Enterprise SEM is written by search marketers running massive search advertising campaigns. Running large budget campaigns with millions of keywords can be an entirely different animal than running less complex ad campaigns. Additional details, such as more complex ROI metrics, optimizing efficiently, managing creatives and automation become the focus of such campaigns. Experts share real-life experience and perspective to running search campaigns of such scale.

Understanding The Limits Of Attribution

While there is much discussion about attribution and its benefits, marketers seldom discuss what it can’t do. Unfortunately, this creates a perception with many marketers that attribution will solve all their multimedia problems and that their media mix problems will go away. While I believe that the evolution of attribution and media mix modeling technology is one of the more significant online marketing developments in recent years, I also think that the technology in its current form has a ways to go before one can confidently say that the problem is solved. Multi-event attribution [...]

SMX West: Where Search Marketers & Fire Alarms Meet

The sirens suddenly sounded, shattering my concentration and halting the flow of my presentation. "Please evacuate the building immediately", the robotic recorded male voice advised. More blasting sirens. "This is the emergency response system. Please evacuate the…" Was this really happening? I’d been preparing all morning and patiently waiting my turn to speak as the last of four presenters on a panel, only to be interrupted three minutes into my presentation by a freaking fire alarm. I laughed aloud, gave a double thumbs-up to the modest crowd, advanced my presentation to the final [...]

4 Reasons Your Boss Might Hate Your SEM Campaign

angry-boss-featured An Enterprise Paid Search program can be, and should be, a sophisticated operation. Sophistication drives performance, but can often lead to challenges with perceived performance within the organization. It is not at all uncommon for senior management to become unhappy with a terrific and progressing paid search program because of the way we communicate results. Averages and aggregates lie, as I've argued many times, yet they are also an essential tool of managing a paid search program. Even the manager in the weeds cannot look at the most granular performance data and make any sense of [...]

Preparing Your Search Program For Mobile In 2012

Between the rise of tablets and the continued proliferation of smartphones, 2012 is looking more and more like the year of mobile for search marketers. Neilsen reports the number of smartphone subscribers accessing the Internet on their phones has grown 45 percent since 2010 with the majority of 18 to 34 year-olds owning a smartphone. Similarly, Google recently found 79 percent of smartphone owners use their devices to compare prices, research products or services, and locate retailers. Mobile devices, it seems, are a shopper’s best friend. There’s certainly no shortage of tips and a [...]

Why Patience Is A Virtue With The Long Tail

A recent article by fellow Search Engine Land contributor Matt Van Wagner on long-tail keyword management  - as well as some recent experiences with several large-scale advertisers, inspired me to write this article on quantitative long-tail management. Too often, I have seen cases where marketers apply incorrect reactive rules on the long tail and kill it in effect. This can have a disastrous effect for a large-scale marketer with an ad spend in the hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars a month, where the tail can represent a significant portion of the business. The Dilemma Tak [...]

An Inside Look At How Yahoo! Handles Olympic Games Marketing

Last month, I wrote about managing search in a decentralized marketing organization. We covered budgets, goals, alignment, etc. All good in theory, but how does it work in real life? To answer that question, I thought I would take a close look at how we’re working on one of our major marketing initiatives of the year: The 2012 Olympic Games. The London Games is one of our big ‘tent pole’ events for the year. At Yahoo!, that means that it’s a major one-off event that gets maximum marketing support. For the Games in July, Yahoo! has the ambitious challenge of attaining (and main [...]

The Paid Search Uncertainty Principle

[caption id="attachment_110359" align="alignright" width="220" caption="Werner von Heisenberg courtesy of Wikipedia"][/caption] In 1927, Werner von Heisenberg documented what he referred to as an "Uncertainty Principle" governing quantum mechanics. The Uncertainty Principle holds that an observation cannot precisely reveal both the position of a particle at a point in time and its momentum. The more the observation reveals about one, the less the observer can know about the other. A similar principle governs paid search. Physics sidebar: feel free to skip! If memory serves, the notion [...]

Can Bing & adCenter Bring More To The Table For Large Advertisers?

During the week of January 4th, I had the privilege of spending a week with the Bing and adCenter teams in Bellevue. First off, I would like to thank them both for their tremendous hospitality. Today, I want to outline some of the most interesting conclusions I have from the meetings with the adCenter team on that trip. One of the things I learned is what the adCenter team is doing to make it more attractive for enterprise scale customers to leverage adCenter to expand the PPC efforts. Firstly, there was a clear recognition by the adCenter team regarding the challenges they face. They ha [...]

What The Holidays Tell Search Marketers

I realize most of us are already well-focused on 2012, so a look back at the 2011 holiday season may seem a bit dated. However, the holiday season provides search marketers a snapshot of behavior that should prove relevant for the upcoming year, though perhaps on a smaller scale. To gain a more accurate view of how online shoppers’ habits may be changing, we took a look at paid search, display and social advertising metrics across our retail clients. Here’s what we found: Savvy Buyers Sought Deals In 2011, online advertisers drove more revenue in November than in December. The opposit [...]

To Centralize Or Decentralize SEM – That’s The Question

Having been through a number of re-orgs over the past few years, I’ve been thinking lately about SEM and direct marketing within the larger organization, and it seemed like a good time to take a step back and look at the different ways companies organize around SEM, and which models make the most (or least) sense at any given time. The bottom line is that you can make any organizational model work if you have the right people in place – smart, flexible people who can see the big picture and draw the right amounts of dotted and hard lines to ensure accountability and align incentives. [...]

Q4 Reports: Search Advertising Growing In Efficiency

Four reports released this month by paid search giants Efficient Frontier, IgnitionOne, Marin Software and Covario all pointed to an overwhelmingly successful fourth quarter in 2011 for major search advertisers in a number of verticals. Across the board, overall search spend increased, as advertisers on the whole enjoyed an increase in impressions and click-through rates, while achieving a lower average cost per click. According to Efficient Frontier's report: Search spend increased significantly in Q4 of 2011, bolstered by aggressive spending by retailers. Overall, search spend gre [...]

Setting Campaign Budgets: Maximizing ROI While Controlling The Risk

Campaign budgets enable advertisers control over campaign-level spend on search engines. Once the campaign spend approaches the set budget, ads show up with lesser frequency, and ultimately ads do not compete in the auctions. However, this is not the best way to control your budget for two reasons: (1) If you have hit your campaign budget limit, it means that you are not competing in auctions for part of the day and hence are missing out on potentially profitable clicks. (2) You are paying a higher keyword CPC than necessary to get the same number of clicks. The reason for this is a bit n [...]

Digital Marketing Trends To Watch Out For In 2012

As you put the finishing touches on 2012 budgets and plans, it’s important to build a point of view on the future. While it’s impossible to predict what will happen or when, running through a few what-if scenarios makes you more prepared for changes as they come. In this column, we’ll highlight some of the trends and possibilities we see for digital marketing in 2012. But first, let’s review the predictions I made in our 2011 predictions and trends column last year – to see if my foresight was correct. My prediction that marketers would increasingly apply automation to combat r [...]

From The Experts: Enterprise-Level PPC Campaign Management

Last month, I wrote about a conference session I moderated on Building and Training In-house SEO Teams. And while that get-together was a blast, I didn’t really get my geek on until I was presenting on a panel on Enterprise Level Bid Management. The title was a bit of a misnomer, as we covered topics well beyond the scope of bid management. But the basic premise of the panel remained about how to tackle large scale paid search problems. Industrial Strength – I love it! There were only three presenters on the panel, myself included, but there was a conspicuous depth of paid search exper [...]

How To Turn Challenger Brands Into Market Leaders Using Efficiencies In Large Scale SEM

As digital marketing professionals, we work with a wide range of clients. Some are Fortune 500’s and some are mid-tier businesses trying to compete in tough markets. The latter of these can be considered ‘challenger brands’ for two reasons – contending with the industrial strength heavy hitters can be daunting for them and positioning these brands to stand head to head with the top players can be hard for marketers. So what is the solution to effectively grow the market share of these challenger brands while improving their online positioning? Turning a challenger brand into a ma [...]

How To Get Started With YouTube Promoted Video

youtube-featured Earlier in the year, YouTube surpassed Yahoo as the world’s second largest search engine. In June 2011, ComScore reported that in the U.S., YouTube attracted 5.6 billion viewing sessions per month and the average U.S. visitor frequents the site 23 times a month with each visit lasting on average 26 minutes. And, just today, ComScore also reported that YouTube passed 20 billion video views during October 2011 alone. No matter how you look at the data, that’s a lot of eyeballs and a lot of time spent on a single site that a marketer can take advantage of. But creating a video is only hal [...]

How To Build & Manage Enterprise Search Marketing Teams

On a panel at a recent conference, I had the pleasure of moderating a great discussion on building and managing in-house SEO teams. What made this panel superb was that it wasn’t just about in-house SEO teams.There was quite a bit of content around hiring, working with third parties, and the interaction between marketing and IT departments. My kind of panel – Industrial Strength! Hiring Search Marketers Josh Gampel kicked off the panel with a fine presentation on hiring for search. Josh and his teams were the first folks to build a company (Onward Search) around staffing for search engin [...]

3 Tips Key To 2011 Holiday Advertising

Last holiday season, online consumers spent approximately $32.6 billion, a 12 percent increase from 2009. We can safely assume the trend will continue in 2011 as shoppers’ propensity to search online for the best deals grows and retailers respond by bulking up their online offers. As a result, competition among online retailers will be at an all-time high this holiday season. Our own research also indicates shoppers will likely begin their search for holiday gifts earlier than in previous years. According to our findings, four of the top five days for paid search conversions in 2010 occur [...]

Three Steps To SEM Planning Success

Ahh, annual planning season. Nothing quite like it. You can almost smell it in the air. Dozens of spreadsheets packed with endless assumptions, each one more fantastic than the last, combining to ultimately seal a marketer’s fate for the next 12 months. What could be better than that? Well, how about three steps to make your SEM planning process more successful: Align SEM goals with company strategy Build different scenarios to illustrate tradeoffs Engage with all stakeholders multiple times throughout the process A couple of years ago, I wrote a column about our Monthly Ref [...]

The Lazy Search Marketers Guide To Increasing Volume Without Adding New Keywords

Sick of spending afternoons reviewing raw query reports? We’ve all been there— pouring over keyword expansion tools trying to identify those stellar terms that your account may be missing. Adding new keywords and refining match types is certainly important for optimization, but it’s not necessarily the fastest way to increase volume. Often, advertisers focused on growing their paid search programs pay too much attention  to keyword expansion activities. It’s not surprising that this bias persists -- given the multitude of keyword tools out there such as Wordstream, Trellian, or Adg [...]

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