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Ok. So now we understand how the basics of online advertising works, you can make a decision on what you need to get started.

Ad Design, Placement and Keywords (a.k.a Top of the Funnel)

If you are going with text ads on Google, you just need to be able to write a good ad that presents a strong call to action (CTA). Remember though, if your ad is too vague or generic you may draw a lot of "false-positive" clicks and that is where most people get burned and waste a lot of budget. Also, make sure your keywords are not too generic.

Here is an example:

Keyword: real estate versus Keyword: best realtor in Sarasota.

So you may think to select a generic keyword like real estate, but the problem is millions of people search that keyword for numerous reasons not just to buy or sell a home.

Keywords should be specific to draw in the right click, which will help with conversion. Many people don't think about the rest of the conversion funnel, and just think about the "Top of the Funnel", and see that they got hundreds of clicks, and think that is a good thing. It's easy to get clicks. It's hard to convert them into leads.

Your Call to Action and Keywords need to drive a big enough audience to your landing page as you can afford to spend.

So for example, if your budget is $100 a month, that is not many clicks (probably 50) so you can be very specific on your keyword and placement. If you are spending $10,000 a month, you will need to broaden your keywords to drive enough traffic to meet your marketing/sales goals. BUT, be careful not to drive a lot of "non-qualified" traffic to your site, because your conversion rate will drop (and thus waste your marketing dollars).

This is why understanding your funnel is so important. It's not just Click-thru rate, it's Conversion Rate as well.

Finally, when you launch your ad, make sure you TRACK where the clicks are coming from. Typically you would add a variable to the URL Link to the Landing Page. (e.g. Learn more about tracking here.

So, take for example this "side-ways" funnel. You market to your target audience, and some of them will see your ad (this is called an impression). It has value if your brand is seen, but ultimately you want them to engage. When they CLICK on the ad, that is considered Top of the Funnel action.

Once they hit your Landing Page, they can either leave and do nothing, or if your Call to Action is strong enough they can fill out a form and this is considered a Middile of the Funnel Conversion (or as we normally know it as a Lead).

Landing Page (e.g. Middle of the Funnel MOFU)

Ok, this is where most people just drive the traffic to their website, and never consider creating a custom website (landing page) for the ad campaign. There are a few reasons why creating a landing page makes sense. I will dive into the details on this one in my next blog.

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