Thrown in at the Deep End of PPC

Given that my role as Marketing Executive at TotallyMoney is my first job out of University, I hadn’t expected that within three weeks I’d be using AdWords Scripts to manage campaigns for one of our core services. I had, naïvely, thought that any tasks I might be given would be closely monitored and that, as someone new to the team, I might not be trusted with the responsibility of making my own marketing decisions.

 

Running the show

When Henry, the Head of Search, gave me a list of tasks to complete while he was on holiday for a week, I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had been asked to set up two new Paid Search campaigns and to implement an AdWords script on one of our ‘branding’ campaigns. Henry suggested Google’s ‘Bid to Position’ script to make sure that when people search for TotallyMoney, they see our ads. The script works by changing Cost Per Click (CPC) bids by a user-selected percentage until the ads hit a specified average search results position. Fortunately, I thought to myself, this should just be a matter of copying and pasting in the script and hitting ‘run’ – simple.

 

Unexpected developments

However, this was not to be – Google’s script adjusts bids across all campaigns within the account, rather than just one campaign. I set about Googling my problem and, after going down a few blind alleys, I finally thought that I had a solution. I added the snippet of code and previewed the results. Despite the code appearing fine, the bid adjustments were still being applied to all campaigns. At this point I decided to ‘call in the big guns’ in the form of Willem – a member of TotallyMoney’s development team. Drawing upon his extensive JavaScript knowledge, we eventually hit upon a piece of code that would allow me to select a specific campaign and use the script effectively.

 

Adapting to scale

After implementing the script, I set about building the two new campaigns, using my own ideas as well as the AdWords Keyword Planner. Once the campaigns were ready to launch I had to select a bid for each keyword, but should I trust Google’s suggested bids? I decided that scripts might hold the answer. One campaign had very low suggested bids, so I set the same low bid for each keyword and started using the ‘Bid to Position’ script to keep our ads prominent. The other had much higher suggested bids which I didn’t want to use, so I modified the script so that it targeted a minimum number of impressions for each keyword to help me learn what bids I should be setting.

Scripts Graph

Ready for the next challenge

Henry was pleased to see my progress, although he did suggest that I add some code to the scripts to set a maximum bid, so that they didn’t increase the bids indefinitely! As well as teaching me how automating tasks using scripts can make life much easier for a marketer, the exercise taught me a lot about how we work here at TotallyMoney: people are always happy to make time to work collaboratively to achieve our broader business objectives, responsibility is given based on competency rather than length of experience and that our build-measure-learn philosophy is a constant drive to improve performance.

 

   

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