Search Engine Marketing (SEM) is nothing short of a revolutionary investment for small businesses. It allows you to target, track and hone in on different markets and segments that you may not be able to reach organically or otherwise.
Below we outline why SEM is vital for small businesses; how it levels the playing field, and what you can do to ensure you stand out from the crowd.
It aligns to your business goals.
One of the key benefits of SEM is that it is one of the few marketing methods that directly slots into your business goals and provides you with a wealth of data and insight – all thanks to conversion setting and tracking.
Setting up and aligning SEM campaigns to your business goals is as simple as setting up goals and conversion metrics in the Google Ad management platform.
The first step in your paid search strategy allows you to clearly articulate and align your SEM goals directly to critical business metrics, including trial sign ups, sales, newsletters and other metrics that you measure as part of your sales and marketing funnel.
SEM is a tool that is flexible to the ever changing needs and demands of your business and allows you to adapt and fine tune your strategy as new areas of focus come into play.
It allows for targeting and testing across market segments.
Targeting and testing are core components of SEM strategy and, with statistics ranging from impressions, clicks, conversions and other key metrics, you can clearly see what is working and what needs to be improved.
No matter your budget, you can test new campaigns and new markets quickly and easily. This ranges from focusing on campaigns for your usual market, seeing where your competitors are, testing new market segments and trying to reach new customers through niche and seasonal campaigns.
Testing new campaigns is easy with the built in keyword planner and ad variations that AdWords and other tools include in their platforms. They take your keywords and website copy and use AI to produce variants to test campaigns in SEM. This is especially useful for small businesses with limited resources.
Thanks to the various metrics and insights available for measuring your performance, you can optimise and continually build and test campaigns throughout the year, ensuring you can reach as many key market segments and customers at whatever stage of the journey and funnel they may be.
It increases brand awareness in current and new markets.
Thanks to the ability to target and test, SEM increases brand awareness in current and new markets for your business.
Visually-based SEM campaigns, including for new segments and targets, means your business appears where your customers are searching, which also adds to your brand awareness. This is an important factor for both current and new markets, especially given the increasing competition in the SEM space.
As brand awareness is a key pillar of any business strategy, appearing in relevant searches using SEM allows you to build your brand and bring new customers onboard, as quickly and efficiently as possible.
It is data driven and allows you to drive effective change.
Data driven decisions are critical for small businesses looking to improve, develop and grow. With SEM you are guaranteed a wealth of data and insight that allow you to continually improve, innovate and drive effective change across your marketing strategy and channels.
You can use the keyword planner to plan out new campaigns, see what your competitors are bidding on and drive growth in new markets.
At a high level, this data can be used to inform content, SEO and various other digital marketing efforts across your business, which is key to creating a cohesive brand.
It ties in and complements your overall digital marketing strategy.
SEM ties in and complements your overall digital marketing strategy by utilising data, insight and the competitor landscape to build a detailed understanding of what works for your business.
It informs everything from your content, SEO, thought leadership and seasonal campaigns in various markets, while allowing you to optimise your campaigns at the click of button.
For small businesses who are looking to make their mark and reach new customers, it’s no secret that SEM is a vital element in an effective digital marketing strategy.
Need help with SEM? Talk to the experts at Yellow Pages about a targeted SEM campaign to grow your business online.