perfect data.

Beischer suggests the keys to overcoming imperfect data are:

  • Monitoring errors
  • Standardizing your processes
  • Validating accuracy
  • Using a third party to analyze, clean, and compile data
  • Introducing machine learning

In the PPC world, that means aggregating data from several tools, deleting any duplicate data, and watching for patterns. (Pivot tables are your friend here.) How does your performance change over time? How do search volumes impact your costs per click?

Imperfect data is here to stay. It’s up to you whether you dig into the data and learn how to make it work or just guess at what might work. (And waste thousands of dollars until you figure it out.)  

Modifying Your Reports

Although you’ve got decreased PPC ad data visibility, you can still tweak your Google search terms report to better suit your needs. This enables you to determine which search terms triggered your advertisements.

You can access this feature in your Google Ads dashboard. Click on Reports, then select Predefined reports (Dimensions) > Basic > Search Terms.

google ads reports ppc ad data

 Then you can see a bit more detail:

google ads reporting ppc data

Understanding and Using Google’s “Quality Score” Metric

As Brad Smith makes clear in a Hootsuite post, Google’s Quality Score is vital to marketers, as it:

  • Increases ad rankings
  • Lower cost-per-clicks (CPCs)
  • Reduces cost per action

But what is it exactly? In Google’s own words, Quality Score is:

“An estimate of the quality of your ads, keywords, and landing pages. Higher quality ads can lead to lower prices and better ad positions.”

Google rates your Quality Score between one and ten. There are three factors to Google’s Quality Score:

  • Relevance
  • Landing page experience
  • Predicted click-through rate

Improving Quality Score = better optimized PPC campaigns. Now, I could write an entire post about how to improve your quality score (and I did), but here are a few tips to get you started:

  • Boost your mobile performance
  • Leverage A/B testing on titles, images, and copy—but only one at a time
  • Optimize landing pages and make sure they use the same language as your ads.


Limited data is nothing new. We’ve been dealing with this way back since Google rolled out the “Not Provided.” The question is no longer “how can I replace this data?” but “how can I work around the increasingly limited amount of data at my disposal?”

Consumers’ concerns over data privacy remain high, and governments worldwide are locking down marketers’ access to a ton of data we’ve relied on over the years.

So, what are you going to do about it?

The methods above can help overcome the gaps in PPC ad data and create targeted campaigns to keep those conversions coming in.

How has restricted PPC ad data affected your campaigns? What strategies are you using to replace that data?

The post How to Pull More PPC Ad Data appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

What Data Can You Pull From Cookie Tracking?

To a non-marketer, cookie tracking sounds like a scavenger hunt for baked goods.

Sounds innocent, right?

Yet cookies, for all of their sweet-sounding simplicity, have recently come under fire.

With the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), cookies have taken center stage in the fight for internet privacy. This is just one of the latest legal issues facing online marketers today.

Cookies are small text files that collect bits of data about users as they browse the web.

Individually, cookies do not track data about who you are as a person; they simply give information about your web browser and trends. But, when bundled with other relevant cookies, they can be used to create an online “persona” that can predict behaviors and seek out trends in browsing.

This tactic has been dubbed behavioral advertising, and while it offers marketers incredible insights into consumer habits, it can be problematic when used improperly. The Cambridge Analytica scandal is a good example of behavioral marketing gone wrong.

That isn’t to say all cookies are bad.

Cookie tracking can be a great way to learn valuable information about who is searching for your product, where they are searching from, and how likely they are to revisit your website.

In fact, cookies are still a strong tool in the marketer’s repertoire, offering detailed insights about the people you are trying to reach.

Ethical cookie tracking is still possible and offers a simple, data-driven way to increase your conversions when used responsibly.

Still unsure? Let’s dive a little deeper.

What is Cookie Tracking?

Cookie tracking helps you collect data on users who visit your pages.

On the consumer side, they are useful for things like online shopping, where your cart information will be stored even if you exit your web browser.

For marketers, cookies help us understand who is engaging with our content, what pieces they like best, and how often they revisit.

This is valuable information for marketers who are looking to improve, modify, or tailor content to their users.

What’s more, it offers important metrics that can lead us toward useful remarketing techniques.

That being said, not all cookies are made the same. While some cookies are ripe for risk and privacy breaches, others are necessary for web functionality. Let’s take a closer look at our modern cookie jar.

what is cookie tracking

Necessary Cookies

Some cookies are essential to good user experiences. Features such as log-in data, authentication, and session management would not be possible without using cookies.

These types of cookies are considered necessary for proper web function and cannot be deleted by users.

Cookies can also enhance the user interface and provide smooth, personalized experiences for users. We often refer to these as performance and functionality cookies. While useful, they are not completely essential. They can often be disabled by users, but if they are, some functions like video players may no longer work on a site.

Unnecessary Cookies

Web analytic and customization cookies track browser activity through individual users. These help website owners gather data about who is visiting their site, how long they stay there, and what features are being accessed or used.

There are also advertising cookies, which are used to customize a user’s ad experience. These cookies are often tracked across websites and can help marketers ensure a certain ad won’t be shown too many times, or allow them to tailor ads based on a user’s activity.

Social networking cookies are a more recent trend. These cookies allow users to share content from a website directly to their social channels. While useful to user experiences, these cookies have been one of the main reasons third-party cookie sharing has gotten so controversial. They collect personal information and pose a security risk for users.

Because of these cookies, many new regulations, such as the GDPR, have come into effect.

Don’t worry, you can still use cookie tracking to benefit your business while also staying GDPR compliant.

What Data Can You Pull From Cookie Tracking?

Per the GDPR, no website is allowed to track cookie data unless the user gives explicit consent.

Necessary cookies, such as performance and functionality cookies, are exempt from these laws.

Yet, against the odds, the GDPR did not mark the death of cookies.

Many users will give their clear permission to be tracked while browsing your site.

Using this data can give you important information that can help you improve your product offerings and understand gaps or problems in your marketing strategy.

So, what data can you pull from cookie tracking?

Interests and Online Shopping Trends

If you’re looking to maximize your e-commerce sales, then cookie data can be a valuable way to understand your demographic, how they use your website, and how likely they could become repeat customers.

Cookies create a more seamless e-commerce shopping experience. They allow persistent shopping carts that retain items even when a customer navigates away from the page, wish lists, product recommendations, personalized customer interfaces, and the retention of payment and address information.

If there were no cookies, you would have to login again every time you looked at a new product.

No thank you.

Successful e-commerce sites use a combination of necessary and unnecessary cookies to improve customer experiences and create more conversions. They also allow you to create personalized retargeting campaigns, such as notifying users if they left a full cart without purchasing, or offering them coupons if they visited without buying.

Cookie tracking online shopping trends

Location and Language Preferences

Cookies can also be used for location and language tracking. This is great for geotargeting and also helps to give you a more complete understanding of where your customers are coming from.

By understanding who is shopping for your product and where, you can find out where to focus your ad targeting, or where your marketing strategy is already effective.

This kind of cookie tracking is also helpful for localization practices, which can help increase conversions. Likewise, it allows users browsing in other languages the ability to have their language preferences saved each time they revisit. This can go a long way in increasing time-on-site spend.

Previous Browsing Activity

Cookie tracking can be used to see a user’s previous browsing activity. As long as they haven’t cleared their cookies since the last time they visited your site, you should be able to see details of when they logged on, what pages they visited, and how quickly they returned after leaving.

Understanding previous browsing history can be an important tool when figuring out what parts of your website aren’t operating properly. For example, if you noticed many of your users log off your site after visiting your FAQ page, that may mean you don’t have the information they are looking for. Likewise, broken pages and faulty links can be discovered through browsing activity cookies.

Time Spent

Cookies can tell you how long a user spent on any given page. This is useful information for anyone looking to improve their web traffic or better locate ineffective pages.

By understanding how long a user stays on a page, you can tell whether your content is engaging, if your links are working properly, and if your web copy is converting the way it is meant to.

Understanding time spent is an effective optimization tool for marketers. If you have a set of pages that cause users to log off quickly, then it may be time to get rid of them. If some pages are getting a lot of long-term visits, those would be effective to push in paid ads or promotions.

Visited Subpages

Information architecture refers to the structural design of a website. A well-architected site should allow users to flow easily through sales funnels and end with strong conversions.

A badly built site will leave users stuck in dead ends, and generally dissatisfied with any product offerings.

Cookies can help you see what subpages a user visited while on your site. This can be helpful if you’re trying to determine how effective your information architecture is and find ways to improve it.

Paying attention to these cookies can help you create a better performing, high-quality website.

The Future of Cookie Tracking

Many browsers are now cracking down on cookie usage and this can make it difficult for marketers to gather the information they need.

Safari now has intelligent tracking prevention, and you can easily clear, enable, and manage your cookies in Chrome. Firefox also blocks third-party cookies by default.

example of cookie tracking preferences safari browser

Does that really mean third-party cookie tracking is dead?

Maybe. But it doesn’t mean marketers can’t still gather the information they need to personalize ad experiences.

New developments in web analytics and PPC campaigns offer similar experiences to cookie tracking. By using behavioral data collected from online ads, we can begin to understand what consumers want and tailor our content to those needs.

Techniques like people-based targeting methods can help gather unique user data that can drive new targeting campaigns. Most brands already have access to an assortment of data on their customers, from emails, to purchase data, and device information. This data can be used in a first-party targeting campaign to speak directly to an individual customer, rather than a vague dataset.

There has also been a lot of talk about contextual advertising, where ads are placed on pages with relevant or similar content to what they are selling. For example, if a user is looking for a new car, they might see ads for tires on the same page. This is still considered directed advertising, as we understand a person who is interested in a car is also likely interested in tires for that car. It’s basic, but it works.

It’s also a good idea to look beyond digital data and understand your customer’s complete profile. Call centers, for example, hold a vast amount of data that often revolves around consumer pain points. Certain programs, such as Signal AI, have been developed to track conversions on calls and help brands understand the intricate demographics of their customers.

What’s most important at the moment is to use cookies in a way that is compliant with new regulations.

Remember, there are different cookie laws for the U.S. and EU, so be sure to check your local regulations before committing to a strategy. If you’re still unsure, talk to one of our consultants.


Although we might be witnessing a third-party cookie phaseout, there is still a lot of room to use cookies in an ethical and regulatory way for the benefit of your business.

Cookie tracking is a great way to understand your target audience and find new ways to optimize your conversions.  

They can also improve user experiences and create more seamless sales funnels for your customers to flow through.

Ultimately, cookies are not a black-and-white topic.

If used correctly, they improve web experiences across the board.

If used incorrectly, they can damage important marketer-consumer relationships.

Have you found cookie tracking helpful in your marketing campaigns?

The post What Data Can You Pull From Cookie Tracking? appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

8 Advanced Amazon Ad Tips to Improve Your Sales

Amazon is the king of e-commerce.

It’s the largest online retailer in the world selling over 12 million items and is one of the most trusted e-commerce sites.

With 197 million people logging on to shop every single month, how can you direct some of that traffic to your Amazon store?

Amazon Ads.

A solid advertising strategy can help you increase sales as competition on the platform heats up, even if you don’t have a massive budget.

While most shops start with the basics, using advanced tactics will get you better results, faster.

We’re going to dive into the eight advanced Amazon ad tactics you can add to your repertoire to boost your ad spend ROI, brand awareness, and ultimately bring in more sales on autopilot.

1. Use Long-Tail Advanced Amazon Keywords to Find Users With Strong Purchase Intent

advanced amazon tips use long tail keywords

Keyword research is the secret sauce of any advanced Amazon ad strategy.

It’s going to get your products in front of right users who are ready to make a purchase, but you can’t go after any word or phrase. You need to make sure it’s a long-tail keyword.


Because buyers who search for something specific like “wooden chopping board with compartments” are far more likely to make a purchase than someone using a vague phrase like “chopping board.”

Another reason to niche down with your keyword research strategy is the lack of the competition. Generic phrases like “candle” are far more expensive and saturated.

As a new seller on the platform, you’ll have a hard time ranking for the term and getting buyers to click through.

By going after phrases with low competition and a high purchase intent, you can boost your brand awareness and sales and improve your Amazon SERP.

2. Use Sponsored Brands to Increase Brand Awareness

advanced amazon sponsored brands

Are you not prioritizing brand awareness? You can bet your rivals on Amazon are.

In a study by Search Engine Land, ad spend allocated for building brand awareness jumped from 26% to 60% in less than 12 months.

So what’s the best way to increase your visibility and start building your top of the funnel advertising strategy?

Sponsored Brands.

The ads appear at the top of search results, and it’s one of the most useful tools for building your brand on Amazon.

Use Sponsored Brands to create brand recognition by using a custom headline, adding your logo, and sending traffic to your storefront and products listing page.

By investing in awareness, you’re helping buyers become aware of your products.

You’re showing users you have a solution to a problem in their lives. This strategy helps customers learn more about you and increase sales over time.

3. Analyze Your Product Level Profitability to Boost Your Profit Margin

Before you start experimenting with an advanced Amazon ads strategy, you need to identify which products would benefit the most from a PPC (pay-per-click advertising) boost by looking at product level profitability.

What does that mean?

Product profitability is the revenue you make from a product and the amount it costs you to make a sale.

For example, your enamel travel mugs might cost $5 to make, but it costs you $15 of ad spend to get a customer.

To find your product level profitability, analyze each product in your storefront, determine which ones have the highest profit margins, and focus your advertising spend on those items.

Once you have your list, run ad campaigns for those products.

Implementing this advanced Amazon tip will help you stop wasting dollars on low-profit or low-selling items and make more money.

4. Use the Advanced Amazon Ad Placement Report to Tweak Your Campaigns

Every successful seller on Amazon knows you can’t take a hands-off approach on the platform.

What’s successful this week won’t deliver the same results in a month from now.

You need to continually monitor, analyze, and adjust your ads to avoid losing visibility and giving your competitors an unintended advantage.

And Amazon’s placement reporting has evolved over the last couple of years.

Back in 2018, only three options were available to sellers: Other on Amazon, Remarketing off-Amazon, and Top Search on Amazon.

Today, it’s expanded to five options, which allow you to dig deep into your data and give you greater control over your campaign performance.

What is the Amazon Ad Placement Report?

The Ad Placement Report is one of the most powerful reports available to you and is a must for anyone looking for advanced Amazon selling tips.

It tells you exactly which ad placements help shoppers find your products and which campaigns need some tweaking.

For example, you might find that an ad placement in the middle of the page consumed less of your budget and had many impressions than a top-of-page one.

The report also helps you identify which keywords are performing the best. You can quickly see which search terms are giving you a greater ROI and which ones are giving you lackluster results.

5. Use Other Marketing Channels to Drive Traffic to Your Amazon Store

Don’t put all your advertising eggs in one basket.

While PPC campaigns on Amazon are a great way to build brand awareness and drive sales, you need to incorporate your other marketing channels to find buyers.

Plus, Amazon comes with built-in credibility and superior customer support. As a new brand, you can use this to your advantage by redirecting traffic to your store instead of to your website.

Using Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and Google Ads to feed traffic to your Amazon Product Listings strategically can generate a high ROI for your store.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Traffic from Day One
  • Tapping into an extensive network where your ideal customer hangs out
  • Using the shopping mentality on sites like Instagram and Pinterest to find users ready to buy
  • Encouraging influencers to redirect traffic to your Amazon store by making an affiliate commission on sales

However, don’t dive into every single platform.

Do your due diligence and identify which marketing channel your target audience uses before you open your wallet.

6. Define Your Target Audience to Reduce Ad Spend and Increase Sales

Paid advertising and identifying your keywords are important for Amazon sellers.

Yet, they’re not the most critical part of your strategy.

There is something far more important you need to master: your target audience.

If you don’t know to whom you are selling, then you won’t know:

  • Which keywords to target
  • Which products your audience needs
  • How to craft compelling ads that get clicks and conversions

Without a clear audience, none of these advanced Amazon tips will work.

Think of your target audience as the foundation of a house.

Without a solid structure, it won’t matter how many keywords you have inside. The minute a strong breeze rolls through, your house will crumble, and your keywords will become useless.

When you understand your demographics like the back of your hand, you know which words they’ll use to describe their problem.

You can figure out their online behavior and identify which social media platforms to target.

For example, if you’re targeting stay-at-home parents, running ads during the day makes more sense. However, if your customer is a full-time employee, they’ll most likely be on Amazon in the evening after work or during their lunch breaks.

When you understand these nuances and put yourself in your target audience’s shoes, it becomes ten times easier to create ad campaigns that convert.

7. Create an Enticing Advanced Amazon Landing Page That Converts

Anyone can build a landing page on Amazon, but how can you be sure it will convert?

Although there is no exact formula you can follow, there are some standard rules of thumb to increase your chances of building buyer trust and sales.

If your landing page is bland (no call-to-action, little-to-no text), you won’t capture people’s attention.

Here are a few things you can do to optimize your Amazon landing page:

  • Above the Fold: This is the part of the page that is visible the moment someone clicks through. It’s one of the most important sections as you have a limited time to entice them to stay, scroll down, and learn more about your products.
advanced amazon above the fold
  • Use Scarcity Features: FOMO (the fear of missing out) is a powerful marketing tactic. It gives buyers a time limit to take advantage of a deal and can boost conversions by 33%. Add scarcity to your Amazon landing page by using a countdown timer before an offer expires.
  • Always Include a Call-to-Action: Think of your CTA as the goal of your landing page. Without one, potential buyers won’t know what to do or where to click. Make sure you use a clear CTA like “Buy Now” to stop users from bouncing off your page and not converting.
advanced amazon landing page call to action
  • Optimize With Your Branding: Your page on Amazon is a space to show off your brand’s personality and stand out from all the other sellers. Don’t leave your page looking like everyone else’s. Add your logo to the header, link to your website, and make it easy for users to connect with your brand. It’s an easy way to make your store memorable and build on brand awareness.
  • Use Images and Video: People consume different types of content to solve a problem. Some like to read, while others prefer videos. Include a mix of different types of content on your page to appeal to different customers.
advanced amazon landing page video
  • Take Advantage of Social Proof: People are like lemmings. We prefer to buy from brands with a track record. It’s why influencer marketing has exploded in the last ten years. Use product reviews and testimonials on your landing page to show potential buyers you’re not a scam and you’re selling a quality product.
  • Keep Your Design and Copy Simple: If your landing page is too busy, people will click off. Attention spans are short, and you need to make sure you’re not overloading the buyer with information. Keep your copy short and to the point. Use short sentences, break the text up with headings, and add bullet points to make your page skimmable.

8. Filter Out Negative Keywords in Your Advanced Amazon Ads

Want to cut down on wasteful ad spend? Filter out negative keywords you don’t want to rank for on the site.

A negative keyword excludes a word or a phrase that isn’t a good match for your product.

Doing so can help you save a lot of money, and not using this tactic is one of the biggest Amazon ad mistakes you can make.

For example, if you’re selling leggings, you might want to rank for keywords like:

  • Leggings for women
  • Leggings with pockets
  • High-waisted leggings for women

But you wouldn’t want to rank for a keyword like “Lululemon leggings.”

The buyer intent is for a brand that isn’t you, and paying to rank for that phrase is going to give you low ROI.

For an advanced Amazon result, look into filtering out keywords receiving large amounts of traffic but few sales.

Not sure what keywords to add to your negative filter?

  • Go to the “Customer Search Term Report”
  • Select the “spend” filter
  • Look for keywords bringing in little-to-no sales
  • Add those phrases to your negative filter


By following these advanced Amazon tips, you can start selling more while spending less on ads and become a successful e-commerce business.

You can achieve this without a gigantic ad budget. You don’t need to spend hundreds of dollars to see results and start converting your impressions into paying customers.

What you need is strong keyword research and an ad strategy you’re constantly tweaking.

Remember, Amazon is not a “set it and forget it” platform.

Your winning formula is going to change continuously. You need to stay on top of your analytics to adjust your strategy and pivot before losing traction in search and seeing a drop in sales.

How are your listings performing after implementing these advanced Amazon ad tips?

The post 8 Advanced Amazon Ad Tips to Improve Your Sales appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

20 Buzzword Ideas for Your PPC Campaigns

The best pay-per-click (PPC) campaigns catch the eye, target relevant audiences, and motivate users to click or buy. Buzzwords are one way to reach these goals in the brief amount of time someone may spend looking at an ad.

Effective PPC marketing will always come down to compelling language. No matter how many features you use or Google Ad extensions you add, the best ads will always be the ones with the most powerful ad copy.

What Is a Buzzword?

Buzzwords are popular or trendy words or phrases. They are sometimes referred to as “jargon” or “business jargon.”

A buzzword can be a single word, a short phrase, or an acronym that gains popularity and replaces more traditional words.

Is buzzword marketing effective in business? It can be. There are several instances where marketing with jargon can be appropriate. For example, if you want to show your audience you belong and understand their problems or when you want to filter out irrelevant readers who aren’t likely to buy from you.

Take a look at these ads for companies offering digital transformation. Are they written for a wide audience?

Buzzword marketing digital transformation example

No. They are clearly making an effort to stand out to a very particular audience, and use buzzwords they know will jump out at a potential customer.

These ads don’t explain or define these terms because they know their ideal client already understands them.

How Can Buzzwords Boost Your PPC Campaigns? 

When you only have a moment to make an impression, buzzwords can have a big impact. They become popular for a reason, and they are often catchy and memorable.

We tend to develop a preference for things that sound familiar, and that includes language. This is called cognitive fluency. When we’re familiar with words, we find them easier to understand — and easier to remember.

Why Is It Important to Use Buzzwords in Your PPC Campaigns?

Countless ads are competing for users’ attention. Your PPC ads need to make a big impact in a small space. Buzzwords can help your ad stand out while appealing to the people most likely to become customers.

Here are some of the benefits of using buzzwords in your PPC campaigns:

Grab Attention Quickly

Most readers only skim ads or read the first few words before moving on. Buzzwords can attract attention and quickly target relevant audiences due to swift recognition of the terms.

If you could only use a word or two to catch the attention of your customers, do you think your ad would stand out if you use words like quality, sell, buy, and fast — words used by every industry or business? Probably not.

It would be more effective to let them know your ad is relevant to them by using buzzwords they’ll recognize from their industry or interests.

Increase Your Visibility

Buzzwords can show up in timely searches for hot topics. You can then direct users to landing pages with content that uses less flashy language.

You can also use varying headlines on multiple ads with attention-getting buzzwords and change them as language evolves.

Target the Right Audience

A specialized audience who connects with your ad copy can become a highly motivated and well-targeted audience. Buzzwords allow you to signal that you’re an insider speaking to other insiders, and communicate value quickly based on that status.

Show You Understand Your Audience’s Needs

PPC is about marketing, but your ads are being read by humans who can be swayed by psychological impulses. Most are making practical decisions based on their emotions, whether they realize it or not.

People use this language because they want to belong. When you use the same language, you’ll tap into a psychological need to feel heard. They’ll respond to make sure they aren’t left out of the latest movement.

If your ad can create an emotional response that fills one or more of these needs, you’re likely to inspire action.

Customers are looking for reasons to buy from you. Reassuring them that you know what they’re facing and can solve their problems encourages them to buy from you.

How to Find Buzzwords to Use in Your PPC Campaigns

The best way to find buzzwords that your customers will recognize is to pay attention to the language they use.

What do your customers say when they email or call your business? What language do they use to describe their pain points and the frustrations they face? What are they asking for when they ask for solutions? What words do they use when they write reviews?

Talk to your service department. They talk to your customers all day long, and they’re used to hearing your customer’s language. If you can address these concerns in your ad, you’re one step closer to showing your customers you are listening. This is a powerful shift.

You can also look at conversations in the communities you serve. What are your customers or audience saying online? What are your competitors saying? What topics are at the center of the most active conversations online?

How to Use Buzzwords

If you want to use buzzwords in your PPC marketing, you should have a good understanding of the structure of an ad. Each ad you write will be made up of a few elements:  headline 1, headline 2, and a description.

You may find that your customers only read the headline of your ad, or that some devices cut off portions of your ad due to space constraints. If you use buzzwords to add impact, make sure your customers will actually see them.

20 Ideas to Get You Started Using Buzzwords in PPC Campaigns  

Ready to get started with buzzwords? Here are 20 ways to make the most of them in your paid ads.

  1. Consider the audiences you want to target with your ads.
  2. If these audiences resemble your existing customers, use the language they use. 
  3. Consult online reviews to see how customers describe pain points.
  4. Check your customer emails and form submissions for the solutions they’re seeking.
  5. Review client testimonials for positive feedback and how they describe success.
  6. Ask your customer service department for suggestions.
  7. Look into online forums and social media chats for new buzzword ideas.
  8. Develop your messaging from your customers’ language.
  9. Create your ads from this new messaging.
  10. Make sure your landing page content matches your customers’ search queries.
  11. Create multiple ads with buzzwords that all point to one relevant landing page.
  12. Keep your website content free of buzzwords and jargon that could go stale.
  13. Update and refresh your ads as the advertising language evolves.
  14. Do your best to send users to relevant content so they don’t navigate away.
  15. Think about the buyer’s journey as you write your ads.
  16. Let your customers see themselves in your ads.
  17. Show up as an insider in specialized industries.
  18. Become a trusted source for solutions by showing what you know.
  19. Create urgency by tapping into your customers’ need to be included.
  20. Target new audiences by adopting buzzwords used in their communities.

What’s the Difference Between Keywords, Buzzwords, and Hashtags?

Buzzwords are trendy words that attract a lot of attention — but only for a short period of time. They are not necessarily language that will stay fresh, and could eventually become stale or develop negative connotations. Buzzwords are ideal for short content that needs to make a fast impression, like your PPC ads.

Hashtags are words or phrases written without spaces after a hash sign (#) in social media posts. They allow you to tag your content so people can find your posts when searching for those topics online. Using hashtags on social platforms can ensure you show up in the right conversations online and grow your social media following.

Keywords are the search terms you want to research when trying to show up on the search engine results pages (SERPs.) While keywords are likely to be used in your ads and your site content and may help your content rank over time, they likely aren’t as trendy and short-lived as buzzwords might be.

Popular Buzzword Examples

From real estate to sales, healthcare, insurance, or the auto industry, every industry has its own specific advertising buzzwords.

Where else does language change quickly? Anywhere there is a lot of innovation in new areas and new capabilities being developed.

For example, in technology circles, if you aren’t using the terms your industry is throwing around, you’ll be left behind.

If your customers see you selling without language that positions you as an expert and trusted authority, they’ll go elsewhere. Buzzwords signal to your audience that you are part of the specialized group they want to be in.

In the auto industry, people have sold used cars nearly as long as cars have been on the road. However, the use of the term “certified pre-owned” vehicles is an example of how marketing language has evolved over time.

Buzzword marketing certified preowned vehicle example

Whether you like the term or not, most people will have a different reaction to ads for “used cars” compared to “certified pre-owned” vehicles.

Without using the new term, you might struggle to sell used cars at the same level as dealers who have adopted it. In this case, not using a buzzword could hurt you.

Buzzword marketing used cars example

Examples of Common Buzzwords

  • Disruption
  • Hyperlocal
  • Freemium
  • Clickbait
  • Leverage
  • Touchpoint
  • Transformation

Examples of Common Buzzword Phrases

  • Blue-sky thinking
  • Pushing the envelope
  • Facetime
  • Ping me
  • Digital transformation
  • Big data
  • Next-gen
  • Deep dive
  • Growth hacking
  • Value add

Examples of Common Buzzword Acronyms and Meanings

  • B2B (business-to-business)
  • EOD (end of day)
  • CAD (computer-aided design)
  • ROI (return on investment)
  • AI (artificial intelligence)
  • RFID (radio frequency identification)
  • SEO (search engine optimization)
  • CRO (conversion rate optimization)

How NOT to Use Buzzwords in PPC

Using buzzwords is a powerful way to boost your ad copy and quickly attract attention from specific audiences. However, be sure the buzzwords you use are relevant, widely used by your audience, and don’t have multiple meanings.

Don’t use buzzwords for communities you aren’t a part of or that will confuse your customers. They want to hear the language THEY use, not the language you use internally.

Ad copy needs to make a point at a glance, and without context, so your buzzwords will need to fit these parameters as well. If it needs explaining, it doesn’t belong in an ad.

If your value proposition isn’t clear in the first few seconds, your ad will likely miss the mark.

What About Using Buzzwords In Longer Content?

Avoid using buzzwords in your landing pages and content marketing. Buzzwords often sound dated after a few months, and it’s time-consuming to update pages of content on a regular basis.

Your ads can be updated and refreshed any time there is a change in language or the general response to popular buzzword changes.

Using too many buzzwords in your writing can turn people off and make them think your content lacks substance. Some buzzwords are so overused that they may turn people off entirely.

Examples of buzzwords to avoid include:

  • Low-hanging fruit
  • Hit the ground running
  • Bells and whistles
  • Get your ducks in a row
  • All hands on deck


Using buzzwords in your PPC campaigns can help you target specialized audiences swiftly and effectively. When used carefully, they can effectively trigger an emotional response in your customers and move them to action.

While using compelling language in your ad copy is essential, remember that plain language will always win out over complicated jargon.

Don’t clutter your ads with multiple buzzwords or try to cram unrelated buzzwords into single ads. Let them stand on their own, craft compelling copy for the rest of the ad, and watch your relevance.

Ad copy is a specialized skill, and many business owners find PPC consulting helpful to see results faster. My team offers PPC management if you’d like to get in touch.

Have you tried using buzzwords to boost results in your PPC marketing? What results have you seen?

The post 20 Buzzword Ideas for Your PPC Campaigns appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

4 PPC Tools to Automate Your Ad Campaigns

The field of ppc (pay-per-click) is constantly evolving. If you use tools that automate some of the ad campaign processes, your campaigns may become more efficient and effective.

Pay-per-click automation tools allow marketers to automate some tasks by using third-party applications. These tools can save you time, improve campaign performance, and reduce wasted ad spends.

Rather than spending your time hovering over dozens of campaigns, you can focus on tasks like pinpointing areas for business growth, increasing audience engagement, and exploring new ad types that will benefit your sales funnels.

That isn’t to say automation is the key to the future, nor are we all going to be replaced by machines. Paid ad campaigns might always need humans to power them, but you can at least catch a break from constant campaign monitoring.

To start this off, let’s take a deeper dive into what PPC automation is.

What Is PPC Automation?

PPC automation refers to the system that charges marketers every time their ad is clicked.

PPC automation allows marketers to control their Google ad campaigns through machine learning, without spending hours tediously updating scope, timing, and targeting. By automating some of the systems and steps, you can leverage third-party applications to do the hard work for you.

For example, if you want your ad to stop running on a certain day, or if you want to change the target audience before the end of the running cycle, you can use PPC automation to control these details. This means no more activating, deactivating, and adjusting your ads by hand.

What a relief.

It also means you can shift your focus back to generating leads and growing your business and let the machine do the hard work for you.

PPC automation tools are a great way to optimize ad performance and focus your time on your larger marketing goals.

Why is PPC Automation a Popular Method?

PPC automation tools allow you to keep up with search engine marketing trends while also giving yourself the time to focus on optimization.

For example, when AdWords became Google Ads, many of the original tools and features were replaced. For a human, relearning these tools can be time-consuming and frustrating. For a machine, it’s instant.

Google actually suggests using PPC automation and smart ad bidding, as it saves you time and increases the performance of your ads.

Think about it this way. Let’s say you’re new to the paid ad world and want to launch your first PPC campaign.

You don’t know much about online paid advertising, but you understand how to target an audience and want a lower cost-per-click. With PPC automation, you can simply enter your campaign goals, choose your smart bidding strategies, and let the machine do the rest.

Even if Google Ads completely overhauls its system the next day, your machine will still know what to do. That means you can take the extra time to learn more about manual targeting or growing your online community.

ppc automation google ads

Pros and Cons of PPC Automation

Manual bidding can be a great asset to a campaign and offers unique ways of winning conversions and lowering ad cost rates. That being said, it only works when done correctly.

Humans often make errors that machines don’t. It’s not that we aren’t as good as they are, but we are more prone to making simple mistakes. The benefit of automated bidding and ad management is you don’t have to worry about those small, silly mistakes, like targeting the wrong audience. In contrast, leaving the work up to a machine can mean less personalization and some important details may be overlooked.

Let’s take a more in-depth look at the pros and cons of PPC automation tools.

Pros of PPC Automation

PPC automation tools work best for long-term, ongoing campaigns. This is because to create a detailed automated system, you need to have relevant data to feed into it. If you’ve just started a new campaign with a new client and you don’t have any reference data to turn to, it might not be the best time to jump into automation.

That being said, once you get the ball rolling, PPC automation tools can save you a lot of time and money when maintaining and monitoring your PPC campaigns.

If a machine can do it just as well as we can, why not let it?

Cons of PPC Automation

Even though it might seem like a set and forget system, there are many details that go into the initial setup of automated PPC campaigns.

For example, you still need to determine which bidding strategies fit your business or what kind of results you want to target.

Also, even an automated campaign can have hiccups. It’s essential to continue monitoring your campaigns even if you choose to use automated PPC tools. The work involved in an automated PPC campaign could be less intense than a manual campaign, but don’t let this make you become a lazy marketer just because you think the computer is handling it.

If you’d rather something else handle your PPC campaigns, my agency is accepting new PPC clients.

Types of PPC Automation

PPC automation is a growing marketing trend and will only get stronger as our paid ad tools evolve. Getting familiar with these tools sooner rather than later will ensure your business can automate and optimize as much as possible.

PPC automation tools range in complexity and cost. You can find ways to automate pretty much anything – it’s just a matter of which steps you want to automate and how much work you are willing to put into your campaigns.

Here are 4 of the most basic ways to use PPC automation.

Integrations and Reporting

Reporting is undoubtedly one of the most frustrating parts of a PPC manager’s life. Think of all the hours spent compiling data, creating spreadsheets, and importing sources to create custom reports.

Automating your reporting systems through integrations can help make this process more efficient. No more manually exporting spreadsheets and no more comparing data.

Integration refers to the different apps and platforms you may want to pull data from when preparing reports. These could be platforms such as Google Ads or Instagram Insights.

When choosing an automated reporting software, be sure to check that it offers the integrations you will need.

Here are a few easy-to-use PPC reporting tools to help make your reporting easier:


Swydo was built for PPC managers and is a simple way to automatically integrate data sets from various sources like Facebook Insights or Bing Ads.

Swydo can also help you monitor your clients’ key points of interest and translate them easily into your reports.

swydo ppc automation reporting

Swydo also lets you schedule your reports so they can be automatically sent to your team or clients, saving you an end-of-the-month scramble.

swydo ppc automation report scheduling

Swydo claims to help you increase client retention through their automated reporting systems. Pricing starts at $62.00 per month.

Reporting Ninja

Reporting Ninja boasts more than sixteen different integrations and has a range of reporting templates.

ppc automation report ninja

Plus, it includes cross-platform comparisons so you can combine data from multiple platforms into a single chart or graph.

ppc automation graphs ninja

Reporting Ninja can also help you create SEO and conversion reports on top of your PPC reports. Plans start at $20.00 per month, which includes ten reports.

Report Garden

Report Garden can help you create client reports, monitor budgets, and add new PPC campaigns, all in one app.

ppc automation report garden campaign

Their creative visual reports will help you look great in front of your clients or company leadership.

ppc automation report garden

They also have a range of interactive dashboards so your clients can see their reports in real-time.

Report Garden plans start at $250.00 per month for ten clients. Dashboards and reports are unlimited for your clients to access. Learn more about how automating reports helped this agency scale from 25 to 500 accounts with Report Garden on their blog.


Scripts are Javascript code pieces that can tell your ads to perform certain functions based on performance data that you input. Scripts can help you customize specific parts of your campaign to automate and let you pick what data points to use and when.

For example, if you want to add ad schedules for a campaign, you might use a script that looks like this.

ppc automation google script

You don’t have to be a coder to use these scripts. Google has a whole library of code scripts you can use if you’re new to this method.

Scripts are a great way to do split testing, big management, and reporting. They can be used to automate internal or external functions and save you a lot of time in PPC account maintenance.

Custom Builds

Custom builds are certainly the most complicated area of PPC automation. These builds require some expertise, so you might need a developer to help you get started.

Custom builds are coded automations that allow you to customize almost anything in your ads. These builds will enable you to focus on unique metrics and create columns that can segment account data down to its finest points.

PPC Automation custom build column example

Google describes customization like this:

For example, to see the percentage of clicks you get from mobile devices, create a custom column that divides mobile clicks by total clicks. Or let’s say you’re a shoe retailer and enjoy a 40% profit margin for each pair of shoes you sell. To understand your total profit for each sale, ensure your conversion value column tracks revenue. Then, create a custom column that multiplies conversion value by 40% and call it ‘Estimated Profit.’

Comprehensive Software

Comprehensive software platforms allow you to customize, automate, and manage your ad campaigns in a more user-friendly fashion than custom builds allow. A comprehensive software would enable you to do everything we discussed above and more from one simple platform.

Here are a few of the best PPC automation software tools out there, so you can get the most out of your paid ad strategy.

WordStream PPC Advisor

WordStream PPC Advisor is a great pick for small businesses ready to jump into PPC campaigns but don’t have large budgets or big staff rosters to support them.

WordStream offers Google Ads, Bing Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter integrations as well as report building, data analytics, and landing page optimization.

PPC Automation WordStream optimize search traffic screen

WordStream PPC Advisor plans start at $264.00 per month for 12-month plans.


Optmyzr is a good choice if you’re running multiple PPC campaigns and are looking for a range of automation features.

ppc automation optmyzr

With Optmyzr, you can create, track, and report on your PPC campaigns. You can also automate scripts and alerts directly from the platform. Optmyzr offers integrations for Google Ads, Yahoo Ads, and Bind Ads.

Plans start at $499.00 per month for the pro version.

Google Ads Editor

Google Ads Editor is free for anyone using Google Ads software.

It’s a great platform for managing your Google ads to create, track, and edit your ads directly from the software. You can also make bulk changes, which is a big benefit when running multiple campaigns for a single client.

Here’s a short explainer video:

Although Google Ads Editor is great for managing your Google Ads, it doesn’t offer much integrations. If you’re running ads on multiple search engines or platforms, then you might find this software limited.

Semrush PPC Toolkit

The PPC management software toolkit offered through Semrush is a great asset to campaign planning, keyword research, and competitor research. This tool lets you easily see how you rank against your competitors and how you can modify your ads to out-perform them.

It also offers a range of SEO features like the Keyword Magic Tool, which can show you search volume data alongside suggestions for stronger keywords. (You can also pull keyword data from my tool, Ubersuggest.)

Semrush offers a tiered pricing plan, which starts at $99.00 for the pro version, $199.00 for the guru version, and $399.00 and up for the business version.

Still unsure if you can make paid advertising work for your business? Watch the video below to find out how you can get the conversions you want from paid ads.


Ready to launch a high-conversion PPC campaign?

Interested in using PPC to diversify your web traffic and boost your business?

With these great PPC automation tools, you’ll be able to tap into the benefits of paid advertising and start making conversions that matter.

What are some of the ways you’ve found success with PPC automation?

The post 4 PPC Tools to Automate Your Ad Campaigns appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

How to Create PPC Campaigns for Real Estate Marketing

Even if you have a smaller real estate business, you don’t have to rely on third-party databases to get traffic to your listings through real estate marketing.

With pay per click (PPC) advertising, you can bring people directly to your real estate website, where you own the medium and are in control of how you present yourself. This means rather than your listing appearing—and perhaps being lost—among a sea of competitors, you can showcase your entire portfolio without viewers being distracted by others’ listings.

PPC campaigns aren’t usually difficult to set up. With a few tweaks, you may reach your target audience more efficiently and bring motivated buyers to your website.

PPC Real Estate Marketing Trends

With six million homes sold in the U.S. in one year, it’s no wonder competition between real estate agents is tough.

As you would expect in such a competitive market, real estate marketing plays a huge role, and the tactics businesses use are always developing.

Today, we see many realtors using trends such as virtual staging, drone photography, inbound marketing, and automation of lead verification. New trends come and go, the need for a good website never changes—and neither does the need to bring traffic to your site.

This is where pay per click (PPC) comes in.

One of the difficulties with bringing traffic to your site is competition from huge online real estate databases like Zillow (236 million monthly users) and Let’s take a look at a search query for “buy homes in Naperville IL.”

Real Estate Marketing Google search example

As you can see, those large sites are dominating the search engine results pages (SERPS).

However, ranking organically isn’t the only way to get to the top of the SERPs, and PPC may grant you a route to the top of the listings. Through a successful PPC campaign, your website could feature at the top of the page for your chosen keywords, potentially bringing in a large volume of traffic.  

You pay a small fee for each click, but if you’re utilizing the latest real estate marketing trends well, then you could see a solid ROI. PPC allows you to bring traffic to a medium you control, which puts you in control of your marketing.

Selecting Keyword Phrases for Your Real Estate Marketing PPC

PPC could allow your website to appear at the top of the SERPs for virtually any keyword. Your real estate marketing isn’t going to benefit from featuring an irrelevant search term, though. This means you need to find the keywords that work for you and bring in people who convert into leads.

To do this, start by understanding your target audience.

  • What does their customer profile look like?
  • What information are your potential customers looking for?
  • How do they search for that information?

Think about your audience and write out a list of all the ways they might search for your business.

For PPC to work for you, you also need to ensure your landing pages reflect the keywords you’re advertising for. When someone clicks on your ad, the page they land on needs to directly address why they clicked in the first place. Take a look at your current pages and list all the keywords reflecting the content you have on your site.

Once you’ve built up a list of keywords, it’s time to narrow it down so the keywords you bid on are relevant to both your audience and the pages they land on.

Part of succeeding at this is understanding where someone is in the buying cycle. For example, someone searching the keyword “best Chicago suburbs” might be at the beginning of the cycle, where the buyer intent is much lower than later on. Later in the cycle, they may search for “buy houses Naperville IL,” meaning they could quickly become a lead. This distinction should help you understand each keyword’s value and focus your real estate marketing PPC on boosting ROI.

After you’ve narrowed down your list, go to Ubersuggest to find out the cost per click and level of competition for each keyword.

Ubersuggest for real estate marketing

Optimize Your Site for PPC Campaigns that Use Local Keyword Phrases

With all our examples so far, we’ve used what’s known as a “location modifier.” For instance, in “buy houses Naperville IL,” the terms “Naperville” and “IL” allow us to target a specific area. Nothing is stopping you from advertising for “buy houses,” and you’d probably get plenty of traffic—but there’s no point if you’re selling houses in Naperville and the user wants to buy one in Ft. Lauderdale.

Local keyword phrases are vital to real estate agents because they’re selling a product with a fixed location. As location is one of the driving forces behind real estate purchases, many people use these modifiers in their searches.

When you use local keyword phrases, your landing pages must match the search intent. If your advertisement says “houses for sale in Naperville,” then it has to deliver on its promise. Many people will click back to Google if it’s showing houses for rent or homes outside of Naperville.

Setting Max CPC Budgets for Your PPC Campaign

When you set up your real estate marketing campaign, you’re going to be asked to set a budget and decide the maximum you’re willing to pay per click for a specific keyword (max CPC). Remember, you’re not tied into anything—it’s something you can adjust as you go and optimize to get the best results.

To get an idea of your budget, set out the goals you want to achieve with your PPC campaign. For a simplified example, to make $5,000 a month from your advertising and the average value of your houses is $100,000 with a 1% commission, you need to sell five houses a month through your PPC.

The average cost per click for keywords related to real estate is $2.37 with a conversion rate of 2.47%—so, to sell your five houses, you might need just over 200 clicks at the cost of $494. While your numbers might vary from the industry average, you can always adjust your budget based on your average conversion rate and cost per click.

It’s also worth remembering that it’s not all about the price you pay per click, as your advertisement’s quality also plays a part. Google wants to send people to high-quality results, and if your ad achieves this, it’s more likely to be favored by the search engine’s algorithm.

Another way to maximize your budget is by boosting your click-through rate (CTR.) The average CTR for real estate ads is about 3.71%— but if you’re writing excellent ad copy, then you may find even better results. But remember, these are just industry averages, and your experience may vary. An ad budget of hundreds (or even thousands) doesn’t guarantee a sale, but PPC is worth a try for most markets.

Deciding Which Ad Platform is Right for Your Real Estate Marketing

When we think of search engines, our minds are naturally drawn to Google because it’s the biggest, with 3.5 billion searches per day. However, there are lots of different search engines and lots of other ad platforms.

Which ad platform you use should be decided by your business goals and your target audience. For example, if you’re selling sleek condos to millennials, your advertising will look very different than if you’re targeting seniors looking for a second home.

This differentiator is where you could help your real estate marketing campaigns by selecting the right platform.

Social media platforms such as YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Pinterest are vital sources for real estate marketing, and they offer great PPC options. 99% of Millenials and 90% of Baby Boomers begin their real estate searches online, and with billions of people on social media, this could be a perfect way to reach them.

The great thing about PPC on social media is that they are highly visual media. Whereas with Google Ads you might be limited to text, social media allows you to incorporate video, images, and other effects. These tools can help your advertising stand out from the crowd, but you must choose the platform and message that resonates with your audience.

57% of Americans aged 25-30 are on Instagram, compared to 23% of 50- to 64-year-olds. However, the numbers look very different on Facebook, as 68% of 50- to 64-year-olds have accounts. This data shows people search for information differently, and your advertising needs to reflect this. You might find Google is the best way to reach your audience, or you may discover an alternative such as Instagram that offers you the most useful real estate marketing campaign.

Here you can see just how different a promoted post on Instagram could look from the traditional ads you see on Google. These various formats could give you the ability to appeal to particular audience demographics and potentially maximize the effectiveness of your real estate marketing.

Real Estate Marketing which ad platform to use
Real estate marketing SERP

Whichever platform you use, you’ve got to make sure your message suits the medium, and you’re giving people the experience they’re looking for. Various advertising platforms allow you to diversify your marketing, but you’ve got to focus on the techniques that work best for each campaign.

Deciding Which Real Estate Marketing Ad Format is Best

When you come to set up your ads, you’ll find you have lots of format options. The options vary depending on which platform you’re using, but for Google, you’ll have the following choices:

  • Search ads: These are the “traditional” ads at the top of a SERP. These are particularly useful for real estate marketing because they allow you to reach a targeted audience at the precise moment they are looking for your product.
  • Shopping ads: Shopping ads are product-focused advertisements that also allow you to feature at the top of a SERP. However, shopping listings are more commonly used for very specific searches such as “buy Barbie dolls,” where many retailers sell the same products.
  • Display ads: Display ads allow your listing to feature on other people’s websites. While this can be a cost-effective way to reach a broad audience, it’s more difficult to judge where these people are in the buyer cycle because they haven’t made a specific search.
  • Video ads: Video ads play between videos on YouTube and are a great way to incorporate a more interactive aspect to your advertising. Many people use YouTube as a search engine, so it’s another good way to reach motivated buyers.
  • Gmail ads: These advertisements appear at the top of someone’s Gmail inbox and allow you to reach a targeted audience. The difficulty with Gmail ads for real estate marketing is determining buyer-intent. You might be targeting someone because they are interested in real estate, but this does not guarantee they’re looking to buy a house.

The key to these different ad types is finding the ones that best suit your business goals. For many real estate businesses, this is likely to be search ads.

This is because this method may best allow you to understand the searcher’s intent. Someone has put a specific query into Google—“find houses in Naperville”— so you more clearly know what they’re looking for and can judge where they are in the buying cycle.

With options like display ads, you can reach a targeted audience—for example, people looking at a house improvement website—but you don’t have control over searcher intent. As you’re selling something very specific that focuses on location, search ads are a good place to start.


Pay per click advertising is an essential tool for your real estate marketing. If you’re to take back clicks from online real estate databases like Zillow, then you’ve got to find alternative ways of getting traffic to your website.

PPC is an excellent way to do this, and it could bring large numbers of targeted, highly engaged visitors with a strong buyer intent to your website. From there, you’re in control of the medium and not reliant on a third party who controls your interactions with customers.

If you’re investing in real estate marketing trends like virtual staging and drone photography and you want to maximize their effectiveness, a way you could do this is by getting them in front of a targeted, engaged audience. With good PPC, you could do just that because it may allow you to boost your lead generation significantly—and perhaps sell more houses.

If you do need help with your PPC campaigns, reach out to my team to see how we can help.

Has PPC benefited your real estate business?

The post How to Create PPC Campaigns for Real Estate Marketing appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

How to Find Paid Social Media Keyword Ideas From…

In the world of digital marketing, content is king. And keywords hold the keys to that kingdom.

They unlock connections to your target market—people who are looking for what you’re trying to sell.

When you’re setting up paid social media campaigns, keywords can help you make those critical connections and ensure your campaign’s success.

Knowing which keywords to use throughout the copy of your campaign can be a pain. If you’re not sure which ones are right, you might miss the mark and, by extension, your audience.

Popular hashtags can be the source of inspiration that gets your paid social media campaigns off the ground.

The Importance of Hashtags in Paid Social Media Campaigns

Why are the top hashtags important for inspiration and keyword ideas? Because they can provide a lot of information if you know how to look for it.

Here are the questions you should ask when looking for hashtags:

  • What are people talking about?
  • What’s the demand for a particular product or service?
  • Is there a rise in interest? Or is the trend on the decline?
  • Who is using those hashtags?
  • What’s the context of those conversations?

Researching popular hashtags can provide relevant insights into the conversations happening around a topic. Their power is in the data you can mine from real-life, real-time sources.

Top hashtags can also lead to other hashtags and keywords you may not have considered. As you continue to dig deeper, you may start to see some patterns to add to your campaigns.

Be on the lookout for:

  • New or up-and-coming hashtags
  • Hashtags used by other relevant target markets
  • Questions or concerns people are expressing
  • Phrases in the associated content that come up often

How to Use Trending Hashtags for Your Paid Social Media Campaigns

First, you have to find the top hashtags. Begin with what’s trending in your industry and go from there. We’ll go into more specifics on different social media platforms later.

As you dive in, explore the content surrounding the hashtags.

How do you use the information you found? It’s all about inspiration. The hashtags, phrases, and keywords you find can inform your paid social media campaigns in the following ways:

  • For text: What you’ve learned can be a launching point for your ad’s language. Look at the posts’ content in addition to the hashtags, and incorporate the language people in your target market use. Knowing how people talk about things can teach you how to best speak to the pain points they face and the solutions they love.
  • For images: What kinds of images are those hashtags often associated with? Whether you plan to use a stock image in your ad or create your own, let what you find attached to hashtags help determine the type of images you use. You may even find a meme that you can join in on, making your social media ad more engaging.
  • For target audiences: Use the hashtag research to inform the parameters of your social ad reach. Who is using these hashtags? Where do they live? How old are they? What else are they interested in? These stats can help you narrow the ad reach to your target audience.
  • For sponsored post research: In addition to helping your paid social ad content be more relevant, hashtags may also help pinpoint a recent post to put cash behind. Experiment with different top hashtags in your posts on each social platform you use. Those hashtags may help your posts perform well organically, and then you can choose to boost them with sponsorship.

Using Facebook Top Hashtags for Paid Ads

Let’s start with Facebook, one of the most popular platforms for online marketing.

With over two billion users per month, there’s got to be some great data out there for your hashtag research.

You are probably only connected with a tiny number of those people, but don’t let that stop you. In fact, you can choose who sees your Facebook ads:

Using Facebook Top Hashtags Screenshot of Facebook ad target market options

But, before you create the ad, you need to find the right words to use that are getting the most visibility. This is where hashtags come into play.

A quick search for #tacos on Facebook shows some drool-worthy meals from strangers around the world who made their posts public as well as from brand pages. You do this from your search bar.

Top Hasthags Facebook providing alternatives to the popular hashtag Tacos

That list shows you what words most commonly follow that hashtag. Additionally, when you submit the hashtag you’re searching for, Facebook shows you on the top of the next page how many people are talking about that topic:

Top Hashtags Facebook view of the popular hashtag Tacos

When you type in the hashtag that interests you, Facebook also auto-fills other hashtag options to explore.

You can also explore the bookmarks that Facebook makes available, including local events, crisis response, or other timely topics. These can provide insights into why people are using this hashtag.

Using Instagram Top Hashtags for Paid Ads

Instagram is a hashtag-heavy environment, making it ideal for top hashtag research.

Much like on Facebook, you can start by typing your hashtag ideas into the search bar. Instagram not only auto-fills suggestions but also shows you how popular those hashtags are based on how many posts include them.

Using Instagram Top Hashtags Instagram providing recommendations for hashtags about puppies

Instagram Explore

Are you still looking for more hashtags to dig into? Head to Instagram’s “Explore” section, with the compass icon, to see top posts related to content you have interacted with in the past. You may discover new or emerging hashtags that you didn’t know about.

Using Instagram Top Hashtags

Now is an excellent time to stop and talk about how hashtags don’t always translate directly into keywords and phrases for paid social media campaigns. You may have to convert from a succinct hashtag to a robust, natural way of talking. Here are a few tips for doing that:

  • Listen to What Influencers are Saying With Those Hashtags: Take some time to watch the video posts and Instagram stories associated with the hashtags you’re researching. Hear how they talk about the subject. What are some key phrases that come up often?
  • Read and Take Some Notes About What the Hashtags are Saying: Now it’s time to turn off the videos and read the actual content. What are they using those character counts to say? This is where you can learn about key phrases that everyone is using and the meat behind the hashtag topics you are researching. For instance, a top hashtag may be “#cleanbeauty,” but it’s not about skin cleanliness—it’s about toxicity in beauty products, congressional oversight, regulations in the industry, and how to know what’s safe for your family’s skin. Learning about the issues and conversations behind the topics can help you frame paid social media content in a usable way.
  • Talk Out Loud Using the Instagram Hashtags: Hopefully, you’re working by yourself because this could get a little awkward: It’s time to start talking to yourself. Go ahead. As you’re writing down ideas that we talked about earlier and starting to craft your social media ad content, actually saying it out loud may help disconnect you from “internet speak” and get you into using a more natural tone.

Using Twitter Top Hashtags for Paid Ads

If you’re using Twitter on your mobile device, you can hit the magnifying glass icon at the bottom of your screen to see what’s trending. If you’re on your desktop, hit “#Explore” on the left side of the screen, then click “Trending” to see currently popular hashtags.

Using Twitter Top Hashtags

You can see what topics Twitter thinks are important now based on their editorial board and algorithms, as well as how many tweets are using those hashtags. Keep in mind some of these are promoted hashtags, not organic ones, though—they are labeled, as you can see with “#Godfall” at the top of this screenshot.

To learn more, click on “Show More” or the “Explore” section on the desktop layout to see more about these topics and find more currently in use.

You may need to dig deep to find hashtags that are relevant to your niche. When you see a conversation or post around topics pertinent to your industry, check out those hashtags.

Don’t be afraid to see a spark of inspiration, such as a new hashtag that’s just starting to catch fire, and get onboard that topic before it becomes a wildfire.

Using LinkedIn Top Hashtags for Paid Ads

Where do you go to find the top hashtags on LinkedIn? There are a couple of different ways to start your research.

You can look up hashtags in the search bar at the top, just as you do on other social media platforms:

Linkedin Top Hasthags LinkedIn recommendations for hashtags about fitness

And like other platforms, LinkedIn will auto-recommend other options.

When you choose a hashtag, LinkedIn shows how many people are currently following that hashtag. This data can help you understand how many people may see your posts that incorporate that hashtag. You will also see top posts with that hashtag.

LinkedIn Top Hasthags LinkedIn option for following the fitness hashtag

When you follow a hashtag you’re interested in, you can click on the three dots on the right of your followed hashtags and choose “Discover new hashtags.”

Using LinkedIn Top Hashtags

Now you’ll see all kinds of popular hashtags to inspire you.

LinkedIn Top Hasthags screen of other hashtags LinkedIn recommends

If you want to skip those steps and just start exploring, you can go straight to LinkedIn’s Follow Fresh Perspectives tab to see the top hashtags, accounts, and companies LinkedIn recommends to you.

Context Is Key When it Comes to Using LinkedIn

Here’s the critical thing to remember about LinkedIn: It’s a popular platform for content, but it’s also very specific in its contextual use. LinkedIn is generally about professional or career conversations.

Using Pinterest Top Hashtags for Paid Ads

Are you trying to reach a creative, DIY crowd with your paid social media ads? Pinterest can show you what’s hot right now.

With Pinterest, hashtags aren’t as critical and promoted as they are on other platforms. Keywords in a post seem to be just as crucial for searching.

Here is a search for the popular term “Hygge:”

Pinterest Top Hasthags Top posts on Pinterest for the search Hygge

And a search for “#Hygge:”

Pinterest Top Hashtags Top results for the hashtag Hygge on Pinterest

You’ll notice similar results. So, just searching around for popular topics on Pinterest and exploring the top posts may prove just as useful.

However, if you are looking for top hashtags, there is a workaround. You can log in to the mobile app, click to create a new pin, and type a hashtag into the description section. This will give you a listing of top alternatives and stats for how popular they are.

Pinterest Top Hasthtags

More Tools For Finding Hashtags

If you’re still looking for the right hashtag, you may want to try one of the many hashtag search tools. These online and app tools allow you to plug in hashtags you’re using, and find related and popular hashtags. A few options include:

  • Hashtagify
  • All Hashtag Generator
  • #HashMe app for Apple devices
  • Hashtag Expert app
  • Ritetag app or Chrome extension


The key to using hashtags for paid social media is to use them as a launching point. They should inspire relevant content for your very specific target market. Hashtags can help you understand who they are, what they care about, and how they talk online.

Popular hashtags can also open the door to new opportunities for your social media strategy as you join fresh, ongoing conversations happening online and reach out to new markets.

Which popular hashtags will you be analyzing to inform your next social media ad campaign?


The post How to Find Paid Social Media Keyword Ideas From Top Hashtags appeared first on Neil Patel.

Paid Ads

How to Level up Your Writing Skills for Irresistible…

Marketers and business owners alike know the inherent value of PPC ads. With 64.6% of consumers interacting with Google ads when online shopping, it’s no wonder PPC ad creation is growing exponentially.

While you may have aced your keyword research, gotten to know your budget intimately, and A/B tested relentlessly, your PPC campaigns may still be falling short of their desired goal.

How can you craft PPC ads that stand out from the crowd with such a highly saturated market?

Strong, compelling writing skills.These should be nurtured to drive conversions.

The Importance of Good Writing Skills for PPC Ad Copy

Google and Bing both reward superior writing with higher quality scores, earning you increased visibility and decreased cost per ad.

While lowered cost is always a good thing, the real importance of good writing skills for PPC ad copy is audience reach and interaction.

With limited character space at your disposal, you need your PPC ad copy to attract audience attention and hold that attention long enough to result in the desired reaction to your CTA.

Which component of your ad is attracting and holding that vital attraction?


You need to ensure your copy is doing three things: working hard enough to earn that initial attention from your desired audience, speaking toward a specific pain point or need for that audience, and providing a clear, actionable CTA.

Without these three factors at work compellingly on the page, your PPC ad copy will more likely than not be lost to the ether of the internet.

How Can You Identify “Good” Writing in PPC and Ad Copy?

To best learn how to improve your own ad copywriting skills, look no further than existing ads that have achieved their purpose.

Maybelline Example:

Screenshot of Maybelline PPC ad copy writing skills

Here, the purpose is simple: purchase the Maybelline BB cream.

The writer drives the searcher to this desired action through copy that is clear and concise.

The copy also draws on the emotional promise of “A good skin day, every day,” promising an ideal vision.

From selecting the CTA to the product description to the harnessing of emotion via the value proposition, this PPC ad is a lesson in strong writing skills.

Field Company Example:

The Field Company PPC ad screenshot writing skills

On the other end of the product spectrum is an ad for a cast iron skillet from Field Company.

Here, the purpose is also to drive a purchase, but this ad is missing key components to make it successful.

This ad lacks a strong CTA and is not making a clear bid for the searcher’s next step.

While the writer takes a stab at an effective emotional trigger by sharing the organization’s family-owned background, this piece of information is not as compelling as the Maybelline advertisement.  

Although these two ads offer customers quite different products, they harness the same writing skills to sell their product, relying on language to attract, hold, and, ideally, convert.

Writing Skills PPC Copywriters Should Have

Above all, the successful PPC copywriter must be deeply familiar with their target audience.

Successful identification of this audience and a deep understanding of their wants and needs is integral to success.

You may be the best writer in the world, but without a clear understanding of who you are speaking to, what you say doesn’t matter at all.

In addition to audience awareness, PPC copywriters should possess:

  • Understanding of user experience
  • Polished writing skills
  • Marketing awareness
  • Specialization

These four writing skills support the creation of direct, compelling content. By harnessing all these capabilities, writers can not only reach but also convert their intended audience.

5 Tips for Improving PPC Copywriting Skills

Some of the best ways to improve your writing skills is to make sure your copy speaks to what users are looking for during their buyer journey. Here are some of the top ways to make sure your writing is converting ads into paying customers.

1. Conversational Conversion Writing Skills

While the following tips all address the more technical aspects of honing writing skills for PPC ad creation, the most important factor to keep in mind is your audience.

You are speaking directly to a targeted individual, so you want to ensure all the crafted copy underlines this individual’s interests and challenges and solves the query they were, consciously or subconsciously, seeking.

This can be achieved by using shared language that is specific to your audience.

In this way, the best writers are also the best researchers. You need to truly understand the terminology associated with the product you’re trying to sell.

By incorporating terms specific to your chosen audience, you establish a silent rapport with your audience, building trust and interaction.

2. The Devil Is in the Details  

Good writing is in the details. Whether you’re writing a CTA or crafting an ad in response to a history of search queries, you need to be specific and detail-oriented.

When you’re sharpening your writing skills for ad copy, you want to be sure to meet each search at its level of detail.

The more specific the search, the more precise the ad. By the same principle, the less specific the query, the less specific the copy.

Every time a search is queried, a potential customer is identifying what they want.

When you note the level of detail present and respond in kind, you’re infinitely more likely to satisfy that customer’s need.

3.  Creating a Call-to-Action

Your CTA needs to do a lot of heavy lifting in your PPC ad copy.

It should be clear, direct, and concise. These conditionals that all rely on strong writing skills.

Remember specifics? They’re important here, too. Your CTA should specifically share what your intended action is for the would-be consumer.

Whether it is “read now” or “enter to win,” the potential customer needs to be clear on their next interaction with the PPC ad.

To sharpen awareness of that next step, be sure to start your CTA with a strong action word.

“Download,” “shop,” and “discover” are just a few examples of many verbs that can encourage your audience to take the intended action.

4. Emotional Charge Writing Skills

In addition to the specificity of action, it’s also important to inspire your audience with the specificity of emotion.

Everyone knows emotions can impact advertising success.

By using words that elicit enthusiasm or emotion, you incite a reaction in your audience, driving them to take the next step.

A Buffer analysis of the IPA dataBANK, which contains 1,400 case studies of ad campaigns, found that campaigns with emotional ad content performed twice as well as their rational counterparts.

Below are the top ten emotions to evoke when you’re writing ad copy:

List of ten emotions that drive a response in readers writing skills

The best ad campaigns harness this emotional power, so be sure to include emotionally charged language in your copy.

5. The Art of the Arc

Every good writer knows that every good story has a beginning, a middle, and an end.

This tenet shouldn’t only be present in narrative but also should exist in every piece of writing you execute.

Whether you’re crafting a tweet, an Instagram post, or a PPC ad, your copy should have a clear beginning, middle, and end.

As consumers, we’ve been taught this structure since infancy, so it’s a pattern we’re accustomed to recognizing.

When employed in your PPC ad copy, you create a familiar structure for your audience, allowing them to interact with the ad in a known way.

This familiarity is beneficial as it gives the reader an intuitive path to follow, which ends with the action explicitly stated in your expertly crafted CTA.

3 Tools to Improve PPC and Ad Writing Skills

If you’re looking for more guidance on sharpening your writing skills, there are plenty of resources available.

The Hemingway App helps identify clunky or overly complicated sentences, allowing you to be more concise and direct in your copy.

Try the Copyhackers’ Conversion Copywriting 101, a free course that teaches you how to prioritize purpose and conversion in your writing, regardless of medium.

To improve your headline prowess, check out the CoSchedule Headline Analyzer. This tool helps you optimize your blog headlines for maximum performance and can work for ads as well.


The tools and tips highlighted in this post can make your ads outshine those of your competitors and lend you a creative edge in drafting other marketing copy.

As you start getting more comfortable with these writing practices and deploying them in your work, you’ll see your PPC ads start to perform better than ever before.

After all, with practice comes PPC success.

What is the best PPC ad campaign you’ve seen?

The post How to Level up Your Writing Skills for Irresistible PPC Ads appeared first on Neil Patel.

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