© COPYRIGHT 2013 ICROSSING LTD AUGUST 2013 | AUDIENCE MARKETING
Search engine marketing is dead; audiencemarketing is what matters
When we want to find out about something, we search for it. When we want to buy something, wesearch for it. Our expectations have been dramatically altered by search. We expect to be able to findthe things we crave, instantly and on the go, no matter where we are.In as much as search has changed consumer behaviour, it has also had a huge impact on the way webuy advertising. Increasingly, advertisers have seen search as the most cost effective digitaladvertising channel, investing millions and driving highly qualified traffic to their websites, which in turnconvert into sales. Internet behemoth Google has been built on this.But will this constant battle for visibility through search engine optimisation last? Consumers arebecoming increasingly savvy to advertising in SERPs, spending more time looking for high qualitycontent and reviews on their intended topic. Social media optimisation is of course the obvious next
step in the journey, but how long will this last? If marketers aren’t putting audiences first what
opportunities are they missing out on?
A search term is a significant indicator of consumer intent
The core to the success of search
, both from the advertisers and Google’s perspective
, has been thelevel of intent that advertisers can garner when serving an advert. Consumers input exactly what theyare looking for into a search engine.
Advertisers can buy “keywords” that are matched to consumer
search terms, which means adverts are shown only to consumers who have expressed a clear intentfor the product or service they are advertising. Moreover, advertisers only pay when a user clicks onthe ad and visits their website, which ensures the marketing spend is focused on a highly relevant,targeted and interested audience.
We’ve seen an
industry of search marketers develop, with a skillset built around interpreting intentsignals and executing advertising campaigns designed to capture this demand. The intent is in thesearch term. The levers advertisers use to execute efficiently are the keywords, the match types andbids they set. They complement this with the message they serve and the destination they send theconsumer to. The outcome delivered is highly targeted and cost efficient seeing advertiser investmentrocket as a result.
Advertisers scale campaigns and increase investment
Paid search is seen as an always-on advertising channel and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is avital cog in the digital marketing machine to drive awareness, increase visibility and increase revenue.But brands want more. More of what search delivers. More ROI. They want to maximise the amount of conversions they are generating.It is common to try to squeeze every drop of value from search. As a result you often see advertiserspursue the following strategies:Build out huge campaigns with millions of keywords to capture additional trafficChase volume by increasing paid search investment in high funnel generic keywordsCompete for high volume, high competition search terms in position one within the naturalsearch results. This can be seen negatively, as it sometimes leads to suspect tactics.The intended outcome of these methods is to deliver increased conversions
to reach more people
willing to buy a brand’s product or service. However, there are inherent challenges with this. Firstly,
each additional keyword that is built into a campaign brings additional complexity into the execution. Itbecomes questionable as to whether the incremental return on that complexity is worth the